Statues and Stories is the solo project of Malachi McNeill. Based in Poconos, PA Statues and Stories lean towards a melodic, emotionally driven acoustic sound. The latest release from Statues and Stories (God Complex) was released on April 28th and instantly hit me right in the feels.
‘God Complex’ shows off a great talent in Statues and Stories. The Emo and Pop/Punk influences ring clear throughout this fantastic album. Its impossible not to see a bright future for Malachi who already has this great album under his belt. I caught up with him and told me more about the album and about the first release off it ‘Whole’
Q: Tell you more about the song “Whole”
A: The song “Whole” is a portrayal of what it feels like to try and piece together a romantic relationship with another person, as an attempt to reach outside of self for approval and love. “Whole” adds to the central theme of the album, “God Complex”, which is essentially a collection of songs about what it’s like to try and change (my) attitudes and feelings towards myself from the inside out, not vice versa. It’s all about finding self worth, and love and allowing myself to share it with others once I’ve found it. “Whole” is another piece to this puzzle.
Q: Who are your biggest influences?
A: In an attempt to separate my greatest musical interests from my influences, I will say that for me, Conor Oberst and Elliot Smith revolutionized “emo” in ways I could never thank them enough for. Though I draw a lot of influence from the pop/punk, emo music of the last 10-15 years, they possess a great deal of my admiration and influence my music hugely.
Q: Who are your favourite bands/artists at the moment?
A: I have all time favorites, for sure, but I’ll list some of the latest discoveries I’ve grown fond of. “You’re Not As ______ As You Think” by Sorority Noise could be my favorite record of the entire year. Period. Boston Manor hit it incredibly hard with their last album, “Be Nothing”. Their sound is huge and the melodies, especially on this album, are incredible. Yes, I still listen to “I’m Wide Awake, It’s Morning” every day, but Conor Oberst’s “Ruminations” album has hit a very sweet spot lately.
Q: Has music always been such a big part of your life?
A: I started learning how to play a guitar at the age of 4. I hated playing the guitar when I was 4. However, I loved Taking Back Sunday from a very early age. I’m indebted to my brother, Matt, for letting his annoying younger brother hang around him enough to listen to the music he was listening to. In the midst of the pubescent horror story that is my life, I found out how vicious, shallow, and hurtful young people could be and I started writing music. There was a choir director in middle school, who took profound interest in my ability, and I’m indebted to that guy for shedding light on that and believing in me. You’re far and few between. So since then I’ve been playing in bands, writing and singing and performing. That was a long winded, blurry answer.
Q: So what’s next for Statues and Stories?
A: Well, my debut LP, “God Complex” was released everywhere on April 28th, and I truly hope that it gets around to some ears. I’m weighing on another music video. I hope to reach new people from all over and meet them and talk to them, and share art with them. It’s really such an honor and privilege for that to be possible. I want to do my small part in spreading love to everyone, everywhere I go. I don’t care who you are. You could be the toughest, most angry person on planet Earth, we’re all just looking for a little love. After the release of the record, I fully intend to hit the road and never come home.