After a few weeks off, let’s today resume our series of interview and take a ride to our friends from Australia. Indeed, Matt HUNTER, playing the bass on all KORITNI’s albums, kindly replied to our questions.
Aldo - Can you first remind how you took part to KORITNI?
Matt - I started in KORITNI when I was 22. I had just finished my Bachelor's Degree in Music and it was January I think... or at least around the start of the year. In Sydney we have a free magazine that is called "Drum Media". It has many adverts about concerts as well as some classifieds where people ask for a drummer or singer for their band.
There was an ad that read something like "bassist needed for European tour". As soon as I read that I said to myself: "That's my gig!!! I'm gonna get that!" so I rang and spoke to Lex (Koritni – NB) and I realized that Lex was actually singing in a friends’ band that I used to play in. I saw him that night on a gig and he came to see a soul gig I was doing two days later. We had some drinks at his place after while listening to the stuff, and a few days later I auditioned with him and Eddy (Santacreu – guitar)...
From then on... I had the gig! We toured France on the Green Dollar Colour Tour very soon after that, then came back to Australia and started work on our “Lady Luck” Album!
A - Unless I am mistaken, first time you played at HELLFEST was in 2009. Before coming to Clisson, what was your knowledge about the Fest? Did you ever hear about it before?
M - I had never before heard of HELLFEST. Only when it was announced to the band did we look into it to find out more about it
A - Can you tell us a bit about the organization and progress of your first participation? What did you expect to find out in terms of people, organization, environment? How did you find that first experience?
M - My first experience with HELLFEST was really casual and cool. The organization was amazing with lots of people to help and volunteers etc… I think I even got a massage after our gig!!! It was so cool that they had massage people there! Ha,ha! It was an awesome experience. The crowd and stage techs were all great and I'll never forget that gig!
A - You and KORITNI came back in 2012. How was it different from your "first time"?
M - Our second time at HELLFEST was another great experience but also a difficult one as we knew that it was another really important show at a pretty great time slot - right after STEEL PANTHER - so we had a lot of responsibilities.We were more prepared for the scale of the event and the size of the crowd but there are always still some nerves when you have roughly 20 000 people attending a festival where you play.
A - Unless i am mistaken, in 2012 you were initially scheduled to play before STEEL PANTHER. Change occured lately, as far as I remember. How did you handle it?
M - Ah yes, this is true. STEEL PANTHER had to reschedule and go onstage before us because of another gig that they had to hurry to after that. It was great for us and i think we found that information out only a few days before HELLFEST.
It was awesome being on the side of stage while they were playing… It was not too much of a challenge to change things around at all. We played later so it meant we had more prep time (and sleep time)
A - As you attended two editions (2009 and 2012) I have two questions:
1) What did you think about the fest? What on your point of view makes this event specific compared to other events?
2) Did you notice any change in the atmosphere/scenery/quality?
M - What I enjoyed most about the fest was.... I loved the attitude of the festival goers. There was no violence or any bad vibes. It was peaceful and really cool. It was also really well organized and the bands were really well taken care of.
I can't really say what makes this festival different from other fests because I haven't played so many festivals of that size in Europe. We have played a lot of smaller ones like "les Z’arts Scéniques" and that festival again was also really well organized but not as massive as HELLFEST.
Regarding your second question: I can't say that I noticed many changes to the festival the second time we played there. Still well organized and well catered etc.
Again, many thanks to Matt for kindness and availability.