You were in a rock-climbing accident in British Columbia that left you with a back injury. How are you doing?
Iím doing pretty well actually. Iím very slowly recovering. I donít experience too much pain these days. One thing that sets it off is sitting in the van all day long. Touring is one of the few times in my life where Iím reminded of the injury. Other than that Iím doing good.
While you were recovering, was there any specific album or band that you listened to consistently?
Not really. First of all, if Iím sick and in bed, I tend to go for the most brainless of pastimes. Iíll watch some TV or a movie. I was doing a lot of writing in the hospital. When Iím writing, I tend not to listen to anyone elseís music. Itís distracting.
Before the injury, you actually considered leaving the band. Would you say that the accident played a part in that decision or do you think you wouldíve ended up sticking with it regardless?
Thatís really hard to say. I think more so than the accident, just the entire experience of being out in a remote, vast landscape and experiencing it -- it impacted me a lot. I think that that inspired me to change my life in a lot of ways. Only one of them was musical. I think it put things into perspective though. You learn a lot about whatís really important when youíre more focused on survival.
You mentioned that you were writing songs during your recovery time in the hospital. Are any of those songs on Glowing Mouth?
Some of the songs are written before that happened, some were written during, and some were written after. I donít think that thereís very much transparent thematic material on the album. Thereís no indication lyrically of where I was at any given time.
Knowing the time period that preceded Glowing Mouth, one would expect there to be a solid theme throughout the album. Do you recognize any themes throughout the songs?
During the course of the writing of the record, I went through a lot of transition. I think that the album is sort of about that. My life went from being a very monotonous, dark place, to being in a very bright and exciting place. I think that thatís reflected in the album. Itís not necessarily intentional though. It wasnít intended to be a themed record of any sort.
Milagres has been compared to Grizzly Bear, Bon Iver, and other influential bands in indie music. What do you make of those comparisons?
Iím certainly familiar with both artists. When thereís a new band, it makes sense to me that people need to compare them to something that already exists. Thatís the easiest way for them to describe it. Some of us went to school with some of the guys in Grizzly Bear so weíre friends with them. I actually asked Dan about it. I noticed we were getting all these comparisons. He was very encouraging about it. I thought that was kind of cool. Itís interesting though. There was one review from the UK that compared us to Coldplay. For me, that one was the most off-putting. But if weíre going to be compared to artists, the ones that you mentioned earlier are not bad artists to be compared to. I donít think that either one of them are necessarily too influential on me. I tend to focus more on some older music and more obscure music.
Kill Rock Stars signed Milagres without even seeing you play live. From what I've read, you were the first band they had ever done that for. What kind of confidence does that give you?
At first, it gave us a lot of confidence in the record. We knew that eventually they were going to see us live though and we werenít really sure if they were going to be pleasantly surprised or not. They seemed really excited when they saw us live. They said that they were surprised and happy to find that we were better live than we were on the record. That was a really nice thing to hear. I think our band definitely has something live that isnít on the album and something on the album that isnít there live.
Is it frustrating or challenging to try and capture the live feeling in the studio?
In the case of this album, it was created more in the way of a studio project. We just made the album and we wanted to make it as good as possible. We werenít playing too many of the songs live at that point. We just assembled them the way we wanted to and then figured out how to reproduce them live later. I donít think itís very common for a band to function that way, but it works really well for us. Sometimes if you go into the studio and youíre trying to reproduce something that you do live it doesnít come across as well on the recording. Itís very difficult to do that. There are some producers who are really great at that. We made this album ourselves though, so we did it the way that we know how to do it.
Speaking of the live show, youíll be touring in Europe with Cymbals Eat Guitars. Is that going to be your first time touring overseas?
Yeah, weíre really excited about that. Itís going to be a lot of fun.
Are you nervous about playing in a country youíve never played before?
No more so than anything else. Right now weíre touring through the United States and weíre playing places weíve never played before. That feels similar. Last night we played in Columbia, Missouri which is a town weíve never played in before. Itís exciting. You get to see a new place and meet new people. Going to the UK will be no exception.
Is the album available in the UK?
Itís coming out in the UK in January, 2012.
So a lot of the people youíll be playing to may not have heard the record.
Yeah, absolutely. But thatís still true in the United States.
Is there a different kind of nervousness doing that overseas?
Iím not sure. I guess weíll find out. Iím not really nervous. I would say Iím more excited. I canít speak for my band mates but for me personally, I tend not to get nervous until ten minutes before a show. Iím usually nervous for those ten minutes. As soon as I get on stage I tend not to be nervous anymore. I probably wonít get nervous about being overseas and playing shows until ten minutes before I get on stage.