Like A Storm's Matt Talks the Cycle that Continually Repeats Itself

Alternative mixture act Like A Storm have released albums, played shows, toured, and continue to do this repeating cycle, that they've enjoyed over the years, and for many more to come. Matt Brooks vocals, lead guitarist, keys and programming, took chance with discussing the band's latest activities and plans for new music and where else you can expect these guys to roam about.

1. Introduce yourself, tell me what you do in Like A Storm, and how long the band has been together.

Matt: Hey guys! Matt from Like A Storm here. I play guitar in the band, and sing lead vocals along with my brother Chris. My brothers and I also do the programming, keyboards and piano on our albums. We grew up playing pretty much any instrument we could get our hands on... Including the didgeridoo! We got our start in New Zealand, where we grew up, and we have been touring the US non-stop since 2009!

2. Tell us the brief history of your band.

Matt: My brothers and I grew up together in Auckland, New Zealand - but contrary to what people expect, we weren't a family band. We actually all played in separate bands for a long time. Whenever we would happen to jam together, when there were guitars and drums laying around the house, we had such an amazing chemistry between the three of us. We all loved playing music, we all loved writing songs... It just made sense for us to start doing it together.

We moved to North America, worked our way up in the Vancouver club scene, and wound up made our first record in Los Angeles. Just as we were finishing up our debut album in 2009, the guys in Creed invited us out on their "Full Circle" Reunion Tour - so our first ever American show was playing to 15,000 people in Pittsburgh! It was such an amazing opportunity for us... We could never repay the Creed guys for kickstarting our career here. We've been touring the States ever since!

3. Where is the band based out of and what is your music scene like there? Are there any local bands you could recommend?

Matt: We tour so much that we aren't really based anywhere at the moment, but our hometown of Auckland, New Zealand has a really cool music scene. Even though it is so small compared to places like New York and LA, there are a lot of really talented musicians! One of my favorite Kiwi rock bands is Shihad - check them out!

4. What type of band are you?

Matt: That's the million dollar question for any musician (laughs). I would say that we fall into the hard rock genre, because we've always loved heavy guitar riffs, double kicks and anthemic choruses. But we are also huge fans of other styles of music, including prog, industrial and acoustic, and we love the sound of ethnic instruments. We love finding new ways to incorporate different elements into the hard rock genre... I still can't believe we got didgeridoo onto rock radio! ("Love the Way You Hate Me")

5. Why did you want to name the band Like A Storm? What does it symbolize and represent for the band?

Matt: The name "Like A Storm" actually came from a lyric from one of our earlier songs. Aside from being unique enough to avoid any of those classic band name lawsuits, "Like A Storm" really sums up the kind of band that we aspire to be, and the music that we endeavor to make - epic, powerful, memorable.

6. Who are your musical and non-musical influences?

Matt: We listen to anything and everything - right now I'm splitting my time between blues guitarist Joe Bonamassa and black metal icons Dimmu Borgir. We grew up listening to a lot of different stuff, but we've always been drawn to heavy rock with great melodies. Bands like Tool, Metallica and NIN really showed us that you could push the boundaries musically while still writing great songs. Anyone who takes risks, musically or otherwise, is an inspiration to me.

7. What are your songs about? (What specific themes do they cover?)

Matt: We write what we feel, so our songs are all born from a very personal place. Writing is a way to express and process different emotions - from defiance ("Love the Way You Hate Me"), to escapism ("Break Free"), to a memorial for our grandmother ("Galaxy"). All of our songs have a very personal meaning to us.

8. Do you write your own songs? (Discuss the songwriting process in detail.)

Matt: We sure do! We all grew up writing songs - for me, songwriting has always been an integral part of being a musician. Our writing process is a bit different than a lot of other bands, in that all three of us write songs, guitar riffs, drum parts, keyboards... Any part of any song could have come from any one of us. It's a very collaborative process - and I love it man! I feel like it always means that we have a lot of musical ideas to choose from, and we can just keep what we feel are the very best ones.

9. You've only released two albums to your name, so do you have anything new in the works, in terms of a follow-up?

Matt: We've been busy man! We have a live double-album, "Worlds Collide", which was recorded both in the US and New Zealand. In addition to that, we also have an acoustic record, "Like A Storm: Unplugged". Both of these records are available at our shows and through iTunes. As far as new material, we are always writing, and there is so much inspiration to be found out on the road. We've already started working on "Chaos Theory: Part 2"!

10. What are your dreams and goals?

Matt: We have been so lucky to achieve so many of our dreams already, and we are so grateful for that. Growing up in New Zealand, we always dreamed of touring the US, of rubbing shoulders with our idols, of making fans and getting to play the music that we love every night. Our dream is to continue to make our music and play rock shows - we honestly can't believe everything we've been able to do already!

11. What should labels/zines/promoters know about your band? Why should they be interested in it?

Matt: In an ideal world, promoters and music journalists would be interested because they dig the music and the story of three brothers from New Zealand touring the US in a rock band. But failing that, I'd settle for them just being interested because we have weird accents from the other side of the planet (laughs). Whatever gets the music out there!

12. Where can we listen to your band and where can we buy your stuff?

Matt: We love connecting with our fans! You can find our music, merch and videos online at, on Facebook at, and on Twitter @RealLikeAStorm. Our music is also available on iTunes, GooglePlay, and on YouTube - our "Love the Way You Hate Me" video just cracked half a million views!

13. What plans do you have for the near future as a band?

Matt: Tour, record, repeat! We love playing music, so we'll be busy all year out on the road and writing new music. It's a really exciting time for us - we are just so stoked to be out touring with our single "Love the Way You Hate Me" on the radio... to hear people singing it back to us every night is insane!

14. What is it you’d like a listener to remember the most when hearing your music for the first time?

Matt: To be honest, I'd love for listeners to remember how our music made them feel. It has always been our dream to write songs that connect with people on a very real level, and to create music that causes them to really feel the emotion of the song. To me, great music is all about feeling - first capturing that vibe in the song, and then being able to make the listener feel the same way you felt on the day you wrote it.

15. Any final words of wisdom?

Matt: No wisdom here, just gratitude (laughs). Thank you so much to all our awesome fans and to everyone who has made playing the music we love night after night possible! We love you guys!

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