Despite preparing for the second semi-final of Pabandom iš Naujo this coming Saturday, we were lucky enough to meet with Justas and Aurimas of Moosu X and talk a bit about their music, their origin story, and what their process looks like as songwriters. You’ll also get a teaser for what staging changes they made for Saturday’s show, so make sure you read until the end!
Hello Moosu X – I’m super excited to chat with you today! Why don’t you give our readers a brief introduction as to who you both are?
Hi, thank you for this interview. We are longtime friends, musicians, composers and music producers from Lithuania.
Justas: First of all I’m a third generation cellist in my family, I was raised as a classical cellist, but was always interested in more than just playing music. I have my own project called “Future Cello” where I implement all my ideas combining cello, looping, electronic and cinematic music. I would say it was very fortunate that we’ve met with Aurimas, and started creating music together. I think we complement each other’s ideas in a way that makes creating music faster and much more interesting.
Aurimas: I have no musicians in my family, but in my childhood, at home we had a gramophone and many vinyls. I loved music since I can remember. Pink Floyd, Led Zeppelin, Queen, Abba, Michael Jackson, later Nirvana, Radiohead (list goes on and on) was my biggest inspiration to start learning guitar. After graduating school I started to study jazz as a guitarist in local college. In that timeframe I have met with Justas, and started playing music together.
Thank you for helping us get to to know both of you a bit more as musicians! I’m pretty curious, how did the name Moosu X come about? And better still, how did you two first meet and start making music together?
Well first of all we met playing on the street about 16 years ago. Connected really quick, became friends and started to improvise together, play some gigs. Then starded to create our own music, which was then only instrumental, and it progressed along the way to what it is right now.
About the name Moosu X. First we were looking for something that would sound and look good and have a meaning to us. Basically “Moosu” is a Lithuanian word “Mūsų“ that means “Our” written in a way that would sound Lithuanian in English. And the “X” stands for everything that we’ve been through together, and all the challenges that are still waiting for us.
Of course, congratulations are in order since you just recently competed in heat two of Pabandom iš Naujo and progressed through to the upcoming semi-finals! What was your reaction when the official results came in?
Thank you! We were very excited that we are going forward. Of course we were celebrating. We are happy that we got so much support from everyone and that we have a chance to improve our performance and to compete for the finals.
This is also your first time participating in the Lithuanian national final as artists, what made you decide to submit an entry?
This year we’ve created a lot of songs that are still not released. And the day we were finishing on “Love that hurts” we immediately agreed that this is the song that we see ourselves performing on Eurovision stage. We believe that it has strong lyrics and meaning that people can relate to, because it was written based on our own experiences.
And for those who might not pay attention to the songwriter’s side of the selection, you both wrote three other songs that are competing in the heats. What has it been like to be competing alongside artists that you also wrote entries for?
We don’t think that music should be a competition, but rather a way to connect all the artists and creative people to combine their talents and ideas. On the other hand, music is a matter of taste and cannot be judged objectively. In addition, we are just very happy that three of our songs can be heard on this show. Artists we were working with are super nice, and we’re happy that we had a chance to work with them.
With so many songs in the selection, I’m interested to learn about your creative process for writing songs. What does the writing process usually look like for you both?
Well, our creative workflow is changing constantly as we are evolving as musicians, composers and of course as human beings. There is no one way how we usually start a song, every time it is different. But there is always something that ignites the main idea. It is very important, that from the very beginning we are both excited about what we are creating.
Speaking of songwriting and songs, your song is titled “Love that Hurts” – could you tell us a bit more about the message behind your song and its lyrics?
Everyone goes through tough times in their life and it leaves a mark that cannot be erased. The song is about how you deal with it, and how it changes you forever.
I also wanted to ask you about your staging for the national final, because I really loved the green lighting design and the four cellos on stage. Are you going to keep this design for the semi-finals or will we see some changes next time you perform?
We are sticking to green lighting design, but we added two back vocals. So we needed to cut one cello out, because Eurovision rules state that there can be only six persons performing on stage. All in all we worked hard to improve our performance, and we hope it gives us a better chance to go to the finals.
Of course, the winner of Pabandom iš Naujo would be heading off to Eurovision this coming May. What would it mean for you to be able to perform at such an international level?
Well, if that happened it would be a once in a lifetime opportunity for us to jumpstart our career as a band and music producers. Nevertheless, it would be a huge responsibility for us to represent our country.
For those who want to connect with you ahead of or after the selection– where can they find you and your music?
Yes, thank you for asking! You can find all of our music on all main streaming platforms (Spotify, iTunes, Youtube and etc.) and follow us on Instagram @moosu_x.
Alright, one final question for you – is there any message you’d like to share with our readers?
Aurimas: You have to know nothing to be able to learn something. Be aware of your knowledge.
Justas: Yes, I believe that the more you know, the more you don’t know…I would just like to encourage everyone to always be curious and from time to time to forget everything you think you know!
Well Moosu X, I want to thank you again for taking some time to speak with me, and we wish you the best of luck in the semi-final rounds!