Thursday, April 25, 2019

INTERVIEW: The Story Changes

The Story Changes - the Dayton indie rock band led by scene vet Mark McMillon – are set to release their long-awaited new album this Friday, making their label debut for local imprint Magnaphone Records.  McMillon (also a member of Hawthorne Heights) is joined by fellow Hawthorne Heights drummer Chris Popadak and rounded out by Chris Serafini of The Stereo on the new album titled, To Hell With This Delicate Equation.  The trio creates a moody, emo-soaked sound with twinges of late 90’s nostalgia; incorporating anthemic screams and sticky alt-rock hooks for the complete package. 
The band has several shows lined up in support of the album including a couple of locals shows; an acoustic in-store performance and album listening party on April 26 at Omega Music and an album release show on May 11 at Yellow Cab Tavern. 
In anticipation, Atlas and the Anchor spoke to frontman Mark McMillon of The Story Changes about the writing and recording process of the new album, it’s more aggressive sound and more.   
The new album was recorded in your home studio.  How did that benefit the writing and recording process?
For me, it was really important to take our time on this album and work on both the writing and recording when we had blocks of time home from tour throughout the last year.   Building the studio here and recording it at home was both frightening and exciting at the same time.  Once we got through the initial learning curve and fear of doing it ourselves, it was completely freeing and an absolute rush.  I also think not having any sort of deadline this time around really helped us hone in on the direction we wanted to go with the album.  The songs had time to breath for a bit and evolve. Everything came together super organically and it feels like we became more comfortable in our own skin as a band. – Mark McMillon  
The new songs, though soaring and catchy like, “Shooting Stars”, have a slightly darker undertone with the addition of some screaming.  What inspired the moodier, more aggressive turn?
We have always flirted with getting a little more aggressive, but it felt good to fully embrace that side of things this time around.  Our last EP, ‘Never In Daydream’, sort of paved the way a little with where ended up on the new album.   As much as we love bands like Jawbreaker, Jimmy Eat World, and Face to Face, we also love bands like Faith No More, Avail, and Quicksand.  Those are three way different examples of more aggressive bands that kind of show you where our headspace was at with our influences on the new album.  We didn't hold back this time. - MM
Are there any lyrical themes on the new album that connect the songs as a whole?
To Hell With This Delicate Equation, as a whole, is about throwing out the rulebook and working past any preconceived notions of who you are supposed to be and how you supposed to live your life.  Pave your own path and make your own rules.   We took that notion with us when writing the music for the album, too.  We wanted to throw out the rules of what we thought we should sound like based on our past releases and try new things throughout the songs. – MM
What song from the new album are you most excited to play live and why? 
We just stared playing “Shake” live and it’s been going over really well.  I think it’s got a little bit everything from the new album all wrapped up into one song.  There’s a really great energy to the song that translates over well live.  It's become a favorite of mine in our live set. – MM
How did you link up with Magnaphone Records (who has also released music by Lioness, The New Old-Fashioned and other locals)?    
For this album, we talked with Magnaphone pretty early on in the process and thought they would be a great fit.  There's a lot of mutual respect between the two of us and it's been a wonderful fit.  We love their roster and everyone involved with running the label.  Great people putting out a lot of great music! – MM

Watch the video – produced by Sound Valley Productions - for standout track, “Shooting Stars”, where the nerds get their revenge over the punks:


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