MONEY The Band Brings Their Poetic Rock To LA


MONEY plays the Echo in LA Sept. 9
Photo by: Julien Bourgeois

MONEY are Jamie Lee, Charlie Cocksedge, Billy Byron, and Scott Beaman, a 4-piece band who describes their music as poetic and atmospheric. Their music videos receive great praise and their love for music is clearly shown with their tracks. They will be touring the US for the first time next month hitting The Echo in LA on Sept. 9.

They have their debut, The Shadow Of Heaven, has a range of music styles from ballads to more upbeat tracks – they describe their album as “a look at modern man and arrive at a poetic denomination of where he is at this point in history. And by that I mean the everyday man.” They have musical influences such as Phillip Glass and Daniel Johnston who all share their love for the art of music, which is something MONEY shows.

OCCG recently caught up with MONEY to talk about their debut album and inspirations for their videos and tracks.

OCCG: What’s the inspiration behind the band’s name? — What brought you guys together to form a group?
Money: Drunkenness, love, art are all attempts to destroy materiality. I think that an artist creates something out of a place where materiality does not exist but is always ashamed of him/herself when that artwork is forced to exist in the world where it inevitably becomes material. That is why we called the band MONEY because we cannot help being the one thing that we wish not to be. If we were to understand the true value of a great work of art we would go mad I think. Perhaps all artists who work to becoming a public entity through their art are guilty of this hypocrisy: knowing that the performance of their art is at odds with the unworldly urge to create it. I like the men in bars who sing into their gin glasses.

Manchester is a place where materiality is not present – it seems to exist outside of time and I always say that people in Manchester are all symbolically dead. It is a physical realization of the underworld. It is hopeless, drunk, has a direct and boisterous intellect and language.

OCCG: Your videos receive such great praise — Is coming up with video concepts a harder thing to think of or easier since you already know the song in the video?
Money: Coming up with ideas for a video is always very easy. Sound and image are always linked together – whenever you listen to music it is always accompanied by an image or experience: you are being shouted at by your girlfriend/you have herpes for the first time etc. I think it must be very painful to hear a piece of music in the dark because you are being deprived of one of its essential limbs.

OCCG: How would you describe your music/sound?
Money: Atmospheric, poetic, aggressive, ethereal, joyous, melancholy… All creations of art are acts of desperation.

OCCG: What/who are some of the band’s influences whether its individual influences or all together as a group?
Money: Individually we each have many and varied influences, from Philip Glass to Daniel Johnston, but collectively we like popular music that in some way subverts its heritage. The hymn is the great ancestor of the pop song – they are catchy so that the sentiment can be remembered and they are sung in congregation and they both are acts of praise towards cultural tropes of the day: today; love for instance. But there aren’t any love songs on this record really.

OCCG: Tell me more about your debut album — what were some of the inspirations behind the album?
Money: Lyrically I wanted to make a record that tried to look at modern man and arrive at a poetic denomination of where he is at this point in history. And by that I mean the everyday man. The man on the street which I am fascinated with. I am always more interested in an everyday person who expresses something profound than an academic or someone who is educated. It seemed to me that modern man has created the assumption that he is superior to his own history; that he is some kind of God by comparison to his past while at the same time being told that he is nothing. It is his challenge to find meaning in this void; to discover its beauty, to discern Heaven from Hell when they are found lying at every point simultaneously, to make meaning out of this impossible loneliness and yet still retain his capacity for human dreams. Our album is about the reasons why we fall in love, the reasons why we drink, the reasons why we sleep – it’s all to slow time down a little bit. To lose all self-consciousness which then produces what we call Heaven. Writing music, or making art, drinking, falling in love are all attempts to create more time. To live more. And also a vehement attack against the finality of death and the cruelty of reality.

OCCG: Is there a certain city on your US tour you’re most excited to play? — Why?
Money: We’ve never been to America before so we’re excited to play everywhere really. We’re lucky to be seeing both east and west, but just like Europe and the U.K sometimes the smallest places are the best – we can’t tell until we get there I suppose…