MUSIC INTERVIEW: Memphis May Fire
The Rise Up tour is currently making its way around the UK, showcasing some of Rise Record’s hottest bands: The Devil Wears Prada, Silverstein, Like Moths To Flames and Memphis May Fire. We caught up with Memphis May Fire frontman Matty Mullins ahead of their recent show in London to chat about the UK leg of the tour, punching Kayne West in the face and a whole lot of Mexican food…
So this is the London show of the Rise Up tour! It’s called the Rise Up tour but you guys are pretty well established in the hardcore scene, do you think you still have any rising up to do?
[Laughs] I think it’s a clever name because we’re all Rise Records bands. I like to think we’re always rising up in one way or another.
Nice! You guys have been around for 10 years now, but what has been your favourite moment as a band?
I think every time we put out a new record, that’s always going to be our favourite moment. Doing a new album is an emotional roller coaster, when you come to the end of that process it’s so fulfilling to have something you’ve created in that process, and to release it to the world. So yeah, releasing our last album, This Light I Hold, has been our favourite moment.
Well it’s a great record! You have come all the way from Dallas, are there any home comforts you have to bring with you on tour?
It’s hard to travel overseas with things, unless they’re really small. I guess our phones are what connects us most with home, staying in touch with family and friends back home.
Any foods that you miss that the UK can’t doesn’t have?
The UK can never give us Mexican food like we have in America. At the same time we love kebab and stuff and we can’t get that in America the way the UK does it. I mean we all have kebab tattoos, even!
No way! We have to see this!
(reveals a tattoo of a chef carving a kebab on his ankle) It’s the guy shaving the meat off the stick!
Thats amazing what’s the guy called, does he have a name?
He’s called the kebab guy?
You have to have a name for him let’s create one!
Yeah, it has to be something like Turkish right?
All we can think of is Zanzibar from the Tenacious D song!
I love that name! Instantly!
Done! So Zanzibar aside this tour has an amazing line up. If you were responsible for choosing who you played alongside, any band living or dead, who would it be?
I grew up loving a band called Blindside. I would love to tour with them because they don’t tour anymore, a few dates in the USA sometimes, so that would be a dream come true for me. Another band I grew up listening to was My American Heart, which I love so much. Their singer actually sung on our new record and so I miss them a lot, so would love to play alongside them. I just like the nostalgic stuff it just would be cool!
Good choices! Your new album was released in October, This Light I Hold. It’s quite an emotional record, what song are you most proud of from the album in regards to its message?
I think every song on the album stands out to me in a different way. When we went in with 13 songs we thought we were going to cut a couple and we didn’t. There was the one song that ended up being Carry On, that as an instrumental we thought we could part ways with, but once I wrote vocals for that and we tracked it, it instantly became our favourite song. It’s a very transparent song about being somebody who goes against the grain and stands up for what they believe in, or isn’t affected by the opinions of the public. So yeah, I think that song.
This is the random part of the interview, it’s where we bring out our Fun Box. Each question is as random and crazy as the next, so do you dare to dive in?
[Laughs] Sure! [Picks one and reads aloud] “Who is a band you would hate to tour with? ”
Hey Anthony [rhythm guitar] come and join the fun box party!
Anthony: [Laughs] Sure! [to Matty] You want me to answer that?
Matty: [laughs] I think that just a general answer to that would be bands that aren’t interested in being a team player. Being out on the road a lot of the time everyone needs to work together to make sure we have the best show possible. There are some divas out on the road so I’d say aslong as everyones in the same wave length it’s fine.
A: That’s a good answer. Nothing is worse than when someone is out for themselves and has alternative agendas all the time. Like they’re here in tour, but really they’re here to not to give a crap about anyone else.
Do any bands spring to mind? You don’t have to be polite for us!
A: We have been fortunate to tour with really nice bands, who maintain the level of respect that’s needed. Other band’s crews can sometimes be a bit weird.
Being on the road in small spaces and with loads of guys and testosterone all over the shop, it must be hard to get on with everyone all of the time?
A: We’re all pretty laid back. I think we all know when to keep our mouths shut and having that equal respect makes it super easy for everyone to get along. [Reads his aloud] “If you could punch a celebrity in the face and get away with it, who would it be?”
M: I actually have an answer to this one!
M: [whispers] Kayne West.
A: Oh dude, for sure! Kayne! Every time I have seen him on television it’s all “me, me, me.”
M: He gives no credit to anyone but himself, that really bothers me. It seems like he forgets people on the way.
Do you guys wanna dive in for a couple more?
M: I’m down!
[Both pick another one]
A: I like these they’re cool!
We always have fun with our fun box!
M: “What’s the most rock and roll thing you’ve ever done?” Erm I think we were somewhere in Switzerland and we were playing this venue where there was like one bathroom only for boys and girls in the whole venue area. So me and Cory [bass guitar] took some empty pizza boxes and pooped in them.
Oh wow! That’s rock and roll right there, pizza box poop!
A: [laughs] “What’s the worst thing that’s happened on a date?” It’s been so long since I’ve been on a date. I can’t actually think of any!
M: Well we’re both married so it’s tough!
Aw! Ok, we will let you off. Let’s go for one more, what would be your last meal?
M: Street tacos for sure!
A: I like to cook so I’d go for ground turkey tacos that I cook for myself all the time at home. I’m a super picky eater the only way I can eat a whole bunch is if I prepare it myself.
Loving the Mexican theme! Well I think that’s a wrap!
M: Love the pun!
Well thanks for hanging out with us guys and we can’t wait to catch your show later!
M: Thanks it’s been a great chat!
A: Nice to meet you!
Interview By: Charly Phillips
Memphis May Fire’s new album This Light I Hold is out now via Rise Records.
Catch the band on the Rise Up Tour with The Devil Wears Prada, Silverstein and Like Moths To Flames at one of the remaining dates:
Mon 5th – BIRMINGHAM – Asylum
Tue 6th – LEEDS – Stylus
Wed 7th – NOTTINGHAM – Rescue Rooms
Fri 9th – BRISTOL – O2 Academy
Sat 10th – SOUTHAMPTON – Engine Rooms