With so much focus on the relationship between a lead vocalist and their go-to producer, bands are a rare, almost confusing concept for this generation: Drake and 40, Futureand Metro Boomin, that makes sense. So The Internet, who surfaced during Odd Future’s rise to infamousy at the end of 2011, must be Syd Tha Kid with producer Matt Martians right?
When the media were struggling to distinguish between Debbie Harry and Blondie back in the 70’s, their then manager built the infamous ‘Blondie is a group’ campaign around it, with fans sporting buttons and t-shirts carrying the slogan. In a subtler fashion, this is the statement that’s being made by the cover of The Internet’s Grammy nominated third LP, Ego Death. Rather than the obscured imagery of the previous records, this time around the full band appear in plain sight against a bright orange background. The band pose informally; Matt still has his earbuds hanging around his neck, and it looks as though they aren’t even all looking at the same camera. Yet it’s the single most iconic image of the full band, and it’s the thing that Matt Martians is proudest of about their third body of work.
“It’s shining light on everybody else in the band,” he says. “It’s dope that they can see all of the other parts of this big puzzle. So I’m proud of that cover, that everybody was on it.”
The band are spread across Manchester Academy’s narrow dressing room area, Matt Martians perched on a stool while Syd “Tha Kyd” Bennett lays across a chair with the hood of her red puffa jacket pulled over her head. Bassist Patrick Paige is sat within ear shot, but is drifting in and out of slumber land, while drummer, Chris Smith, is fixated on his phone and Jameel Bruner, the man behind the keys, is hunched over his laptop. The sixth member, Steve Lacy, isn’t here for the tour – he’s still in school and is focused on completing his studies right now. They are exhausted right now, yet still maintain that the main focus of their third album was to create a better album and build a bigger following so that they can avoid getting “real jobs”.