We started out as Tunnelmen, I thought it was a good name for a band, bringing underground music to the surface. Later, trying to be clever when we changed our line-up and started writing more electronic based stuff I changed it to tunnelmental by adding the three extra letters, also emphasizing the progression from the socio-political observation of tunnel vision into what I saw as tunnelmental. The new moniker is a description of what we are now.
How did this band get started?
T.E.A. got started in 2008 when I got together with the original guitarist and a drummer friend who liked what he had heard of us from the mid nineties. I decided to experiment with sounds, line-up and technology. We played a show or two with lots of former members and some new ones, it was fun but hard to maintain, that’s why it is an assembly, it is constantly under review and evolving.
What bands are you influenced by?
I suppose early on it was the punk rock movement in general that inspired me. Then later Joy Division and Killing Joke. I mostly enjoy music that has a powerful message or is passionate.
If you could tour with any bands, past or present, who would they be and why?
Probably Prodigy, fans are mental. Beastie Boys, they seem fun. Massive Attack, they are brilliant.
Best food to eat on tour?
Curry or beans on toast.
Why should people listen to your band?
Because we mean it, we are passionate about it and have something to say.
If you could be any athlete, which athlete would you switch places with?
I don’t really know if I would swap places with anyone. I suppose if I had to it would be Pele. He was an amazing soccer player.
If you won a Grammy, who would you thank?
My mum. Although I would probably not accept one. Industry bullshit bothers me.
If you could change something about the music industry, what would it be?
Stop it being an industry and make it about music.
Memorable tour experience?
Wychwood festival 2010 in UK. I rode a winner as a young jockey at Cheltenham Racecourse then played the festival on the racecourse many years later, it felt so good.
What does AP.net mean to you?
I see it as a place where the original ethos of punk continues to be supported, a place to discover new and passionate music.
What is your favorite song to play?
It is always the latest one I write, nothing is more exciting than playing a new song you just wrote.
What is your vacation spot of choice?
I don’t really have one, I think life is one long vacation, if you treat it like one.
What music reminds you of your childhood?
The Who. The Beatles. The Rolling Stones.
If you could have any super power, what would it be? Why?
A love lazer, the power to end all wars.
Any pre-show superstitions or rituals?
A shag helps, failing that no superstitions.
What is something that most fans don't know about you?
I am God.
What is your assessment of the current state of radio? Do you think it's a place where your band could flourish?
Radio should be in the hands of fans of music, not fans of money. Yes we could flourish as a backlash against mainstream media bullshit.
What do you like to do in your spare time?
I am an activist and pacifist, I like to protest against violence and war.