Max Collins released his debut solo album earlier this month. The album - Honey From The Icebox is a terrific listen. For those who are interested in checking it out and it's interesting because you can identify it as a mixture between Eve 6 and one of Collins's main influences in his solo career - Mike Doughty. All of the songs are sonically something we've never heard from anything relating to Collins, but the singer's ability to write lyrics that are out of every one else's realm is what sets it apart. Alternative Addiction caught up with Max before the release of the album to talk about the sound on Honey From The Icebox and about two music videos from the album - one that's out and one that's about to be.
"Instrumentation wise, everything flows together pretty nicely," remarked Collins on the sound of his debut album. "I wanted it to be really simple and a platform for the songs. I wanted to use the acoustic guitar as a cornerstone instrumentally. That said, a song like 'Sports Bar,' that has a country influenced bass line, and some of the other songs take more of a pop form from time to time. They're from the same world sonically, there's just some differences from song to song that I really like."
In regards to "Sports Bar," Collins released a video for the song about a month ago and so far it's received rave reviews. The video has a style that seems like it's authentic Collins. It's a little weird to be sure, but it's also remarkably poignant. That song got the video treatment release first, but that's not the way it was supposed to go. Collins and his team made another video when fate intervened and forced Collins to make a video for "Sports Bar" first.
"We did a video for 'World on Fire' first. Then we decided to go with Sports Bar as a single," said Max. "One of my friends, Thad (Bridwell), he directed both videos. A few months ago, he was working on a short film in Joshua Tree. He and another guy had some car trouble and they got stranded in the middle of the desert without any reception. Eventually, Francis (Skinner), the Native American man in the video, he pulled up and saw that they needed help. He got their car towed and he fixed it himself. Thad kept in touch with Francis and when it was time to shoot the video, Thad thought of Francis. He said, 'I know this incredible man. He's a great guy. He's got this amazing face, we should put him in the video.
"We cast him first in the 'World on Fire' video, and that's coming out in a couple of months. But while we were down there, Francis showed us his property. He has acres of land in a little town near the Joshua Tree national park. On his land, he's built a fully functioning old west style saloon. He said he did that because he got kicked out of every bar in town so he built his own. We looked at that and thought it was some cosmic gratuitous thing going on so we decided to do 'Sports Bar' at that place."
The location for the video was too good for Collins to pass up, but he needed to come up with a treatment that fit the location. He needed to think of something that would give Francis and his bar justice creatively.
That treatment came to me in a terrible hotel room during an Eve 6 one off. I wanted to set up the audience for certain rescue by Francis, and then completely knock the wind out of them. I really don't know where the animal heads thing came from. It was sort of like a waking dream I had. But Thad dug the concept and we were able to find the heads pretty easily at a costume place. I think everything turned out great with that. I think those heads are the most important part of the video - those are incredible."
Check out the video for "Sports Bar" below - when Max puts out the video for "World on Fire" we'll have it right here on Alternative Addiction as well.