Of Mice and Men

By paul

Paul: For those yet to hear Of Mice and Men, how would you describe your sound and which bands would you say are an influence on you, both lyrically and musically?

Valentino: We have a very aggressive sound, with very melodic singing and abrasive vocals. Nothing too technical about our music, just in your face. We draw influence from all corners of music but you could better relate our music to the screamo/metalcore genre.

Paul: Here’s your sales pitch: why should people buy/listen to your debut full length album?

Valentino: Because like any other band to have their music distributed through a record label, we put a lot of time and effort into this piece of art. You should listen to it because it has something you will like. guaranteed.

Paul: You’ve only been a band a short time yet you’ve managed to achieve a lot. It’s safe to assume the band name is linked to the book, which of course was all about the American Dream. Did you honestly believe that within 2 years of being a band you’d be signed to a label like Rise, have videos on MTV and start to tour the world?

Valentino: We had no idea the magnitude of this project, Every member of this band was pulled from another walk of life but still in the music scene, we all came together and wrote an album and had the right support behind us, and things just exploded! its taken us all by surprise really. We’re more than grateful for our fans because without them, we wouldn’t get to do all of these amazing things!

Paul: Incidentally, how did you hook up with Rise Records?

Valentino: Austin’s previous band was on Rise Records. I’ve personally known Craig (owner of Rise) for a few years so coming into this project for me was a no brainer, Rise is an amazing label and Craig is a great dude.

Paul: Of course with the trappings of fame come the internet gossip and your split with former vocalist Austin Carlile has been well documented. If you could turn the clock back would you have handled any part of either a) Austin joining the band at the start or b) the way Austin left the band any differently?

Valentino: Nah, it could’ve been less publicized haha but at the end of the day, we did what we had to do. Being in a band is about having fun and getting along and trusting the people you are around.

Paul: There were comments just recently were Austin suggested ‘Second & Sebring’ wasn’t being sung correctly. Although he suggested it wasn’t meant as a criticism, did part of you think ‘why is he opening old wounds’ and that he should mind his own business?

Valentino: I know that song meant a lot to him as well as Shayley (its not JUST Austin’s song) Yes, the band did feel like “why is he STILL trying to give his two cents?” this band is trying to evolve, to move away from those associations with the past and show that what we have RIGHT NOW is awesome, because WE feel that it’s awesome and we want to share it. You come to a live rock n roll concert to get a SHOW! to get blown away, more often than not, bands don’t sound EXACTLY like they do on the album when they play live, we know that we don’t, were trying to give our fans a different experience. Since we have a new screamer, you will be getting his version of what’s happening. Not to mention Jerry screams way different from Austin.

Paul: Do you worry that the band’s reputation may be damaged by some of the things Austin does/says? He’s become a bit of a ‘scene’/internet “celebrity” after all.

Valentino: Not at all, its in the past.

Paul: How did you come across Jerry Roush? What skills did he have that made him a perfect fit for the job?

Valentino: We knew him from his previous band Sky Eats Airplane, loved his work with that band, felt like he’d be an awesome fill in, turned out when things started getting shady with our previous vocalist back home, he was an even better replacement.

Paul: Why did you choose to cover ‘Poker Face’? What attracted you to the song? Are you all Lady Gaga fans?

Valentino: It was actually on a whim, just a little idea our guitarist programmed on Garage Band, recorded vocals on it, and released it for fun and it ended up being a pretty big hit with our fans. Who ISNT a lady gaga fan!?

Paul: You’re here in the UK in October, what can we expect from the Of Mice & Men live show?

Valentino: We will be bringing the Southern California stylings HARD! We’re excited for the opportunity to bring our live show overseas, and show everyone how powerful our set is!

Paul: Have you toured with August Burns Red and Blessthefall before?

Valentino: We have toured with Blessthefall before on the Atticus tour last year, they’re awesome dudes, we have an amazing bond with them so we’re excited to get to tour with them again. August Burns Red is one of my favorite bands so I cant wait to be out with them.

Paul: At what point will you start writing new material for the next record?

Valentino: We actually have a little time off right now before we leave for Europe and we’re going to be doing some writing for the album!

Paul: If that process has already started do you have any song titles or schedules in mind?

Valentino: We’ve discussed a timeline with our management and label but its all in the works, the record will definitely come out sooner than later next year.

Paul: What is influencing the new material?

Valentino: The reception to our current songs live, we like writing music for people to get into live, so we will be using the response that we’ve gotten from the crowd on certain songs to develop that into something new!

Try these three interviews

Interview: Greywind [Reading 2016]

Interview: Arcane Roots [Reading 2016]

Interview: Trash Boat [Reading 2016]