Volume Denver Interviews: Animal Soup

This is part of a series of interviews with local bands who are in the latest round of Volume Denver artists. If you've not already checked it out, Volume is a project by Denver Public Library to gather and share some amazing local talent. You can listen to full albums and songs, make playlists, and even download music to keep using your library card. Today we meet Josh Mundt of Animal Soup.

Animal Soup is the moniker for music written and recorded by Josh Mundt with occasional help from friends. Animal Soup does not stick to a single style of music, but rather employs an eclectic style that changes and evolves with each album. The first album, Lover's Leap, was a mixture of sugar-coated pop and technically dense progressive rock. The follow-up, Eardreams, took a more accessible approach with simpler songs and a heavier emphasis on electronics. It also introduced influences from genres such as surf rock and Latin music. The latest Animal Soup album,  A Night of Standards, takes a complete left turn from previous material. The album is a raw and intense exploration of thrash metal with a jazz twist. It was conceived as a performance in a space age jazz club in an alternate dimension where heavy metal is played in smoky clubs with fine dining. It is heavy, musically complicated, and unique.

How did you get your musical start?

I began writing music for Animal Soup in high school. I started by recording my guitar directly into my laptop and mixed the recordings with MIDI drums and keyboards. In my senior year, I took an audio production class where I was given access to a recording studio with real microphones and Logic Pro X. I took advantage of this and recorded my first real album, Lover's Leap. Since then, I've invested in recording equipment and continue to make music at home. While Animal Soup is primarily a studio project, I am not opposed to doing live gigs.

What did music look like for you as you were growing up?

Most of my musical experiences came from my time at Denver School of the Arts, where I was exposed to a wide variety of other musicians and artists. It helped me with developing my own style and figuring out what music I enjoy playing the most. At school I received training primarily in Classical and Jazz music. On the other hand, many of my peers were into styles such as Progressive Rock, EDM/IDM, Hip Hop, and Math Rock. Exposure to all these different types of music had a large impact on myself as a musician and writer. 

What's the story behind the name Animal Soup?

At the time of making my first album, I was reading a lot of 50s Beat poetry. A line in Allen Ginsberg's poem Howl about the "Animal soup of time" stood out to me as a catchy band name and it stuck. 

Describe your sound in one sentence.

Eclectic and unpredictable. 

If you could open for any other musical act, living or dead, who would it be and why?

I would want to open for an artist that had a similarly wide range of musical styles and influences, such as Frank Zappa or John Zorn

Check out more Animal Soup at animalsoup.bandcamp.com. The follow-up to A Night of Standards is expected this Summer. 



Written by Jennifer D on April 27, 2018