Mission Control - Under Control
Indie dance act Mission Control are about to release their debut EP Innerspace, so 3D’s Robert Blamire got on the blower to find out more.
Melbourne quartet Mission Control were formed nearly two years ago after frontman Raph Brous called it quits with his psychedelic-rock band in order to attempt what he defines as “something more distinctive, original, and futuristic.”
A couple of celebrity endorsements from home and abroad have built hype around the band. In particular, Philippe Zdar, one half of French powerhouse Cassius, sent encouraging feedback after visiting the band’s MySpace profile and spoke of his desire to work with them in the future.
“It wasn’t random, though,” Brous admits. “I actually sent him a message first, in French, as I thought he’d like our stuff.” Using the little high school French he remembered, Brous brought about what would become a significant seal of approval. “Kim from the Presets and Philippe were both really positive, which was very encouraging as they’re both in a position to know what’s good.”
However, the thought of being labeled an internet hit does not sit well with Brous. “The idea of a MySpace success story, in inverted commas, is a fallacy,” he says. “Lily Allen, who is considered the biggest, was signed to EMI before she even had a song up. There are just so many bands on there, and just a deluge of music. With bands using sneaky programs to boost friends and play counts it’s hard to know who is genuinely popular. How do unsigned bands with no releases have thousands of friends- A robot.”
There have been some changes in the band’s line-up along the way, most notably the departure of lead singer Lodi Zambruno, with Brous stepping up to take his place. “There’s been a shift – nothing monumental – I had done a lot of back up anyway, and I wrote all of the songs and lyrics,” he says. As well as lead vocals, Brous takes keys, guitar, and bass duties at various times, and also serves as manager. “We’ve found a good label and good people without paying lots for management. It’s important for bands to know what’s going on around them and be proactive in their careers.”
Interestingly, Mission Control cut their teeth in the studio, rather than on the live stage. “We wanted to be tight and impressive right from the start,” Brous says. “We spent about a year making demos, using a little studio just outside Melbourne, and had eight well mixed tracks and a full setlist before our first gig.”
Now, after two years of preparation, Mission Control are about to embark on their debut national tour as headliners. “Our live performance has a lot of energy in it, a really big sound that is both very melodic and very fucked up,” Brous says, before adding, “and it is always improving!”
WHO: Mission Control
WHAT: Innerspace through etcetc/Universal / Play Oxford Art Factory
WHEN: Saturday 13 September