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Growing Up In Public
Currently charming the under-crackers off of all and sundry thanks to their chart-bothering single ‘Little Talks’ and debut album My Head Is An Animal, Edwin McFee meets Icelandic indie folksters Of Monsters And Men to talk overnight success, cracking the States and why everyone thinks they’re Irish.
The Hot Press Newsdesk, 17 Oct 2012
“Mainstream ‘acceptance’ has been great for us — who wouldn’t love it?” begins the songwriter. “It means that your music is being heard by many people all over the world and it’s definitely a very positive thing. MTV have been great to us. In fact we filmed a secret show for them here in New York last night. I think it went well. It was kinda rough in the beginning — we had a lot of feedback and stuff, but we pulled through and it turned out fun. It was a great venue, I don’t remember the name, but it was an old cathedral or something like that and we had a circus act opening for us and sword-swallowers and stuff.”
While Raggi confesses that the band never initially set out to conquer America, he’s certainly enjoying his success and is trying to take it all in his stride.
“No, it was never an ambition to crack the States. When we recorded the album in Iceland we had no dreams of ever taking it anywhere else. We thought we’d tour it at home and then move on to the next one. We had some songs and wanted to make an album together and there was literally nothing else on our minds other than recording them.
“Our first American tour was quite interesting,” he chuckles. “It was fun but also a lot different than what we had done before. We would drive for like 24 hours straight just to get to the next venue and we saw a lot of cities but didn’t quite see them, you know? We just played in them and then went to the next one. It was a very surreal feeling and a culture shock. The people in each town were very welcoming, knew our songs and sang along. Every show was sold-out, which was great.”
Recorded in March 2011 and released that September in Iceland, My Head Is An Animal was unleashed in North America in April 2012 and then in Europe in August via-Universal. While the strategy of staggering the dates in specific territories has most certainly worked, we have to ask: how come it took so long for us to get our hands on the record? Was it something we said?