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IN CONVERSATION WITH… MATT JONES, THE TREATMENT – late 2014

| 19 February 2015 | Reply

IN CONVERSATION WITH… MATT JONES, THE TREATMENT – late 2014
By Shane Pinnegar

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With scorching hot young English rock n’ roll gang The Treatment heading to Australia for the behemoth that is Soundwave 2015, we couldn’t resist the chance to get singer Matt Jones on the line from Cambridge, England.

100% ROCK: Yeah, I’m good. Matt it’s Shane Pinnegar from 100% ROCK MAGAZINE in Australia. How are you?

Matt: Yeah, I’m good. How are you doing?

100% ROCK: Excellent Mate, very good today. It must be pretty early over there for you. Just before lunch time?

Matt: Yes, it’s about 11 o’clock now, so yeah, just before lunch time.

100% ROCK: I actually lived in Cambridge for a year going back to the late ‘90s. It’s a nice little town.

Matt: Yeah, it’s a great little town. Lots of good vibes, yeah, true.

100% ROCK: Good stuff. You must be pretty excited about heading back to Australia [for Soundwave].

Matt: We cannot wait. None of us have ever been to Australia before, [so] coming to Australia is absolutely amazing. We cannot wait.

100% ROCK: Excellent. You guys became pretty good mates with Airbourne when you did some dates with them in 2013, didn’t you?

Matt: Yeah. We did a tour with them late last year. We had a great time, great fun, good laughs and [they were] kindred spirits. We got along really, really well with them.

100% ROCK: Have you touched base with them about what to expect heading down under?

Matt: We haven’t had contact with them for some time. Maybe we can see them in Australia next year. We’ll be ready to have a good time since the show is great and everyone gets involved. [Playing with them] was the perfect match.

100% ROCK: Is there anything special you guys do to prepare for touring in a brand new territory for the first time?

Matt: I don’t think we can 100% know what to expect. Like you said, we’ve never been there before, we don’t know exactly what it’s like. I guess it seems [Australian fans like] what we do in general – how we sing songs, that we play them well and all of that kind of fits together. We’ll do the best that we can do, anyway.

The Treatment 03

100% ROCK: You’ve got Fabian Dammers in the band on guitar now. How did you hook up with him?

Matt: That’s a weird one, we don’t really know…

100% ROCK: You just woke up one day and he was in the band?

Matt: Yeah, we woke up and there he was. One of our friends lives in Germany and he said to us, ‘this guys really good, you should check him out.’ We hadn’t even listened to him, [but the guy said] ‘yeah he’s good, just get in touch with him.’ [So we said] ‘Come on out and audition,’ we’d be more than happy to accommodate him over here. He got on a bus, a 2 thousand kilometer journey to England which showed a lot of dedication – which we liked. He comes over and plays and… here he is!

100% ROCK: Wow. There you go. What happened with Jake [Pattinson, former guitarist]? He stepped up after Ben [Brookland, the band’s guitarist prior to Jake] left to care for his dad, but he only lasted a little while.

Matt: Yeah, I mean he’d come along and have a good time with us. I believe he realised it wasn’t for him and you have to be the right kind of character to do this. It’s hard work man. You sacrifice a lot and there are days when you go without eating, there are days when you have to clean for the band and stuff like that. I don’t think that he was completely cut out for it. He wasn’t made for it.

100% ROCK: Yeah, cool. What’s the word on Ben and his dad? How are they doing?

Matt: Unfortunately Ben’s dad has passed away. It’s one of those things. It was really sad when we first heard that about it. Ben’s left now and we haven’t heard from him much.

100% ROCK: Hard times to go through.

Matt: Oh yeah.

100% ROCK: It’s pretty amazing for a band that’s only 6 years old, you’ve been out supporting some really big names like Alice Cooper, Thin Lizzy, Motley Crue, blah, blah, blah. It’s like a mega introduction in rock n’ roll right there. How closely do you study the headliners when you’re going out with legends like those?

Matt: Every time we go on a tour with a big band like that we literally watch every show, sit there and go ‘okay, how can we take this and how can we do that and how can we do this and make it different for us, and how can we incorporate that into our band.’ Literally every night we go on the tour we watch the band. We’re always watching and learning and it’s actually one of the main reasons why we’ve gotten better as a band. These are huge bands and you have to learn from the best.

100% ROCK: There must be a few head rush moments with guys like these. You would have had posters of them on your wall as kids…

Matt: Mate, definitely. I literally had a poster of Motley Crue and Kiss on my wall – LITERALLY next to each other. It’s crazy. I mean, the first day we turned up on the US tour, the first tour we did, the first time we met Kiss, they’re in their full gear – all about eight foot tall. I couldn’t help myself – I was about to drop dead and die!

We’re sitting down eating our dinner and Gene Simmons walks over, puts himself down on the chair, introduces himself and then just starts talking. It was just really casual – really, really cool. I think Gene Simmons gets a really bad rap: obviously he’s quite outspoken, he says what he thinks a lot. He gets a lot of negative feedback, but he’s actually a really cool guy, really down to earth. All of them are really, really cool. Really cool.

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100% ROCK: Excellent, man. You must have had a couple of starstruck moments in there – I’m sure I would have as well.

Matt: Yeah, you do have to sort of pinch yourself when these guys come up and talk to you, but at the end of the day they’re normal people just like you are, so you’ve just got to talk to them like they’re normal people.

100% ROCK: For sure. You guys have a reputation for not doing drugs, not drinking very much – certainly not when you’re touring. Alice Cooper, Kiss, Motley… they’ve all had issues with members going over the top through the years. Did your professionalism and attitude get more of a nod of approval from those guys than perhaps some other bands would?

Matt: I think it does. Obviously they don’t know that until they meet us. When they come see that we’re very professional and we go out and we try to do the tour and try to make it the best we can and the fact that we don’t drink, we don’t take drugs or that kind of stuff, that does help, I think. Obviously people like Nikki Sixx who are ex-drug addicts and stuff like that actually have more respect for us for not getting involved with it than getting involved with it. That does definitely help, yeah.

100% ROCK: For sure. You’re managed by Dhani’s [Mansworth, drummer] Dad, Laurie, who’s had a lot of experience with a whole bunch of bands including More & Airace – an old favorite of ours. How integral is all that experience that he brings as a manager for furthering The Treatment’s fortunes?

Matt: It’s absolutely key for us. We wouldn’t be here without Laurie at all. He taught us everything we know. We know there’s nothing that we do that he hasn’t done before and he kind of knows where to go, where not to go and all that stuff like that. He’s massively important to us and we couldn’t do it without him. We’re so lucky to have him.

100% ROCK: Everyone knows the music industry is not what it used to be, and it’s really hard to make a living. How – even when you mentioned sacrifices earlier – how are you managing to have five guys plus the support team and make a living out of it?

Matt: Well, we try to do the best we can. We try to save money where we can and be smart and stuff like that. Yeah, it’s getting much easier for us now, because we’ve gotten much more comfortable and it’s actually going great for us so sacrificing in the early part of it has actually helped us to be where we are right now, if that makes sense.

100% ROCK: Yeah, absolutely. It’s great to see too. You’ve even got Gene Simmons coming out recently saying rock is dead – but you guys and a few people like you are proving the opposite I think.

Matt: Rock is not dead by any means, I think it’s just changed, because like you said no one buys records anymore. Everything comes from t-shirt sales and live ticket sales and stuff like that. I think the game has changed, [but] it’s not dead.

100% ROCK: That’s exactly how I took what he was meaning to say, but he’s certainly got a few people rubbed the wrong way by saying it the way he did.

Matt: Yeah.

100% ROCK: I don’t think he minds that.

Matt: It just keeps them talking [about Kiss]!

The Treatment 01

100% ROCK: In every interview I read about The Treatment it always mentions how much you believe in yourself and the band and your mission… do you ever have moments when that belief wavers a little bit?

Matt: No, I don’t think so. We believe in what we’re doing so strongly, and I think that’s why we get the stuff that we do – because we believe in it that much and we’re willing to work hard and we’re willing to go out and do what needs to be done to make it happen. So I don’t think so, no.

100% ROCK: Good. Keep at it man, that’s the way. No offence intended here, but it seemed like earlier [2014] from one photo shoot where you all had long hair, then bang, in the next photo shoot you’d all had haircuts and a bit of styling going on there. Was that a marketing move or was that a coincidence and everyone went to the hairdresser independently at the same time?

Matt: [laughs] I think one of us – I don’t know who did it first – I think it might have been Tag or it might have been me, I can’t remember – one of us cut our hair and thought that looks so much better and it actually seems to fit us so much better. Then we mutually decided the whole long hair thing is not right for us.

It goes beyond fashion into our intent. By looking like we’re from the ‘70s and ‘80s, it’s just not doing that. I think we just decided to try and make us look a little bit more modern but [it was] completely our choice. We’ve actually had some really positive feedback about it. Some people say you should have long hair if you’re in a rock band or that kind of stuff – that’s great, but that’s their opinion, and for us, I think it’s actually worked a lot better [this way].

100% ROCK: Thanks for your time today and have a great trip to Australia.

Matt: Bye man, take care.

Shane

Category: Interviews

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Editor, 100% ROCK MAGAZINE

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