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June 2, 2022

Interview with Memphis May Fire (Matty Returns!)

⚡️Our first IN PERSON interview since March 2020! ⚡️

We had the pleasure of interviewing Matty Mullins of Memphis May Fire over Zoom video!

Memphis May Fire makes anthems for the broken. The four-piece rock band channel a generation’s worth of...

⚡️Our first IN PERSON interview since March 2020! ⚡️

We had the pleasure of interviewing Matty Mullins of Memphis May Fire over Zoom video!

Memphis May Fire makes anthems for the broken. The four-piece rock band channel a generation’s worth of angst, frustration, and pain, with a focused blend of gigantic melodic hooks and crushing aggression. Even after topping Billboard’s Hard Music Albums chart and breaking into radio’s Active Rock Top 20, Memphis May Fire refuses to sacrifice who they are or the people who made them. In fact, Remade in Misery, their seventh full-length album, is the heaviest Memphis May Fire record yet.

It is the first Memphis May Fire album to be both produced and mixed by Kellen McGregor, the band’s guitarist who co-founded the group roughly 15 years ago. The longtime rhythm section of bassist Cory Elder and drummer Jake Garland inject the songs with infinite depth and focus. Cameron Mizell, who coproduced 2014 fan-favorite Unconditional with McGregor, produced Matty’s vocals.

Mullins enlisted his friend Cody Quistad, guitarist and clean vocalist for the band Wage War, during part of the writing process. Fire From The Gods singer AJ Channer guests on “Only Human.” At the heart of any collaboration is the Memphis May Fire mission: to connect with the brokenhearted.

The guys are family to the million-plus fans who follow Memphis May Fire on social media, revered by the people who discovered their early albums in 2009 and 2011; those who made Challenger (2012) the biggest selling debut in the history of Rise Records at the time; and everyone who championed their music since. Unconditional debuted at Number One on Billboard’s Rock, Independent, and Hard Music charts. In 2016, This Light I Hold made inroads into radio while rooted in heaviness. Boasting the singles “The Old Me,” “Live Another Day,” and “Heavy is the Weight,” Broken was a distillation of what the band does creatively, with the group’s signature passion and fearless genre-bending.

Remade in Misery is the sum total of all that’s come before with a forceful charge into the future.

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Hello! It is Adam. Welcome back to bringing it backwards. A podcast where both legendary and rising artists tell their own personal stories of how they achieve stardom. This was a very, very special episode. It was actually the first in-person episode we've done since COVID the last in-person interview was March of 2020. We finally had the opportunity to do another in-person interview, and it was with our dear friend, Maddie Mullins of the band. Memphis may fire. We previously interviewed Maddie via zoom and in zoom call realized that we live very, very close to one another. 3 (1m 53s): So we ended up just hanging out, doing another interview, but all about their brand new record, which is called remade in misery. We also recapped Maddie's entire musical career. Definitely way more in depth than the first interview. He tells us things that he's never revealed in interviews before, which is really, really cool. He has a lot to say about all the previous Memphis may fire albums. You find out how he got in the band. And of course all about the new record, how it was put together called remade in misery, you can watch our interview with Maddie Mullins on our Facebook page and YouTube channel at bringing it backwards. 3 (2m 34s): It'd be amazing if you subscribe to our YouTube channel like us on Facebook, follow us on Instagram, Twitter, and Tik TOK at bringing back pod. And if you're listening to this on Spotify, apple music, Google podcasts, it would be incredible if you follow us there as well, and hook us up with a five star review, 4 (2m 52s): We'd appreciate your support. If you follow and subscribe to our podcasts, wherever you listen to podcasts, 3 (2m 58s): We're bringing a backwards with Memphis may fire dude. I'm so excited. 5 (3m 4s): I am so excited. Yeah. The last time that we, last time we did one of these, we found out that we live in the same city, less than a mile apart. 3 (3m 11s): No. Yeah. And it's so funny. Cause like our faces when you're like, yeah, I live in SpringHill. I'm like, I live in a street. We're both like, oh my God, 5 (3m 18s): Like spring hill, Florida, 3 (3m 20s): What is 5 (3m 21s): Happening? Crazy. 3 (3m 22s): So, yeah. And this is the first interview I've done in person in over two years. 5 (3m 28s): Really? Yeah. Oh my gosh. I feel honored. 3 (3m 30s): So bear with me here. 5 (3m 31s): Dang dude. That's going to be good luck, bro. 3 (3m 35s): That's why I brought notes. So you know the drill, it's basically about you and your life and your journey and music. And obviously I want to talk about the new record. I had a chance to hear it. It's amazing. Awesome. 5 (3m 47s): I'm glad they sent it to you. So that ribs 3 (3m 48s): Excited. All right. Born and raised in Spokane, Washington. 5 (3m 52s): So comfy. Did 3 (3m 53s): You like it? Love it. 5 (3m 54s): I feel like you, I feel like you sit and then you kind of sink into the back of that. Love that. I 3 (3m 58s): Love it. Yeah. It's short too. I 5 (3m 60s): Hate the couch in my living room. Really? I hate it. So anytime I sit on a comfortable couch, I'm always like, dude, we should have gotten a softer couch. 3 (4m 8s): Yeah. Not, not a whole lot of kids. 5 (4m 11s): Okay. So your question was 3 (4m 13s): Born and raised in Spokane 5 (4m 15s): Washington, which is the first day of the next tour that we're doing with dance. Gavin dance really day one, April 26th, Spokane Washington. 3 (4m 24s): Is that a big deal? Like I know that cause the band started in Dallas kind of, I want to get to that, but kind of you'd moved there to join the band. Is that like a huge thing for you guys to play there? 5 (4m 34s): Huge thing because Spokane is in the Pacific Northwest. If you're on a tour routing, usually going to hit Seattle and Portland, but rarely do you go to Spokane. It's just out of the way. So unless it makes sense, you'll hardly ever end up there being that it's day one on this tour, our bus has like a 36 hour drive from Nashville to Spokane to start the tour. Oh wow. Gas prices is going to be awesome. 3 (4m 59s): You're driving literally from here, they're like 5 (5m 2s): Is the bus will with the gear with a drive that lengthy like I'll, I'll fly out. But it's, I mean like usually yeah, we would just be on for, for the long haul, but yeah, it's really cool, man. I mean, I think that the people that I grew up with having them come out and see us is, is always like an amazing time. But what's even cooler is all of the people that have moved there or were so much younger than me that I didn't know them when I lived there, like coming to the show and then not even knowing that I was like raised there and then being able to tell them on stage, like this is where I'm from. It's so fun. Cause it's just an odd place to be from, you know, like out of anywhere in the country when the band is from Dallas and you know, our bass players from Murphy's borough and our drummer's from Orlando, it's like, I'm from Spokane and it's not pronounced Spokane. 5 (5m 47s): It's pronounced Spokane and yeah. Yeah. It's, it's really cool. And that's my favorite venue that we're playing there too though. The knitting factory. Yeah. Oh, 3 (5m 54s): Well there's a few nitty factories. 5 (5m 56s): There is. Yeah. There's only, I think there's one in Boise and one in Reno. 3 (6m 1s): Maybe that's it. 5 (6m 2s): I think we've played all of them. The one in Spokane is by far the best. 3 (6m 5s): Okay. Yeah. There you go. All right. So how did you get into music? I know your music is in your family, right? Your brother plays. 5 (6m 11s): Yeah. My, my brother did play. My dad played and my mom was just a music fanatic, you know, like she took us to shows religiously. Like it was more like music was our sports. Oh. In our family, we would just, we would go out and probably like every weekend, every other weekend, whether it was like something coming to the arena or something coming to like a local church or even just like some sort of local band that we knew and supported, you know, a lot of those like local, younger bands. We did a lot with when I was growing up like a lot, we would travel to go see them and support them however we could. And so that was my whole childhood was 3 (6m 50s): Yeah. Cause most kids are kind of pushed into sports or something like that to have the music be. 5 (6m 56s): And my mom, you know, like she she's, she loves sports as well. But I think that like when she saw w what the trajectory of my growth is going to be, she was like, well, that's not going to happen. You know, 3 (7m 9s): What was the first instrument you picked up? 5 (7m 12s): I played guitar a little bit. I got an acoustic guitar for Christmas when I was really young and my brother played guitar, but never really wanted to pursue it. I always just wanted to sing. Really? 3 (7m 23s): Yeah. 5 (7m 24s): It was like the, the, the one thing that drew me to music was just holding the microphone, you know? And since I really do wish that I would have pursued guitar and gotten better at it and I could play a little bit and I've got, you know, a handful of guitars in the studio, but yeah, but I've never like, you know, I wish that I, I would've really liked dove and, and piano too. I wish that I would've learned piano is just such an amazing songwriting tool. 3 (7m 47s): You play piano bit. Don't you? I was just looking at credits on some of the records and you have, 5 (7m 52s): Yeah, no, I don't. I literally can't play a single thing on piano. I think that our Wikipedia says that I'm vocals and keyboard. 3 (7m 58s): Yeah. One of the records, I don't know if it's on all the records, but it says that you played keyboards and I'm like, huh, 5 (8m 5s): What are you talking about? Like Wikipedia is the craziest thing that you can just literally put anything on there. But no, I have never done any programming or keyboards or piano for anything we've ever done. 3 (8m 14s): I want to do a, another podcast. That's just all sitting down with an artist and just like going through the Wikipedia because I've gotten burned so many times just going off Wikipedia. 5 (8m 24s): Oh, it's crazy. I know. And that, I think that our management or our label years ago, I think they submitted like a bunch of requests. Like Maddie does not play keyboards and whoever like put it in was like, no, he does to me, you know? And it would just stay up. So it's funny. Don't believe everything you read on the internet. 3 (8m 39s): That's funny. So you said microphone, you're always a singer. Tell me about this picture of you and you're six years old. 5 (8m 47s): I, yeah, so my brother invited me on stage to sing with him when I was six. I think it like, he was in like a grudge. It was like a grunge project. I can't remember what the name of it was, but there was like five lyrics. And he was like, just come up on stage and scream these over and over again. And I just went up and grabbed the mic and I was like, and that was my, that was how it all started. And then later there was a girl that I liked and she asked if I wanted to go to karaoke. That was at a bowling alley. Do you like cosmic, bowling? And then you do karaoke in the other room or whatever. And that's when like sync and everything was popping up. Right. And I was, I was so young and she's like, sing something. 5 (9m 28s): And I was like, I don't know. And I, I grabbed the mic and did like an instinct song and I sang it and I was like, oh, that felt kind of, that felt kind of good. And everyone in the room like looked over like what? And I was like, what was that? All right. And I still like, to this day, I don't think that I necessarily enjoy my own singing voice. You know, like I it's, it's this weird thing where it's something that I've done and I've done a lot and people have been like, oh, man, this really affected me in a positive way. I'm like, okay, that's awesome. I'll keep doing it. But I've never been like, wow, that sounded great ever. You know what I mean? So that day at karaoke was like kind of eyeopening. And I was like weird and then started bands. And you know, my, my dad's neighbor, his name was well, his son's name was, will and became my best friend. 5 (10m 15s): And we started a lot of early bands together and I'm going to go down a rabbit hole if you're here for a second, I'm here for, before we, even before we even started this interview today, you and I were talking about a guy named Brian Ortiz. Yes. So Brian lives here and he's your friend and an old friend of mine. He was in a band called buddy ruckus in Spokane. That me and all my friends looked up to big time. I mean, they were so rad, just really cutting edge for anything that was coming out of Spokane. And so my buddy will, who lived across the street from my dad, had a band room because his dad was a musician. So we had access to everything. We had a PA and guitars, pianos, you know, like microphones, anything that you could need just to jam as a child. 5 (11m 0s): Like we had it, which was insane and 3 (11m 4s): Loud as you want it in there, 5 (11m 5s): We can, oh dude, it was a separate building built onto the back of the house that was specifically for music. And I was just like, and I mean, you know, like looking back, it wasn't like, it was like state-of-the-art, but it had everything, right? Like, and you just go in and you'd grab an SM 58 and you had no idea that it costs a hundred dollars. You're throwing it around and 3 (11m 21s): Well, to be fair, you could like hammer a nail and 5 (11m 25s): Yeah, you really can. But yeah. So when buddy ruckus, when they decided to break up their bass player, his name was Steve Wescott me and will invited him to join our band. And he was significantly older than us. So we were just like, there's no way he's going to say yes. And he did. And he brought a new drummer with him. And that was, that was my very first real band ever. I was probably 14 or years old and overnight was playing with some of the most well-respected rock musicians in Spokane where I'm from. And it happened. I mean, it happened fast. I had to grow up really fast. 5 (12m 6s): They were like, you guys want a tour? And I was like, ah, I got to ask my mom, like for real I, how 3 (12m 10s): Old were you? 5 (12m 11s): I was like 14, 15. I was like, I really got to ask my mom and the van would pull up outside of the house and my mom would go up to the driver's seat and talk to Steve. And she would just be like, I swear on my life, if you, if anything happens to my son and, and we would go, we would just drive. We would drive to Portland. We would drive to the Tri-Cities. We would drive to salt lake city and we would play shows for whoever would listen. And we built up a pretty decent following in Spokane where we were from. It was really cool. And then just throughout the Northwest and met a lot of awesome people and yeah, yeah. Wild, wild story. That's, that's kinda how it all began. 3 (12m 42s): And when, before, you know, their bass player and drummer joined the band who was playing, what were you just singing? 5 (12m 49s): I was singing well, I was playing guitar. We had a buddy from high school that was playing drums and another buddy, well, another guy from my high school that I didn't really know that was playing bass, but he only owned an acoustic bass. So we would be jamming and he'd just be like a little Bubba and bumps. I was like, all right. But yeah, it was, it, it was a, it was pretty strange lineup at first when Steve came and brought the other Steve, who was actually not in buddy ruckus, but just a friend of his, that was a drummer. Everything was like, I mean, we started like we bought a trailer and just, it was so I was so young and it was so fast for it to happen like that. And it was cool. I think some of my favorite times in music ever. Wow. 3 (13m 28s): Wow. That's so incredible. So this band is this night's and fire that you're, that you're talking about. 5 (13m 33s): The first, the first band name we had was I always mix them up. I can't remember what was first and what was second, but I think we started as Eloy. 3 (13m 44s): Okay. 5 (13m 45s): Which is ELO. I, and then we became the Monroe 3 (13m 49s): Then RO yeah. You were touring with that was the band he started touring with. Oh my God, 5 (13m 54s): Dude. I mean, we would go to, like, we would drive nine hours to Portland to play in a coffee shop for seven people, you know, like, and just kept doing that. And the scene started to kind of pop and, and we were on kind of, kind of riding that wave, like the local scene in Portland and local scene in Spokane and everything. And I mean, like we had great shows, like after about a year of doing it, you know, like we did a battle of the bands and Spokane and one, the whole thing is called Bob Fest. And we were like front page of the newspaper and all this stuff. And it's like, it was, it was wild. It was wow. I have a lot. I have, I have a lot of just respect and love for Brian Ortiz for Steve Wescott for Steve Turner, you know, for Christian Hendricks, for these guys, from Spokane that took a chance to play music with this little ginger kid change, change the course of my life. 5 (14m 44s): So 3 (14m 44s): That's so amazing. Well, okay. Was the next band then nights and fire. I want to talk about that van real quick. Yeah. 5 (14m 49s): When the Monroe started to come to an end, I've never talked about any of this in an interview. It's so funny because I've always been like, I don't want anybody to know what the bands were called because they're funny a 3 (15m 0s): Good name. 5 (15m 2s): Well, the music was just, yeah, I'm, I'm stoked to talk about it. Let's do it. So yeah, the next band was nights and fire nights, as in like nighttime, not, not like a night, like on a horse. 3 (15m 14s): Okay. 5 (15m 15s): But we, the, the Monroe, there was some like internal stuff. People were like talking about having kids getting married, stuff like that, which is funny. Cause I was only like, you know, 17, 16, but, but there is older guys in the band. Right. And I had decided to start another band with another guy, a couple other friends that I had not played music with yet. And we decided we were, we are jamming in a, in a postage meter storage facility, which is crazy. And we were like, what if you know, like what the guy was jamming with was like, well, what about this riff? And it was like a lot heavier than anything we'd ever done before. And so before that, before we were called Knights and fire were called fever fever, I know there's another band called fever fever now. 5 (16m 0s): But this was like forever ago when there was no fever fever. 3 (16m 3s): And you couldn't find like any band on Spotify. No. 5 (16m 5s): Right, exactly. This is a long time ago. And then he wrote this riff and brought a table and he's like, can you scream? And I was like, I don't know, like let's, let's try it. So, so I did. So I was like, you know, just thrash my vocal chords. And I was like, but this feels, this feels cool. This is right when like showbread was coming through town and you know, like, oh, like tooth and nail solid state era that was just explosive was happening. We were like, we could do this. And so we just honed in on that and we made a record. And what was the record called dark and desperate times is what it was called. Yeah. We did it with, with my producer in town. His name was Joe Varella, who is like the biggest sweetheart who actually recorded my audition for Memphis as well. 5 (16m 51s): But yeah, we did that record and we'd went and played some shows around town. And then my buddy Ryan Folden, who was most recently the drummer for the band lacuna coil he's from Spokane and my buddy scoop Roberts, who had played for a lot of different bands. And they had done some traveling and they came back and I was in nights and fire. And we had actually just recruited a guy in Spokane to be in the band. His name was George Silva and he was just a local legend, you know, still is a local legend in Spokane for music using a band called five foot thick. That was a really big deal back in the day. And he had agreed to join nights and fire. 5 (17m 32s): And he was with us for probably six months or so. We did a bunch of shows and scooping and Ryan went and did some traveling. Ryan was touring with Papa, Roach doing some stuff. And they came back 3 (17m 46s): Real quick on that. We like babysitting for Dakota. Yes. 5 (17m 49s): And I told you about this in the last interview. 3 (17m 51s): Just the one little piece of it. I thought that was interesting. 5 (17m 53s): Ryan Fulton. He was babysitting for the shadows crazy, but they came back and they were like, Hey, Matt, we need to take you out for lunch, scoop and Ryan or scoop and blaze depending on how you know them. 3 (18m 6s): Okay. I haven't, I have a follow-up question on this. Yeah. So what they call you and say, Hey man, we, we need to take you out to lunch. And that was the, that was how the, the question was phrased. Like 5 (18m 16s): We need to talk to you. 3 (18m 17s): Was that like, terrifying me. I'd be like, oh, like what? 5 (18m 21s): Back then, there wasn't so much anxiety in life. It was just like, they were like, it was just more like 3 (18m 29s): Exciting, you know, 5 (18m 31s): There's a taco bell in town now, you know, 3 (18m 33s): I get a text from somebody and it's like, we need to talk. Yeah, 5 (18m 36s): Yeah, yeah. It wasn't like that. Like I think there was, maybe it's been so long. It was like just some more details. Like, Hey, we need to talk to you about, about something, an opportunity or whatever. 3 (18m 45s): So the phrase a little 5 (18m 47s): Less, I don't remember exactly, but 3 (18m 49s): That was what I was thinking. When you said the last 5 (18m 51s): One was, we went to a place called Monterey pizza and sat down and they were like, Matt, they're like, we have been out and we've seen the whole country. This is before I had done hardly any traveling at all. And like just outside of the Pacific Northwest. And they were like, what we have here in Spokane is cool, but it's not anything like what's going on out in like major cities. And if you want to succeed, you're going to have to spread your wings and fly because there's so much else there's so much more to see and to taste and to do. And, and when a band comes through and they're selling a thousand tickets, you're like, oh, that's cool. I wonder how that happened. 5 (19m 32s): But you go out and you see how it happens. And it's every single day you're grinding and you're going to major cities and you're playing and you're performing as much as you possibly can and getting it on tour with bands and, and in, in Spokane at that time, it was like, there just wasn't enough happening for the city to, to go out. There's one other band called Coretta Scott that had gone out and done some cool stuff. But I mean, like they were an anomaly, right. And they were like, there's this band called Memphis, may fire. Some girl that scoop was dating dated one of the guys in the band at the time or something like that and had told him that they were doing open vocal auditions. And by the time I had gone on to see it, I mean, it was basically, they uploaded a song to my space, an instrumental to my space, and anybody could download it, record vocals over and send it in. 5 (20m 20s): And then they would like pick somebody. Right. They had done like the garden. God knows how many, 880 or something like that at that time, 3 (20m 27s): When they were listening to all of these 5 (20m 28s): Calendars, get them in his email. And I mean, there's a lot of other like notable singers who I won't mention because I don't know if they would want to people to know or whatever, but a lot of other guys from other bands that have become very successful that had auditioned for this at this time. And I had no clue what I was doing. The instrumental was called decade. I was okay. You know, I took it. I went out and I had a band meeting with the guys in my current band. And I was like, I don't know if I'm going to be around very long. I'm going to try this out. And if it works, I think I have to do this for my career. I have to do this for my family. It's so crazy to look back on that moment because it was so like massively, like dramatic and, and it should have been. 5 (21m 8s): And it because of how things worked out, but blah blah. So I did it. I went in with Joe Varella, I wrote and recorded some vocals, sent him to Callan and he emailed me back immediately. And he was just like, Hey, do you want to jam? And I was like, yeah. And he's like, all right, can you come to Texas? And I'm like, I don't have any money. And they were like, we'll see if our management can afford to fly you out. But I mean like a $200 plane ticket was like budget crushing back then. 3 (21m 36s): Right. 5 (21m 37s): But they did. So 3 (21m 38s): That management ended up getting 5 (21m 40s): The management, not doing it. They had in their dad's in Kellen's dad's living room, which had a bunch of plants and stuff in it. They had all their gear set up. I literally walked in, met them for the first time. And we went into the living room and they just started playing one of their songs and they were like singing. And I was like, okay. 3 (21m 58s): So did you like w cause they had an EPA, right. 5 (22m 2s): They had an API, which was like, so, so unlike me, you know, like the, the senior that was on that EAP was couldn't have been more wildly different than me. So I was trying to emulate him and he's very like Southern Texas kid I'm from the Pacific Northwest. I was like, 3 (22m 15s): But you know, did they send you the P? And they're like, okay, listen to this. No. Right. 5 (22m 20s): They didn't, they didn't really give me direction on that, but I just did. I just went ahead and jammed it a bunch, especially like getting to learn the band and everything. And so we did that. I, I flew to Texas. I jammed in their living room in, in Kellen's dad's living room. And then like, literally minutes after we finished, I think maybe the second song, he was like, all right, if you want it, it's yours for shows and a couple of months. So, and I was, I mean, 19 newly married and had just only been married for like a year. I called my wife. I was like, we got to figure a lot of stuff out. So I flew back, we packed up everything. My wife transferred jobs to, to Texas, and we drove a four runner, Toni, you haul all the way down to Dallas and just uprooted our entire lives overnight to get there, to, to essentially, to, to make no money at all. 5 (23m 16s): You know, like the first five years that I was in the band, like, we were just grinding, we live on $5 a day. And when I'd come home from tour, I was working, I would get I'd go in and get a part-time job at hot topic. And it was really easy because they were selling Memphis may fire shirts on the wall. So I would literally go in and I'd be like also, and I would just, you know, people would come in and they're like, aren't you? And I'm like, yeah, dude, like we're broke. And, and yeah, we just, yeah, it was crazy, crazy time, dude. Just endless effort, everybody that's. I mean, even guys that aren't in the band anymore that were there, just like busting, you know, like, and obviously Jake Kellen and Corey it's like, nobody has any idea what we've been through. 5 (23m 56s): Dude. Nobody has any idea that years. And, and just like the hardest moments and tragedies and things that we've all like just gone through together and, and stuck through to get to where we're at now. 3 (24m 9s): So to call your wife up, I mean, call Brittany up and say, Hey, they're offering me this gig for this band. You guys are on trust, kill at the time. Right. And I mean, people may assume like, oh, you're signed to a label, like you're loaded. Right. Which is so like, it's crazy to think. I interviewed this band Ann Arbor who were from Phoenix. And I think they were signed to like a pretty big indie label. And they had like a video on MTV two or something back in the day. And the guy came in, they, they have a new guitar player now that's kind of a rant story, but he came in to like game stop. And the new guy who plays guitar with them now is working there. And he's like, oh my gosh, like, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. 3 (24m 51s): And he's like, yeah, you guys hiring like out on the road, 5 (24m 55s): But that's how it 3 (24m 55s): Goes. 5 (24m 56s): That's how it goes, man. I mean, like I worked at guitar center for a little while Kellen was working at Sam's club. I don't remember where Corey was working 3 (25m 7s): And it's not like you guys are it wasn't music full-time yet? No, 5 (25m 11s): No, not at all. I mean, like it was even, even though, you know, like we would take any tour opportunity we could get it's like we still came home and it's like, okay, well now I gotta make some money to make up for that money. I didn't make. Right. Because you're out living on $5 a day and just get enough gas money to get to the next show and trying, and trying, and trying, and trying and trying. And there's a lot of people that respect our first record, which is awesome. You know, it was called sleepwalking and to some people it's their favorite record, which is so cool. Cause I was just learning, I was figuring out who I was at that time, but nothing felt official until the center came out. 3 (25m 48s): Okay. 5 (25m 48s): When the center came out, it was like that song, that video it's like everybody all at the same time was like, okay, we'll take you seriously. Okay. And it was, it was 3 (26m 0s): For 5 (26m 1s): Another record as, yeah, it was a while. A while later we did it, we did the full length and we did the EPE to get off of trust, kill. And then unsigned went to Florida to start working on a new record. And the first song that we did, maybe maybe second or third song, but the first song that we had finished, we started sending around, shopping it to labels. And a few of them were just like, nah, spans dead in the water. You know, like he's not going to happen. And then as soon as we signed to rise and put that song out, it's like everything changed. It was really, it was really fast, too fast to even really grasp what was happening. Cause we were still playing in 300 cap rooms, but then all of a sudden, the next record came out and we were top, top of the billboard and like all this stuff, it was like, you couldn't even really taste it. 5 (26m 47s): It was just too fast. You know, 3 (26m 50s): I got a couple of questions on. Yeah. So you're in the band. Then they have a record done right. With no vocals. Right. And you have to go and record vocals on this record. Not only that, like, I mean, you just kind of joined the band. Yeah. Now you gotta write lyrics, everything to it with a band you hadn't played in. And then everything was kind of in shambles with the label and management and all that. Right. At the time 5 (27m 15s): It was insane. Yeah. It was insane. I mean like the producer wouldn't bounce the songs for us at the end of the day to listen to, because he hadn't been paid yet by the label, like the deposit. So he was like, sorry guys. I can't like, I can't get stiffed. So we would like track all day and then we couldn't listen to it. And yeah, dude just, it was such a crazy time. 3 (27m 38s): Like I know 5 (27m 38s): Being in Seattle, it was funny because the record was being done in Seattle. So like I went, came from the Northwest, moved to Dallas, we geared up, flew out to Seattle and started working on a record out there. And I had buddies from Spokane kind of come by the studio. And I'm just like, you guys got to hear this. I was so stoked. And it was just so it was so next level and so fun. Casey Bates is who did that record. And he's had like an insane amount of success since then, as a producer doing like all sorts of cool stuff. But he was like the first real, like it was the first real studio I'd ever even been in first, like real vocal producer I'd ever worked with. And he was like, just really encouraged me to, to be fully emotional and not be so critical of myself, which was transformed me in a lot of ways. 5 (28m 25s): Yeah. 3 (28m 25s): Yeah. I would imagine that being very hard to go in there. Super hard. Yeah. Yeah. Lyrics that you said the other singer was not anything like, 5 (28m 32s): Nothing like me. Yeah. All the respect in the world, but I mean nothing at all like me. Yeah. 3 (28m 37s): Yeah. And then now they have a fan base. I mean, they're on a label. Right. And they had enough buzz that people are 180. People are sending auditions to this band. You get in the band. Not only do you have to kind of probably come out and prove yourself to their fan base, but you're gonna put your voice on, on a record. 5 (28m 55s): I do. My first show with them was like thousands of people in Dallas. It was a festival that Mike Zimmer had put on at the Plano center. The very first time I ever performed with a band, I think it was like 6,000 tickets sold. Oh 3 (29m 7s): Wow. I 5 (29m 7s): Was just like a rough. I know I wasn't, I was so ignorant to just everything that I was just like, here we go. You know, like, it's just like, this is how it is down here, you know? Like, and just went up and yeah, crazy man. Oh, 3 (29m 21s): Oh my gosh. Okay. So then you put out the EPE after that. And I remember the last time you talked, you said that's kind of where you fell in. You felt like you've found yourself in the band. 5 (29m 30s): That's definitely when I was able to start being myself behind a microphone, you know, like I was for the first record, I was just like, all right, let's really stay true to this bands. You know, like thing that they had and tried to do it and ended up being a lot more like me than what they were doing previously anyways. And then by the time we got to that, I was like, all right, this is, this is where I can start to just be myself. You know, Matt Mullins from Spokane Washington. And I did. And, and then there was a good amount of buzz behind that just locally and everything. And that was really the, the leeway into the hollow. You know, that, that gave me the confidence and the understanding of who I was enough to go in and, and make the hollow what it was. 3 (30m 14s): And you guys gave that EAP, you said it was kind of like a deal with trust killed. Here you go. Now we're out. And you get approached by a producer in Orlando that says, I'm going to do this next record pro bono. 5 (30m 28s): Oh yeah. Yeah. Helen actually had reached out to him and said, we have no money. We have no deal, but I believe in us, will you help? And he was like, yeah. So, you know, we went down to Orlando and just started doing it. I don't even know. I don't. I honestly like we lived at the studio, which was in a storage unit, sleeping on the floor, essentially. I slept in the vocal booth and 3 (30m 53s): He said, there's a brown recluse in there. 5 (30m 55s): I'll do it in less brown recluses. But no, it was just, it was a, I don't even know how we were eating or anything. Like, I don't know. I can't remember how we had any money to do whatever. I don't know. Maybe I was borrowing money from my dad or something back then, but we literally had nothing. Like we were literally just in Florida seeing all these crazy, like love bugs for the first time. Like this is wild, you know, like making a record and getting to know the dynamic of Karen Mizel who was doing that record. It was just such a man. It was such a special time. It was so wild and so free. And so unassuming, like nothing that was happening you would think was going to happen. 5 (31m 35s): And then it did. It was just the way that the songs were coming together. Some of the opportunities that kind of fell into our play, the labels that we're looking at as the labels that we're like no way and the labels that were like, sure. It was just like a lot going on. And, and yeah, 2 (31m 52s): Planning on traveling this summer, make saving at the pump part of your plans with two times the fuel points from Harris Teeter, it's easy. Download your EBIT coupon. And for every dollar you spend with your VIT card, you'll get two fuel points. That's up to $1 per gallon on quality fuel at participating BP and Harris Teeter fuel centers. Download your EBIT coupon today and save money at the pump all summer long with Evoque and Harris Teeter fuel points. 6 (32m 21s): What a great way to recognize your employees check out custom ink. Have you ever thought about doing something special for your customers? Custom ink can do that too. And when your team loves some custom gear, custom ink is ready. Custom ink is your go-to custom gear partner with great customer service, quality products and all in pricing along with personalized help when you need it. And an easy to use website, when you don't plus everything is a hundred percent satisfaction, guaranteed. Check out what we can do for your 5 (32m 51s): There was a cockroach that fell from the ceiling while I was paying one day. And it was huge. I was paying, it just goes from, just fell right next to me. And I was like, ah, looking back on that, I can't believe we slept in there. There was actually a homeless guy in the rafters. This is a true story. 3 (33m 7s): I have a question. I'm glad you're telling this. Okay. I was going to go here. 5 (33m 11s): Yeah. So you are, I've already told you. No, no, no, no. Okay. So there was a, there was a, in the control room, there was a TV that had four cameras and the camera for the vocal booth camera for like the librarian or something. And the camera for where like storage and live room kind of like met together. And Cameron was like, dude, always, he's like, I must be seeing things like I'll just be working and I'll see something kind of moved by the camera. And I see he's like, maybe it's haunted. And I'm like, I don't believe in that. Let's just keep working whatever. And there was one day that like Cameron went in there and heard some rustling and like can like fell from the ceiling or whatever. And he went up there and there's literally like two homeless people sleeping in the rafters where they like kept all the drum sets and everything. 5 (33m 56s): Everything was just in there, you know? And he said that they were like urinating on the ground up there and like all sorts of stuff, dude, this was a wild place. How 3 (34m 4s): Do you get them out? You just go, 5 (34m 6s): Luckily I wasn't present for that price sprint it. I was like, 3 (34m 10s): Yeah, 5 (34m 12s): Yeah. It's crazy. Squatters is what they call them, dude. 3 (34m 15s): Yeah. You guys got them out and this is still on the holodeck 5 (34m 19s): I heard. This was no, I think this was in between the hollow and challenge or when Jake was still engineering for Cameron there, but yeah. 3 (34m 31s): With, but you guys got signed to rise. What? A couple of songs into the recording. 5 (34m 36s): Yeah. Yeah. We were only like, not even halfway done with the record when it was being shopped and they were like, we'll finish this with you. For sure. And I think we signed for like, you know, four albums or something crazy, like right. In a moment you have no idea. You're like the next eight years of my life here, yo 3 (34m 52s): What's rise record. 5 (34m 53s): Yeah. It was at that time, it was, there was no comparison. Right. It was rise. And so we did, we signed and it was, it was literally like a week later, like everything was done. Like we were on rise and they started like uploading stuff about us and put us on the website and everything. It just yeah. 3 (35m 11s): Was that like totally life-changing at that. 5 (35m 14s): I mean like, you know, like confidence wise, for sure. It's not like we like made any money or like, you know what I mean? They paid, they paid for the record and we shot some music videos and stuff like that, but it was definitely like a confidence booster. It was like, okay, we we've got this. You know, when I joined the band, it was after the band had already had a little bit of hype. And so the manager, the band dropped the band, you know, the booking agent had dropped the band just like this. Isn't gonna work with the second singer. And so getting to that point where, you know, we'd signed. Yeah. It was. Yeah. 3 (35m 49s): And they put out the center is the single and that was took off. Yeah. 5 (35m 55s): And it kind of felt like, because I was, you know, observing rise and how well they were doing it kind of felt like, oh, well there's this many views on this song. Like, that's just what happens when you put a song out on a rise, YouTube channel, which to an extent it was true because they had a killer following of people that were just watching whatever they were putting out. But there was like a real, there was a real energy behind it. There was a real buzz. There was a real like nationwide, worldwide buzz around this like song. And we didn't have any idea. We didn't have any idea until it was just like, oh my gosh, here we are in Bangkok. Here we are in Bangkok. You know, like here we are in Bella Ru you know, here we are like in Monterey, like what, what is happening right now? 5 (36m 40s): You know, 3 (36m 41s): I hadn't left the country on a tour. 5 (36m 43s): And then we played like Japan. And like every, we went everywhere. It was crazy wild time. 3 (36m 48s): And then the challenger comes out. That's the next record? And is this the one, oh, no, it was the next record. But tell me about the challenger. You record, you recorded that one in the same spot. And this is when 5 (36m 57s): Challenger, we did back with, with Cameron there and unconditional. But between those two records, Cameron had moved from Orlando to Phoenix. And so we did that record in Phoenix, 3 (37m 10s): But you did say last time we spoke that that was the record. That kind of solidified you guys as 5 (37m 15s): Challenger. Yeah, absolutely. Yeah. Like the, the hollow gave us a start, so everyone would kind of pay attention. Challenger was the record where everyone's like, okay, like they're here. You know, like it's, it's actually a real thing. It's not a, it's not going to, it's not just like a flash in the pan, right. 3 (37m 31s): Charts on billboard again. And does this, I mean, having the hollow, then you follow it up. I mean, that must've been the biggest scare, right? 5 (37m 40s): Yeah, totally, totally. Cause we didn't know. I mean, like it was, we were still riding the wave and touring as much as we could. And just trying to wrap our heads around, you know, what was going on. And so going back in to do that record, it's like, can we beat it? Right. 3 (37m 52s): You know? And then you beat it again on the next record. 5 (37m 55s): I think so. 3 (37m 57s): Well the charts, 5 (37m 58s): Yeah. Charts, charts. 3 (38m 1s): And you, you asked, this is a great story. I didn't, I don't know if he told it fully last time, but about how to, like, we get out of this van. Right. Wasn't it like the unconditional is coming out and you're like, said something, your manager, like, how do we get out of the van to the next level? Like, what's the next thing? Like a bus. 5 (38m 20s): Yeah. My, my manager had told me he was like 10 K plus equals bus. Like if we sold 10,000 copies or more first week, then we would, then we could get a bus. And that was like such a false equation. I mean, he was just trying to figure out a way to like, get me stoked. Cause we had been sleeping in a van without air conditioning for however long and transmissions blowing out and getting stuck in Las Cruces, New Mexico. And like, it was crazy. I mean, for years, right. We did it for years and he was like 10 K plus equals bus or whatever. And then we were on warp tour and he comes busting in and he's just like, this is the number. And I can't even remember what it was, but it was way beyond what we had thought it was going to be. And I was just like, here we go. 5 (39m 2s): That's 3 (39m 2s): Cool. Yeah. 5 (39m 3s): And I mean, it was just like days later that rise showed up with our plaques and gave them to us. And then all of a sudden the blacks just kept coming and we were just kind of like unwrapping them and sticking them wherever we could to try to like, you know, not that sounds really crazy. It's not like post Malone. Right. It's like, but like there was like four in a very short period of time where you were just like, what do I do with this? You know what I mean? And, and it was a, it was a wild thing. And then I was like, man, this is, this is what it's like. And then, you know, like it's, I didn't know. It was like, not always going to be like that record sales are totally different now streaming and all of that, you know, I, I took it for granted at the time, but I don't anymore. You know, I definitely look back and I'm like, wow, 3 (39m 42s): Opening a plaque with senior name on it. Like that's so crazy. Super cool. Now you have this plaque to kind of, 5 (39m 49s): Yeah, it was 3 (39m 49s): Validate everything 5 (39m 51s): Validate for sure. Yeah. Validate for sure. Just, you just don't know. I wish that you could really kind of taste and smell and touch everything in a moment, but it's never until like hindsight's 20, 20, you know, like never until you get to another point where you're like, oh wow. You know, it's hard to be really grateful for everything when everything's chaotic and you feel like you're so much is expected of you, but yeah, I dunno, man. Crazy. 3 (40m 20s): That is what, what record was it or at what point were you off the $5, a day budget and quitting hot topic. And 5 (40m 31s): I think that on our tour with, I think it was called the all-stars tour. I mean, there's a million bands. It was like Alice, Santa and Amir. And I think like a Scarlet drives, sleeping with sirens us until like, it was like a big like thing or whatever. I think on that too, where we bumped our premiums up to 10 bucks a day. 3 (40m 56s): Nice. 5 (40m 60s): And then I think we even got to a point on like a warp tour or something where we had like $15 premiums, but then there was catering every day. So no one knew how to spend their money. And they were like, dude, so we just all like had these like, you know, wads of like maybe a hundred bucks in cash. Like by the end of like a month, he was like, this is crazy. Let's go to the mall. You know? Yeah. So, and we were on a bus on our first warp tour, but that's like kind of a given of some bands do it in a van. It's like, God bless it. That's the most insane thing. It's such a hot and grueling tour with no real indoor facilities. So we bus it on that. That was our first bus ever. It was that first war tour we did in 2012 and we shared it, shared the bus with Barnaba Cyrus and that was wild. 3 (41m 41s): Oh 5 (41m 42s): Really? 3 (41m 43s): Why those guys are crazy. I mean, their music is insane. 5 (41m 47s): I love them. There's still some of the funniest guys I've ever met in my entire life. They Ronnie and Cameron, I mean, it's like, you should follow those guys on Instagram. There's still like, so I've passed around means they share like all the time, but 3 (41m 60s): Yeah, we didn't talk much about this record last time to let it hold. I know Larry of no way out. I'm just going to drop that. Yeah. It was on the record. Like tell me about, tell me about that album. Cause like I said, we didn't really talk about it. 5 (42m 16s): So we did that record in Phoenix with Matt. Good. I think I went into that record with a mindset, but kind of a confused mindset. And I wished that I would have been more clear in my head. Like I look back and I'm happy with how the record turned out, but it could have been so much better had I just kind of had my head wrapped around things the way that I do now. Right. As far as just like the perspective of how the song is being written. So anyways, we were there and it was like a struggle. I w I was there for probably a month left, came back for like another, probably 15 days, something like that. We spent a lot of time on it, but when the record was done, I was like, okay, we've got something here. 5 (43m 1s): And I had Larry from my American heart do guest vocals on that record, which he's like one of my favorites of all time. And then Jacoby from Papa Roach on that record too, which was just insane. He like flew out to Phoenix. I picked him up at the airport, brought him to the studio. He had a flight like that night or whatever, just came in and crushed it. One of the most talented live and studio vocalists I've ever heard in my life, dude, he is he, whatever you think Jacoby is, he is in real life. Right? Like it's nuts. And so he killed it. And I mean, we had like four hours of spare. He's booked a different flight home, like literally flew in, picked him up, killed it, got to chat, hang out for a while, drove him back to the airport. 5 (43m 41s): It was all happened within like three hours. So 3 (43m 44s): Prior to that, had you ever met him? 5 (43m 45s): We had presented an award together at an award show called the golden gods. And he was like, Hey, do you know who I am? And I was like, yeah. He's like, well, I know who you are, man. I got a lot of respect for what you're doing. God bless. And I was just like, wow. I looked at Kellogg's Kellen was there. I was like, did that just really happen? So yeah, it was special. It was really special, man. His energy and his little, you know, his little brother, you know, Bryson who we've brought out on tour to do like documenting and certain things like that. Their family and their family dynamic is so special. And so getting to know Coby from doing that song together was awesome. And then he flew out to LA, we did the music video together, which was crazy. And then we would just, you know, we went out, we've always wanted to wear a pop Roach. And we just did this last year. 5 (44m 27s): We went out and stayed in arenas and did that with breaking Benjamin and Papa Roach was so cool to see them. I genuinely believed that Papa Roach is at the top of their career right now, period. Like they are, you know, like last resort is such a cool song for what it is and what it's done for them. But if that's all that you've paid attention to, you are missing out in wild ways. I mean their newest stuff is insane. And Jacoby is just as energetic and lively of a front man as he's ever been the whole band, Jerry, Jerry looks younger, which is annoying. Every time I saw him, I was like, dude, you do you have Benjamin buttons? 3 (45m 7s): Like Brad Pitt, like 5 (45m 8s): What is going on, dude? Like literally if you look at Papa Roach photos from like the nineties and then you look at, or like early two thousands, whatever, and then you look at like a pop Roach promo. Now he looks better. And you're just like, what are you drinking dog? Cause I want some of it. Yeah. But no, it was really cool. 3 (45m 25s): But you are a big fan of my American heart wants you there San Diego band. That's the only reason, 5 (45m 30s): Huge fan huge fan. And, and to the point where, I mean like I used to tweet at Larry back when, like I was doing the Twitter thing a lot and I would just be like, please come to our show in San Diego, anytime we were coming to San Diego, that's all I could think about. And one time he, I think he was just like, man, this fan is annoying. You know? And one time he came out and by that time we were on a bus and he came out and we were just like hanging out and he was so kind and genuine and special. And we sat in the front lounge of the bus and sang my American heart songs, this close to each other's faces for the entire night, like four hours. 3 (46m 6s): That's amazing. It 5 (46m 7s): Was like one of the most amazing nights of my entire life. My band would just kind of walk in and out of the bus, like, oh my gosh. And me and Larry were just like, we just, like, we loved each other, instantly became brothers. And you know, like I went to the ten-year shows and I got to sing with them at one of the 10 year shows. And he came down and stayed at my house, you know, before the pandemic and just we've developed like a really special relationship Jesse too. And Dustin who played bass for the place with Dan and Shay, you know, and he's, he's a good friend of mine too, and just such a, such a sweetheart. So a lot, a lot of like, you know, music like benefit and relational benefit has come out of that band and the people that were in that band in my life, you know? Yeah. 3 (46m 45s): Yeah. I remember when there were no way out and they started to get really 5 (46m 49s): <inaudible> I was like, so 3 (46m 51s): Sick, like who are these kids? Because they're younger than me. And I'm like, yeah. And I'm like, what is happening? And then they just started to skyrocket and I think they got signed. That's why they changed their name. 5 (47m 2s): Yeah. Ernie ball records, which is like a Kevin Lyman thing. Yeah. My American heart and the records that they put out, you know, hiding inside the horrible weather and the meaning and makeup, two of the most underrated records from the scene ever. Like if you know, acceptance, but don't know my American heart, you missed out on a big part of your childhood. You know, if you know more, but no, no, my American heart, you missed out on some of the greatest records ever made dead serious. I 3 (47m 30s): Completely agree. There was such a great band. You could see them. I mean, San Diego got quite a few bands out of that scene with Pierce, the veil and then Nick Martins. And he was in a band called underminded for a while and yeah, it was cool to see kind of those bands just make it out of San Diego before. I mean, it was blink was the deal and the pod came out of there. Switchfoot but like these bands from this scene that were making it out 5 (47m 58s): Definition. Oh yeah. 3 (47m 59s): Lower definition 5 (47m 60s): Then, you know, Tino he's in a of mice. Oh yeah. That's crazy. Wild, 3 (48m 5s): Wild, 5 (48m 6s): Cool scene. Yeah. 3 (48m 7s): So tell me the broken was the next record you guys did before the pandemic. Right. And a couple of radios plays, which 5 (48m 14s): Yeah. We had a couple of songs on the record that went to radio, which was a huge blessing. We had gone in with a different producer, like a rock producer that we had never worked with before. And didn't know, you know, we had done a single with him to like, try it out or whatever we were like, okay, well, let's, let's go make a Memphis may fire rock record. And we didn't know what we were doing or what we were getting ourselves into. And the biggest thing that we learned through the process was that we've always been good at making records in our bedrooms. And we should do that. We should do that. You know, like we don't need to go and be fancy. Our band doesn't need to be fancy. Kellen is brilliant and far more than capable of, you know, anything that we need. 5 (48m 54s): And I think you get in your head and you hear all these voices and you're like, we gotta go and do this and do that and work with this guy and all that. And all that stuff is cool. And something that I think every band should do at some point. But we really, I think learned that who we are is a band that has this energy, this connection with our fans. And the further that we get away from what originally created that connection with our fans, the more that we lose touch, you know, like blood and water was the first song that we had put out that felt like fans had really, they were just like, oh my God, I've been waiting for this moment for Memphis may fire. And it's like, well, I recorded the vocals in my house and Kellen recorded everything else at his house, like, huh. 5 (49m 38s): You know, weird, you know, we didn't go to Vegas and spend unbelievable amounts of money on this. Like we did a record in our bedrooms. I was just like, I think that this means something, you know, I think it means like what it was that gave us the anx that we had as, you know, like as a young band and, and how we had to do things a certain way, because we didn't have any other choice. It gave us something that our fans felt. And we rediscovered that with this new record, 3 (50m 8s): The record is amazing. Like I said earlier, I had a chance to hear it. And I definitely hear the kind of coming back to the hollow and those earlier records in it. And my favorite song on the album is the last one really within, I love that song. 5 (50m 24s): That gets me so stoked. Really. 3 (50m 25s): I think that song is so 5 (50m 27s): Good. Thank you, dude. 3 (50m 28s): And I mean, the whole album is good. Don't get me wrong. You guys have put out, I think only three, you have three songs that haven't came out yet. I think from what I was going, 5 (50m 37s): Just put out only human. 3 (50m 40s): Yeah. And you have a guest vocals on that 5 (50m 43s): Killer. It's such a good voice. Yeah. And, and yeah, so there should be three 3 (50m 48s): Every other year term. We'll just drop them all your turn misery. 5 (50m 51s): Yeah. So I think misery, and I 3 (50m 55s): Love that one too. That's on my notes. Yeah. Breakdowns or 5 (50m 59s): Thanks, dude. That's what the, that's the song that the album was named after 3 (51m 5s): Remade and misery. 5 (51m 7s): Yeah. And did you see the, who is it? Silverstein's new album is called misery. Made me know. I was like, no way. That's crazy. I'm totally, it's awesome to me. Cause it, you know, like they announced theirs. It was just like a week after we announced ours or something like that. And we've toured those guys and their sweethearts and everything. And I was like, that's it it's to some people it's like, the internet will take it as like a chance to let go and like try to like shred people in the comments, like come on it, in my opinion, it's like, man, like even the fact that the names that we desired were connected on some other, it was just cool. I thought it was cool. I was like, that's awesome. But yeah. Yeah. So remade and misery is the name of our record. And that's a line from the song misery, which is really something that sums up the whole record. 5 (51m 51s): For sure. 3 (51m 52s): This record, you kind of had time for right. Obviously a time for it, but before the pandemic, wasn't that the original plan to kind of just, we're going to take a little bit of time here between tours and focus on writing a record. 5 (52m 4s): Yeah. Yeah. We, you know, when the pandemic really first hit, we were not w okay. So we were supposed to be out on the road of this DJ named <inaudible>. Okay. That was something that got canceled for us. And it was like, I can't remember it. I think it was only like seven shows or something like that, but they were going to be sick. We had done one show with him in Houston and dude, he is so he's so dope, man. 3 (52m 27s): It sounds like such an interesting set. I mean, interesting. 5 (52m 31s): His whole thing is that he is like really paired up, you know, like rock and emo era music with EDM and created his own thing that way. It's like, it's amazing. He's so he's so good. And his live show is crazy as productions. Crazy. His crowd is so energetic. So like for us, he's just like a metal, core band load came out and just like played a set before him and everyone was jumping. I mean, he was like 3,500 people. They're just like going nuts. They came for like an EDM show, but we're just given what we had. And it was so cool. We were like, let's definitely go out and do that. Those shows. And that was the first thing that hit, that was like really, really early on when everything started to kind of talk about getting canceled and we got the word, they were like, ah, we can't do this. 5 (53m 12s): And then after that, we were like, all right, let's dive in and let's make a record. And we knew that we were going to be writing, but the whole plan for everything and how it came out, like single by single and stuff like that, all really came together during the pandemic. As we were writing the songs, we got into song four and song five and songs six and song seven, and I was telling rise. I was like, these all feel like singles to me and that's not, it there's something in every one of these songs that feels important to my heart. And I can't stand the thought of putting out a record really fast, not being able to tour and having seven deep cuts that people aren't going to hear. Cause they weren't singles. And I was like, can we just put this out one at a time? You know, really want to do that. 5 (53m 53s): You know? And we knew that there would be challenges with it. People being like, this is different. I don't like different. Right, right. But, but it worked, it worked so amazingly well. And I don't know if that formula is, would work the same if you weren't in a pandemic. I think people were hungry for music and live music wasn't happening as, as, as much. Right. So by the time we were putting songs out, it was just cool to like have something to look forward to every month. Cause we weren't on the road if we were touring as much. I don't know if that format makes as much sense, but for this specific thing, like it was a risk and I really wanted to take it and it paid off and I'm really happy with how it turned out. 3 (54m 28s): Yeah. And I know we were talking about this last time. We're just like how people digest music nowadays. It's like single cent, you know, it's the single game, but a band like Memphis may fire doesn't necessarily need to do that. I mean, you have such a fan base, you've put out six records at this point. If you're a newer band, it makes sense. It's like, okay, I'm going to try to test the waters. It's going to work. And then these five songs are going to make an EAP, but I love the way you guys did this though. Cause all of this, it does give every song an opportunity to kind of have its moment. 5 (54m 57s): Totally. Yeah. I think, I think that w there would have been focal singles. Had we done it in a regular album format. People would have been like kind of latched onto these and only certain people would have gone and listened to the record front tobacco. Cause it's kind of rare that people even do that anymore. Right. Right. And so this was the way this was the way that it needed to be in. And gosh, man, I'm so glad to have had, you know, a full year of just looking forward to putting out something every month and it's been cool. 3 (55m 23s): How are you guys doing it was Kellen writing the music and sending it to you. 5 (55m 26s): Yeah. Just, I mean, just like we always have like as long as we've been a band except for broken, which I think you can hear if you listen to the record, but you know, like as long as we've been a band, Kaelin has always finished instrumental demos. Send them to me, I'll write vocals over it. If we need to chop and edit and move stuff around for them to compliment the vocal, we will. But rarely do we ever do that. And you know, that's how it's always been. Okay. Always. And so like pandemic writing style of like not being in person was like, cool. We never did that anyways. You know what I mean? I can't even imagine like being Kellen, sitting down in a room, like how about this riff? And I'm like, how about this vocal? Like, that's like a movie in my head. 5 (56m 8s): Like that's not how it works in real life. So yeah. 3 (56m 10s): But this way you had Cody who we've talked a good friend of yours, I've interviewed him before I met him a few times a year house. He was coming over. Right. Isn't 5 (56m 20s): Well, he's coming over every day, no matter what, we, we hung out every single dude and, and he's just like such a special friend of mine. He's a great guy, such a sweetheart lives out here in SpringHill. And we've gotten, we got so close over the pandemic because the only people that we were able to see where the people that were like right in our immediate community there that we saw every day and that was Cody was there. And I, you know, Kelly and I were going to travel around and write with some people. And I was like, well, I'm, you know, I'm going to be here writing. And Cody, would you want to write some songs with me? And the more we wrote together, the more we realized it just made sense to keep riding together on every one was so fun. And it was like, it was, you know, Cody is, has liked the band for a long time. Cody's been a fan of the band for a long time. 5 (57m 2s): So riding with him was like, it was literally like being able to be in, in the, in the studio with a, with a Memphis fan and write a song and then be like, this is what I wish was going to happen here. And I was like, oh cool. You know, it was just, it was so fun. And, and he's brilliant 3 (57m 16s): As I say, coming from somebody that you probably respect as a musician, obviously like it wasn't just some fan. That is a no, 5 (57m 23s): Absolutely. Yeah. And just respect as like the heart Cody and I are so similar in how we think and how we operate and how we interact that it was just like, literally the same as like, if you were like, have buddy, Hey, you want to come over and watch the game. Right. So yeah, you wanna come over and right. You know, and we just did and then made a record. So that's how 3 (57m 42s): Cool, so did he help you on like a majority of the songs on the album or 5 (57m 46s): We wrote together on every song on the record, it was, there was some that were way more far along by the time he had come in. And then some that were like empty when we started, you know, the first one that we had, the first song that we wrote together with somebody. And I think I had the chorus done and maybe a couple lyric changes that needed to happen in the course. I can't remember exactly where we were, but we came in, we just like vibed on the chorus, started working on the verses, got that kind of like pop, like pre-chorus like cookie thing in there. And we're like, this is really cool because unlike anything we've ever done and finished up the demo, like actually cut the vocal and finished up a demo and send it to everybody. And everyone's like, whoa. 5 (58m 26s): And I was like, okay, there's something really special about me and Cody doing this stuff together because he's bringing out the best in me. And it was, it was great. And so we did another one together and we were like sick and everyone's like, this is really sick. And then we did another one together. Everyone was like, we're on fire. And I was like, all right, let's go. Let's go, keep going. And there was a time when he had to leave to go finish their new record. And we had like 10 days leading up to that. And I was like, let's write every day for the next 10 days. So we just did it, just got a bunch of like snacks and drinks and hold up in the studio and just chill. Then we'd celebrate at night every night, you know? 3 (59m 0s): And you helped them on a song on their record as well. 5 (59m 3s): Yeah. Yeah. I wrote a row with one of the, on their record. Cody's I mean, by the time Cody does all the writing for wage, like by the time a song is done, it's usually like the vocal and everything is just on there. Right. Like, so we'll hear songs and it's been like this for the last few years where like, if we get a wage song, like an idea, it's a finished song, you know what I mean? You're like, he's like check out this idea I wrote today. And it's like, it's like, perfect. And you're just like, whoa. Yeah, it's always really sick. But there was one that, that I think I wrote a chorus on and, and we were like, that's sick. Let's work on that. So I got to, to be on one's is cool. 3 (59m 41s): Yeah. And thank you, Maddie, for coming to my house. And then this, like, this has been 5 (59m 44s): Ribs. 3 (59m 45s): I appreciate, 5 (59m 46s): I like it better than mine. Nah, we got to move over here. 3 (59m 49s): It's only got space maybe less 5 (59m 51s): Than a mile. Yeah. 3 (59m 52s): Come on over. We've got a third car you can park in 5 (59m 56s): Park in the back yard 3 (59m 57s): And the big guy. That's awesome. Do you thank you so much. I'm going to ask you the same question. I asked you last time, but I want to make one comment on the, on make-believe. I love like the glitching on the vocal, like where you guys like, like the calendar, the production on it, like 5 (1h 0m 14s): Yeah. Kellan did. So we had, while tracking demo vocals, me and Cody had some ideas for vocal production that he would bring to life in the best way that we could just look what we're doing in the moment. And then I tracked vocals with Cameron Mizel and we did some production that was kind of like extreme became like extended demo production. And then once it was time for the whole record to come together, Kaelin actually built everything from dry. And so some of it remained the same. Some of it became kind of Callan's own flavor and some of it changed completely. So yeah, it was. But, but the glitching thing, I think that Cody and I just, we did that in the moment. Right. When we wrote that part, it 3 (1h 0m 55s): Sounds so 5 (1h 0m 55s): Sad. It was really cool. I mean like glitch and that kind of stuff it's been around forever, like in our genre of music, but that part and the story that it told right there, 3 (1h 1m 4s): Like so much sense. Yeah. I like 5 (1h 1m 6s): The glitchy vocal thing I think is dead and has been dead for a long time. Like what was happening so much in like 2012 and 13 or 14, but it's not that 3 (1h 1m 14s): Part 5 (1h 1m 14s): Like 3 (1h 1m 14s): Brilliantly. 5 (1h 1m 15s): Yeah. It's not that in that part, it's very much it's very much needed. Right? Like it was like, this is this digital, like this like, you know, kind of lucid like digital world that like needs to be seen and felt and tasted through this part. And the music video does a great job. It kind of shows. Yeah. 3 (1h 1m 35s): That's amazing, man. Okay, man, again, so much respect and thank you so much for doing this. Yeah. First time I've actually spoken with someone in person two years. 5 (1h 1m 45s): I'm stoked for you, dude. You guys should be doing this a lot more. 3 (1h 1m 47s): I will hopefully. So last question, if you have any advice for aspiring artists. 5 (1h 1m 52s): Yeah, definitely. This isn't easy. You know, like I think that like the most loving and most direct thing that I can say to any new artist is don't waste your time. If you're not really in, if you're not all in just don't even waste your time. You're gonna, you're gonna end up with heartbreak. You know, I get that question all the time. Like how do I, I want to do music full time. Like how do I, and I'm just like, if you want to do music, full-time do you music. Full-time like literally live on someone's floor, sleep in someone's closet, you know, buy a van, take out a loan by a trailer. 5 (1h 2m 35s): If you think that you're writing songs that people will love and utilize and, and be changed by, you know, like go and do it, do everything you can do, take every single risk that there is. Because if you don't, someone else is going to, there are people that want this enough to be 33 years old and still chasing the dream. Right. So if you don't, then, then don't waste your time. You know, there's so many, so many life paths out there that you can be happy with, obviously music and doing it full time is such a gift. Don't waste your time. If you're not all in. And, and, and if you don't want to do music full-time, but you just love music and just want to put music out. That's awesome too. You know what I mean? Like don't feel like a million streams has to happen every time you put on a song. 5 (1h 3m 19s): Sometimes it can just be about the music and that's amazing. And the one person that hears it, it helps them. And that's enough. That's amazing. But yeah, if you want to do this full time, like strap on your boots, it's a wild ride.

Matty MullinsProfile Photo

Matty Mullins

Memphis May Fire have always made anthems for the broken. The four-piece rock band channels a generation's worth of angst, frustration, and pain, with a focused blend of gigantic melodic hooks and crushing aggression. Even after topping Billboard's Hard Music Albums chart and breaking into radio's Active Rock Top 20, Memphis May Fire refuse to sacrifice who they are or the people who made them. In fact, Remade in Misery, is the heaviest Memphis May Fire record yet.

A new season unfolds for the band, filled with revitalization and renewal. Stripping things down to their core elements, hearkening back to the days when they created the music their fans most cherish, Memphis May Fire rekindled the spark within to build an inferno of riffs and inspirational words.

The band confronts anxiety, violence, and polarization all over Remade in Misery, strengthened by a foundation of hope and renewal at the heart of the lyrics, which evoke the cathartic bombast of the band's best-known songs, a return to their roots with the seasoned polish earned through years of touring and making music together.

Memphis May Fire have toured with a vast list of important rock and metal acts that include Killswitch Engage, Sleeping With Sirens, Black Veil Brides, Sevendust, and Atreyu. They've co-headlined with Yellowcard and The Devil Wears Prada, regularly appeared on Warped Tour, and at major rock festivals. The band's previous six albums' continued relevance is a testament to the energized connectivity between the band and their audience. Their catalog accounts for over 100 million views and millions of streams on fan-favorite songs.

"We want people to have songs they can sit down and listen to, or play in the gym, or driving in their car, and know the world is bigger than it seems," Mullins says. "To know they exist in a world with other people that understand that it is okay to be imperfect. That someone else knows your hurt."