Over the course of their original incarnation (1981 – 1994), Moev underwent numerous line-up and stylistic changes, with their musical output ranging from catchy synth pop to atmospheric, semi-industrial rock. After then-vocalist Dean Russell died in 1994, the group went on hiatus before being revived by co-founder Tom Ferris in 1999. Featuring Tom’s wife Julie on vocals, the current incarnation of Moev has a dark, predominantly electronic sound and features strong melodic vocals. It’s undeniably Moev and should appeal to any fans of the old material, but at the same time a represents a true progression. This past fall, Moev released a new album, “One Minute World.” The following is an email interview with them.
In terms of both line-up and sound, Moev has changed quite a bit over the years. What would you say defines what Moev is and bridges the various phases?
Julie: I think Tom has a distinctive sound that comes through his writing. It’s part of who he is. He has always been the engine that drives Moev. Even when he works on other projects like Blackland, Waiting For God and Lazarazu you still get that sense of melody that pulls you in.
What is the current lineup of Moev?
Julie: it’s been just Tom & I for quite some time
What was the timeframe of making “One Minute World”? How did the process compare to that of your past few albums?
Julie: With “Ventilation” the songs were written over many years and lineup changes. We went off and did Lazarazu with Kevin Kane and put Moev on the back burner. With One Minute World, Tom stacked up a pile of songs for me to work on and I literally wrote and recorded all the vocals in a month. It was great because I we didn’t allow ourselves time to second guess anything. It was very instinctual and had a great sense of propelling forward.
Do you currently perform live? If so, do you perform any pre-”Suffer” material?
Tom: We would definitely like to. We actually prepped to do a show with Xymox last fall but it didn’t work out. There were actually quite a few “oldies” on the set list.
Like a lot of electronic-based music from that era, the sound of early Moev was clearly influenced by the state of available musical technology at the time. While things have evolved and opened up quite a bit, there still might be a chance of current electronic music being dated by sound or production techniques. Do you think / care about this at all?
Tom: My set up has totally transformed, especially over the last 5 years. I have always picked sounds and gear that I liked at the time. I don’t think you can worry about how people will perceive it down the road. Kids of all ages still race to the dance floor when Blue Monday comes on. It’s because it’s a great song. That’s what endures.
Could you describe your current studio set-up? Are there pieces of equipment or software that you feel are particularly key in creating your music?
Tom: I use Mac with Logic Pro X and a lot of UAD plug-ins. It’s nice have to have access to compressors and eq’s that I’ve used in large studios like Westlake in LA-UAD makes plug in versions of almost anything I could ever want and they sound amazing.
You’ve some videos for the new album. Does your approach to videos differ at all now that they are more likely to be viewed online rather than on tv or in clubs?
Julie: The biggest difference is we do them ourselves. No record company=no video budget. Necessity is the mother of invention.
What would you say the biggest challenges have been in re-launching Moev?
Tom: Promoting it ourselves and getting it heard outside our built in fanbase.
Are the members of Moev currently involved in any other projects?
Tom: I spent a lot of time and energy working on outside projects only to end up babysitting or counselling people when I could have been ploughing forward and writing songs. It would have to be a really worthwhile project.
What’s in the future for Moev?
Tom: New songs, new release hopefully in the summer. We’d like to play live as well.
Be sure to also check out our Moev interview from 2000, as well as a gallery of Moev videos from various points in their career. For more info and the latest Moev news, visit their official website.