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July 2022
Feature

Mint Green: "Our songs can be sad but hopeful; there’s a lot of self-reflection"

Get to know Boston, MA foursome Mint Green.
Published: 11:10 am, June 16, 2022
Mint Green: "Our songs can be sad but hopeful; there’s a lot of self-reflection"

Boston, MA foursome Mint Green - Ronnica (vocals, guitar, songwriter), Daniel (drums, production), Tiffany (bass, production) and Brandon (guitar) - have just dropped their album, 'All Girls Go To Heaven'. It's a charming and relatable debut about finding yourself and learning how to break out on your own.

Hello Ronnica! What are you up to today?

Howdy! Today I'm getting new brakes for my 2011 Toyota Prius. Exciting stuff!

Have you lot known each other long? How did the band come together?

Daniel and I have known each other for the longest amount of time. We met on Craigslist in October of 2015. I met Tiffany on Craigslist in November of 2019. I met Brandon on Twitter in April of 2020. Mint Green has had quite a few line-up changes over the years; in fact, the LP that we're releasing will be the first body of work that features this new line-up, as our two EPs were recorded with the original members back in 2016 and 2018. So that's kind of what makes this first LP extra special. It is a true representation of all that Daniel and I have been through and what we've been working on from 2018 to now. And we're so happy that we found Tiffany and Brandon to join us because they're in it for the long haul.

How did you hit upon Mint Green's sound? Are you all into similar music?

When I started Mint Green, I was pretty much exclusively listening to Turnover's 'Peripheral Vision' album and Tiger Jaw's 'Charmer' album. So I think our first EP, 'Growth', reflects that a bit. I would say that we're all into similar music, but that similar music is super diverse! So, for example, Daniel's favourite artists are Vampire Weekend, Kendrick Lamar, Blink-182, Radiohead, Billie Eilish, Soccer Mommy. I love Paramore, Charli XCX, Top 40s pop, Adele. Brandon is into hardcore, math rock, punk, and rap. Tiffany likes a lot of 80s and 90s stuff as well as indie pop like Japanese Breakfast and Alvvays. So we definitely have a lot of overlap in the music and songs that we love, and I think because we all listen to so many types of music, there are no limits to what we can bring to Mint Green. We don't feel pressure to fit in a box or a specific genre.

Are there any lyrical themes you're repeatedly drawn to?

I feel like our songs can be sad but hopeful. They can be about both conflict and resolution. About accepting the truth. Standing up for oneself. There's a lot of self-reflection and hindsight. There's longing, wishful thinking, and growing up.

What's the best song you've written so far?

"Best" is hard to create a criteria for. But, I would say that the song I'm most proud of is 'Body Language'. It was one of the first songs we made from scratch together with Tiffany and Brandon. I remember it being pretty tough to write, both instrumental-wise and lyrically. In fact, I didn't have all of the lyrics until a few days before we recorded it for the album. As the song came together, though, in the studio, it quickly became all of our favourites. But if you had told me back when we were writing it that it would be the first single off of our debut album, I wouldn't have believed you!

At what point did you start pulling together your debut album? What was your starting point?
Technically speaking, one of the oldest songs on this album dates back to late 2017. And a few songs on the album we've been playing live consistently as a part of our set since 2018. But I would say that the real starting point was in the summer and fall of 2020. We knew that we had to have as many demos as possible by the end of the year to start pitching to labels. We ended up with six songs. Four of those made it to the album, and out of those four, two were already ones we had been playing since 2018. So essentially, between summer of 2020 and summer of 2021, we had to finish or write from scratch eight songs for the album.

Was putting together the album a very different process from your EPs? What are the benefits of each format, do you think?

Putting together the album was definitely a very different process from the EPs because we started during the pandemic! We went into 2020 expecting to write songs, play shows, and then record in a studio like we always have, but we ended up having to record at home or in our practice space. We had to do everything ourselves, whether it was for virtual shows or covers, and we recorded demos for this LP using Logic and Garageband. Those demos were then used to reach out to labels! The benefit of DIY recording is that you have full control over your sound, like you can have as many vocal takes as you want, and you can go at your own pace. It's of course challenging, though, because you're limited in terms of gear, space, and your own skillset. But Tiffany and Daniel really took the reigns on recording and producing, and we all got to learn together and put our talents together. Daniel and I never recorded a demo prior to this album. For our EPs, playing shows was kind of our "demo" process. We would just add the new songs we wrote to our set and play them for months or even years before going to a studio to record them. Whereas with this album, we didn't play live as a band together until August of 2021! A year and a half into Brandon joining the band and months after the album was recorded, lol. Luckily, we did get to record the album in a studio, though. But even that was a different process than our EPs. For one, we got to record in Nashville, Tennessee! We also worked with a producer for the first time, Collin Pastore (Lucy Dacus, Illuminati Hotties, Julien Baker), so that was cool.

Releasing the album must be a huge high point for you; what've been some other highlights of your time in the band?

Opening for Tigers Jaw at a sold-out venue here in Boston was definitely a highlight for me. That was surreal because, as a fan, I had already seen them twice at that very same venue. Daniel and Brandon had also seen them live in the past. In fact, Brandon had already bought tickets to the very show we played before we even knew of the opportunity to open for them! So it was definitely a dream come true to share the stage with them at a venue where we had seen them just a few years back.

What else are you working on at the moment?

We're writing new music!

Taken from the July issue of Upset. Mint Green's debut album 'All Girls Go To Heaven' is out now.

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