Ever wonder what would happen if Artic Monkeys and Tame Impala had a love child? Allow us to introduce you to HYMMJ as we invite you to celebrate the world premiere of their debut single.
“Music is everywhere in Berlin”, says drummer Max Jännerwein. And the drive to differentiate themselves from the crowd translates into the band’s debut single “Guillotine.” If you don’t believe us, check out the hypnotic video:
The members of HYMMJ (an acronym for Have You Met Miss Jones? – we’ll explain later) are all a rare breed of unicorns known as “echte Berliner” or “true Berliners.” Born and raised as citizens of this idiosyncratic, art-infused city, the group prides themselves on throwing everything they’ve got into their music.
Band is life, band is love
“I’ve got a sticker on my pedal board that says ‘there is no plan B,’ and that’s become my motto,” explains vocalist/guitarist Sönke Piet Flucke. “The band is plan A, and there’s really nothing else to life at the moment.”
The band has been around, as an idea at least, since Sönke and Max were still playing in the sandbox together.
“I remember sitting next to [Sönke] in Kindergarten and we said, ‘let’s start a band,’” Max says.
“Then when we got older and learned our instruments, we would play in the upstairs room at Max’s when no one was home, and after a few hours the neighbors would start coming over to complain,” Sönke adds.
In 2013 the pair snatched up bassist Elias Weber and keyboardist Samuel Gestrich, and they fulfilled their kindergarten dreams.
Real McCoy – Echte Berliner
“I can’t imagine if we’d grown up in a small town,” Max says. “Music is everywhere in Berlin; it makes it so easy to meet similar people and grow as musicians.”
“There are other artists here to look up to and get input from, so those connections help you improve,” says Sönke. “But that also makes it hard, because there is a lot of competition with how many bands there are and everyone wanting to play concerts. It’s possible to get lost in this huge music scene.”
Who the hell is Miss Jones?
“Miss Jones is everything, and nothing, for whoever,” Max says.
“When you first read it you think it’s a woman, but we’ve kind of moved away from that idea,” Sönke explains. “It’s more like solving for ‘x’ in math; we ask the question to everybody and everyone can find their own Miss Jones. It might be a desire or feeling, maybe a person, or band or music. We’re asking the listener what are they searching for.”
You can catch HYMMJ at their next gig with Israeli psychedelic-rock group Tiny Fingers at cassiopeia on May 24.