By Serenat Kivilcim
Alexis is an electro pop duo formed in 2010 based out of Grand Rapids and consists of frontman Matthew Forbush and Dan Hurst. The duo recently released a remix package (Love or Temptation Remixes) featuring some great tracks from some awesome artists, including Andre’ Obin and Millie and Jam.
Black on the Canvas recently chatted with Matthew Forbush about music, his favorite underground artists from Michigan and more!
How did you guys meet and form the band?
Matthew: Dan and I honestly met at a tiny little place called Fenians Irish Pub in the farming town of Conklin, MI. He had just moved out to the area from a stint in Texas and at that time I was still a country boy who had grown up around the area. Country living can be great for finding the time and space to create and play music. Anyway… we started chatting it up and even though we had hardly anything in common musically, we felt like we could come together on the same page with a pop/dance project. There was a lot of back and forth and some disagreements here and there, but we released our first ep, The Night, in the summer of 2010 before we had even played a show together.
In three words how would you describe each other?
Matthew:I would describe Dan with the terms genius, passionate and retentive.
Dan: My three words for Matt are creative, Impulsive, witty.
You guys have shared the stage with acts like The B52’s, Flosstradamus, Anoraak, and Andrew W.K. Do you have any interesting stories to share?
Matthew: It’s funny that some of the crazier stories we have are more from the open mic nights we were doing when we first started. We drank a lot of beer etc. in those days to try and get in the groove to go out there and really kill it. Soon after that, we switched almost exclusively to sobriety as we’re both super picky about putting on as perfect a show as possible. We actually don’t have too many stories about a lot of the bigger name acts we’ve opened for. Often times, they are not around until they walk out on stage. I will say however that Andrew WK goes through a ton of Red Bull and 5 Hour Energy!
To whom do you like to send your tracks for feedback?
Matthew: Our manager, Mark Allen is an amazing resource. Austin Ruhstorfer is the engineer at the studio we work with sometimes; He’s great. My buddy Chris Schaefer has been a great ear for me since we were kids. We played music together for a number of years.
Dan: Honestly, what makes my sound somewhat unique is that I tend not to seek out much feedback and that way I end up making mostly what I want to hear.
What are some of your favorite underground artists from Michigan that you would recommend who deserve more attention?
Matthew: Rapper/DJ, A.B. (Adrian Butler) is great and a total fashion plate. Although not in a similar genre, our friends The Crane Wives and our buddies in the band Valentiger are all amazing as well. We’ve done a lot of events with all of these acts.
So, if you weren’t a musician, what would you like to be?
Matthew: I think something with nature and national parks. Maybe a park ranger. I wish I had more time to spend traveling around and taking time to be outdoors. My working and studio schedule keep me pretty locked down for the most part. Some day!
Dan: If I wasn’t a musician, I’d like to be a pro-cyclist.
What’s in the works for you guys? What’s next for Alexis?
Matthew: We released a remix package (Love or Temptation Remixes) featuring some great tracks from some awesome artists. Andre’ Obin and Millie and Jam to name a couple. Two new remixes from Dan as well putting a fresh spin on a couple of songs from our most recent record (Love or Temptation).