MINKA’s Dick Rubin chats Bowie, Babies, New EP, and Surviving in Philly

Featured Image provided courtesy of Noisy Ghost PR

If you don’t know MINKA, you definitely need to hop on this crazy train! Spawning some energetic, dance-rock tunes with just the right amount of synth and unconventional sampling choices, MINKA’s frontman Dick Rubin recently sat down with Rock On Philly to chat about the inter-workings of their latest, self-released EP Born In The Viper Room. If you can take anything away about MINKA it is this: the band is all about expressing the individual you as much as possible, forging one’s own path, in any way that fits you. With some hedonism thrown in with some killer tracks, what more can you ask for? And, without further ado…the Q&A!

Rock On Philly: For people that don’t know MINKA, how would you describe your music?

Dick Rubin: when Genghis Khan’s armies swept across Asia, they left a trail of destruction in their wake.

that’s how you feel when you’ve finished listening to a MINKA song.

ROP: That’s intense–I might have to agree! Your EP is well-rounded and well-constructed, with a lot of songs that I can see becoming hits. What makes this release special for you?

DR: we’ve dedicated this record to my newborn son.

he was crying throughout the entire recording process, so we actually sampled him. his shrieks are littered all over the record.

the funny thing is, whenever he hears the final product, he always jumps up and down. imagine that — dancing to the sounds of your own suffering!

ROP: Hmm…maybe that’s what I was hearing in the background (and CONGRATULATIONS!). Anyway, while intently listening, I got some major David Bowie circa Let’s Dance vibes- is his music an influence for you?

DR: i had to Wikipedia who you were talking about, but yes. this Bowie fella sounds real smooth.

ROP: Cha-cha real smooth. What was the process like while writing your album?

the songs usually start with our drummer, Max. we call him “chef” because he’s always cooking up tasty beats.

next, we send an iPhone recording of the drumbeat over to a bassist named Joe. he lives in New York, so he has access to some pretty cool sounds.

then we give it to Barney, our guitarist. he studied with Prince in the 90’s, and today you can still hear the “Minnesota sound” in our music.

for lyrical inspiration, i go to the library and pick out a book at random. usually the romance section works best.

ROP: Sounds like a well-oiled machine! Has Philly been an influence for you? How so or, how not?

DR: back in ’68, i remember going to an Eagles game. my dad was dressed as a Santa impersonator and the crowd threw snowballs at him.

ever since, i’ve learned never to wear a Santa costume at Eagles games.

there are lots of things we’ve learned from living in Philly, but that’s probably the most useful.

ROP: I can agree with that. If you could pick any venue anywhere to perform, where would you pick and why?

DR: our dream is to play as Yanni’s backup band for the next Live at The Acropolis record.

ROP: Nice! On the topic of playing live, what kind of experience do you strive to give your fans when they see you?

DR: our shows are designed to wake people up.
to help them reconnect with the Id.
to remind them that we are, at least for now, still human.

ROP: I love that. What is your favorite thing about being Philly band? Least favorite thing?

DR: philly is a great incubator for an infant band. we have all the nutrients we need to survive.

we have no complaints.

P.S. all grammar and punctuation mistakes are intentional.

What do YOU think of MINKA? Tell us in the comments below!

1 Comment

  1. Gigi

    June 28, 2017 at 5:42 am

    If Bowie and Prince had a love child, it would be MINKA 😎 (drops mic)

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