News updates for Muuy Biien

Muuy Biien at Tidal HiFi

Blending the fiery fury of early-‘80s hardcore with the trained restraint of Krautrock and post-punk, Athens five-piece Muuy Biien has quickly and decisively plowed its way to the top of Athens’ music scene.

The young band has earned high marks from local and national press for its two impressive full-lengths, 2012’s scrappy This Is What Your Mind Imagines and 2014’s slightly more polished D.Y.I.

They continue to win converts in Athens and elsewhere with their fierce live shows, which are anchored by frontman Josh Evans’ steely stage presence and snappish vocals.


Muuy Biien and Eureka California at Flagpole

2014 was the year Eureka California made the shift from “the band that could” to “the band that did.” With little fanfare and almost zero downtown club presence, the group quietly released a true kicker of an LP, toured the UK and steadily increased its stateside audience without jockeying for the ever-shifting hometown spotlight. The simple songs onCrunch never sound simplistic, and though the band’s early work owed a certain debt to ’90s-era power-pop, it has since been paid in full.

Steadfastly bratty local rock act Muuy Biien grew up in a big way with D.Y.I. (short for “Do Yourself In”), the imposing follow-up to 2012’s This Is What Your Mind Imagines. While that debut, with its frenetic, stop-start arrangements, invoked the sweat-soaked spirits of Darby Crash and D.C. hardcore, D.Y.I. scaled back the madness without losing any energy. With the “Cyclothymia” series, frontman Josh Evans and company continue to experiment with menacing drone. Elsewhere, the band finally, fully embraces the taut, Fall-meets-Joy Division gloom-punk it has been steering toward in its live gigs for some time, incorporating vicious low-end sneer and motorik precision into already-potent guitar hellscapes. It’s been a heck of a lot of fun for Flagpole to watch Muuy Biien develop over the last few years; it’s no shock that D.Y.I. emerged as our clear consensus favorite album of 2014.


Muuy Biien at Online Athens

I’m a snob about punk music, a genre which I place into a finite definition. For many, merely having fast guitars and snide lyrics is enough to rise to the punk label — allowing bands such as Blink 182 to be considered punk when nothing could be further from the truth.

No, punk music is a churning, guitar and cymbal thrashing cavalcade of sound and noise, sometimes melodic and repetitive, fronted by singers who act as if they just rather do something else, even though they’re really great screaming into the mic. Bad Brains, Agent Orange, Dead Kennedys, Fear, Minor Threat. These are punk bands.

I love love love The Clash and Husker Du, but they are not punk bands. A punk band would never make sweeping albums like “Sandinista” or “Candy Apple Grey,” as great as those albums are. Plus Strummer and Mould cared, Jello Biafra always seemed like he didn’t care at all.

Music I call punk I hold dear, because it came of age during my restless teenage years, opening a stirring rage within. There is nothing more freeing that slamming into a group of people who share this rage but are human enough to pick you up when you fall down. I remember a Bad Brains show in 1986 at the Cameo Theatre on Miami Beach like it was yesterday — to barely survive the floor during I Against I only to slowly “reggae slam” for The Meek Shall Inherit the Earth is, at 17, discovering true happiness.

I don’t slam dance anymore, my knees disapprove and so does my temperament (what kids today will slam to has me shaking my head), but every time I see Muuy Biien, I’m 17 again. I force myself away from the stage, because I want to throw down. The band makes it difficult for me to obey my own common sense.

I listened to D.Y.I., Muuy Biien’s latest release on Happy Happy Birthday To Me records, and it is a packed potion of punk power (sorry for the p’s). Infused with an insatiable edge from singer/songwriter Joshua Evans, D.Y.I. is nostalgic and inventive, honoring venerable bass lines while roaming through a modern landscape of musical chaos.

To understand the range and verve, all one must do is listen to the first three tracks. The instrumental Cyclothymia I, unexpected with a dreamy sharpness, slides into a drum kick and racing bass line for Human Error. When Evans utters his first words the song tears into new territory — his cadence and ability to filter above and around the sterling din behind him is a treat. With White Ego, all funky-edgy bass line and squawking guitars, Muuy Biien is at its apex. Evans sings, in a controlled yelp, ‘Another white ego/another good gone bad/to overcompensate for what you lack,’ and you understand you’re not dealing with common lyrics.

I go through stages where certain Athens bands I won’t miss if I have the opportunity to see them, I went through this with The Whigs, A. Armada, Producto and Easter Island. Three of those bands are gone and the former tours the world. I’m not sure what will happen with Muuy Biien, but it’s my new must-see crush, and D.Y.I. makes the argument that it’s the best show in town.


Muuy Biien at Hissing Lawns

“Ya’ll mind if I take a piss in the back restroom right here while ya do this here interview? I heard in the distance from where I sat with three of the five that make up the noise-punk band Muuy Biien.

“That’s perfectly fine,” I shouted back, not wanting to throw off the zen this drunken show-goer had clearly achieved.

We were in the back of Graveface Records, which had just hosted a show featuring Anxiety JunkiesCrazy Bag Lady, and the focus of this interview: Muuy Biien, collectively of Athens, Georgia.

When I stepped into the venue earlier, I heard a voice shouting from the stage.

“Can I get into it?”

The band shouted, “Yeah!

“Can I get into it?”

This time the crowd answered, too, “Yeah!

The singer made the call one more time, and then the room exploded. The crowd seemed to suddenly lose its equilibrium and the band was soaking it up and throwing it right back.

It was a reference to James Brown, what the frontman, Joshua Evans, shouted before the song started. I recognized it and asked him about it later, and to my excitement he said that the father of funk was a big inspiration.

Josh and Jacob Lake (percussionist) were busy running the merch table after the show, but the rest of the band (Xandar Witt and Robbie Rapp on guitar, and Parks Miller on bass) were able to speak for them. The gist of what I learned was that everything about this band seemed to be a collaborative process.

hissing lawns: What was the general start of this band?

Xander: Josh started writing all of these really cool songs, like, recording them onto a four track Tascam tape recording machine, and, um, you know, he just started recruiting a band. And I wasn’t a part of his original recruiting process, but I think some bass player didn’t show up, and I said ‘Yeah, I’ll fill in,’ and here we are; we’re all writing songs together. We only met Parks about a year ago, and he kind of acts like our manager as well. He’s added so much to the band, it’s really great.

Parks: I actually joined this band… Mainly as a fan. Before that, they were playing in Atlanta a lot, and that’s where I was living, and I would go to their shows. I just fucking loved it.

hl: What inspires this band as whole?

Xander: Music-wise, or attitude-wise?

hl: That’s good, I’m going to go with attitude-wise.

Xander: Definitely neurosis.

The entire band chuckles.

Xander: You know, being kind of poor and cynical, I guess. It’s something that most anyone can relate to in some way.

hl: What’s your most recent album?

Xander: DYI. We actually recorded it a long time ago.

Robbie: We started recording it, like, August of 2012. It’s just stuff that we’ve all had a part in writing.

At this point the venue was empty and Josh wandered back so I was able to talk with him about his role in the band.

hl: I really liked the way you just lose it on stage. What got you into that method of stage performance?

Josh: Um, I don’t know, I think it had a lot to due with the fact that when we started there were a lot of bands who didn’t have people up front at all. And if they did have people up front, they were just sort of, like, stoic, and didn’t move or anything. And that’s something that’s happening more and more even with bands that are bigger now. And I feel like there’s not a lot of personality in rock and roll anymore, and that’s my way of putting something back into that. Cos if I’m not [playing] anything else up there, I might as well fucking put on a show.

hl: With talking to the rest of the band I’ve learned that the writing process is very collaborative. Sometimes they’ll write songs, and you’ll put words to them. What do you pull from when writing lyrics?

Josh: It’s mostly things that I deal with. I don’t really know what else to write about other than myself. And I think it’s how I document where I am at that point in time, and then how I move on from it.

Robbie: It’s really great, because the music isn’t set in, like, one mind, you know? We’re not a political band, we don’t have any kind of set commentary, other than just the one on ourselves. And that’s something that we can relate to even as the band. And in that way, we don’t have a problem with what he’s saying reflecting back on us, because it’s projected from us too.


Muuy Biien at Shiny Grey Monotone

Somewhere along the line, Muuy Biien traded in their Black Flag records for Wire records, and consequently their sound has more of a post punk jitter to it than the slashing hardcore aggression of the older records.
It actually harkens back to the San Diego bands circa 1998 or so, after thespazzy grindcore noise had been superseded by arty, asymmetrical riffs and all black everything. Which I guess is “old school” to someone of a certain age, and maybe that style is making a comeback? The title track even flirts with some later period Dead And Gone, when they too ratcheted up theirdarkened post hardcore noise with some Christian Death spookiness. I could support a renaissance of that sound. I’m in.
The band has released a few instrumental droning ambient type records, and occasionally employ those sounds as folly to the more rocking numbers, but it’s nothing to get too worried about. Merely a sorbet palate cleanser prior to the scallops course.
I wasn’t expecting this sound from this band, but it’s really not any wild deviation in evolution really, and after a few listens (Without Prejudice vol. 1 – George Michael) I could appreciate it on it’s on merits. There are some really strong songs on here, the urgency and intensity is still there, just now it’s dipped in India Ink and sneers rather than spits on you.


Muuy Biien at Razorcake

If you can weather the ambient intros on both sides of the record then you’re in for some spastic dance punk with noisy guitar accidentals, chunky bass lines, and bestial howls galore. This is a difficult sound to leash, but Muuy Biien has lassoed it like a wild animal tamer. You can almost taste the salty sweat dripping off your brow from the inevitable nonstop pogoing while these dudes thrash out some tasty tunes with “fuck all” attitude. D.Y.I. (do yourself in) got me undulating in my rickety desk chair. Recommended for the secret freak in you.


Muuy Biien at In Transit Records

Among many fairly interchangeable indie rock/garage bands in Athens, Georgia, Muuy Biien stands alone and bares their teeth at an otherwise complacent scene. From solo noise project to punk band, Muuy Biien has found the right amount of rope to hang themselves exactly the way they want to with their latest album, D.Y.I (Do Yourself In). What differentiates Muuy Biien from every other frenetic noise band is the obvious method to their madness, their controlled chaos, and specific instrumentation. From start to finish, D.Y.I is an intentional journey back to true punk and hardcore roots. Taking time to slow down with tracks such as Cyclothymia I and II, these songs are perfectly punctuated ambient commas on the otherwise “in your face,” but passive aggressively so, record, letting the listener know where to take a break and catch his or her breath before a song like “Virus Evolves” pops up and commands you to jump back in the pit.


Muuy Biien at Used Car Parts Online

Muuy Biien is a scrappy punk-rock band from Athens, Georgia, but there is nothing slight about their scrappiness. D.Y.I., the band’s new album, may run under a half-hour, but it’s a set brimming with ideas and tensed-up ambition. The lean riffs of “Human Error” hone themselves into impossible sharp edges and angles, while the chorus explodes in power-chord shards. “White Ego” is awash in claustrophobic, paranoid layers of buzzing distortion, crowding up the space as the band thrashes through it.

Meanwhile, “She Bursts” turns that buzz on its head, smoothing it into a propulsive jangle. These songs are equal parts frustration and zeal, the words spit as much as they are sung, yet this is not just split-open fury. These nervy songs are bookended by three movements, all titled “Cyclothymia”, which are big, humming soundscapes that stretch the borders of this taut set of songs. D.Y.I. is an exciting, frenetic rock record, the kind that can rev you up in the moment, but keep you thinking long after the record ends.


Muuy Biien at agoodthingeachday

In-yer-face punk rock from Muuy Biien is the order of the day today.

Today’s #onegoodthing is their album D.Y.I., which came out earlier this year and is a blistering collection of raw, hard-edged songs that are broken up by a trio of tracks –Cyclothymia I, II and III – that hint at something more prosaic behind the rip-roaring likes of Melters and Virus Evolves.

Imagine if Hookworms leaned more towards punk than their excellent psych-influenced sound and you’d be approaching what Muuy Biien could bring to your life.


Athens Intensified at Athens Banner-Herald

No stranger to performing in Athens, Atlanta rapper Killer Mike still made a splash when Athens Intensified, the weekend-long music festival that rose from the ashes of Pop Fest, announced him as this year’s headliner alongside Japanese weird pop duo Cibo Matto at the festival kicking off next Thursday.

Killer Mike’s past dates at New Earth Music Hall and Georgia Theatre were well attended, to say the least, by Athens’ own hip hop scene, members of which had been entranced by the emcee’s Southern style lyricism since before he guested on the Outkast classic “The Whole World”.

But the rapper’s star has shone brighter in recent years with the release of his studio pairings with rapper El-P, calling themselves Run the Jewels and attracting the attentions of the oft-hip hop trepidatious indie rock community.

It’s not hip hop directly that has everyone talking about Killer Mike at the moment, though he does seem to be cresting whatever arc of power he’s riding, meaning he’s at the top of his game.

The emcee turned into an outspoken critic of the current police state in the wake of Mike Brown’s death in Ferguson, Mo. Beginning with an op-ed piece in Billboard, the outlet of record for the entertainment industry, Killer Mike then took to TV, most notably Fox News, to decry a slate of highly controversial deaths of African Americans at the hands of police officers.

None of this could have been predicted, of course, when Killer Mike signed on to helm Athens Intensified. But his presence at the 40 Watt next weekend gives an unintended poignancy to a festival notable for its corralling of talent local and regional, and in some cases international.

Spanning a number of venues in downtown Athens, the festival kicks off Sept. 11 with an all-ages Happy Happy Birthday To Me Records showcase at the Caledonia Lounge, 256 W. Clayton. Starting at 8 p.m., the showcase includes, in order, Tunabunny, Bows and Arrows, Muuy Biien, Robert Schneider, Deep State and Eureka California. Also on Thursday is a night of experimental and dance music at Go Bar, 195 Prince Ave. Staring at 9 p.m., the lineup is AstroShama, Future Ape Tapes, Holotropic JuJu and Dr. Fred’s Karaoke.

On Friday, Killer Mike headlines a night of hip hop at the 40 Watt Club, 285 W. Washington St., that includes Floridian producer Frost the Waver God, fellow Floridian Dola, Eddy Braveaux, local Louie Larceny.

At Caledonia on Friday is Under a Sky So Blue, Pinecones, Blue Blood, The Powder Room and T. Hardy Morris and the Hardknocks.

The Friday lineup at Flicker Bar, 263 W. Washington St., is still coming together, but Orgegan’s Genders and Athens’ Mothers are highlights on this bill of minimalistic-named bands.

Outdoors on West Washington Street Saturday afternoon is a skate competition co-sponsored by Get Rad Skateshop from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Currently scheduled live outdoor acts include punkers Burns Like Fire and Come What May.

The 40 Watt hosts Nels Cline of Wilco and Cibo Matto on Saturday night. Go Bar has Death Domain, Future Ape Tapes and Feather Trade.

Flicker has Four Eyes, Grand Vapids, Shoal Creek Stranglers and Matt Hudgins.

Caledonia, again, has the all-ages goods all night Saturday beginning at 5:45 p.m. Lots of young-ish local and touring indie acts fill two stages, with the night capped off by a scenester’s who’s who in Faster Circuits.

Athens Intensified also extends to the weekend of Sept. 20. New Earth Music Hall, 227 W. Dougherty St., has Djs Mahogany and Osmose early on that Saturday. Then at 10 p.m., there’s Javon Womack, Wesdaruler and The Egyptian Lover.

Festival passes are $35 for all events or $30 to skip Cibo Matto. Individual tickets to Killer Mike are $15, Cibo Matto are $16 and Egyptian Lover are $10. For tickets, go in person to Wuxtry in downtown Athens or order