- Belle Mt. returns with the pensive new track "This Kind Of Heavy."
Following the release of the track “Hollow,” Belle Mt. has returned with a powerful soul-stirring new song, “This Kind Of Heavy.”
Fronted by songwriter/frontman Matt Belmont, “Belle Mt. [pronounced bell-mont], is an ever-evolving concept that can take on many forms.” It can manifest —at times— as Matt performing his most intimate songs solo on guitar or keys & vocals. In its current incarnation, Belle Mt. mostly performs as a trio comprised of Matt alongside long term collaborators Chris Burgess on drums/percussion and Ben Worsley on guitar, bass & backing vocals. Belle Mt. first emerged at the end of 2017 with the debut EP, Volume I as “Hollow (Acoustic)” claimed real estate on coveted playlists such as Spotify’s New Music Friday, the group performed at SXSW, BritishSummertime in Hyde Park, Eurosonic, and on the road with Kaleo.
This interview has been edited for length and clarity.
Vacancy Magazine: The composition of the latest release “This Kind of Heavy” is captivating at the emotional level. What is the story behind the new single?
Belle Mt.: “This Kind of Heavy” was written at a real low point for me, I’d recently lost a good friend and had been struggling to write about anything at all, as whenever I got half way through a new song it always felt meaningless in comparison to this loss and so I’d throw it away. Around this point my Austin-based manager Bruce passed through London to watch another band on his roster ‘The Cadillac Three’ play a support slot at Wembley. I headed up to meet him, we watched their set and then went for dinner. At one point in conversation Bruce asked me how the writing was going, and I told him honestly… “it’s a bit of a train wreck, nothing lives up to this event in my head right now and I’m struggling to find the right words to even write about that”. He responded “Hey don’t worry about it man, it’s understandable. Nothing comes close to that kind of heavy, right?” and turned back to his dinner with no idea that he’d just given me the words I’d been looking for.
Vacancy Magazine: What draws you to the alt-pop genre and who are the major influences shaping the band’s sound?
Belle Mt.: Alt-pop is a genre name I kind of thought I made up and then I realised it already existed. It was a way to keep myself right in between the two boxes I didn’t want to sit fully inside as an artist. I just wanted a way to create great music with meaningful lyrics that I fall in love with first and foremost and I guess that happens to fall somewhere between Bon Iver soundscapes and Coldplay hooks. I was raised on 60’s singer/songwriters like Joni Mitchell, Leonard Cohen & Bob Dylan mixed with bands like Fleetwood Mac, REM and Queen, the last 3 are kind of the alt pop of their day.
Vacancy Magazine: What would be the one defining song, written works or artist that encourages your songwriting style?
Belle Mt.: It’s so hard to pick one… but that’s the question so I’ll go with it! I’d say Bon Iver hugely influenced the way I set this project up and also in the way that I approach songwriting and production; he breaks so many rules of song writing and arrangement with such incredibly inspiring results. I don’t think our end result sounds like Bon Iver, but I definitely learned a lot from Justin Vernon, and continue to.
Vacancy Magazine: During these uncertain times around the world, what message do you want your listeners to take away from your music?
Belle Mt.: It’s a big responsibility to release right now and I wouldn’t release unless I felt like we had something to say that can help punctuate the moment, there’s so much social unrest and division in the US and in Europe and we need artists to speak to this time. I want people to feel moved and inspired by our music and I want it to help them feel something real, whatever emotions those are at that time is fine, I just think we are all longing for art to ground us in the moment. We’ve got enough escapism already. Ultimately we want to be a uniting force.
Vacancy Magazine: What are you looking forward to most post-COVID personally and within the music industry?
Belle Mt.: Big groups of singing people at music shows, my whole family in one room, band practices, regularly meeting new people, touring, my friends in music coming together to help with a much needed recovery in our industry and our society.
“This Kind Of Heavy” is now available on music streaming platforms.
Adriana Chavez is the editor for Vacancy. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org