sábado, 9 de julio de 2011



" No tengo nada que demostrale a nadie, yo soy quien soy, y no tengo que desmostrale a ninguna mierda nada" DICE FRANK IERO, SOBRE LOS FESTIVALES VERANIEGOS Y SOBRE LA GIRA CON BLIK 182, EL HONDA CIVIC TOUR , POR LOS ESTADO UNIDOS QUE COMIENZA ESTE AGOSTO.

This summer is going to be a pretty big one for My Chemical Romance. With several festival appearances lined up they’ve come a long way since the days of the Daily Mail’s emo cult. But when they’ve been on the receiving end of some hostility at UK festivals in the past, are they worried about how the crowd will react this time? We spoke to Frank Iero to find out.

Where are you and what are you up to at the moment?
I’m in Los Angeles right now. I had a day off yesterday, and we’re actually driving up to Bakersfield, California today for a show tonight.

How are you preparing for your UK festival appearances this summer?
Man, it’s crazy. When we were first talking about these festivals it felt like there was a lot of time, but there’s not at all. We did a headline tour here in the States, playing an hour-and-a-half every night, honing the songs that we hadn’t played in a long time. Now it’s like getting in shape for the big race. We’re going to be doing these headlining festival slots where we’re going to be playing for a long period of time, we’re going to do as much production as we can humanly bring to all these places and really just focus on the music that spans the ten years that we’ve been a band - and that’s what we’ve been practicing on this tour.

Reading & Leeds will be the first time you’ve headlined a UK festival since 2007. What’s changed for MCR since then?
Life’s definitely changed. We’re all married now and some of us have kids. We took some time after ‘The Black Parade’ to re-assess why we love doing this and who we are as people, then came back older and wiser, more comfortable in our own skin, and wrote a record that we’re really, really proud of. So you have a band that’s matured and grown up. We’re just really proud to come back and do these festivals in a headline slot. It’s something that, as a kid, I never thought we’d be able to do, and we have this opportunity so you wanna get out there and show why you’ve been around for ten years and we’re not going away.

Do you feel like you deserve it?
Well (laughs), y’know it’s one of those things where you’ve got to have a limit... It’s having the confidence without being cocky. I don’t think I’ll ever feel like, “Holy shit, we deserve these sets that legendary bands have had!,” y’know? But, at the same time - do I feel like we deserve what’s come to us because we’ve worked that hard? Yeah. It’s a strange thing, I guess it depends on the day you ask me.

You’ve been on the receiving end of some - ahem - rather unfriendly welcomes. Are you hoping to put an end to that this year?
Ah, who knows? I think the one thing that’s working for us is that Slayer’s not on the [Reading & Leeds] bill! (Laughs) But yeah, it’s one of those things, it's a tradition. You can either fuckin’ be a pussy about it and walk off, or you fuckin’ get up there and you man up and you do it. I mean, it’s a Blues Brothers moment, y’know? (Laughs) I’ve been there in other bands too, it wasn’t at a huge festival of course, but you took a lot of shit, being a young band growing up in a punk rock scene, playing in basements and stuff like that. You get used to it, y’know? And, I dunno... a couple of bottles will never scare me.

Do you feel like you’ve got a point to prove to some people this summer?
Um... (long pause) Nah, I don’t have to prove anything to anybody. I am who I am, we are who we are - we’ve been around for ten years, y’know? It’s one of those things where I’m proud of the band I’m in, of who we are, of who my best friends are, and if somebody doesn’t get that then that’s bad on them. I don’t have to prove that shit to anybody.

So what can we expect from your festival appearances this year? Presumably they won’t be low-key affairs...
Yeah, I don’t think we ever do anything low-key, except for the aftershow! I think that’s the thing about the band - I mean, I don’t even know what’s expected. It’s fun being in a band where nothing’s planned. I think you can expect us to give our all - blood, sweat and tears - but that’s all I can promise, that we’re going to give it 150% every single show.

I’m sure you’d love to put your feet up and chill out after Reading & Leeds, but you’re heading home to for the absolutely massive Honda Civic Tour with Blink 182 just four days later - how are you managing to find time to prepare for that as well as all of your upcoming festival dates?
It’s crazy, it starts on the 5th August, so we’re actually touring the States, then flying over to do Reading and Leeds, then flying back and we’re still on tour. There’s no rest for the weak and weary y’know, it’s constant... but that’s the way we like it. We’re lucky enough to be doing a big tour where we can have a room where we can have warm-ups, so while we’re touring on one we’re going to be preparing for the other. But right now I’m just worrying about what we have at hand, and then I think we have two weeks off to really get our heads together for the festival run, and then we’re right on tour again.

You recently played at Radio One’s Big Weekend in Carlisle - did it feel a bit strange to be playing in between Taio Cruz and Lady Gaga?
You know, it’s strange, man. It’s something that we’ve never gotten to do before, but I like those kinds of things because you’re playing for people that you’ve never had the opportunity to play in front of before, and you’re getting to play with bands that you never would have played with before. It’s a strange situation, I feel very fortunate that our band is able to do those kind of things.

Ever since My Chemical Romance first came into the public’s consciousness, you’ve had a bit of a struggle to shake off the dreaded ‘emo’ tag. Do you feel that being labelled with a word that’s so often used in a derogatory manner has ever held you back as a band, or has it helped spur you on?
(Laughs) Oh, well from a personal aspect it’s never held us back. I think maybe it’s held other people back from getting to know the band and realising that it’s more than just this label... but I think it stems from a lazy way of figuring out what a band is. These days there’s so much content out there - there’s so many new bands and new movements and whatnot that are very fleeting, so people are like "Oh, let me look at this real quick... oh, it looks like this... alright, let’s throw it in that pile," and that’s what it’ll be labelled for the next five years, and it’s a way to kinda shake things off. But for us, we never really paid attention to it. It’s kinda one of those things, like “So, how do you feel being the new emo taste of the month?” and I’m like "Ah, who fucking cares? I don’t even know what that means. Do you know what that means? ‘Cause I don’t know what that means." It’s the same thing that happened in the ‘90s with grunge and alternative, the alternative became the mainstream, and who knows what the term even meant anymore. I think it’s kinda funny though, to be lumped into a genre that was so fleeting and didn’t mean anything, and then to still be around ten years later. People will be like "Oh, I guess you’re not that genre, huh?" and we’re like, "Yeah, well we never said we were!"

One thing that is really noticeable about My Chemical Romance is how much your fans seem to really adore you - it must feel great to know that you have such a loyal following that has stuck with you from the very beginning?
Yeah, ever since we started the kids that would come to the shows and were fans of the band and the art and the amount of work and time that we put into it, they would appreciate it so much, and we were lucky enough to be a part of this. It’s really like a community - they’re very artistic and creative and they do their own thing, and they really, truly love the band, and we’ve always been appreciative of that, and I think that they know that. And now to be ten years old and to have the kids who grew up with the band bringing their families, it’s crazy. We’ll play these shows and Gerard will ask how many people have never seen us before and it’ll be, like, half the crowd, and how many people have seen us, like, five or ten times and it’s the other half. So y’know, we’re coming into this time in the band where it’s really like we’re playing to this huge stretch of audience - it’s young kids, and there’s parents and they’re bringing their kids, and there’s older cousins or friends ushering in this new crowd, and it really feels like how I got into all my favourite bands as a kid. Y’know, your older friend or sibling would hand you a mixtape and be like “Hey, check this out,” and that’s how it feels - and that’s the way it should be. It should be organic like that.

It’s always best for a band when their following is built up naturally over time...
Absolutely, and when you first get into a band, it feels like you’ve found this band, and it becomes yours, and you feel an identity in that and I think that’s something that’s really important. And then they can go back and be like “Holy shit!” When I was in grammar school this Revenge record came out, and they’re just finding out about it now - and that’s kinda cool.

You mentioned that you’ve got a much wider target audience now, but you’ve always seemed to relish being the ‘outsiders’ of the mainstream music scene - do you feel at all uncomfortable with your world-famous, multi-platinum status now?
It’s kinda OK because, if you think about it, we’re kinda still the outsiders. Like when we’re doing a show like the show in Carlisle, you still feel like "Wow, they sent the invitation to the wrong people!" (Laughs) It’s a very strange thing because we’re not a mainstream band, so we’re not gonna be thought of in the pop world as a heavy-hitter, we’re always an underdog in that - but we’re not cool enough to be on the white belt websites, y’know, Pitchfork is never going to say that they like our records. It’s never accepted anywhere - and you know what? That’s OK - fuck it. I like being in our own little group. I don’t need to be accepted by the cool kids or the too-cool-for-school kids y’know? I don’t like labels, I like being who we are, and we’re never going to pander to either.

And one final question: If you were going to a UK festival as a punter and could only take ONE thing with you, what would it be?
Oh man... it would probably be wellies or some sort of wading outfit like galoshes, because I know that, even if it’s not raining, there’s mud, and it’s usually piss-mud and that shit is gross (Laughs).

You can catch My Chemical Romance playing both T In The Park and iTunes Festival this weekend. Later in the year they will also play Reading & Leeds and Rock En Seine.



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