Interview: As Strange As Angels

Dallas, Texas based As Strange As Angels is a new project from former Murder FM frontman Norman Matthew.  He has just recently released a new single “Mirror Mirror” with a new EP being released on April 26. Norman was kind enough to talk with us about many things including events in his personal life that drive his creativity, his new EP, and Mötley Crüe.

Alt Revolt: How were your recent shows with John Corabi?

As Strange As Angels: They were awesome! The ones in Arkansas and Dallas were especially crazy! I didn’t know what to expect with just coming out of the gate with a new single “Mirror Mirror”. I have the record coming out and not doing my own stuff for two years is was crazy to see that anyone cared. It was great to see people feeling and connecting with it.

Alt Revolt: How was it working with John at these shows?

As Strange As Angels: John is awesome and really low key. He rocked it. This guy is the real deal.  I learned a lot from him.

Alt Revolt: Is John performing any of the material from the self-titled Mötley Crüe album from 1994?

As Strange As Angels: He did a really cool version of “Hooligan’s Holiday” and “Misunderstood”. I loved that record and I love Mötley Crüe! I was only 10 years old when that came out and I didn’t care who the singer was but I remember the Corabi stuff kicked ass. Corabi was so hospitable and nice to us. He took care of us and we had a great experience.

Alt Revolt: Have you seen the Mötley Crüe ‘The Dirt’ movie?

As Strange As Angels: Absolutely! I got a message from Tommy Lee congratulating me on our chart position. He said “You are on the chart with the Crüe baby”. “Welcome to the circus”.

Alt Revolt: Has the reaction to “Mirror Mirror” exceeded your expectations?

As Strange As Angels: 1 Billion %. I went through a couple rough years with a divorce and the challenges it presented. Life does not prepare you for it. It jacked up my head. I had ridiculous amounts of awareness and ridiculous amounts of low self-esteem that made the music thing really difficult. I remember telling my manager that I wasn’t sure if anyone was going to like this stuff. We went full throttle and grabbed the #1 most added on Billboard the first week it was out. It was crazy! It has been massive. I would have never expected it.

Alt Revolt: How has the experience working with Sahaj Ticotin?

As Strange As Angels: Sahaj was amazing! He broke me open. We were doing these sessions in Los Angles the same time as the fires. There was a crazy tension in the air. I worked with him for less than 48 hours and kicked out two songs. He was pushing me so far. I swore I was going to cry. It was the sweetest ass kicking I have ever had. He had me singing thigs I never thought I could be singing.

Alt Revolt: Would you ever work with him again?

As Strange As Angels: Absolutely! We already have plans to work on some more stuff. He is super hot right now especially working on the Mötley Crüe ‘The Dirt’ soundtrack.

Alt Revolt: Has the events in your personal life pushed you creatively on this project?

As Strange As Angels: Absolutely! There was a lot of therapy and counseling. I learned to embrace it. This was a challenging thing in my life and I turned it into a positive. There must be people who feel the way I do. Everyone goes through adversity if their life and I channeled those obstacles and got excited to break things open in counseling. It broke open a part of me emotionally to better connect to my music.  Murder FM was an amazing band. Those guys are some of my best friends. Those are some of the best times of my life. But it was character driven. (Manson, Rob Zombie, and Korn). As Strange As Angels for me is bare bones real and vulnerable. That is why we started with the acoustic shows. It is the spirit of extreme exposure and vulnerability, let’s do acoustic shows. I have been hearing responses from fans that I have tapped into their soul and touched their lives. I wanted to do something different. If I was going to go at it again in music I needed to bring something to the table or not do it at all. I changed my self physically, mentally, and emotionally. I try to keep it real from top to bottom. I wanted to make a difference and challenge myself to evolve.

Alt Revolt: The song “Love and Death” is my favorite from the new EP. Can you tell me about this song?

As Strange As Angels: “Love and Death” is the second song I worked on. I ended up working on it with my best friend C.J. Pierce from Drowning Pool. He plays guitar on the track. It was the first time where I really started to open up. I was real skidish until I hit the riff in “Love and Death” and realized that I found that thing again. I found that thing that I love about my music again. I took it to C.J. and he amped it up then finished it up with Mick Kenney who has worked with Motionless in White. After working on that riff, I told myself that I was not done yet. I have another chapter to write.  I want my son to see me do it. He is with me all the way. I wrote that riff with him falling asleep at my feet. The entire EP except for “Mirror Mirror” was done with my son Dexter laying next to me.

Alt Revolt: Are there challenging things in the musical climate today that you did not see 5 or 10 years ago.

As Strange As Angels: Yes and No. It is weird. I have got through big personal challenges. It is not as shocking to me today. I look at things through a different set of glasses. We were young and 17 and had a developmental deal with Capital Records. We were after fame, stardom, and world domination. My goals are different now. I have learned to embrace it. The scene and model has changed. I’m just going to grow with it. There is a niche for everybody. If you are willing to hustle and do the work there is an audience for your music.

Alt Revolt: Do you have any upcoming tour plans?

As Strange As Angels: Yes. We just have been building this one brick at a time. I didn’t know if anyone would react or care. I didn’t want to be the guy that showed up to the party uninvited. We are going to where the people want to hear it. It has taken off! We will definitely we doing some shows.

Alt Revolt: Is this new EP only released digitally?

As Strange As Angels: It is only digital at the moment. But I think we are going vinyl with it. But we have another EP we are working on later this year and I would love to release it as one vinyl with side A being EP #1 and side B being EP #2.

Alt Revolt: Good luck and thanks for taking the time to answer my questions.

As Strange As Angels: Thanks for being an early believer! I appreciate it.

As Strange As Angels is:
Norman Matthew – Vocals, Guitar
Nicholas Klinger – Bass, backing vocals
Michelle Graves- Drums

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