Moxy And The Influence or "MXI" for short, is a rock n' roll band that is fronted by members aged 13 through 21 years of age. Saying that, says that they have a sound that defies their age, let alone being fronted by powerhouse vocalist frontwomen herself Moxy Anne, who as a matter of fact, discussed with us, the band's new EP "The Best Revenge" as well as what the future has in-store!
1. Can I get a backstory on the band/ band biography?
Moxy: Sure! We’re based on Orange County, California, and have been a band for almost three years now. The band was started by me and my guitarist, Sydney, and we’ve recorded two EPs and two music videos. We toured last year for almost a month, going through nine states and Mexico, and as of August of last year, we are officially an all-female band! Our band is made up of: me, Moxy Anne (18, vocals), Sydney Ellen (20, guitar), Shea Hamilton (17, bass), and Alexey Poblete (13, drums). We play rock/metal and write our own originals, as well as playing a few classic rock covers for fun.
2. What made you guys decide to form a band?
Moxy: It was actually a bit of an accident! My guitarist Sydney and I had been in a girl band previously for a while, and I had started a solo project on the side. I was just writing music, doing some media branding, things like that. Well, a very close family friend booked me a gig without asking and said, “You have two months! Find a band!” At the time I was a little blown away, but I’m so thankful for that now. We never meant to start a band, but it just kinda kept going because we loved it so much. We still do.
3. How would you say you differ from other bands and artists on the scene?
Moxy: This band is fun, and we do it because it’s fun, but we also do it because we’re serious musicians and we’re all seriously committed to music. Sydney and I are both in college majoring in music, and we’ve all put more blood, sweat, and tears into this band than most of the bands around us. We believe in our music, and we love doing what we do - and we all love music so much that we’re willing to work our butts off for it. It doesn’t matter if it’s this band or another project. We all hope to work in the music industry somewhere. We’re in this for more than a good time: we’re in this for the love of music.
4. Your band name is Moxy And The Influence and the initials are MXI, how did you manage to come up with those initials for the band's name? Does the band's name have an actual meaning behind it?
Moxy: When I started this project, we were playing gigs under the name “Moxy Anne.” We didn’t exactly know how long we’d be playing gigs, but we knew that after playing several under “Moxy Anne” if we were going to be doing it for a while, we couldn’t completely re-brand. We thought about what made us who we are and how much we just wanted to help people. We were clean, we had fun without hurting ourselves or causing drama, we were straight edge and a lot of the people around us had become straight edge because of us. We’ve all been very influential on the people around us, and someone came up with the word “Influence.” We liked it, it was easy, so we went with it. We want to be a positive influence on the people around us with the music we create.
Moxy and The Influence is a super long name so we wanted to come up with a quick abbreviation for it (MATI is a little difficult to say, and it looks kinda odd). Whenever we play bars, we have to write X’s on our hands in Sharpie so the bartender knows we’re too young to buy drinks, and X’s on your hands are also a signifies of being Straight Edge, which we all are. It’s a big part of who we are as a band - for us, it’s all about focus. Staying straight edge allows us to keep our focus on our music and other things important to us. There is also an X in Moxy, so we figured MXI would be a good symbolic abbreviation for us.
5. What bands have influenced your band and its sound?
Moxy: We LOVE classic rock. Led Zeppelin, Joan Jett, Motley Crue, Journey, Aerosmith, Rush, Heart, Kiss…we love it all! As musicians, we grow by listening to great music, so we listen to a lot of modern rock like Sixx A.M., Wolfmother, and Halestorm (to name a few). We enjoy other genres too - we all personally enjoy jazz, classical, and several other genres as well. We are influenced by great music, whether that be from today or from 60 years ago - and to us, it doesn’t matter if it’s jazz or metal. Good music is good music!
6. What lyrical theme do you guys use in your music? What message do you want to send?
Moxy: Just like our overall goal of being a positive influence as a band, we want to send positive vibes with our lyrics. I am the primary lyricist and my goal is always to touch people, to make them think deeply about things that matter to me and that may matter to them. If you look through our songs you’ll see we speak on subjects like abuse, self-harm, self-worth, becoming who you want to be and fighting to make it happen, getting through the day even when all you want to do is scream. A lot of my lyrics are very personal and I like to make it so people can apply my words to their lives, too. I love making people think.
7. What can fans expect from the new EP?
Moxy: Every band coming out with an album says it’s heavier than their last one. In our case, it actually is! It’s four songs, and we all really feel like we went in a totally new direction musically and personally with it. It’s better than anything we’ve done before, and we’re SO proud of it. The name “The Best Revenge” comes from the famous quote, “Living well is the best revenge.” This EP somewhat personifies what the band is all about – to always do your best, try your hardest, be positive, and don’t worry about what other people say.
8. What was the writing and recording process like for this EP?
Moxy: The writing process for “The Best Revenge” was a bit of a whirlwind actually. In the beginning of January, we realized we had all these song ideas and weren’t doing anything with them, and we hadn’t put out any new material in a while. We set a goal to get a new EP released within five months - and it happened! The recording process was a total growth experience for us as a band, and it was incredibly fun.
9. Why do you think people should check out your new EP once released?
Moxy: More than ever before, these songs speak to who we are as people and the emotions we feel most strongly. We wrote it all so people would enjoy rocking out to music that really means something. Music shouldn’t be pointless. It’s heavier, it’s well-written, and it’s something we did all ourselves. And, in the end, this EP is all for our fans, who have always been the reason we do this.
10. How would you say that your debut EP "Alive" and your follow-up EP "The Best Revenge" compare, contrast, and are in equality with one another?
Moxy: A lot of the songs off “ALIVE” are on the same kinds of deep topics. For example, the piano ballad “Queen Anne’s Revenge” speaks to any woman who struggles with abuse, self-harm, or pain, and “Bella’s Song” (off “The Best Revenge”) is a deep, soft acoustic song pleading with a girl who hates herself so much she wants to hurt herself. Contrastingly, though, a lot of these songs are more well-written than the ones on the last EP. I put so much more time and energy into the lyrics, and Sydney literally worked on each song every single day for two months. However, these EPs do have one thing in common: they’ve both got some killer songs to bang your head to. They’re high energy and great to rock out to!
11. Do you see yourselves keeping the EP pattern going, or will we be seeing a full-length coming up in the future?
Moxy: I know we’re not fully developed as a band yet - we’re only three years into this, and we’re still growing and changing. However, we would love to do a full length album when the time is right, and that’s definitely a hope for the close future! It all depends on how the material is feeling and how we’re feeling. One of our problems is we get so excited when we have new music to release, that we don’t want to wait until we have 8-10 songs before we let people hear them!
12. What can the fans expect to see from you in the future?
Moxy: Lots of growth and lots of thanks in their direction. Seriously, I am currently so blown away by the support we’re getting from our fanbase. It’s crazy. We’re going to be writing more and playing a lot of bigger, better shows. We’re already doing a lot more interviews and going on more radio stations, and we just want our trajectory to continue going up so we can meet more and more amazing, lovely people through our music. Hopefully we’ll get to tour again soon!
13. Where can fans find out more about you?
Moxy: Fans can find out more about the band and us personally from our social media accounts. We are on Facebook under Moxy and The Influence - MXI, as well as Twitter (@moxyinfluence) and Instagram (moxyandtheinfluence). We all have personal Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram accounts as well, so if you go on our band accounts you should be able to find our personal accounts easily! Our website also has a lot of information about us (www.MoxyAndTheInfluence.com) and you can find press, merch, and band bios, along with many other things there. Fans can find our music on iTunes, Spotify, YouTube, Amazon, and wherever else music is distributed!