10 Questions With Minas on His Latest EP ‘Grazes' and More [Q&A]

If you like your music to sound like a dagger clenched between the teeth and live grenade in hand, then Minas will give you all that you can handle. The son of certified punk rock parents, Minas has the tunneling effect of sound, a brash cocoon of noise that strengthens and invigorates all of that negative energy we store inside. Wanting to know more about who this blunt truth speaker is, his US tour which leads into SXSW, and his Grazes EP, we sent some ransom notes aka questions to dig in.

OnesToWatch: Who is Minas?   

Minas: It started out as my outlet to vent my own frustrations and tell my own story during my time working as a producer. Then after showing a couple mates, it grew into the band it is now. The music covers stories from my life in the Welsh Valleys, which some mates of mine call No Man’s Land, my time as a young one growing up to parents who were involved with the circus, being exposed to a lot of mad stuff from an early age, and how I navigate life now as a kind of grown up. 

What is Grazes all about?  

It’s pretty much just a collection of rants of mine during a time I felt pretty disillusioned with my local scene. I love and hate it; it’s pretty competitive underneath all the hand-holding, and I’ve always really struggled to play that game. It’s the same with music, most are in it for their own agenda, almost to the point of guarding it with their lives that you never always know if you’re having an authentic relationship with someone.

How’d you settle on your very brash, rambunctious sound?  

Probably a combination of my parents being heavily involved in the 1980’s punk scene and how that shaped my early musical memories from the kinda stuff they’d play in the house. Then the way the circus we would go on the road with lived. They’d perform these massive and dark theatrical shows every night then party til the early hours. It was a fast-paced life and after experimenting with various different sounds for Minas the one we have kinda clicked and felt the most authentic to us and the message we’re trying to convey. We also moved around a lot in my youngest years. I was born in Athens, Greece before my parents returned with me as a newborn to the UK, so life’s always been a bit mismatched.

Any collaborations on the project? Who produced the EP? 

Yeah, two features, one artist who’s also one of my best mates who I’ve worked with for years, Razkid. Then Freddy Forbidden, who’s an artist I was initially a massive fan of and have since become friends with. He’s sick. I produced the EP myself, and so far I’ve produced everything we do. That might never change, but who knows? There are a few collaborations tracks I’ve been working on with other artists where the production is shared but as far as songs that go out as us it’s all been me. 

How do you feel your sound has evolved or changed since All My Love Has Failed Me? 

I’d say it’s developed to a slightly more mature place, but it’s hard to say when comparing an EP to an album. There are a lot less tracks to work with. The album was pretty diverse, but I’d say definitely with the material we’ve been working on post-Grazes, there’s a real shift in the sound.

Can we expect more of this style in the future? Or you always looking to change it up? 

There’ll always be an element for sure. We’ve really created a style that’s our own so we’re trying to push that as far as we can. However, we’ve always done songs that really have their own style due to the lyrical content and what it’s about so there’s a lot to play with I feel.

Besides this excellent EP, what else should we be on the lookout for? 

After we get back from the US, we’re going to be a lot more active with live shows now. A lot of people have felt that seeing the project live really hammers home what we’re about, so always eager to get people who’re interested there. Then, as I mentioned earlier, I’ve been working with artists I love and am lucky enough to make music with and it’s really given me a chance to try out different sides of Minas, I’m mad excited for those.

What’s inspiring you right now outside of music? 

I guess just trying to understand what’s going on in the world. Not so much what I’d call inspiring, more confusing, but that’s always where I’ve written from. I’ve made music for as long as I can remember, and it kind of became a way for me to process and figure things out that are frying my head. Aside from that though, and as it always has, the music I make with others as a producer is constantly inspiring me. I always get inspired by how other artists approach their art.

Food or drink best suited to going down the rabbit hole of your work? 

A decent Gyros Souvlaki and a pint of good old Guinness. 

Who are your OnesToWatch? 

I’d have to say Freddy Forbidden, Blackhaine, Space Afrika & Rainy Miller, Sorry Stacy, Kitty, Razkid, Figo, Chroma, Em Kokko, Spit Hood, SHLUG, too many to name to be honest, but yeah.

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