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Interview:
Outside projects brought 3OH!3 members back to their roots
 

By GARY GRAFF
@graffonmusic, Facebook.com/Gary Graff on Music

» See more SOUND CHECK

After spending time producing and writing for other artists after 2010's "Streets of Gold," the two members of 3OH!3 decided to "get back to the roots" on their fourth album, "Omens," which came out earlier this year.

"Yeah, it was nice to get some time to go back and work on our stuff, take the savvy we'd learned from writing and producing that other music and apply it to our project," says Nathaniel Motte, who co-founded the hip-hop flavored synthpop group with Sean Foreman nine years ago in Boulder, Co. (the name comes from the city's telephone area code). "We've always written and produced our own music at the center of everything we do, so this was getting back to the roots of just Sean and I experimenting with music and just having fun in the studio and hoping it translates and that people like it.

"It's nice to have the pure, unadulterated fruits of our labor this time."

Motte, 29, certainly had an active period between 3OH!3 albums. He collaborated with Awol One on a 2011 album called "The Child Star" and worked with Elen Levon on the 2012 single "Dancing With Myself." Motte also wound up co-writing the 2012 Maroon5 single "Love Somebody," which hit No. 10 on the Billboard Hot 100 and topped the Adult Pop Songs chart.

"That was the best calling card for me," says Motte, who was brought into the project by co-writer and co-producer Ryan Tedder, a fellow Coloradan. "He and I are friends and we exchange instrumental ideas, and he called me up one day and said, 'Hey man, I'm in a session with Maroon5' and wanted to use this one idea I had.

"A lot of people were surprised that I'd do something with Maroon5, but why not? I'm no hipster snob, y'know? It was really cool to see how they took my idea and what they did with it."

3OH!3 headlines the Journeys Noise tour with NeW bEAt FUNd, the Summer Set and Wallpaper on Tuesday, Oct. 29, at Saint Andrews Hall, 431 E. Congress St., Detroit. Doors open at 6 p.m. Tickets are $20. Call 313-961-6358 or visit www.saintandrewsdetroit.com.

Web Site: www.saintandrewsdetroit.com

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