Interview: Pierce The Veil talks Misadventures and Warped!

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As someone who has been interviewing bands for seven years, EEEK, I’ve seen bands come and go. Be hot for two years then be never heard from again. One of those bands though that paid their dues and are reaping the benefits now are the boys in San Diego’s Pierce The Veil! The band just released their fourth full length, Misadventures, and just finished a sold out “small room” tour with the Boston venue clocking in at 933. For this hard working band though, that is considered very small considering the last the time the band came to MA, they coheadlined with Sleeping With Sirens in an arena that holds about 6,500.
In my new interview with Jaime Preciado who has been holding the bass down since 2006, he talked everything about the largely acclaimed new record. He also talks Warped Tour which is fitting since this year’s run is just three days in. Read our new interview below and catch these guys on Conan O’Brien tonight!

Maybe a soft one to start you’ve been on the Misadventures tour for quite a while now. Playing the album from the top to the bottom, was that always something you wanted to do as a band? 
Jaime: Yeah I think this whole tour came about just because of the fact that this album took a long time for us to kind of finish. It was just something that we thought of doing. Our producers kind of brought up the idea. People have been patiently waiting for this album so why not make it a celebration. Not only for us but for every fan that was just waiting. We tried to make it like a once in a lifetime thing. It’s not something that we’re going to do again. It’s been cool. It’s actually been a lot of fun. Especially for us. Just playing brand new songs every night that we had never played live. It’s a crazy feeling. I feel like a new band. It’s really strange because you’re really not playing anything that you’re comfortable with and we’ve been a band for like the last ten years. So you feel like a brand new band playing these brand new songs to all these fans. It’s been a trip and we’re really excited that we did it.

Perfect. Then like you said it had been a while for new music for the band. Maybe when did you start the process for Misadventures? Was it something where you took from old songs, were they songs you only wrote fresh? 
Jaime: I mean we toured on our third record, “Collide With the Sky”, for almost three years. We just kind of kept getting tours and wanted to be on the road. We really stretched that period out. So as soon as we got done, we went straight to the studio and we had skeletons for a bunch of the songs. We took some time off and spent almost eight months. Almost a year creating all the songs or at least the skeletons. Then from then on, we just took this crazy detour to finish this whole thing. Hence the name “Misadventures”. It was literally exactly that. We had this plan going in and it really didn’t go that way. We had all these songs written that we thought were going to make the record that we ended up cutting towards the end of the process. We also had to rewrite some from scratch in the studio. Then in the middle of it, we went on a tour because we kind of had to get out of the studio life. We had been in there for so long. So we booked a tour, we did Warped Tour then we jumped back into the studio. So it was a good little break for us. When you’re in the studio for that long, you kind of forget what you’re doing and what you’re doing it for. So the touring and being able to play shows in front of kids is kind of a good reminder of why we’re in this band. We like playing music. I think all those things kind of made the record what it is right now and we’re so excited that it’s finally here. We’ve been dreaming of this day since we started making the record. Just being able to play these new songs in front of kids and we’re really taking it all in.

And I wanted to ask you, you obviously have a strong background in sound engineering and you worked with a program called Foley to create some live effects. 
Jaime: Yeah it’s more for the live stuff that we do. We try to put on a show. Not just us playing songs on the record. We have a bunch of stuff happening in between and all through out the songs. We try to keep it really exciting. For me, coming from that background, I think it’s beneficial to have someone in the band that can try to do that stuff because I think it adds another dimension to what we can do live. I think that’s just always been kind of our vibe. We always try to do more with what we have. We’re trying to bring in for example on this tour, almost arena-sequel production into these really tiny rooms. We’re trying to pull out all the stops. Trying to really set the bar higher for us. Everything we do. That’s just how we’ve always looked at it. So having that engineering background is definitely helpful.

And for this album, was there a song that really sticks out to you that’s maybe something that would really surprise Pierce the  Veil fans? 
Jaime: Like what songs? Yeah, I mean we tried a lot of different things on this record. One of the first ones that you can actually hear is a song called “Floral & Fading”. We put that song at I think at track number four. That was one of the ones that we kind of didn’t think too much of when we were creating it. It was kind of a curveball for us. It was like wait this is a weird one where do we put this in the track listing. As it was kind of being created and all the elements were being added, the song kind of became our personal favorite. It was such a cool sounding song and really different for us. We loved it so much that we wanted to give it to you early just to see how people would react. We put it really early in the record. I think that one really had it’s own sort of personal vibe. Its’ own unique sound. I think every song on the record is unique and different.

Then I wanted to ask, obviously you’ve paid your dues.  You’ve been a band like you said for ten years, you’re touring constantly.  You didn’t even really break until quite a few years into the band. Maybe the moment for you where you knew this was going to be like a full career? Obviously you guys are now one of the biggest bands now but you’ve obviously paid your dues to be here. 
Jaime: Yeah, I don’t know when exactly it was, I don’t know if it was a single moment. I think it was just the fact that we were touring so much and we kind of lost sight. We were on tour for so long. We were doing shows every single night. I think the first time I actually realized that people actually were there to see us was when we were playing Warped Tour. Warped Tour is one of those shows and festivals where people will catch your eye as you’re walking by and stuff but there’s also a million other bands playing at the same time as you so if they’re sticking around, they are obviously interested. For us, I think we were playing Warped tour, I think it was 2012. We noticed that the crowds just kept getting bigger and bigger and we were like wow what’s going on? Are they waiting for another band? It was a very cool moment for us when people were like no dude, they’re here to see you guys. It was a big deal. It just kind of sunk in that finally all the work we had been doing had gotten a little attention and that for us made us to just want to impress fans and to really do the extra kick to make our shows more memorable and more fun. So it’s kind of a daily plan to work. Like okay what can we do now? I think now now we’re in the position where we have full control of every aspect of our band. That’s the best feeling in the world where you can finally do what you want to do as a musician and as an artist. It’s definitely an awesome feeling.

Perfect then maybe speaking of Warped Tour, obviously it started today. It’s a very well balanced tour. You have the bigger bands like you guys with New Found Glory and Sleeping With Sirens then you have the smaller breaking bands. Maybe bands that people should be looking for on this summer’s run? 
Jaime: Oh man, there’s so many bands. The lineup is really great. I really am super pumped on Kevin Lyman. We were on last year’s Warped. He tried out some things that were a little strange for Warped. He put different groups and DJ’s and had a bunch of crazy stuff going on and I think he kind of went back to his roots and was just like I want it to be a rock tour. Let’s just put on a bunch of up and coming rock bands. I think just in general, Warped Tour has always been a very positive thing. I’ll go ahead and say that Warped Tour made out band what it is. That is the reason we’re doing what we’re doing today because we learned the right way to tour. How to really not be princess-y about everything. You got to work more then you’ve ever worked. It’s fought. It’s a crazy tour, you survive it. If you ever get the chance to go to Warped, I would recommend you do it. It’s such an experience and there’s a lot of great bands on it.

Then I was reading a bit of your bio. I know you’ve played music for a long time but in the beginning, it was the trumpet.  Maybe what like first sparked y our interest in music? Like what was your first show that you went to? 
Jaime: Actually my first rock concert I went to, well I went to a lot of shows when I was younger. That was one of my thing that I did all the time. But I remember my first real shows with like real production in a real venue was when my aunt won tickets on a radio show for a Korn show. I was like okay let’s go see Korn. It was like Korn, Papa Roach and like all these bands. Funny enough, I had never seen anything like that before. I had mostly gone to little punk rock shows in tiny little rooms. The sound was super huge, the production was great. I think that’s what opened my eyes. I was like wow, a band can do this? Like bands can actually put on this crazy theatrical experience. It’s not just in a tiny room. I like both aspects. You like playing those little dirty rock shows and then you also like playing crazy big shows but I think there’s something to be said about having production and having cool stuff that happens during a show that kind of really pumps it up. That was a really cool moment for me I think.

Perfect then maybe to end it off, like you said, you’re still on this tour.  The record is still so new. Kind of what is the plan for Pierce the Veil.  Like you said, you are in the position now where you have full control of the band and you guys do what you want to do. Kind of what’s the plan for the next few months? 
Jaime: Oh yeah we have a lot of stuff planned. Right after this, we finish this then we’re playing Conan O’Brien so that’s a first for us. We’re really excited for that then after that we do a South American tour. Then after South America, we have an Australian tour and a UK/Europe tour in the works. I think we hit Australia with Silverstein and Beartooth with this band Storm the Sky. Then the US and Europe, we’ll be playing with our friends in Letlive. We have a lot of stuff going on. Obviously we have plans to come back to the US and do a real full set. New stuff, old stuff kind of tour. So all that stuff is in the works for sure. We’ll be in a city near you very soon.

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Colleen has been writing about music since 2009. Interviewing bands since the glory days of Warped and has continued to do so for now over fourteen years. As well as doing freelance for other publications, the love for everything rock continues today.

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