Last week, when MTV News was in Las Vegas for the kickoff of the Blink-182 reunion tour, Mark Hoppus volunteered to do our job for us: interviewing his friends in [artist id="1236080"]Motion City Soundtrack[/artist] about their new record (which, conveniently, he produced).
Naturally, we said yes, and we were shocked when Hoppus donned the reporter’s fedora (figuratively speaking) and got the guys in MCS to reveal the top-secret title of said record: My Dinosaur Life.
And since part one of Hoppus’ interview went so well, we decided to roll out part two today: In it, MCS talk at length about how great it was working with the Blink bassist on not one, but two of their albums, his great (yet unorthodox) production techniques, and, really, just how great he is in general.
“You’re pretty much awesome and, like, the best person that I’ve ever met,” MCS guitarist Josh Cain told Hoppus. “Just being around you, I’m more creative and better at what I do.”
Hoppus then asked Motion City frontman Justin Pierre how his “hands-on” approach to producing inspired the band to make My Dinosaur Life their best album yet.
“I think when you came in that one day, about a week into recording, and you were physically beating me and said, ‘I’m going to beat this record into you, until you get it right,’ ” Pierre explained. “That really hit me.”
These days, tapping Hoppus to produce your album is a no-brainer. But, back in 2004, MCS took a risk when they asked Hoppus to helm the sessions for their Commit This to Memory album. After all, he’d never produced a record in his life.
“We started having these conversations with you, I remember, in the dressing room in Italy [MCS opened for Blink on tours of Europe and Japan in 2004], and we were talking about different producers, like, possible people like Jerry Finn, who you’d think would be right for us,” Cain told Hoppus. “Because you had come out and said you liked our band … and in that conversation, you were talking about how you made your last record and you bought all that gear, [and] how much you were into recording. I was like, ‘Why don’t we just ask him to do it?’ We were pretty confident in our band, [and] musically, we didn’t feel like we needed someone to come in and change us. We wanted someone to come in that likes us.”
“I think it was a combination of several things,” Pierre added. “One thing we noticed was that before you guys went on to play, you were listening to bands like Ned’s Atomic Dustbin, Dinosaur Jr., Fugazi, Get Up Kids … bands we all liked and listened to. [We liked] your music, you know how to write songs. You worked with really good producers. And — we like to take crapshoots.”
And the crapshoot paid off. Or, as Hoppus told the guys: “That’s my production style. It’s a little unorthodox, but it gets results. You can’t argue with results.”