New Machine was originally created as Downfall in 2004 and had a good start locally. Like most bands, all four members struggle with a “day job.” Three of the four members live the military life, and have been called to active duty numerous times. Still, the group’s passion and zeal for music has kept them playing local gigs as often as possible under the reformed name New Machine.
The working parts of the band are Dave Marshall (vocals, guitar), Scott Hawkins (lead guitar, vocals), Mitch Dennis (bass), and David Miller (drums).
I was able to sit down and ask the boys a few questions about the band’s future, their opinions on the Rock Band craze, and just exactly what grinds the gears on New Machine’s machine.
What makes you stand out from other bands?
Hawkins: We don’t sound like anyone else. We’re a bit older than most bands at this stage of the game, so there is a bit more maturity — though you wouldn’t know it hanging out with us.
Miller: Versatility! We are as versatile a band as you’re gonna’ find. We can play everything from Zeppelin and Tool to Skynyrd.
Marshall: You certainly won’t read about crazy nights in the tabloids. Our tone has a lot to do with that. When I write, I try to tell a story that people can follow. The ‘70s had some great tales to tell. We still do today, and our band adds a harder feel to those stories.
Dennis: Our broad range of inspirations allows anything we write to morph into something completely different sounding.
What do you think about Rock Band?
Hawkins: I’ve tried Guitar Hero and my 14-year-old son kills me at it every time. Despite this, I think there are more musicians out there with more integrity than most politicians today. The creation of a video game to commemorate such artists is a testament to this.
Miller: Those games don’t interest me — I never even think of the bands on them, just the music played.
Marshall: No game will ever substitute the hours of practice, collaboration, pain, boredom and satisfaction of learning an instrument. I’m just glad to see the game pays respects to greats like Aerosmith over the Miley Cyrus’s of the world. Still, it’s a quick fix for people too lazy to actually take the time to appreciate the feel and sound of the real thing.
Dennis: Eh, I think Rock Band is fun, but there isn’t anything better than playing a good show and meeting the REAL people who enjoyed your music.
What about music inspires you?
Hawkins: A good guitar tone, an awesome drum beat, a low-down-fat-bottom bass line, inspiring lyrics ...You know, New Machine.
Miller: I get going by the way a song feels and builds.
Marshall: Music to me is therapeutic. A good song can put you in a good mood and keep you there. Playing for other people inspires me because if a song makes someone not worry about their day for just a few moments, then that song is powerful.
Dennis: Intricate music. I want to be able to play faster and heavier than anyone else.
When asked why anyone should check out the band, bassist Dennis replied with a simple “Because we have pizzazz.”
Any man who uses that word in all seriousness and to indicate worthiness gets my vote. So, go check ‘em out. Their heavy rock sound finishes with clean vocals creating a new machine for a tired rock vehicle. For their next show, check out dates on their Myspace: www.myspace.com/fayettevillesnewmachine.