By now, any introduction would be superfluous for Max Colombie of Oscar and the Wolf. Creating a music jargon that is inadequate to describe with common phrases such as “profound,” “moving,” or “one-that-shakes-you-to-yourcore,” Max Colombie’s music has become much louder than a voice in the alternative genre. Let’s turn it on even louder, shall we?
You’re attracted or drawn to this feeling and at the same time that feeling will eventually destroy you in some way which is mostly what I write about.
Would you say that your childhood played any part in your choice of becoming a musician?
Well actually, yes, because ever since I knew I existed I’ve been singing songs. I think it first started when I saw the music video of No Doubt on TV – the Don’t Speak song – which is how my dream of playing music in a garage began, just like they did in that video. I think after that I just continued to follow that idea.
Would you say you had a happy childhood?
The reason I ask that is because there is a very thin line between sadness and happiness in your songs – one can go either way.
Well back then I didn’t really understand the meaning behind their lyrics or the 90s sound. I don’t think I was thinking about happiness or sadness at the time. When I started writing my own songs that changed because I had to be able to place happiness and sadness in a certain box in my mind to analyze what I was feeling.
Would you then say your songs are happy or sad? Or both?
Basically when you here my songs they could sound sad but I think they embrace that sadness or make you accept that sadness. I always compare it to a caged bird. The caged bird won’t be able to sing if it doesn’t accept the fact that it is locked up.
And how would you define your sound? I read somewhere that you call them “Dirty Disney Love Songs.”
Yes! Because one of my main inspirations are songs from Walt Disney. However I try to transform them into a little darker and dirtier versions; a more adult version of producing music or something. Now what I want to accomplish for the next record is kind of like something even more dirty; like a little bit more crying but with one tear only instead of bawling your eyes out.
Are you in the works of doing your next album?
Yes. I’m really working and writing right now.
Your stage presence is captivating. One might not expect high levels of energy during your “Dirty Disney Love Songs,” as you call them. What sort of emotions do you go through on stage? How do you connect with the audience?
Mostly when I’m at a festival of some sort I try to engage myself more with myself and not think about what I’m doing.
What is your creative process like?
Mostly I start with just playing the piano writing lyrics or I start with a beat. Then I start making arrangements and go to someone who can make the beats sound better. Mostly I do all the arrangements myself though.
And what are some of the emotions that urge you to write a song?
Basically it’s always about love, but not in the common sense. It more like loving this sort of entity and at the same time it attracts you so much that it will eventually kill you in some way. You’re attracted or drawn to this feeling and at the same time that feeling will eventually destroy you in some way which is mostly what I write about.
Do you have any creative outlets other than singing?
I went to art school so I used to draw but I don’t do that anymore, I honestly don’t know why. I love doing collages of old footage that I find online and I like creating new videos from those.
Would you want to direct your own video one day?
Actually I met with this amazing videographer who told me that I had a very clear knowledge of what I wanted to do when it comes to videos and that I should direct our next video, which is probably what I will do. He said that it would be so much better to have full control over what I wanted to show the audience.
On a personal note… What is your song Princes about? You know when you go to a club and you flirt with someone?
I tried to write about something beyond that – like actually feeling like a Prince because I feel like there are people who you flirt with and then there are people who you actually love and I sometimes feel like I am not that “Prince.”