One of the most incandescent and creative humans on the planet is The FMs front-person Matte Namer. What at first glance appears to be a quiet laid-back ambience, Namer and The FMs (femmes, females to males, fuck me sillies) explode on stage taking the audience on a journey through an intellectual insanity, leading the crowds into a different realm of sensibility and exploration. Giving away avocado one by one, The FMs can be seen in the Showtime film “Fluidity” performing their hit single “Change Your Men Up.”
In response to current planet events, has it altered your musical creativity either by enhancing or stifling it?
Societal upheaval has always been a fascination for me lyrically, and when I was younger, i wrote an entire concept album about the apocalypse (or the end of human civilization or whatever you want to call it). When I was fifteen, I witnessed the world trade center falling down from my high school two blocks away and felt called to become a musician shortly thereafter. In a certain sense at this particular moment though I am doing both reflection as well as foretelling. About a year ago I wrote a song called Silent City about a pandemic causing fear and isolation in NYC and even though intellectually I was always aware of this reality, it’s still truly bizarre and strange to see it actually unfolding. As my foreboding mind peers into the future I worry and thus write about the cultural civil war taking place in this country accelerating into a violent one and how the COVID-19 crisis (happening amidst a census and presidential election) could help catalyze it. ** As a note for the rest of this interview I’m going to refer to COVID-19 as the #trumppandemic because he and his disgusting narcissism are responsible for the severity of the crisis in the US right now. From firing the entire US Pandemic response team in 2018 to cut costs, severely downplaying the threat and consistently providing misleading information to the public, mismanaging resources, and bragging about his high viewer ratings for his #trumppandemic news briefs, a lot of the blood of this crisis in the US is on his hands squarely.
Explain the avocado?
This is actually the perfect follow up question to that heavy answer on the last one haha. Obviously it’s a bit of a joke. Poking fun at my generation, poking fun at all the jaded Brooklyn hipsters, poking fun at the times we live in and therefore poking fun at myself. In NYC (before the #trumppandemic, everything is different now) you’d basically only be able to get people to leave their house if you were hosting an event with live sex acts between fire eating clowns who did it upside down thirty feet in the air, free LSD at the door and celebrities doling out caviar enemas. However, there’s a bit of a joke that millennials spend all their income on rent and avocados, so we figured perhaps it could be an effective marketing technique to give some out at our shows. A friend recently told me, quite sincerely in fact that it was the best commentary he’s ever seen on our generation. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
What are your plans when this situation finally comes to an end?
It seems like as a society we are on the very beginning of a very chaotic journey. I’m really hoping that at the end of that road we will have collectively grown our capacity to love and take care of one another. Musicians depend entirely on live entertainment for their incomes and its fairly easy to imagine that concerts will only start happening at the very end of this #trumppandemic nightmare road. Hopefully when that does happen though there will be an up-swell of support from music fans ushering in a new renaissance that The FMs will be ready for !!!
Since your movie debut have new opportunities open up for you?
I’m still waiting for the call to be offered the part of Joe in the new Joe Exotic movie, but the execs are just a little slow to get back to me during the #trumppandemic. (Although truth be told if I had to I’d play the toothless, shirtless husband)
Can you talk about any new releases?
Our second album is actually being mastered right as we do this interview. It’s actually a tremendously huge deal for us. We’ve been working on it for three years straight and spent thousands of hours working on it. “Silent City” is one of the tracks on it actually. It wasn’t one that we were originally imagining would be a single, but now that it seems quite prophetic, we’re maybe going to work on a video for it and put together what we can in the age of social distancing. I think it will end up being a pretty interesting project.
We also recently finished a single with Miss Cherry Delight called “Annihilation Denial”. Also relevant content, that song is about a lack of imagination that humanity has around its own demise, in this case focusing on climate change. We hope to release that single on April 22nd for earth day.
Can you recall a moment that changed the trajectory of your life?
Years into the future I think I will answer this question by saying this particular moment that we are living in today.
If you could help me ask you any question in the world what would it be at this point in time and how would you answer it?
Seriously, everyone make sure to go fill out the Census. It takes five minutes online and is perhaps even more important than voting this year. Federal resources and congressional districts are constitutionally determined by this for the next ten years and the #trumppandemic isn’t stopping the timeline or the process. Here’s the link: https://www.2020census.gov
What are you currently working on?
Generally, I’m caught between the pull of two paths right now. One is to rest, re-evaluate, contemplate and grow. The second feeling is one of a call to action, to speak out, to help others, and to be creative with the new reality we face.
Featured Image by Dylan Mars Greenberg