nothing, nowhere On Touring Australia For The First Time
‘What I try to portray in this record is yeah nothing matters, which is the saddest thing in the world but it’s also the most motivating and beautiful thing in the world cause if nothing matters, you make your own meanings.’
Joe Mulherin the mastermind behind nothing, nowhere talks candidly about his music before his first ever tour of Australia next week. He is well versed on our weather and culture which means no, he won’t be doing a shoey.
nothing nowhere is the multi-instrumentalist, lyricist and singers cathartic release to the world and musically it switches from rap, to death metal, pop punk, acoustic ballads and anywhere else the mind takes it on record. What though can audiences expect from a live show?
‘The scene I came up in in Soundcloud, there was a lot of signers and rappers who would just perform with a backing track. When I started touring in 2016, I grew up in the hardcore DIY scene and I really appreciate bands. I just love seeing guitars and drums so I always knew I wanted to do that. So I started with one of my friends I grew up with, his name is Burt, and he plays bass for me right now, and we sort of built a band around that. Right now my guitarist is Blake who use to play in bands like Counterparts and Gideon while drummer David is from an amazing hardcore band out of Nashville called Chambers. So what you guys can expect over there is it’s a lot heavier live than it is in the recordings. It’s just a blast and I think people are surprised when they see mosh pits break out. It’s fun.’
With a back catalogue of different genres, does the band go heavy live or mix and match?
‘I love to mix and match but I’m like most musicians and my favourite work is the most current work. So I do the new stuff but especially going somewhere I’ve never been before, I gotta make sure I hit the older stuff. We usually just beef it up, make it heavy and fun.
To me, growing up going to shows, I still go to shows, I like to see something different from the album, I think some people like hearing a band exactly like the record but for me I like a different experience and that’s what I try to bring to it personally.’
The latest album release, 2021 Trauma Factory deals with a variety of experiences and emotions, all showing the depth and clarity of Mulherin’s work.
‘I’d say it encapsulates my life story of the past two years when I recorded it. And that includes relationships and personal mental health struggles. I treat my albums as a diary and sometimes I share too much. That’s how I always approach music and Trauma Factory was an amalgamation of ups and downs. I released it peak pandemic and I just wanted to action that weird dark feeling everyone was having into a record and I think it came across pretty well. It’s pretty depressing but at the same time it has its moments of some light at the end of the tunnel’
Recently dropped tracks like M1sery_Syndrome and Cyan1de featuring Fall Out Boy’s Pete Wentz are much heavier musically however now post pandemic are the lyrics all sunshine and rainbows now?
‘Haha, I think the people who listen to my music know that’s not the case. That’s not to say that I’m some sort of brooding permanently depressed individual, I mean I do have my own mental health struggles which a lot of people, especially in the alternative music space do, but this upcoming record is definitely not sunshine and rainbows. I’ve been fascinated with the intersection of nihilism passing with religions like Buddhism and the idea of that nothing matters, that stoic Marcus Aurelius viewpoint that nothing matters. What I try to portray in this record yeah nothing matters which is the saddest thing in the world but it’s also the most motivating and beautiful thing in the world cause if nothing matters you make your own meanings.
Having these dark lyrics and heavy material helps me cause I can put it to paper and not have to carry it around in my heart. In return I get people come up to at my shows and say ‘your music really helped me’ so it’s sort of that double edged sword. It’s dark yes but it helps me and people who listen to it cause they know they’re not alone.’
You’ve appeared with Sum 41, Dashboard Confessional to make a few, do you ever pinch yourself and go wtf?
‘Every day! Every day! I try to never forget where I started and where I’m at now. It’s a mind blowing thing cause when you’re younger , if you have parents you really care and motivate you, they will most often say you can put your head toward anything, you can achieve anything. And when you’re younger you go yeah I can but as you get older you go ‘there’s no way I’m gonna be on a song with my idols, in the studio with Travis Barker from Blink 182.’ I always have to pinch myself but I’m also accepting lately I deserve to be here, I worked hard to be here and I’m just grateful to be here now.’
While he will be grateful to be touring Australia, just don’t give him a shoey.
Interview By Iain McCallum
Catch nothing, nowhere on the following dates, tickets from Destroy All Lines…