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3OH!3 Wants You – Interview with Nathaniel Motte

For the first time in my personal history of attending/covering the Van’s Warped Tour since 1996, a local band was on the top of my priority list as I scanned the day’s gig schedule. It was none other than Boulder’s 3OH!3, the boys with the electro, hip-hop toys who love to play and dance, much to the enthusiasm and joy of their adoring fans. A duo who were more successful with their signature 3OH!3 shirt sales than many emo-pop-punk national acts combined.

A few days before their performance on Sunday, June 29, we received the spanking new 3OH!3 album, Want (Photo Finish Records). For the first time I had an actual CD of there’s in my hand. At past, sell-out shows at the Fox, I was never quick enough to pick up the demos at their merch table. Damn whippersnappers.

Ideally, we were shooting to get our emailed questions answered prior to the show. But heck, we were glad and thankful to Nathaniel Motte, one-half of 3OH!3, for taking the time to get serious with us in between the chaos of nightly drives and daily shows during one of the most grueling tours on the circuit. So here it goes…


Kaffeine Buzz: 3OH!3 has been on fast and furious ride from the beginning. How do you think your music and live show has evolved from a few years ago up until now? Better outfits? The ones you were sporting at your last Fox show were smashing.

Nathaniel Motte: I think we yell a little louder. The gyration in our hips is a little wider. We jump a little further out into the audience. Sean does one extra floor spin on that one dance breakdown. We point more. Directly at people. In people.

KB: Who do you look to for inspiration when choreographing your dance moves?

NM: That one dude from Stone Temple Pilots that does the creepy chest in and out snake thing. Shaq. Lebron. A.I. K.G.

KB: How excited are you now that you’re releasing your first full-length and will you have it for sale this Sunday?

NM: SUPER PUMPED!!!! We worked really fucking hard on the record and it was so much fun to be in the studio creating! The prospect of having people listen to all that we put into it is awesome. Ideal environment for listening:
1. Find a room of about 20 feet by 30 feet.
2. Buy about 4 pounds of scorpions – that should be enough to provide an even layer across the floor.
3. Pop the CD on.

KB: From what I understand, 30H!3 started out as a ‘just for fun’ musical endeavor. But since things blew up in a positive way for you guys, are you still having fun? It seems like you were taking yourselves really seriously in the studio for the new album. Especially when Sean broke out the lightsaber.

NM: We’re having more fun than ever. Warped Tour is amazing! We erected our portable basketball hoop last night right after our set in St. Louis, and proceeded to demolish any and all motherfuckers who stood in our way. Shwayze was no problem, Katy Perry’s team needs a point guard.

KB: Do you whistle in real life when you see a woman with Double D’s?

NM: No, we HOWL.

KB: What should we know about the producer for the new album: likes, dislikes, astrological sign?

NM: Matt Squire is great! I made the beats (and collaborated with Benny Blanco on a couple tracks) and we would sort of just bounce stuff back and forth off of Matt. He has a great sensibility for a hook, and an overall song in general, so it was great to have his savvy! Benny is wonderful – he smells really good all the time. He swears it’s the lotions he uses on his hands. I think he’s guarding his secret. I’m going to get it out of him.

KB: Did you take the opportunity to mess with any of the A&R peeps that started courting you, and how did you decide on working with the music business entities you’re with now?

NM: We were wasted in a Williamsburg bar, singing some Seal karaoke and some dude came up and kept buying us shot after shot. Eventually we woke up the next morning naked at his house and apparently we had signed a record deal on a napkin in lipstick. His name was Matt Galle. He owns us now. Photo Finish Records for life, baby.

KB: Is it true that you moved from Boulder to Brooklyn? If so, what was the reason and how has that changed what’s happening with your act, i.e. getting more connections, better access to quality pizza, recording the new album, etc?

NM: Sean moved there. I’m still in Boulder, sort of… New York has changed Sean… he wont read this will he?? Well, as long as you keep it on the DL, he’s just different now. You talk to him and it’s almost like he’s not getting what you say. He’s got that glassy look in his eyes and he smiles too much. He licks his lips profusely, and all he talks about is basketball.

KB: How has the Warped (endurance) Tour been thus far? Any particular cities/shows stand out? How many days have you gone without a shower? More importantly, do you still have your signature 3OH!3 shirts in stock?

NM: Warped has been wonderful. We play basketball almost every day. We shower daily, using blood from a cat’s face. T-shirts are selling like hot cakes. Crowds have been amazing – people all over the place come to our shows and know all of our lyrics and shit… to me it’s INSANE! All the shows have been really good – SLC was really great, and then there was DENVER…. God what an incredible day that was. What an incredible reception and energy at the show. Probably 6,000-7,000 people going BATSHIT the whole time. It was one of the most amazing experiences of my life!

Check out our Kaffeine Buzz MySpace, Kaffeine Buzz Facebook and Flickr gallery to check out more shots from the 3OH!3 show. The new album, Want, goes on sale Tuesday, July 8, released on Photo Finish Records. The album can be purchased from iTunes, but if you pre-order it off of the Photo Finish webstore, you too can recieve a 3OH!3 headband.


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