Back in April 2010, The EDGE were lucky enough to catch up with Matthew Leone, prior to an outstanding show at the Porstmouth Wedgewood Rooms. Just months later, Leone was hosptialised and left in a critical condition following an act of unrivalled heroism in which he defended a woman being beaten by her husband near his home in Chicago. The Madina Lake star was flooded with wishes of health, culminating in a charity show hosted by none other than The Smashing Pumpkins, in an attempt to raise the funds for Matthew’s hospital treatment. Leone is now on the steady road to recovery.
Firstly, it’s great to have Madina Lake back in the UK – what have you guys been up to?
Thanks, it’s been a pretty crazy few months. We’ve just come back from the best tour of our lives. It was intense, actually. We were touring for two and a half years almost constantly, then we went home for a few months – we needed some time for our personal lives! But now we’re back here, and this has been the best UK tour so far!
It must be pretty hectic – how do you stay so chilled out?
Yoga. No really. And audiobooks. And meditation. Our bus is a real rockfest… (laughs)
Now the UK tour is coming to a close, what have you got planned for the next few months?
First of all it’s the European tour, then Give it a Name International, and then another US tour straight after that.
And how is that, going back to the US – must be like a homecoming for you guys?
Yes and no. Chicago is obviously a big show for us, but we actually prefer playing the UK (laughs).
Well, yeah! There is something superficial and material about playing in the US. Here you guys are all about the music!
Can we take a few minutes to talk firstly about ‘Attics to Eden’? There is undoubtedly a shift from the previous record – was this a conscious decision?
At the time, no. It was just a reaction to what we saw on tour. You see 30 different bands, and they all sound the same, they are all worried about which way to wear their hair, or what shoes to wear. They are part of a certain kind of success that we didn’t want. So retrospectively, I suppose it was a conscious decision. But we just want to play and write music that moves us, anything we can get enthusiastic about.
And what about the “Dresden Codex EP”? Where does this fit with the Madina Lake story, and what can audiences expect?
It wasn’t part of the original plan – we had an idea to unfold a story over three records, which the other two records have been part of, but with Dresden, we don’t really know what it is going to be. It’s a blessingin disguise really, as we are still learning and discovering it.
In the UK, our Summer of festivals is a pretty big deal – to round things off, do you have a favourite festival to play at, or to attend as a spectator?
Sonisphere is pretty cool, but we played a show at Reading and Leeds last year, and that tops it all. They are the definitely the best UK festivals. Although anywhere where we could support Muse would be amazing, Muse are f*cking retarded (laughs).
(Laughs)…Don’t print that! No, I just mean they are fantastic, they are an amazing Brit-ish rock band, and I think what they do is great! It’s an American thing, obviously!
And one last question, where do you see Madina Lake going in the future?
Creating music, hopefully. As long as what we are doing is gratifying, then I don’t care. At the moment we are addicted to performing, it’s an expressive outlet and we are going to keep it up as long as possible. New songs, new experiences, holing ourselves up in a studio, who knows!?
For more information on Madina Lake and the release of their new EP ‘The Dresden Codex’ visit: www.madinalake.com