Perth Hardcore lords Miles Away have just finished recording their latest offering Endless Roads, and we were lucky enough to catch up with Vocalist Nick to discuss the new record and all things MA.
Could you please inform the internet of your name and role in Miles Away?
Hello internet, my name is Nick and I am the vocalist in Miles Away.
It seems Miles Away have been tucked away in Perth writing for the past 18 months apart from the occasional national and international tour. How are you feeling about the new material and what can we expect from the songs?
It was a long process writing this time around, I guess we just needed a break after some of the heavy touring we did after Rewind, Repeat… came out. In the end it worked out for the best as we had alot more time to really come up with a record of songs that we’re all really happy with. We could have just churned something out last year, but we’ve never really worked that way.
Crowey particularly put alot of time and effort into the music and i think that will show in the songs once people hear them. Generally its not too far removed from the usual Miles Away sound, theres some melodic songs, theres some harder songs…its just better. Even though all bands say that.
‘Endless Roads’ was recorded with hardcore guru Dean Baltulonis (Sick Of It All, American Nightmare, No Warning, Modern Life is War) at The Wild Arctic Recording Studio. How much influence did Dean have on the release and how was the recording experience overall?
Dean was really amazing to work with and a totally chill guy. Going over there we didn’t know what to expect having never met apart from talking over email, so anything could have happened. Of course we went there with a pretty solid idea of how we wanted the record to sound and what we were going to do, but having Dean there to express his opinion on structures, riffs, vocal patterns, anything even the littlest thing really helped us out.
The way he recorded was totally different to the way we’ve recorded anything in the past and everything just felt fresh and right. The two weeks we spent in NY recording will definitely be one of my best memories i’ll have of the band.
How did you come to the decision to allow Dean to take over the production reins for Endless Road? What are some of the benefits that come with outsourcing recording as opposed to have an Australian produced and recorded disc?
When we first started writing and having ideas for a new album we decided that we wanted to record somewhere other than Perth. Not that Perth is a bad place, we just wanted to get away from our daily lives and routines that can sometimes get in the way when trying to focus on a recording. We thought about recording on the east coast, but then we figured why not just go all out and do it overseas. Besides it worked out roughly the same cost, so go figure.
Once we’d decided that we were gonna record overseas we each came back with a list of producers that we were into over the years. We talked to a couple of dudes for a few months and in the end we ended up going with Dean at Wild Arctic which turned out to be a really great decision. Besides the fact he has worked on some of our all-time favourite hardcore records, he was just a really good dude to hang out with for a couple weeks.
Plus who in Australia can tell you stories about recording with Skarhead or take you to a bar with the singer of Supertouch? In the end the main benefit is that Dean knows exactly how to record and produce a hardcore record, and has done for years.
Before the new record drops you will be releasing a 7”inch which has a few tracks from the full length and a few unreleased beauties. Is vinyl making a comeback or did it never leave?
We planned to have the 7" out for this tour but as always with vinyl, things get held up. But we’ll still be releasing it, two songs from the album and two extra tracks we did while we were in NY. Personally from the very beginning of the band vinyl was something that i always wanted to do, and luckily we’ve had the chance to release a fair bit. This time we really wanted to release something ourselves so this was our chance.
Vinyl never really left, the vinyl lovers are hidden everywhere, and theres ALOT of them in Europe. I’m not sure if vinyl is making a comeback, but it definitely seems quite popular at the moment. I think the fact that CD’s are becoming obsolete has something to do with that. You can get a record with nice big artwork and a nice piece of wax along with a download code slipped inside so you can have it on your ipod as well. Makes sense really.
Miles Away have toured consistently both in Australia as well as Europe and Asia. What are some of the differences you notice in the crowd responses and what is you preferred region to play shows?
In general things are pretty similar across the globe. America is obviously leads and the rest kinda follow. Crowd wise things are a bit bigger in the US or Europe, but Australia is not too far behind. Alot of the Asian countries are quite young and growing scenes, but the kids are really enthusiastic and grateful when bands tour.
My personal favourite is Europe as you see so many different countries and cultures in the space of a few weeks. The people at shows are very involved in everything, running the show, politics, zines and distros. Plus you get a hot meal every show and good beer! Japan is another amazing place to play and explore. Then playing at home is always good, hanging with friends and so on. We appreciate it all.
Do u find it difficult readjusting to normality in Australia when you would return from few months jaunt in another country?
It can be quite hard to reintegrate at first after a few months away. But usually by then you’re kinda burnt out and ready for the comforts of home and to be with your family, friends and loved ones. Sometimes i actually look forward to going back to work just to have a normal routine. But then after a few weeks back home, you’re itching to be back on the road adventuring.
In June the Rather Be Giggin tour kicks off with fellow Perth lords Break Even as well as the mighty Hopeless as well as the Broderick. How are you feeling about the tour and what towns are you looking forward to hitting up the most?
We just had the Perth leg of shows last weekend, and the shows were great. I’m really looking forward to getting across to the east coast and playing some smaller venues with some really good bands and actually some of my best friends. Definitely looking forward to The Arthouse show as always, especially since its closing down. I’m actually looking forward to everywhere as its been a while since we did a proper run. Add to that the fact that the world cup is on over the whole trip its just gonna be good times.
Being based in Perth can’t be easy considering the great distance you have to cover with each run of dates. How does everyone in the band manage to sike themselves up for the monster travels and keep doing what they’re doing?
Usually someone in the band gets sick just before tour and makes everyone else sick during the tour. But really its pretty easy to get siked about spending weeks/months not working a proper job and just hanging out playing shows and meeting new people. When things get stale we just take a break and then get re-energized. Its good to have some balance.
After the I’d Rather Be Giggin’ tour your off to Euro for a run of dates with The Carrier. Can you please bring them over to Australia please?
Haha. Yes going to Europe for a few weeks with The Carrier and Cruel Hand. We’ve toured with CH many time so it’s gonna be fun in the euro sun. Hopefully The Carrier are cool dudes too, i’m sure they are. I’m sure they will get over here sooner or later.
What lies in store for Miles Away for the rest of 2010? Apart from what we have already discussed haha
Giggin tour, Europe, Album out August, Album tour in Sep/Oct. After that we’re looking at heading over to the States for a couple of weeks and hopefully some more Asian travels. So it will be quite a busy end to the year!
Pre show routines?
Looking for the rider. Before that eat something good. For a while me and cam used to put Deep Heat on our balls to see how much pain we could take before we go on stage. Haven’t done that for a while. Maybe a quick stretch but usually not.
Must have CDs when on the road?
Compact Disc? Haha. Actually last time we had a good burnt disc in the van with a wild mix of songs. Mere Theory, 25 Ta Life, Shelter, World Collapse, Bad Seed. Usually we just pick a song and play it lots. The Alphabeats "fascination", Ashley Simpson "outta my head", Seal "kiss from a rose", Alien Ant Farm "smooth criminal…these are good examples.
Any Final thanks or shout outs you would like to share?
Colton is our new bass player. He maybe works out more than Hoppo used to. He grew up in Geraldton and is single. Buy him a beer and make him feel welcome.