Another weekend has gone and a new edition of Skoped Out is here. This week we decided to head below the equator to check out a band making some heavy noise called Megarex. What caught me most from these guys is their ability to write catchy hooks. I got hooked on Megarex after listening to their new EP, ‘The Recyclable Data EP.’ Join us this week as we talk about gaining recognition in the US, Brazilian women, grooming, and much more. The boys are also offering an MP3 of “Alien” for all Skope readers!
Stoli: Where are you chatting with me from today?
Megarex: I’m in Brazil, preparing to go to Austin to play at SXSW!
Stoli: What is the meaning behind the name Megarex?
Megarex: A few people know this but in 1887 a group of Italian archeologists found an exquisite crypt carved in the middle of nowhere in the region that used to be the old Mesopotamia. Inside that crypt they found a giant golden vase, and in this vase it was written “MegaRex”. Although there is still no unanimity, most of the archeologists believe that the word means “an onion a day keeps everyone away”.
Stoli: How did you three come together and were you friends before the music?
Megarex: Yes, me and Tibira are childhood friends and we already played together in lots of bands, including a RUSH tribute when we were teenagers. Paulinho started to play with us on a music festival in Brazil, in 2003, and he’s been with us since then.
Stoli: I love to try and guess what the lead single is off new albums I listen to. I would have to choose “Alien.” Is that correct and what inspired that awesome song?
Megarex: Thank you for the “awesome song”! Well, we are releasing our first album sung in English (Recyclable Data) in EP format this time, but soon we will release the complete album (there’s a lot of new songs being produced), so there’s a chance that another lead single candidate may appear, but for now yes, I think “Alien” is the chosen one.
About the inspiration for “Alien”: one day I started to imagine what an Alien would think of us if he could spend one day one Earth. Of course I took the Brazilian culture in reference, but I think there are lots of things in the lyrics that fit in almost every culture…
Recyclable Data EP available here: www.cdbaby.com/cd/MegaRex
Stoli: Why did you decide to call this album, ‘Recyclable Data’ and are you a “Green” band?
Megarex: Hahaha (LOL). Recyclable Data is a joke about the way music is consumed nowadays. There are lots of people who listen to a new band and elect them as the best band in the world, and next week they do the same thing with another band and the previous elected artist is discharged and “dated”. So Recyclable Data is a joke about that, you can use our songs for your hearing pleasure and them throw it away and recycle. The intention behind the name has nothing to do with ecology, but of course I’m very concerned about that issue.
Stoli: How easy or hard was it to translate the album from Portuguese to English?
Megarex: I think “extremely hard” would better describe the process. Almost all of my lyrics (in Portuguese) are humored, and to do an English version that keeps the same kind of humor and adapt the jokes and expressions to another culture, adding to that some rhymes and rhythms… it’s not an easy task. I was lucky of being helped by a fantastic Brazilian teacher, an American musician and teacher and a Canadian friend. I hope it worked…
Megarex “Alien” MP3:
Stoli: You have a huge following in Brazil. What made you want to venture out and reach beyond your borders?
Megarex: That’s a very good question, and people ask me often in here too. Brazil is a very complicated market. At the same time that there’s a huge number of music consumers, the business runs in a very unprofessional way. This can be very frustrating in the long term, especially when you are trying to do things right. I know that there’s not a perfect place to work, but at least we are feeling and experiencing that outside Brazil things are more professional and in the long term we think we will achieve something more gratifying. I’m experiencing this right now, chatting with you.
Stoli: If I was to visit Brazil where can I see some live music and beautiful Brazilian women?
Megarex: LOL (or Hahahaha). It depends on your preference. Beautiful women can be found everywhere in Brazil. On the North you will find beautiful Brazilian women descending from Africans, on the South you will find lots of blondes (descendents from European, especially German, Italian and Portuguese). In the rest of the country they are all mixed!
Stoli: Flavio has the perfect look and sound as a lead singer. Was it known that he would be the face behind Megarex?
Megarex: Thanks again for your kind words ;-), but I don’t see myself like that. I just always wanted to write my own songs and be able to play and sing them. But I understand that since I’m the lead singer and composer I’ll be seen like the face behind MegaRex.
Stoli: Flavio also writes all the songs. How much of his personal life come out in the lyrics?
Megarex: I think it’s inevitable to put some of my personal experiences in the lyrics, because ultimately I try to sing how I see the world. Sometimes I try putting myself in someone else’s shoes and tell their stories, but my personal experience will always interfere. Lately I’m writing some songs about meditation (like “Angel” or the next coming “Dynamite”), but since I’m not sure if it’s a popular theme, I try to sound a little ambiguous so the listener could easily think I’m talking about a woman. And I could be. Or not. Or both. It depends on the listener perspective.
Stoli: When will Megarex come up to New England and play live Boston?
Megarex: I’m praying for it to be very soon! We are being played in lots of College Radios in the US right now, so our next step is to do a tour to support the media we are getting. We hope to find a good booking agent to make things easier for us.
Stoli: How did you hook up with Jamie Siegel and what has that connection done to elevate your sound?
Megarex: Jamie and I met through My Space, his associate is Brazilian and she was promoting their company to Brazilian bands. Jamie is known for working with artists such as Joss Stone, Smashing Pumpkins, Lauryn Hill, Santana, Whitney Houston (among many others), and he showed a lot of interest in our music. I sent him the songs I was already producing, and he wanted to re-mix them to sound more “powerful”. And I think that’s exactly what he did: he “trimmed the edges” (I don’t know if this is an American expression too…) and made the sound bigger and more powerful.
Stoli: What’s up with your press shot with all three of you grooming yourself and would you consider yourselves clean cut?
Megarex: Haha, not at all. We were making the photo shots for the album and press and we already had some good ones, but there was nothing really new about it, just the same “trying to look like a band” faces and posing. Then I remember saying, “what if we take some pictures like we where doing something fool in front of the mirror?” Then we tried lots of stupid things, and it ended up on that unusual band shot.
Stoli: What have you found have been great marketing tools to garner new fans in Brazil & beyond?
Megarex: I think what worked better in Brazil so far was Youtube. We had more than 250.000 views in less than one year, increasing our sales, downloads, mailing list etc. In the US we are using MySpace, Sonicbids, Twitter (every week we find a new website), a college radio campaign and we are fortunate enough to work with a first-class musical consultant, Mr. Eugene Foley.
Stoli: What is coming up for Megarex and where can readers get more from you?
Megarex: We are planning to do some serious touring and a larger campaign in the US as soon as we can. We are also writing and recording some new songs that will be available soon.
People can see everything related to our 1st album (in Portuguese) in Youtube and at www.megarex.com.br.
Now we are working on our 2nd album (1st sung in English), and people can get more of that at www.myspace.com/megarex, www.sonicbids.com/megarex and www.megarex.net. The last one is our official website which is not completely finished yet. On our MySpace page there’s also links to Twitter, Youtube etc.
And last but not least, anybody who wants to see us live at SXSW should go to the Opal Divine’s Freehouse on March 19th. (http://www.opaldivines.com/freehouse/index.html)
Thank you very much and it was a pleasure chatting with you!