Crash Blossoms & Rural Internet Interview
In this Music Mondays exclusive interview, staff writer Rei Low sat down with members of Crash Blossoms and Rural Internet to discuss their recent success with their art as well as breaking down the details of collectives including their significance in underground culture.
Zombae: There will probably be more people dropping in as this goes on, since there’s people from different time zones.
Charlotte: Um, we usually have an idea before a record of what we want to do. We’ll have a few songs that kinda represent that sound. We work on two albums at a time so when we’re working on the next one we’re working on the one after that. That’s usually how it goes.
Rei Low: That’s so hard. How do you keep up the workload from all this worldbuilding stuff? Each project is about an hour, and y’all are doing solo stuff talking about a song a week. What’s your mindset, what's your creative process?
Zombae: I’d say we call every day. We don’t always make music during those calls, but we’re usually working on this, fiddling with that the whole time.
Charlotte: I’d say I make music casually just because I enjoy it honestly.
Zombae: We’re literally fiddling with three or four ideas per call or something. Some are good, some are bad, some are solo projects. We’re never not working on music.
Rei Low: You don’t even take a break after a release?
Zombae: Oh nah, we haven’t worked on Rural since Saint Anger. That’s probably the longest we’ve taken off since we started. Like after Escape Room, The fifteenth song Age of Sin was made right after Escape Room dropped.
Charlotte: A good part of Saint Anger was made in 2020. It was always meant to be the third album in the doll trilogy plan.
Rei Low: What’s the idea behind doing a trilogy with the doll?
Zombae: If I'm being honest we come up with shots or ideas with the doll that are cool.
Charlotte: Like honestly we just come up with some crazy shit for the doll.
Rei Low: Like let’s crucify the doll?
Charlotte: Like the doll gets stabbed but isn’t dead enough. Let's burn the doll.
Rei Low: Do y’all know about Piss Jesus? Or Piss Christ? Whatever it’s called?
Zombae: Yea I know about Piss Christ.
Rei Low: It kind of looks like Piss Christ. It’s awesome.
Zombae: Yea I didn’t think about that but that’s fye.
Rei Low: It's transgressive too. Nice.
Zombae: Basically the whole idea was what’s the logical progression if everything gets angrier and shit. It was also meant to represent, like we make songs, and they’re supposed to represent the climate of the world.
Rei Low: There’s so much topical stuff on the album, not in a bad way it’s just relevant.
Zombae: When it comes to Saint Anger specifically, this last year was one of the worst years for trans people in America. The cover is basically the representation of that anger. It’s just burning.
Rei Low: Yea it started in sports and got fucked up from there.
Zombae: There’s literally bills in Oklahoma that are trying to detransistion everyone under 26.
Rei Low: If you’re on your parents health insurance basically you can’t be trans. That’s so fucked.
Zombae: It’s been a really angry year and we had to reflect on it.
Rei Low: I noticed that. There’s like a certain trolliness and lack of seriousness on the last two albums before Saint Anger. There’s not a lot of jokes on Saint Anger.
Zombae: I didn't want to take any of the topics on Saint Anger lightly.
Rei Low: I definitely respect that. So getting into some of the concepts on Saint Anger, there’s tracks like Get Shot, which is almost entirely produced with gunshots. That’s so interesting from a compositional standpoint. What inspired the sound design like generally on the project and that song in particular.
Zombae: Vriska did that beat, and Charlotte did the breakdown. I would say the inspiration comes from like JPEGMafia and Death Grips did that shit. Like taking very literal sounds, especially like gunshots-
Rei Low: Is taking industrial [rap] to its extreme.
Charlotte: Yea we do a lot of sound collage stuff too. It’s great.
Zombae: Shit like the prodigy or like City Morgue.
Rei Low: Oh yea I was gonna ask you about the Danny Brown project, Atrocity Exhibition.
Zombae: I’m not sure if his delivery from that project directly inspired me, but Danny Brown is all over my voice.
Rei Low: Not particularly your melodies, but like your
Zombae: Intonation yea. Baby voice thing is very Danny Brown. And on Atrocity Exhibition, how he was able to cut through all of that crazy production was something I really took notes from and for sure had to incorporate on that record.
Rei Low: What are some recommendations from before the 2000s y’all have? We don’t talk as much back then.
Charlotte: I listen to a lot of fuckin’ music. Jazz, Progressive Rock, Folk shit. Everyone says they listen to everything so I feel lame saying that.
Zombae: I fuck with like a lotta Wu-Tang like NWA. Shit that everyone likes from a hip hop standpoint. I feel like a bunch of people from my era don’t fuck with like Def Jux, like Aesop Rock, El-P, that era of shit.
Rei Low: Dude Cage? I was listening to Too Heavy For Cherubs like last month.
Zombae: I fuck with Def Jux like who are some other people?
Rei Low: What do you think about Kool Keith?
Zombae: All the tracks I’ve caught have been crazy. Like I couldn’t name like albums off the top, but
Rei Low: What about Dr. Octagonecologyst?
Zombae: Yea Dr. Octagon was crazy. I think dudes who were influential to me in the band perspective that don’t get a lot of shine is like Doseone.
Rei Low: I think you’re about to put me on who is that?
Zombae: Oh Doseone, he’s from Clouddead.
Rei Low: Oh Ok!
Zombae: You can look up his projects online. He had so many crazy projects like Alias. It was like a whole ass band. It has a guitar section and drummer, but he was still rapping in this nasal tone and it was all frantic and shit. Big influence into what I am doing.
Zombae: Charlotte, you want to go?
Charlotte: It’s all based around live instruments you can just perform. There’s a lot of long ass shit: I like alot Krautrock like Can and Faust and shit. I like folkier kinda stuff. I like progressive rock like King Crimson.
Zombae: What about Metallica?
Charlotte: Oh yea I grew up on metal.
Zombae: If you ever want to blow minds, show them the Metal Up Your Ass album cover.
Charlotte: That’s a classic.
Rei Low: I’m gonna put it in the article.
Charlotte: It’s a bit tongue and cheek. Metallica is a very important band. I think it’s good to call your idols dorks sometimes.
Rei Low: So, Crash Blossoms we kinda already talked about that, and then I remember we talked about this vaguely, like on the Seraphim server, but you were telling me about like the origin story of uh, Crash Blossoms, do you wanna go into that at all anyone?
AOL: The short version is, years ago I met [saturnultra] when we were both vaporwave producers- uh they used to run a label-
Rei Low: Wait- which one?
AOL: They used to run commercial dreams omitted
Rei Low: Oh! I used to be involved with the vaporwave scene
AOL: And then years later we reconnect. You know I’m in their discord server, and they start like producing, like making beats, and I had been like you know kinda messing around with making beats a little bit too. And then they meet James Gorsica, they become like a full blown rapper, and then cut to like a couple years later, it’s like, me and Leo, and like a couple of our friends, and then, I make this server- or not This server but a server that we all congregate in now but, Luca joined like randomly cause they had been following me like on twitter so that’s like I think the first time we met. Like we just kinda accumulated like sorta an army of like minded people, and out of that you know vriska was like “I wanna do a song for this form compilation, and I wanna get all of us on it” all of like the regular people in the server. And so, you know, it ends up being like vriska, me, luca, like char was on it- okay like there was like 10 of us on it. Anyway lso that song was Crash Blossoms
Zombae: I mean yeah so here’s the thing is that like, this started around like covid time so like, we really didn’t have like shit else to do like it was just like laying around the house, fuckin’ make a song.
AOL: But you know the calls for like, you know 12 hours a day-
Rei Low: Yeah, it was covid shit
AOL: everyday, cause you know, it was 2020 and I couldn’t go outside so I’d just be talking to my friends all day
Rei Low: Yeah that’s pretty much mine
AOL: And like we still kinda just do that like anyway so
Rei Low: That’s sick- so how did you get the Neph [RXK Nephew] feature?
Zombae: Oh that’s really funny, that was through apartment9 I think, yeah like basically apartment9 hooked that up. Yeah like I knew him through like the stupid beats so I sent him like the stupidest beat that I could think of honestly- and that ended up working for him so like that was pretty tight.
Rei Low: What are some other dream collabs other than Lars and Nephew?
Zombae: Oh yeah um, we’ve been working with MKULTRA a lot, we’ve been working with Devi McCallion from Black Dresses, and uh, backwxsh was supposed to be on this one but we're still workin’ on shit.
Rei Low: Still workin’ on backwxsh?
Rei Low: Cool!
AOL: She’s been very supportive of the band you know, you know she’s just been busy and shit like you know how it is.
Zombae: Yeah this is kinda like her breakout year so
AOL: So I guess like what are our like dream collabs i guess, like-
Zombae: I don’t know, like, I guess like I used to have so many people who I wanted to work with, but honestly like, right now I’m pretty happy with my network you know?
AOL: Yeah probably the only people I really wanna work with now is like probably like a lot of musicians moreso, like drummers and shit like that’d be cool as shit
Zombae: Oh Weatherday would be cool
Rei Low: Weatherday is sick, Weatherday- that’s such a good idea, damn, I love weatherday
Rei Low: Alright so I think I hit everything I wanted to hit is there anything I missed?
Zombae: Yeah probably just some shit about like, meadow (https://twitter.com/girlfromplut0), yeah I’d like meadow to get some shit in because like yeah shoutout meadow. Well meadow just released a project that I think is really cool, because Crash is like, on the surface like a rap group or some shit, but like meadow's most recent one isn’t that big of like a rap project, it’s called ‘falling away.’ Yeah it’s very atmospheric and shit like I really fuck with it, I’ll let her talk about it.
Meadow: I guess, I don’t know why it’s hard to describe but I guess I’ll just describe it as maybe like rap ambient pop maybe?
Rei Low: Mhm!
Meadow: It’s like, this really spaced out sound like, a lot of the songs are structured in a way that’s like more repetitive and shit, it’s like, I don’t know it’s just meant to build like this really big feeling for like 30 minutes. I’m incredibly proud of it
Zombae: And also we got murder music by Ava which is like, the most recent one. If you like the loud shit with like extreme anger, like, it’s much less political or whatever-
Rei Low: I like the political shit but yeah-
Zombae: Yeah, if you want something that’s like, more like, I don’t wanna say like grungey because it doesn’t sound like grunge, but like something that’s way more raw sonically I’d check that one out yeah
Zombae: But yeah, one thing I really wanna set up is that like, Crash is like, I mean like we are based in rap music, but like stomach book, material girl, plut0’s next shit is like, more-
Meadow: I’m working on a post-punk record right now. We were talking about inspirations from like the 80’s and shit and like, I don’t know if you’re familiar with like any of like the late 80’s like french cold wave scene, like uh lively art. It’s sick I’m trying to due shit like that
Zombae: Yeah Ava’s been on like her lowkey RnB shit like for a little bit
AOL: Yeah and I put out like an 80’s synth funk album last year.
Rei Low: Hell yeah, you gotta keep them on their toes, exactly.
Zombae: For sure like Stomach Book is just fuckin’ like noisy emo type shit
AOL: Like the gnarliest like fuckin’ post-emo like cabaret
Zombae: Yeah she’s more in like the cabaret sorta zone like if you like cabaret I think you’d fuck with her shit a lot. And material girl like, it’s rap but like way more in the artsy/atmospheric vibe right.
Rei Low: Yeah!
Zombae: And of course we got like Fax Gang you know what I mean
Rei Low: Fax Gang yeah I’ve listened to them a bunch
Zombae: We’re making anything we want, it just like, happens to go around rap because, it’s like I don't know, it’s like the most free genre you know what I mean
Rei Low: Yeah like with the sampling and the culture and like- yeah you can kinda do whatever with it
Zombae: Like it’s the genre that’s most like, that has like the least rules, and like that’s most conducive to like electronic production I’d say right. So that’s basically what it is, like, we’re proud to be a rap collective, but like, I wanna push what rap collectives are.
Follow Rural Internet: twitter.com/Rurallnternet
Follow Crash Blossoms: twitter.com/crashblossomss
Interview By Rei Low: twitter.com/_rocktimist
Transcribed By Rei Low & Em
Edited By Zomb Slays: twitter.com/Zomb_Slays