TMHM, originally known as The Man And His Machine, are a Canadian group whose full-length debut album is Stage Names. Dylan Nash introduces to TMHM, this week’s Meet The Band featured artist.
Chad Bowar: Give us a brief history of TMHM.
Dylan Nash: TMHM has been together since mid-2011. We originally started as a 5-piece, but over the years of touring, recording and developing our sound we’ve downsized to four members. After we had the opportunity to record 5 EPs and do multiple Canadian tours we finally felt ready to release our first full length this year, and start working towards touring out of Canada.
We decided to shorten the band name after years of seeing people abbreviate the name for tours and events. “The Man And His Machine” was quite a mouthful, and there were many variations of those words in other bands’ names, so it just felt right. We’re still in the process of transitioning though.
Describe the songwriting and recording process for Stage Names.
After getting home from an eastern Canadian tour in 2015 we decided to hunker down for the entire winter and focus on writing. Our songwriting process for the album was very communal during the pre-production phase. Everyone in the band pitched ideas and after a few months we came up with a solid foundation for the album.
We drove 20 hours out to Vancouver and laid it down at Rain City Recorders in a quick four-day session. We had a limited amount of time to record the album, so it produced an urgency that you can hear throughout the album. Working with Stu and Mark at Rain City was a great experience, they both contributed to the vibe of the album in a big way.
How would you characterize the album’s style/sound?
The album has a pretty diverse atmosphere throughout. We try to maintain a chaotic and dark vibe throughout the album while having groovy rock riffs and punk rhythms break it up. The entire thing is pretty high energy and we try to give a feeling of desperation in every song both vocally and musically.
What has been your most memorable live show?
I think one of our most memorable shows was in the basement of an abandoned dental office in Toronto a few years ago. One of the smallest rooms we have ever played and definitely one of the most interesting crowds. The promoter literally took the mic before we played and told the audience that if anyone moshes into the water heater the entire building might blow up. The water heater was like two feet from the mosh pit so there was a tangible feeling of death approaching throughout the set.
What are your upcoming show/tour plans?
We’re embarking on our third eastern Canadian tour in a few weeks to promote the new album. We’re teaming up with an amazing band called The Apex from Windsor for most of the shows out east. We’ll be travelling further than we’ve ever been so everyone is very excited. We’ll be doing everywhere from Ontario to Prince Edward Island. After this year’s tour we’re going to start the process of getting into the USA, which seems like a lot of work.
Who are your musical heroes?
It’s hard to put all our heroes into one answer, but we’re definitely influenced by some bands like The Gorgeous, Red Fang, Converge, and Graveyard. We’ve had the opportunity to play with some people we really look up to like Fuck The Facts and Architects, so we feel pretty lucky.
What are some of your non-musical interests and hobbies?
We’re a pretty mellow group of guys for the most part. Some of us snowboard, skateboard and do some video/photography stuff, but it’s mostly just work and music these days. Our drummer is taking care of a child right now, so the house that we jam has had an unusually infantile vibe as of late. Drinking also helps pass the time.
What’s currently in your heavy musical rotation?
A band called Maritime Bleach just put out an amazing EP called God’s Teeth. Everyone in the band has been pretty into it. It’s got some amazing songwriting that mutates from grungy rock to beautiful melodies. Definitely worth checking out if you’re looking for something unique and honest.
What’s the heavy music scene like in Saskatchewan?
Saskatchewan’s heavy music scene is great. There’s lots of musicians here that are putting out all kinds of heavy material. A pretty diverse range of genres here as well. There’s a handful of promoters that put their entire lives into the scene here just to keep it alive. They definitely don’t get enough recognition for their efforts.
The only downfall is the low population and distances between here and other large cities. I think everyone in the scene here makes up for it with heart and soul, though.
Anything else you’d like to mention/plug/promote?
We’re heading on tour in a few weeks with The Apex and they’re releasing a new EP. Definitely give that a listen once it comes out. For fans of Dillinger Escape Plan and unpredictable metal. Thanks for the opportunity for the interview!
(interview published August 20, 2016)