Tool's Justin Chancellor and Peter Mohamed List The Albums That Left A Lasting Influence
Converging as MTVoid, the duo detail a broad range of classics that have not only withstood the test of time, but have helped shape their personal evolution as artists and collaborators.
For longtime friends and creative cohorts Justin Chancellor and Peter Mohamed, their shared appreciation for boundless artistry has long been at the root of their connection. Having met back in 90's while Chancellor was at his post on bass for Tool, Mohamed was fronting seminal Polish alternative outfit Sweet Noise. The two instantly forged a lasting friendship - one that was predicated on nurturing art and encouraging the exchange of ideas.
The two creatives converged under the name MTVoid with Mohamed handling the vocals, production, programming and Chancellor fielding the bass, guitar, production, vocals. The tandem's first effort, Nothing's Matter was the equivalent of an arthouse film purposed into a rock album - covering a broad stylistic spectrum that veered from heavy alternative, ambient noise and even global electronica in an especially ambitious 13-track presentation.
While the duo would eventually continue on their own career paths as Chancellor strengthened his tenure with Tool and Mohamed pressed on with his projects, the pair's intuitive creative chemistry was something the two maintained, even while pursuing other endeavors. As the global stall of the pandemic brought life to screeching halt, Mohamed and Chancellor finally found time to again flesh out their consistent exchange of ideas, this time completing their second MTVoid release, Matter's Knot Pt. 1.
Ramping up their brand of cinematic noise, MTVoid enlisted the likes of Aric Improta of Night Verses, Isabel Munoz-Newsome of Pumarosa and Andy Morin of Death Grips to execute their shared musical vision. Melding elements of rock, noise, industrial and electronica the resulting 7-track release is a testament to artistry that dares to explore outside conventional genre lines. The project also speaks to the focus of Chancellor and Mohamed, corralling such a broad collection of ideas and channeling it all into a cohesive 7-song effort.
To better understand the kind of pedigree that produces such innovation, Chancellor and Mohamed offered some insight by revisiting some of the albums that have remained an inspiration throughout their accomplished careers. The collection of work pools both the classic and the contemporary, tapping into a broad spectrum of styles that suggest just how MTVoid evolved with such versatility.
These are the albums that have long been important to Justin Chancellor and Peter Mohamed of MTVoid.
Buddy Holly - Greatest Hits
Chancellor - I was drawn in by the original sepia cover. This album really made me want to play guitar and is a song writing inspiration.
Neil Diamond - Hot August Night (Live at the Greek Theatre)
Chancellor - I found this rocked out look to be very cool, long hair and leather jacket. The atmosphere of the live show was intoxicating, plus... great tunes!
AC/DC - Highway to Hell
Chancellor - Once again, a killer cover, but the music inside was something else. It was something I hadn’t heard before. There's endless inspiration for guitar players, as well as one of the greatest rock albums of all time.
Simon & Garfunkel - Greatest Hits
Chancellor - A tapestry of incredible songs. I was particularly struck by the whole mood of the album and love its folkiness.
Michael Jackson - Thriller
Chancellor - To me, this music was on another level. Great songs, but crafted and recorded with a previously unmatched precision. This was truly a groundbreaking record.
AC/DC - BACK IN BLACK
Mohamed - This album is the backbone of my musical education. Got it in Libya from my father and it was the first modern music sound that I ever heard. I was mesmerized, shocked, captivated and blown away. I fell in love with the raw energy of the band and always tried to put some of it in my own art.
MUSLIM GAUZE - JERUSALAAM
Mohamed - I love everything this great and also not very popular artist created. The sound is very close to my own understanding and taste in noise music. Bryn Jones' dedication to the cause of Palestine and the consequence with which he represented Palestine's struggle for freedom and sovereignty is worth a lot of respect. For a long time I was convinced that he created his art somewhere in the Middle East.
SWEET NOISE - CZAS LUDZI CIENIA
Mohamed - I had to include this album of my original band Sweet Noise. In this case I'm a fan as well as creator. Through this album I learned about the power and freedom of producing music using computers in our own independent studio. The combination of fat beats, aggressive electronics and wall of guitars came together in a really powerful way. It is a concept album exploring the idea of being a sovereign individual in a world filled with propaganda, centralised banks and systems. It was a very powerful Freedom and Revolution Manifesto. I still learn a lot about myself when I listen to this body of work.
AUTECHRE - QUARISTICE
Mohamed - I love this band. One of the most intelligent projects in the electronic music field. The rhythm, space and sound on this record are beyond special. I used to listen to this one a lot when creating beats for the first MTvoid album so it was a great inspiration. Just as Autechre, I also tried exploring the Max/Msp sound environment. They are one of the artists I'd love to hear remix Mtvoid tune sometime in future.
GUNS N ROSES - APPETITE FOR DESTRUCTION
Mohamed - List wouldn't be complete without this badass album. It knocked me out in a similar way that AC/DC Back In Black did but in a different time and place. It accompanied me in the early 90's in Poland. I loved the attitude, the sound and the raw impact it had on me. Funny I discovered the band by watching their Ritz Hotel Live performance on VHS cassette while being totally hung over and I had it on loop with my mates for a few days.
THE PRODIGY - ALWAYS OUTNUMBERED NEVER OUTGUNNED
Mohamed - This album by The Prodigy seems to be less popular but it has to be one of my favorites. It is a cool combination of punk and electro. I love the beats and overall aggressive sound. The band created its own space that was never overcrowded by projects trying to emulate their sound and that says a lot I think. They must have this special recipe of combining electro, punk, rock into one fist punching you in your face.
DAVID BOWIE - OUTSIDE
Mohamed - I'm a big fan of Bowie. I love this concept album. The sound, song structure, lyrics and vibe..it is all perfect here. The record was very forward thinking at the time and opened a few doors for me. Bowie was one modern age artist using cut up technique for writing his lyrics and poems. His approach and philosophy behind this method inspired me to use the method for MTvoid Matter's Knot Pt 1 lyrical content creation.
Matter's Knot, Pt. 1 from MTVoid is currrently available via Lobal Orning.
Get the album - HERE
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