Interview with Robert Bloomfield of MyChildren MyBride

You guys are playing on Haste The Day’s Farewell tour right now, correct?

Yes, they’re calling it quits after ten years.

Ten years is a nice amount of time. MyChildren MyBride have been around for a while, too.

To us, we’ve been doing this for a long time. [MyChildren MyBride vocalist] Matthew [Hasting] and I have been in the band the longest. And before I was in this band, I was in a band that toured with MCMB back in the day. It’s weird because we’ve done it for so long, but we haven’t been relevant for so long. Haste The Day has been relevant for basically ten years. I heard about them back in like 2003, and they were huge.

Indeed. It does feel like you guys are getting to the next level though — especially with your latest album, ‘Lost Boy.’

That’s our goal. We always hope for that when we put out a new record. As much as we like the audience that we got from ‘Unbreakable,’ we don’t just want to please that audience. We try to get newer fans. Every few years there’s the younger generation that grows up and is able to go to shows. You have to please those kids and hopefully make music that grabs them.

How’s the tour with Haste The Day been overall?

I wish they were filming for a farewell DVD of the whole tour. We were just talking about this the other day. Haste The Day picked out everybody on this tour. There were three bands they wanted to tour with on their farewell tour: MyChildren MyBride, The Chariot and A Plea For Purging. From day one, every show has been packed like it was a 2004 or 2005 show. Hundreds of kids are coming to the shows and showing how much they support Haste The Day. It sucks that they have to announce, “Oh, this is our last tour,” then everybody comes out.

A Plea For Purging is a great band that just started off. They get the crowd riled up for The Chariot. Basically, it sucks playing every night after The Chariot. They’re insane and their showmanship is on a whole ‘nother level. Then, our job is to get everyone even more prepared for Haste The Day. [Eventually,] Haste The Day plays and the whole room starts singing every one of their songs. It’s just the ideal vision of a tour, [how] you’d hope it would be. It’s super awesome to be a part of it and watching it all happen.

Are any of the bands pulling crazy pranks?

We all do our jokes on each other. Every band on the tour has been friends for a long time. We hang out pretty much every day. There have been some funny little things that go on that are not necessarily pranks. The other day, we were sitting in the green room and there were burritos — everybody on this tour likes burritos — and Josh was like, “I need to eat one of these burritos.” Someone else was like, “Hey, do you think you could flip it out of that tin foil?” He then flipped the burrito out — like if you were to straighten a blanket out on a bed — and catches it in the air. So I grab one and I’m like, “Hey, should I try that too?” He’s like, “Yeah, of course.” I fling it open and it doesn’t open like his. When I flipped it, it didn’t go straight. It flung across the room towards Josh, and he kicks it like a hacky sack, and then I catch it and proceed to take a bite out of it — all within probably two seconds.

Food acrobatics!

Exactly. There’s just a lot of funny little things that happen because everybody’s such close friends.

You guys have a new video for “King Of The Hopeless” that came out recently. In the video, the band is in a huge field — where is that?

That’s in the hills of Orange County. We made that video and “Crimson Grim” in LA within a span of two days with the same director and producer. It was actually the best experience we’ve ever had making videos.

Tell us a bit about the concept behind it.

Well, the whole CD has a theme to it — it’s not a concept album, but it has a theme. Every song kind of sums up the name of the record, ‘Lost Boy’ — not meaning somebody’s lost, but instead spiritually or in your head you don’t know what you’re doing. When you’re in a band, you question what you’re doing: “Is being in my band a career or am I going to go home and start all over again.” That’s why we decided to call it ‘Lost Boy’ — because a lot of us have that problem.

So in that video you see a little kid going down this metaphorical path, placing flags to show how he can get back to where he started. But there’s the guy in the cloak who’s taking the flags, so at the end of the video when the boy turns around to find his way back he can’t because all his flags are gone.

When did you guys record ‘Lost Boy’? Was it at the end of 2009?

Yeah, we recorded ‘Lost Boy’ with Matt Goldman at the end of 2009 — around Christmas time, basically. We started doing pre-production in December and then we tracked it up until Christmas and then we all flew home for Christmas and New Year and then came back and Matt did his vocals.

After living with these songs for so long and playing some of them every night on tour, does it change the way you feel about them?

Oh yeah, of course. When you’re making the record it’s like, “Yes, finally — new music!” We played our previous record, ‘Unbreakable,’ for so long. We toured on that record for two years. Matt and I have been in the band since before ‘Unbreakable’ and so we’ve been playing the songs from ‘Unbreakable’ for almost four years. Once we got in the studio for ‘Lost Boy’ it was really refreshing. Our mindset was, “Let’s write songs that are fun for everybody.” Now, a little less than a year later, we’re kinda like, “Okay, we’ve played these songs every night and have made videos for them. It’s time for new music.”

Have you guys started working on your next album?

Yeah, we already started writing our next record and we plan on recording this summer. So we’re already going to pump another one out.

Nice. What do you have down for the new record?

Right now we’re trying to solidify where we’re going to go to do it. We have some big surprises on it that I think a lot of our fans are going to like and it’s going to make us a better band. We’re taking two steps back to get four steps forward. We’re not going to make ‘Lost Boy’ again, we’re not going to make ‘Unbreakable’ again, but we’re still MCMB and we’re still going to sound like MCMB. We’re striving to be better musicians on top of pleasing people.

Totally. You might not have any idea how the record is going to end up until halfway through or even towards the end.

Every record I’ve ever made has been like that. You can’t necessarily force yourself to write what you think you want. You’re going to write what comes out. I listen to a lot of different music and that’s what helps me. I have backbones of songs. I study — not necessarily theory, but structures. When I write, I’ll have notes and different things on how someone [else] did it. I’ll think something like, “This riff sounds cool; I think it’s the hook and needs to be played again.” In my mind that’s how you become a better songwriter — when you actually try to learn how to write a song versus just writing.

Does everyone in the band have a clearer picture as to what this new record should sound like?

With Goldman, the first thing he always says, [whether] you’ve made all your records with him or not, is “What are we going to do to make this record different from the last?” We were like, “Well, that’s why we’re coming to you. We don’t want to make ‘Unbreakable.'” We didn’t want that sound, we’re still going to be that band but we want to move forward and explore different directions of music. We never [wrote] structured songs before, we just wrote riffs. We thought more about the arrangements on ‘Lost Boy.’ We tried to really focus on the structure for each song.

Is the plan to work with Goldman on the next full-length?

We loved working with Matt Goldman. It was comfortable and the dude’s got it. He understood what we wanted. We went in with eight songs and we didn’t even have a drummer and all of our amps broke. He was like, “All right, let’s make a record.” And that was the first time we met him. We went in with eight half-ass songs and came out with twelve. The dude really indulged and helped us finish. Without him, ‘Lost Boy’ would have been a whole different record. It probably wouldn’t even be called ‘Lost Boy.’

Anyway, our initial idea was to go back to Goldman, but at the same time, we don’t want to make the same record. We’ll probably actually record a few songs with him, but I don’t know at this point if we will go back to him.

Next up on your agenda is a European tour with The Chariot.

Yeah. The last time we were in Europe was 2007, which was before we were signed and before we even had a record out. So many people were asking us to come over there so we just did it. We did it DIY style without any managers, labels or booking agents, and no record. I bought our plane tickets on my credit card and we went over there and just winged it. We didn’t know what we were doing, but the shows were awesome. We played a few festivals and played Germany, Denmark, Belgium, and actually broke even, which is very rare.

Since then, we’ve been trying to go back to Europe. Unfortunately, Solid State Records doesn’t release records internationally, except through iTunes. It puts it on a weird level for booking agents in Europe. Finally, we get to go with The Chariot, which is awesome because they’re our friends. If it wasn’t for them, we probably wouldn’t be going to Europe as soon.

Anything else going on?

We’ll be doing a few festivals including Cornerstone Festival, iMatter Festival, Soulfest and New England Metal and Hardcore Festival. Then, we’re going to go put ourselves in a hole and write a record.

Great. Have fun on tour and good luck with the new record.

Thanks, man. I appreciate that.

Pick up MyChildren MyBride’s latest album, Lost Boy.

For the band’s tour dates, check out their official Myspace page.