We spoke with Northern California’s grunge-pop trio, Monster Treasure who consists of Briana Granados (vocals/guitar), Rachel Orimo (vocals/bass), and RJ Mar (drums). The group just wrapped up a UK tour a couple weeks ago, and released their second full-length album, “II” via Leisure & District Records. You can check out the band below at the following links, and make sure to see them in a city near you!
Their new record, II: https://mnstrtrsr.bandcamp.com
Hey! How are you all doing today?
We’re doing well, thanks!
How did you all meet?
Rachel: We went to high school together
Who are your musical influences?
RJ: I think it ranges. I got into music because of bands like Green Day, and 90s bands like that. I watched a lot of MTV when I was really young as well so I wanted to play music, and look like that. It just evolved during high school when I started to get into more punk bands
Briana: I think a lot of punk bands influences us
Rachel: I’d say Yo La Tengo too because we’ve seen them a bunch, and bands like them
Briana: Yeah, there’s just a lot of bands. We didn’t consciously think of bands that we wanted to sound like honestly so it’s hard to choose specific bands
You released “II” just over a month ago. How has the reaction been to it so far?
Briana: Pretty good I feel like especially for the people who actually heard it I guess
Rachel: Yeah, it has been a pretty positive response
What’s your favorite song to record or write?
Rachel: I don’t think I have a favorite. When we recorded them, we did everything by instruments
RJ: As for songs I like playing, I pretty much like playing everything off of our newest release
Which song took the longest to write?
Rachel: When we went to go record, I think “Come Over” was kind of half written or have solidified and we had to practice. I just remember in particular “Come Over” and the jam was thrown together when we were at the studio
Briana: Yeah, we had to find like endings and everything you should have figured out before you recorded a song
Rachel: I think we had the skeleton of it and then added more to it as we were recording them as well
You all were just in the UK couple weeks ago. How was your tour?
Rachel: We were in the North part of the UK and then stopped in Glasgow which is in Scotland. It was really fun actually. We supported Slowcoaches who are our label mates and drove around in a big red van
Briana: It was petite rouge which wasn’t petite at all *chuckle*
What was your favorite city to plan in on that run?
Briana: I liked Glasgow
Rachel: Yeah, Glasgow was my favorite
Briana: Also Manchester!
RJ: I liked them all pretty much and I have nothing bad to say about any of the shows we played out there
What’s an item you must bring with you on the road?
Briana: Lots of underwear
RJ: Haha yeah! Aside from instruments, I try to pack as light as I could
Briana: It’s 50% underwear
If you could headline a show in any city or venue. Where would it be, and who would you have as your opening acts?
Rachel: Woah! That’s a really good question that requires some thought
RJ: I’d love to go East Coast and anywhere over there
Briana: Even though we haven’t played over there yet
RJ: I’ve never been out there, but I feel like anywhere out there would be fun
Briana: I suppose in New York City apparently *chuckles* and The Pixies are opening for us because I don’t like them anymore. Kim Deal isn’t in it so they can open for us
Rachel: Ooh Yogurt Brain can come along
Briana: But they have to go after The Pixies
What can we expect from you all next year?
Rachel: Hmm I don’t know yet. I think we’re going to try to tour in the U.S. like more than the West Coast. Or like Midwest, and South. Hopefully East Coast too.
RJ: Yeah, definitely! I’ve definitely have like a travel bug, and just like the first time we went to London, and going again really soon was crazy. I didn’t think we’d go back that soon but after being there for like two weeks and going to more places I just got like a bug, and I’d like to keep going. Like fuck work and just go places
(Interview & Photograph by: Samantha Toy)