Russian Futurists Pop Prodigy
Published Feb 01, 2000Sometimes it's difficult not to feel a little bitter towards precocious young talent. Take Matthew Adam Hart for example. Having messed around producing some beats for various hip-hop MCs in high school, he decided to turn his attention to some pop tunefulness. "I didn't have any gear," he says. "I had an old sampler and some toy keyboards from when I was a kid and I didn't know how to write songs, so anything I could find around my place I would try to throw onto a song." The resultant five-song EP, of which he claims there are only ten copies, led to a full-length effort and the Russian Futurists pop confection The Method of Modern Love was born. It's endearingly lo-fi, charmingly melodic, skewed pop that only musical visionaries seem to be able to conjure from no training. "I can't even play guitar, so I can't write a song that way." By layering sound upon sound, filling up all eight available tracks to the brim, Hart fashioned a debut that, two years after its completion, is getting him some notoriety, particularly in the UK.
Now just 23 years old, Hart is taking the next step in his evolution æ building a live band that involves himself and three childhood friends sitting in a row with computers and keyboards æ and recording a follow-up. Hart continues to do things kind of ass backwards, having taken the name from an older brother who was studying Russian history, and only later discovering that his art movement namesake was rather telling: "When I started to do some reading, there are weird similarities I didn't even realise; [the Russian futurists were interested] in taking things apart and putting them back together, things like that." In the same way, Hart writes and records and then figures it out later. "Whenever I do something, I always think I've totally ruined it. Then a month later, I feel much better about it." He's particularly excited about the next album. "I'm writing the best stuff I've ever written," he says, particularly keen on releasing a higher fidelity recording done on his newly acquired computer. "I'm not really loyal to sounding shitty. You do what you can with what you have."