Here is a somewhat condensed interview I did with Kenny Bridges. We had several communication problems arise, all due to a passing rain storm. However, after 4 disruptions, the interview prevailed. Kenny also mentioned in the interview that after the Say Anything tour, that they are planning a headlining tour in Canada, UK and Australia in the winter and hopefully a US headlining tour more towards the spring time of 2010. Enjoy.
Would you be so kind as to introduce yourself and what you do for Moneen? My name is Kenny Bridges and I play guitar and sing for Moneen.
How has everything been for Moneen as of late? Its been pretty good, we are basically counting down the days to release this record.
The fall of 2009 marks the return in presence with Moneen with the release of "The World I want to leave behind" on September 15th along with a five week tour with Say Anything in the states. How are you mentally preparing for it all? It's funny, we have been doing festivals and some random performances over the summer, kind of like little teases to actually go out and start playing real shows, if you want to call them, like in the club. Its just a tease because we want to get out on tour because we haven't done a long tour in a long time. We went over to the UK with Brand New a month ago, and Australia and Germany, and just little things in the past months, but we cant wait to jump into a van and especially in the states. We havent been there in a long time.
Would you mind going into detail about how you came up with the name of the album, "The World I Want To Leave Behind", along with how the artwork is incorporated with it? Yeah, Yeah, Yeah! So, the name of the record is kind of reflective to the full record's events. Funny, in the past, like for "The Red Tree". That record is not about any personal relationships, but more about looking at the outside world in all perspectives. So the record before that was a lot having to do with two things, one being relationships and a lot of the content was with my grandma passed away. That was the first time having to deal with death being that close to me. So now jumping ahead to this record, lyrically its more of a personal record. It's not personal like about girlfriend issues, but more about the outside world and how we fit into the world we live in now. Its pretty much thinking about when we all leave, what are you leaving behind? How is how and what we do everyday in our life is going to effect things in the future, and even people around us. Not everyone is going to be positive, but it is basically about being aware of what we are leaving behind and what we do with our lives.
In regards to the artwork, when I was in the UK filling in for bass for Alexisonfire, we had a bunch of days off, so I was really getting into the zone for getting all of the lyrics finished for the record. So I had all of this time to kill, so I would just walk around and as I was writing lyrics, wherever I would be sitting, I would take a picture of what I would be looking at as I would be writing these lyrics. All throughout the booklet of the packaging are these pictures that I would have taken from writing certain songs, and the cover itself came from this little short video I was taking one day when I was walking around and I found these really cool classical lamp posts, which is whats on the cover. But when I loaded them to my computer and you see the little thumbnail comes up and you see the first frame of the video, it was the lamp post and the car driving by and it was kinda blurred. When I played the video, it wasn't the same effect but it was that one frame, that one split-second of time that inspired the entire packaging of the record. The quality wasn't good enough to use for the album cover, so I had to take the jpeg and send it to my friend in London, England and sent him a Google map of the area where I was in, and I told him, "Go look for this lamp post, and take some rad pictures!". So he sent them back and captured exactly what we needed. In the end there will be essentially three different versions of this packaging, I am really proud of it and excited for it.
In 2006, you felt as if you had pushed yourself as a band with the release of "The Red Tree", how have you pushed yourself with this release in comparison? With The Red Tree, there were certain things we wanted to try that we haven't tried as a band before. I think we only started to break the ice a little bit on that, and with this record, we really really really did try a lot of different things that we wanted to do before. It is the first time that we walked away from a record and, like I cant really listen to our old stuff so much, and I think everything we have done is really good and I am really proud of everything. I don't think we have written a shitty song in the past, some of the stuff have been pretty weird and lack, but not shitty. But this is the first time where I am excited to listen to our own music and this may sound geeky, but I do enjoy listening to our stuff. There are some moments on this record that are way more intense than we have ever been and there are moments that are way more quite and striped down than we have ever been. I love riffs, I have been getting into old Soundgarden so I can listen to riffs. That's something that we have always been into but we have never been a riff'in band, but on this new record, there's riffs.... oh, there are riffs, my friend.
Earlier this year, you digitally released the "Hold That Sound EP", which has three songs off of the new album, in which two of the songs, "Waterfalls" and "The Way" being acoustic. Will these two songs remain acoustic, or will there be a full band version? The Way is played electric and with a full band. Whereas with Waterfalls, we had a whole bunch of people come in and play on that song. We had a harp player, we had a string quartet come in, it was incredible. Musically, that song was an adventure. I was playing in the same room with a harp player, which I never thought I would ever do that. Like in the punk rock world, you don't think about sitting and playing with harp players, its amazing. And its cool too now because we have two different versions like a real stripped down version and then an electric version.
Before we conclude the interview, is there anything you would like to say to the readers and fans? Yeah, yeah, yeah! Even when the bad times come, like a rain storm, and weird automated messages try to shut you down... You keep going, my friend, you keep going! PERSEVERANCE!
Here is my Breathe Carolina interview in which was conducted right before Warped Tour wrapped up.
Can you introduce yourself and what you do for Breathe Carolina?
My name is Kyle Even, and I am the screaming half for Breathe Carolina.
You have been on Warped Tour the entire summer, how has the tour been as a band?
Oh dude, it has been amazing. Definitely not what we thought it would be, its kind of the experience of it really that’s awesome. It’s a whole lot more work doing a twelve hour day, getting up at seven in the morning and performing as late as eight or nine o’clock as opposed to club schedule and tours, but its kind of exciting doing that though, and like I said before, just having the experience of doing Warped Tour.
This year’s Warped Tour has been viewed as being one of the more diverse bills in recent years, in which clashes between musicianship, band integrity and style of genre come with being apart of the tour between other touring bands and media outlets. Unfortunately, bands that are remotely associated with the electro-dance genre are receiving the most nay-say. Has it been as prominent on the tour as the media and other bands make it out to be?
I think there are some bands that talk about it but that’s to be expected. I think its kind of cool though that something that a bunch of people bitch about it. All of these bands on the tour that are apart of the electro-dance genre, a lot of people don’t know how we even got started when really it’s a lot of us sitting and hanging out. That’s something that is stirring up controversy with something that has been around for a while. I think its fucking awesome that we can play something new and it hits people, you know? If you do or do not like it, you are aware of it now, and that’s cool.
How would you say that your band, let alone for the genre, promotes a positive relationship?
We try to be ourselves, and we try to be real. We aren’t trying to be something that we are not, we enjoy how we perform on stage, and I think by doing so, the fans are able to relate and interact with us.
Going into the new album, “Hello Fascination”, how have fans responded to the release?
There have been a lot of people that say that it is totally different. We had a girl recently tell us that she loves this release better than any of the rest of our albums, which we are really excited to hear that. There will always be people who are tied to the first album because of songs that have memories in their lives. I know that I have bands that I listen to and they come out with a new album, I will still like their old stuff because of the memories that I have. So when they come to us and say that they like the new album better, its just awesome that they are looking at it as progress.
Would you mind going into details as to how you choose the title of the album and any significance it may have for you?
We picked it from the song title that is on the album. The song, itself is all about being diverse with your influences. That song has guitar, breakdown, just everything we wanted. This is who we were, and the is is the album that we would have wrote if we had the capabilities before. Before we didn't have a studio, guitars, and awesome mics to go crazy with. Now that we have that, we are very excited about that.
Your first release off of a label, "It's Classy, Not Classic" was self-produced, whereas with this release you worked with both Mike Green and Matt Squire. How would you describe the differences between self-producing a record and working with a producer.
Recording it ourselves, we had half of that album recorded prior to the release, but in order to get a full-length we needed to write some more songs. Those songs were the hardest to write, I mean we were writing them on the road, in hotel rooms recording it, that was tough. It was a huge load off of our shoulders when we wrote this album in a studio with a producer. Having a producer with us, it was like having somebody there living it with us, and having that person there with us guiding us and helping direct us was awesome.
As a band, you are moving at a fast pace, with releasing "It's Classy Not Classic" with Rise Records, and within nine months, you have signed with Fearless Records and release "Hello Fascination". Can we expect more of this pace with another album in 2010?
Honestly, I would love that. In all honesty we haven't had much time to talk about it. There are a lot of different things that we are down into, and if they [Fearless] were wanting us to get into the studio, we would definitely be down.
How has the change been with going from Rise Records to Fearless Records?
One big difference between both labels are when we were with Rise, it was a one man label, so we were able to more things for ourselves, whereas with Fearless where there are a whole lot more people there to work with you. I think that was the hardest thing to get used to, because as a band, we are very particular about how we do things. We like to know whats going on with our band, so that was kind of weird for us to get get used to that, but now that's something that we totally appreciate and love.
After Warped Tour, you will be embarking on the Dance Rawr Dance 3 Tour with Family Force 5 and Cash Cash. What can fans expect from your set?
Hopefully an awesome light show. We will be bumping a couple of new tracks, and I think with each tour, we will be playing different songs for fans.
Before we conclude the interview, is there anything you would like to say to the readers and the fans?
Thank you for being apart of our lives, and we really hope you like the album. If you catch us at one of our shows, don't be shy to stop and say hi to us, we love to meet the people who impact our lives.
Here is my VERY condensed interview with Thrice. I about half of the questions that were removed were questions with the disability of transcribing a phone interview onto the computer, however these questions are ones that you can find online or may know of now.
How are you doing with this summer’s Warped Tour?
Doing pretty good! We were on the first week and a half and just came back to finish the last 5 days on the tour. We are having a good time. Does Warped Tour mean the same to you as it did when you first played in 2002?
No. (Laughs) Its cool, but its funny because we were younger and it you got used to it, but you get used to it after a while and it looses it’s magic. The funny thing is that we are the older guys touring now, and surrounded by people who were in the same shoes that we were in back then. Would you say that it is a much different playing field for these young bands now as opposed to when you were starting out on Warped?
I don’t know. Its kind of hard to see how it is for them now just because we are seeing it though a different eye… Well after Warped Tour, you will be going out with Brand New for three weeks and then following it up with a string of headlining dates with The Deer Hunter and Polar Bear Club. Set wise, what can fans expect?
There will be a lot of Beggars, with a good mix of everything else. We are excited to play that stuff live. It will be about a month and a half before we are playing those dates, so we hope that people are excited to hear it. The whole album is written in a way so that it is fun to play live. In regards to the new album, “Beggars”, what significance does this album has as a band, and how did you come decide on the title?
The thing we get excited about is the stuff that we are working on at the time. It all really develops from us getting back together and playing together again. Alchemy is very analytical and methodical approach, and this was more about the excitement of getting back together and playing our instruments and seeing what happens. But I have kind of talked about it as after Alchemy that the next record would be kind of a fresh start… I think it has that kind of feel. This is the band that we are now, and regardless as to where we have been in the past, but obviously there is going to be some time to change people’s minds. The sound is very natural and raw, and that’s how we like it now.
In regards to the title, I got it originally from, well our title track, but from Martin Luther’s last words that were written, which says “We are beggars. This is true.” A friend of mine told me this a couple of years ago, and it kind of bounced around in my head. Just the idea of everyone being beggars in a sense and contrasting to what we think about, especially here in America. We have the idea that you can accomplish anything with hard work, which is very good, but it also tends to make people feel unappreciative to the things that they have been given when you really sit back and look at your life and look at the things that thankfully didn’t happen, did happen, where you went to school, where your parents worked, all of these things that you have no control over. You have to take a step back and saying “well its not that we are responsible for our actions, but just taking it into account that everyone comes from somewhere different and you should be thankful for the things that have happened. With the release of The Alchemy Index, fans and listeners generally were able to see four different sides to your musical abilities as a band. Do you find that through that release you may have found a new process of writing and creating music with the release of “Beggars” as opposed to any albums prior to Alchemy Index?
I don’t know how much it taught us how to write or anything, but it was more of a cleansing of the pallet. It at times felt forceful to try to incorporate a different sound or aspect before Alchemy. I feel like afterwards we were able to be more about being with the time and to let it happen more. I think if we were to make another album straight after Vheissu, it definitely would have not been this record that’s for sure. But that is just time passing as well. It was a very cool process doing that record. It definitely was hard and long and different. It definitely matured us in the way we play but I don’t think there is a way to quantify it. What can we expect from you as a band for the rest of 2009, leading into 2010?
Just the Brand New tour and headlining tour for 2009. I think in 2010 we may be in Japan and Europe. There is nothing really set in stone. Before we conclude the interview, is there anything you would like to say to the readers and the fans?
Thanks for continuing to follow us all these years, and with this new record, if you don’t like it at first, sit on it for a week and give it another chance. I knew that it was hard for some to get into The Alchemy Index, but after a while fans started to like the album and I think that this is album will be just like that.