Tag Archives: heavy metal

Metal 101 – Guide to Metal by Metalheads.

 

received_314788095746055Hi, I’m Chasing Destinos oldest child, Tenorsaxicorn, My SO Catsandguitarguy and I are going to walk you through different metal genres and the best bands in them.

Some bands are in several genres because it’s almost impossible to make several songs in one genre. Without being incredibly boring and hard to listen to the same band for long periods of time. There are so many bands it’s almost impossible to list them all so we’re going to list the bands we recommend or the most famous and popular ones from it.

T- My favorite genres of metal are metalcore, post-metal, deathcore, prog, nu-metal, and grunge. I also enjoy some rock, emo, and alternative music. But this is about metal so I won’t get too into detail about those.

C- My favorite genres of metal consist of a little of everything, I listen to a lot of metalcore, nu-metal, deathcore, post-hardcore, Viking metal, death metal, melodic death metal, black metal, folk metal, and tons more…

There are some genres that have changed over the years and they end up giving the different styles different names because they become their own things entirely. Such as traditional metal and new traditional metal or grunge and post-grunge. Some genres, such as folk metal, end up developing completely new concepts and origins to create their own genre. That’s where Viking, pirate, Celtic, and pagan metal comes from. So even if they seem like they’d be the same because of their similar names, they’re not. At the end of the list, we’ll explain the difference between Heavy metal, new traditional and traditional. Let’s get into it!

Alternative Metal

Alternative metal is a mix between alternative rock and heavy metal, it doesn’t have an immediately identifiable sound. Alternative metal features clean and melodic vocals, influenced by those of alternative rock, in contrast to other heavy metal subgenres.  Later bands frequently incorporated vocal styles that alternated between clean singing, growls and screaming.

The bands that are more on the alternative side we recommend would be; Avenged Sevenfold, Breaking Benjamin,  Linkin Park, Seether, and Three Days Grace.

The bands on the metal side we recommend are; Disturbed, Drowning Pool, Godsmack, Stone Sour, System of a Down.

Black Metal

Black Metal is a heavier genre of metal featuring shirking vocals, heavily distorted guitars, unusual song structure, and a heavy emphasis on atmosphere. The artists commonly sport corpse paint and have stage names sometimes based on authors. Bands in this style are mostly Norwegian.

The most popular bands in this genre are; Behemoth, Cradle of Filth, Darkthrone, Mayhem, Satyricon,

Deathcore

Deathcore is a combination of death metal and metalcore, sometimes with hardcore punk influences. It uses death metal riffs and blast beats with the metalcore breakdowns. They have down-tuned guitars.

T&C – Bands we recommend are; Impending Doom, Carnifex, Whitechapel, Emmure, and Chelsea Grin.

DeathMetal

Usually uses low tuned and heavily distorted guitars, death metal is a more extreme subgenre of heavy metal with elements of hard rock and heavy metal. The vocals are usually heavy growling or screaming and the lyrics usually include extreme graphic actions. There are powerful drumming features with abrupt key and time changes.

Traditional heavy metal bands; Black Sabbath, Iron Maden, Megadeath, Metallica, Pantera, Slayer.

New traditional heavy metal bands are; Amon Amarth, Behemoth, Cannibal Corpse, Children of Bodem, Ghost, Gojira, Killswitch Engage, Lamb of God, Six Feet Under, and a lot more.

Melodic Death Metal

Melodic Death Metal is a subgenre of death metal that uses highly melodic guitar riffs, often borrowing from traditional heavy metal, the style originated and developed in Sweden and the United Kingdom.  The vocal style typically combines harsh screaming and growling with melodic singing, with some artists emphasizing one of these techniques over the rest.

Some melodic death metal bands are; Children of Bodom, Dark Tranquility, Insomnium, and In Flames.

Symphonic Death Metal

Symphonic metal is a subgenre of heavy metal music which combines the heavy drums and guitars of metal with different elements of orchestral classical music, such as symphonic instruments, choirs and sometimes a full orchestra. Often feature classically trained female vocalists, it is not uncommon for them to feature a second vocalist preforming growls.

Some examples of the best symphonic death metal bands are; At the Gates, Cradle of Filth, Kamelot, Opeth,

Folk/Viking Metal

Folk metal is a combination between heavy metal and traditional folk music, containing older folk instruments and to lesser extents traditional singing styles, they commonly contain six or more people in their line-up.

Viking metal is a style of heavy metal music characterized by a lyrical and thematic focus on Norse mythology, Norse paganism, and the Viking Age. Common elements in their songs include a slow-paced and heavy riffing style, anthemic choruses, use of both sung and harsh vocals, a reliance on folk instrumentation, and often the use of keyboards for atmospheric effect.

C – The bands I highly recommend are; Amon Amarth, Arkona, Enslaved, Heliung, Moonsorrow, Turisas, and Tyr.

Pirate Metal

Pirate metal is a subgenre of heavy metal often characterized by its use of pirate mythology in the music and sometimes their stage performances. The lyrics often include pirate jargon and various music genres, such as thrash metal, speed metal, and folk metal may be combined with traditional-sounding songs like sea shanties.

Two bands in pirate metal are Alestorm and Swashbuckle.

Grunge

Grunge is a fusion genre of alternative rock, punk rock, and heavy metal. Bands mainly focus on utilizing either punk rock or heavy metal in their sound. Lyrics are typically angst-filled and introspective, often addressing themes such as social alienation, apathy, concerns about confinement, and a desire for freedom.

The most famous bands in the grunge scene are; Alice in Chains, Nirvana, Pearl Jam, Soundgarden, and Stone Temple Pilots.

Post-Grunge

Post-grunge morphed into a more clearly defined style that married the sound and aesthetic of grunge with a tone less intense and less abrasive than grunge.

The most commonly heard of using post-grunge are; Creed, Foo Fighters, Matchbox Twenty, Nickelback, Puddle of Mudd, and Seether.

Industrial

Industrial music is a genre of experimental music which draws on harsh, transgressive or provocative sounds and themes. The first industrial artists experimented with noise and aesthetically controversial topics, musically and visually, such as fascism, sexual perversion, and the occult.

Some Industrial would be Rammstein, Marilyn Manson, Nine Inch Nails, and Slipknot.

Metalcore

Metalcore is a fusion genre combining elements of extreme metal and hardcore punk. Metalcore is most known for its use of breakdowns, which are slow, intense passages conducive to moshing. Singers typically perform screaming or the death growl. But more recent bands have incorporated standard singing, usually during the chorus or bridge.

T&C the bands that we recommend the most are; Asking Alexandria, August Burns Red, Beartooth, Bring Me the Horizon, Famous Last Words, and Parkway Drive.

Nu-Metal

A subgenre of alternative metal that combines elements of heavy metal music with elements of other music genres such as hip hop, alternative rock, funk, industrial and grunge. Nu-metal rarely features guitar solos, it is heavily syncopated and based on guitar riffs. Many nu metal guitarists use seven-string guitars that are down-tuned to play a heavier sound.

T&C- Bands we recommend for some Nu-Metal jams are; Disturbed, Deftones, Korn, Slipknot, System of a Down.

Post-Hardcore

Post-hardcore is a descendant of hardcore punk that maintains the aggression and intensity of hardcore punk but emphasizes a greater degree of creative expression initially inspired by punk rock, post-punk and noise rock. Typically featuring very fast tempos, loud volume, and heavy bass levels.

T&C- Bands in the post-hardcore scene we like; Alesana, Bring me the Horizon, Dance Gavin Dance, Falling in Reverse, Famous Last Words, Silverstein, Underoath.

Emo

I know I know don’t kill me, please. Emo is a style of post-hardcore and is an alternative rock music genre characterized by an emphasis on emotional expression, sometimes through confessional lyrics. There is also screamo, which is a more aggressive form of emo music.

Bands with the reputation of being emo bands with the most post-hardcore style; Black Veil Brides, Green Day, Pierce the Veil, and Sleeping with Sirens.

Prog

If you are more of a softie who doesn’t like the crazy hardcore bands then progressive rock or progressive metal would be your thing. Progressive rock’s scene is sometimes limited to a stereotype of long solos, overlong albums, fantasy lyrics, grandiose stage sets and costumes, and an obsessive dedication to technical skill. Progressive rock had poetic lyrics and uses technology for new sounds.  Progressive metal is a fusion genre melding heavy metal and progressive rock which combines the loud aggressive sounds and amplified guitar-driven sound.  Prog was made for listening rather than dancing to it.

Prog rock bands; Kansas, Pink Floyd, Radiohead, and Rush.

Prog metal bands; Animals as Leader, Deftones, Mastodon, Opeth, and Tool.

Thrash Metal

A subgenre of metal music characterized by its overall aggression and often fast tempo. The songs usually use fast percussive beats and low-register guitar riffs, overlaid with shredding-style lead work. The lyrics often deal with social issues and criticism, using direct and denunciatory language, an approach taken from hardcore punk.

Popular thrash metal bands are; Anthrax, Metallica, Megadeath, Slayer, Suicidal Tendencies, and Testament.

 

Interview with . . . Acaedia

 

 

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My boyfriend and I don’t always agree on music. He loves hippy jam bands and I like punk. However, we agree on one genre – metalcore. He trusted me enough to pick which band we would see at Warped Tour for the 2 p.m. slot. So far I have not steered him wrong. He’s like “How did you know about Band XYZ?” My answer is usually “YouTube.”
Miami-based band Acaedia is one of those bands that we would both look forward to seeing in concert. If they had been at Warped Tour this year, I would have definitely chosen to see them.

You may have seen their video for a metal remix of “Despacito.” If you haven’t seen it, there’s a link at the bottom.

FYI: Acaedia is pronounced uh-SEE-dee-uh.  Acaedia includes Ray Jimenez (lead vocals), Javier Sardinas (guitar) and Michael Collantes (drums).

Before I forget, Acaedia also did the following interview with me. Read on and enjoy!

 

Who is your favorite Star Wars character?

I grew up with the original trilogy, but I have to say Kylo Ren. I know my friends would be appalled, but there’s just so much more to Kylo than what we’ve seen in the live action films. I feel Ren is everything I wanted Anakin Skywalker to be and more. Hoping a new Darth Vader film will change my mind

Do you think Warped Tour will ever come out of retirement – like boxers do?

I think so, but it probably won’t be a full U.S. thing.

What do people need to bring to a rock concert?

Sunscreen, comfortable shoes, a small backpack and ear plugs are a must.

Why do people bring their babies to concerts?

would think most of us would deem this to be a horrible idea, but I guess not since this is a question. lol

If you in Game of Thrones, who would you be? But who would you want to be?

I would want to be Tyrion and I’d definitely would be Tyrion.

Is there any metal that is too much – even for metalheads?

Never!!!

Do you have any tips for surviving the mosh pit?

Wear comfortable clothes and shoes, and definitely, do not wear glasses (get yourself some contacts).

How many people do you think lose their sunglasses in the pit during festival season?

Everyone dumb enough to get in the pit with glasses. lol

Did your parents ever sit in the parent’s tent at a concert?

I’ve never asked. I probably should.

What do you love about your hometown?

It’s pretty much a food paradise if you love Latin American food.

What has been the highlight of your summer?

I lost 14lbs. Wohoo!!

 

Acaedia website

 

Next to None: Heavy Metal Prodigies

nexttonone

The kids in Next to None are young enough to still be considered prodigies. The band members are about 15 or 16 years old, which I’m sure makes people feel old.

All of that being said, they are really remarkable. They write their own music too, which is becoming rarer these days.

Their sound is a little progressive, a little hard rock, a little heavy metal. It’s all good. It’s better than good really. I am totally blown away by how mature their sound is. Hopefully, their voices maintain a similar quality after puberty is over.

Next to None will have their first album, “A Light in the Dark,” out any day now.

Next To None includes Max Portnoy on drums, Ryland Holland on guitar, Kris Rank on bass, and Thomas Cuce on keyboards and lead vocals.

P.S. Remind me to hide my daughter when they come to town. I know, I know, I should take her to the show.

Next to None

Mayhem Festival Wish List

I’m probably going to get in sooo much trouble for saying this but I’m not overly excited about the Mayhem Festival lineup this year. It’s not that there is anything wrong with any of the bands. It seems like if you’re doing a big festival, you should have a few more bands that will draw a large crowd. People should not be thinking, “I’m not going because I don’t like the lineup.”

I’m just not sure if I really want to 2 hours drive to Detroit to just see the one band that I want to see. Oh yeah, so far there are no Ohio dates -not even Cleveland. It’s a lot of time and money to spend on one band and maybe liking another band. I’m all for hearing new or new-to- me bands, I really am. But is it worth the effort? I could spend all of the time and money on going to see a band that I really want to see.

So what bands would make a good addition to the lineup? The chances of adding some bands are not likely, which is a shame.

I made a list of five bands that would be good additions. I know it won’t happen. Maybe next year.

1. Sevendust. It’s on my bucketlist. They are pretty kickass. I missed out on seeing them a few years ago. It was my own fault and it haunts me still.

http://loubrutus.com/
http://loubrutus.com/

2. Nothing More. I’ve heard that they have a great live show.

Nothing More (l-r)  Paul O'Brien (drums), Jonny Hawkins (lead singer,drums), Daniel Oliver (bass, backing vocals), and Mark Vollelunga (guitar, backing vocals)
Nothing More (l-r) Paul O’Brien (drums), Jonny Hawkins (lead singer,drums), Daniel Oliver (bass, backing vocals), and Mark Vollelunga (guitar, backing vocals)

3. Lacuna Coil. My boyfriend has worn out the CD. So that’s a good sign, I think?

Lacuna Coil: http://www.pinterest.com/pin/199354720979908958/
Lacuna Coil: http://www.pinterest.com/pin/199354720979908958/

4. While She Sleeps. Alas, they are on the Warped Tour.

http://wssofficial.com/
http://wssofficial.com/

5. Drowning Pool. I’d like to see the new singer and his mohawk in concert.

http://drowningpool.com/
http://drowningpool.com/

Hellyeah: A to Z Challenge

Several weeks ago, Kyle Sanders, the bassist for Hellyeah, answered a few questions for me before he went to sound check. The band was originally formed in 2006 by Chad Gray, Tom Maxwell and Vinnie Paul. Sanders and guitarist Christian Brady have joined the group within the last two years.

The band has also been involved in the No More campaign, which is pretty awesome.

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hynm-1

How long have you had the dreads?

Since 1995.

That’s dedication.

It’s a commitment for sure.

On some of your concert pics, you have blood on your face. How does that happen?

I spit blood on Chad’s face every night right before we play “Blood for Blood” every night. That’s pretty exciting for me. And everyone else I guess.

It’s something to see.

Have you ever had a photographer ask you or the band to do anything ridiculous?

Not really. I don’t think anyone wants to ask me to do anything ridiculous.

How is the new lineup working out?

I think it’s perfect. It’s like a new band, you know. It’s a new fire. Everyone is excited. Everyone is happy to be here and be together, you know. I don’t think it’s been that way in the past. It’s a positive thing going on right now.

How long have you been in the band?

Since December of 2013.

Do you feel like the new album is different than previous albums?

I think it’s more mature than the others, which it’s supposed to be. It’s more focused. Overall, I think everyone would agree. It’s the best full record that the band has put out so far. It’s supposed to be getting better and better and be able to do different things and still be good.Everyone in the band is satisfied with it. New fans love it. Old fans love it.

Who are you listening to now?

I listen to pretty much every kind of music. I’m around heavy music all of the time. So I don’t listen to as much heavy music in my off time. I like psychedelic stuff, 70s rock a lot, acoustic singer-songwriter stuff too.

Do you have any upcoming tours planned for the summer?

We plan on taking this hopefully, through the rest of the year. This tour ends March 8. We’ll have an April-May run. We’ll have some dates with Godsmack and some radio shows in the U.S. W’re going to Europe in June and July. Hopefully, there will be more after that. I’m not sure what the plans are yet.

 Have you guys found the fountain of youth? You guys don’t look or act your age.

Oh yeah.

I’ve seen pictures of the drummer was standing on the drum kit. That is awesome. 

Every night, every night.

What motivates you guys to keep making music & touring?

Because it’s everyone’s passion. When we’re not playing then we’re miserable. All of the fan feedback is so appreciated. They’re appreciative that we’re there. We’re appreciative that they’re there.

 Has it been difficult to balance touring with life at home? Do you have kids at home?

Yeah, I have a family back in Atlanta. It is difficult to balance. It makes you appreciate both sides better. When you’re on the road, you miss being home. When you’re home, you miss being on the road. So it’s all about keeping a good balance and not being gone for twelve months straight but not being home for twelve months straight either. Because then you miss playing. It’s not an easy thing to do but you have to make it happen.

Hellyeah was kind of formed on a whim, like a lot of bands I guess. Did you guys think you would be so successful and still together?

I think so. I think that’s the plan. It started out as kind of a side project because there were other members in other bands. I don’t think it was meant to be a one time thing. You’re in it for the long haul. Whether it works out that way or not is a different story. I always commit to one thing and stick with it.

Who writes most of your songs?

This past record was different because two members are gone. Tom Maxwell wrote the majority of the songs. He and Benny got together in a room and started nailing songs out. Tom is a riff master anyway. He’s got a million of them. So it was focused that way rather of different members writing different parts.

Hopefully, the next record will be different. Me and Tom plan on writing music together. Christian Brady is in the band so hopefully he’ll be writing some music with us to keep the group effort going.

What do you think of musical acts that don’t write their own music or play instruments?

I don’t know what to think of that. You’ve got to think of the person in the situation. Like maybe that was the way they were brought up, that’s all they know. I was brought up to play my own bass and write my own music. That’s just how it is. If you’re a young kid and you have all these people writing music for you and all of a sudden you’re famous and making a lot of money then if they’re happy with it then good for them. I’m not in a line to judge them but I’m not down with it at all.

I was looking up Tom Maxwell. Did you know that there is a different Tom Maxwell in a different band but it’s a swing band? The Squirrel Zippers.

 No, I did not. I’ll have to look it up and show him.

On your Tom Maxwell’s Wikipedia, it links to the other Tom Maxwell

I had no idea. I’ll have to look into it.

P.S. Here is a side by side comparison of the Tom Maxwells

Tom Maxwell of Hellyeah

Tom Maxwell of Squirrel Nut Zippers.

Destino’s Interview with . . . I Prevail

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It’s not very often that a band can make a cover from a different genre and make it their own. Meet I Prevail – they are one of those bands. They have done a cover of Taylor Swift’s “Blank Space” but with a heavy metal twist. Even if you aren’t a huge heavy metal fan, you might just fall in love with this band.

If Taylor Swift calls Lee, how awesome would it be if she sang with them? It could be magical, you never know.

Seriously, buy their new album, “Heart vs Mind” on iTunes, Google Play or Amazon Music. You will thank me later, I promise.

I’m so stoked that they were available for an interview. It was a spur of the moment thing.

1. How long have you guys been together?

We’ve been together for over a year.

2. Are there any plans for touring soon?

Yes we have big plans for touring very soon! No announcement on that yet though!

3. You’re an unsigned band. Do you think that’s working in your favor? Pros/Cons?

We have had enormous support from people and we’re not sure if part of that is because people know that they are personally supporting us. It would be nice to have a major record label funding our project but its the best feeling in the world knowing our fan base cares about us and wants to support us!

4. I love the cover of “Blank Space.” Have you heard any response from Taylor Swift?

No response from Taylor yet…. Lee is in pretty bad shape…. We’re doing everything we can to get the kid a phone call from her haha.
5. Anything that you would like to tell your fans?

We appreciate the support so much!! We would have never gotten our music to go viral without everyone pushing our videos!

6. Who influenced you musically when you were growing up?

We all had different influences growing up. Some were Third Eye Blind and Blink 182 early on. And later on other bands were Saosin and Underoath. Our biggest influences right now are A Day to Remember, We Came As Romans, and Bring Me The Horizon.

7. Is there anyone that you would like to work with? Other bands? Producers? Songwriters?

.We would love to play a show with A Day to Remember, We Came as Romans, or Bring Me The Horizon someday!

8. Have you had any ridiculous photo shoots yet?

No haha. Pretty standard photo shoots so far! Our music videos were definitely very crazy to shoot though!

9. listen to you on 89x. How supportive have radio stations been of your music?

89x has been playing our music quite a bit. There have been a ton of radio stations playing our songs across the U.S. Sirius Octane has been hugely supportive of us by playing us daily!

The band members of I Prevail are  Brian Burkheiser – Vocals | Eric Vanlerberghe – Vocals | Steve Menoian – Guitars | Jordan Berger – Guitars | Lee Runestad – Drums

Links to I Prevail
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Chasing Destino’s Interview with . . . Miss May I

I was able to track down Ryan Neff the bassist for Miss May I to ask a few questions. They have been difficult to pin down because they have been on the road so much.

Since 2007,the band members have included Levi Benton, Justin Aufdemkampe, BJ Stead, Ryan Neff, and Jerod Boyd.

Miss_May_I,_photographed_in_2014

I read that you guys have been together since high school. Is that right?

2007 was the initial formation. That’s when I hopped in the band as well. I hopped in in really late 2007 about a year after that started playing shows. My band from a different town in Ohio played with them. And then they stole me or I kind of bailed on my band. One way or the other, I ended up in the band.

Then we started touring in 2009. It’s been all five of the same guys ever since.

What has been the key to staying together for so long?

Growing up together is a big part of it. Four of the guys played in high school together. Three of the guys were in the same graduating class. And then when I joined the band, I really wasn’t much older than them. I’m the oldest by two years. I was only one year out of high school when I joined the band. We were all relatively the same age. We all started touring when we were so young that we grew up together. Now I’m the oldest but I’m only a whopping 26. There are guys in the band that are 22 right now.

How did you guys come up with the name Miss May I?

We don’t have a good story. It happened before I joined. I don’t know why they chose it. They don’t know why they chose it really. Sometimes they say they do. Other guys say they don’t know. It’s not really a cool story unfortunately.

Now we’re just stuck with this name that we have to explain to people that haven’t heard it before.

You’re from Troy, Ohio. Did anyone have Ms. Lindeman as a music teacher?

Yeah, Jerod had her. Jerod knows her. He was rocking the drumline.

What have been the highlights of touring this year?

2014 was in terms of the style of shows, it was a really up and down year, as far as the size of the places we would play. In America, we’re used to the club scene, where you go into the House of Blues room and say, “This place is huge.” Over in Europe, we were used to the same thing if not smaller.

All year we were fortunate to be on tour with great bands or on great festivals. We started the year off in Europe with Trivium, which was awesome for us. I got think of all of the crap we did this year. So crazy.

Then we came back to America, and kicked off the record with a bunch small bar shows. Like places we haven’t played in years. Like down to 200 capacity places, which is really cool for us because it’s up close and personal. The fans are right there with you. A really limited number of tickets. So it’s like all of the die hard fans can make it in, which is really cool. And you get to meet every single one of them. It’s totally opposite of the big shows, where you can’t meet everyone. You can literally meet every single person at a show that small.

Then we did the Mayhem Festival in America. We played gigantic crowds in America outdoors for that. Right before that we did European Festivals, like we played the main stage of Download, stuff like that, which are gigantic and completely different from what we’re used to. It was just wild. It was just a really crazy year for us, like a bunch of really different styles of shows.

(Had a small break for some navigation for the driver. Ryan said navigation is a lost art. The first time he drove to a big city, like Columbus, he had to print out MapQuest instructions, which were all completely wrong. We’ve come so far with GPS tools.)

How did you wind up choosing the fan to get the lion tattoo for the cover of the album? It looks really awesome.

The whole record was a fan based type of deal. Topics were from fans. We wanted a fan on the cover. We wanted a tattoo of that and to tie it into the first music video. So we had to find the right guy. We posted on Facebook, the almighty Facebook that connects everybody- that we were looking for somebody in the US within a reasonable distance. And we found this one guy.

Basically, they had a folder compiled for us. Levi and I just went through and judged a bunch of guys. We had to choose. We had to choose. The guy we ended up choosing was a giant dude. He was just big ol’ buff guy. He wanted it on his back too, which is a giant canvas. It made it perfect for the album cover. He ended up getting the tattoo the day before that we filmed the music video. We had a really cool cover.

Do you guys have a method to writing songs?

It has been different with every single record. I think it’s one of the big reasons we have different sounding records every time. Different producers, different writing styles. It’s cool though. It’s cool because we’re so young and now we have like four records under us. So we kind of know what lyrics we have that worked and what ways that didn’t.

“Apologies are for the Weak” was written when the guys were still in high school right before I came back to the band from touring with a different band. They were driving back and forth from high school classes to Indiana, tracking and trying to get back to school in time for morning stuff. They were doing a lot of writing at the studio and a lot of writing coming from B.J. At that time, he was out of high school, pulling all-nighters trying to get stuff done.

For “Monument,” we all lived at the studio. We wrote the entire record there.

“At Heart” we wrote most of the record in New Jersey together in a studio, once we finally got off of the road.

During “Rise of the Lion,” we rented a studio. We wrote the whole record live, took it to the studio, rewrote it a bunch of times in the studio together. It was a six or seven month process, on and off. It was a little more labor intensive and stressful than this one that we’re working on.

We’re already working towards the next one. This particular one, we’re all catching up with the newest technology. All five of us can use different systems and actually send projects to each other. We can work on songs and get most of the songs written before we get together and actually play it live. As a group, it’s our first time to put together that final song structure. So it’s different every time. We don’t really have a set method.

Do you have a favorite venue?

Oh, that’s hard. I can give you a favorite venue in every state. But it’s hard to choose. I guess if I had to choose one in America that we haven’t had anything terrible happen to us – like blow the show or a bad crowd or messed the trailer up or blown a tire. We’ve always had good luck at in Milwaukee at a venue called The Rave. Even though we did the Warped Tour in Milwaukee a few times, for some reason we’ve had great luck up there. It’s just a really good pocket for us. We have a great following up there. The Rave would be my favorite venue.

Well, who knew? Milwaukee.

What do you like to do when you’re not on tour?

I don’t like to not be on tour very much. I actually love being on tour. I would be in another band and be on tour all of the time that this band isn’t touring. I play some race car videos here and there. I practice playing songs that I enjoy and try to keep my voice worked out. It is way more exciting for me being on tour. I don’t have much to do when I’m not on tour. I really like my cat. My girlfriend and cat keep me sane when I’m not on tour. I enjoy the bar. The bar is cool.

Do you guys still get pretty excited when you see your videos?

It’s kind of the norm thing. Fast paced. It’s been really a fun trip so far. We’ve been busy and packed with that sort of stuff. We’re always working on another product, whether it’s a video, a record, merchandise, a fan meet and greet. There is always something going on. It’s almost hard to keep track of all of the things that we’ve done so far. We’ll be trying to choose songs and we’ll be like “Do you think the fans are big fans of that song.” Then someone says “Oh yeah, that video has such and such hits on YouTube.” There’s so much stuff going on all of time. It’s cool when family members ask “What are you doing? How are things going?” We can say “This.” Then play them a video. We can show them the immediate video footage of everything that is going on.

How was your experience doing the record with Terry Date?

It was cool. It was a lot different than any of the others we did for sure. We were really far from home. New Jersey was the furthest that we’ve been from home to record a record. It’s a lot different than touring when your record a record – You’re living in the same place for a little over a month minimum. We did two records in Connersville, Indiana, which was very similar to home. Cornfields in the middle of nowhere. So we had really similar upbringings.

We lived in New Jersey for the third record, which was different for us. It was right outside of New York City in the middle of winter.

When we recorded with Terry, not only were we recording with this amazing, legendary producer, we were also recording at the amazing Studio X in downtown Seattle – like a beautiful city and a historic studio that a ton of my favorite bands have recorded at. He recorded a shit ton of them at this studio. So you walk in the first day, and you’re like “This dude is in charge making this music that we deliver sound great. He was excited to do this project. It was just really cool to be working with that big of a name who is stoked about making the song.

Do you guys stay pretty healthy on the road? Sorry for sounding like a mom.

We try not to eat as bad as we did, if we can. For a long time, we were the McDonald’s three times a day kind of guys. It’s nice on your wallet but not so great on your waistline. You definitely don’t feel great afterwards. We’re trying. We’re trying to eat a little healthier. If anything, I get stupid stuff like bronchitis – dumb stuff that you catch from not taking care of yourself or doing simple stuff that makes you feel healthy. It’s definitely not easy with eating gas station food and that sort of thing. But it can be done.

Good to know. I’m glad you’re staying healthy.

The interview ended with the approach of rush hour traffic. Ryan had to get back to being the navigator. Thank you Ryan for taking the time out of your day to chat with me for a few minutes.

Beginning in January, Miss May I will be on the Frozen Flame tour. Check out their Facebook page to see when they are coming to your area. https://www.facebook.com/MissMayIMusic/app_308540029359

 You can also visit their website at http://www.mmiriseofthelion.com/ for even more information.

This is my favorite Miss May I video. Enjoy!