“It is hard and we were hard.”
That pretty much sums up my entire time spent with Pierce the Veil. That quote was actually taken from their [presumably] sardonic description of the recording process behind their newest album Selfish Machines. It is also an apt representation of my time with them. I had a chance to chat with Mike Fuentes (drums) and Tony Perry (guitar) while they were on the Warped Tour. Oh it was an experience. I thought I would take a lighter approach and it was more than well received. I won’t get into the full extent of where the interview took its wrong turns, but I will try to follow a few of the detours.
These boys grew up on mostly west coast punk, but everything was there. Mike’s father was a jazz drummer instructor so that was a great influence to him and his brother, Vic Fuentes (vocals and guitar). From a young age, Mike recalls always wanting to be on stage playing a drum kit. It was all he knew and wanted to know.
This latest album of theirs, Selfish Machines, was primarily written by Mike and Vic, although the whole band collaborated. The boys describe it as “fun to play live” and tell me it was “recorded nude and produced nude”… which should lead into the fact that they discussed at length their pre-show ritual of “naked time” on the bus. They told me story of how at one time, they all prepared for the show individually, but that was rather time consuming, so in the interest of time, they made the decision to all get ready together, thus naked time was born. So… yes… much of our dialog involved nudity, in fact. Take it as you will. They also discussed a pre-show chant, reminiscent of something out of “Harold and Kumar”, they explained. That of course they do fully clothed, of course, since it is backstage right before they step out in front of the crowd. They made it very clear as well that I mention sexual positions. While I declined to answer when they asked what my favorite was, they unanimously agreed (even shouting across to their bandmates who were involved in an interview of their own) something about “legs to the sky, sauce in your eye”.
I also found out some incredibly important information about things like television and alcohol. For example, the television shows they miss the most are “Family Matters” and “Full House”. They believe Jaime has the greatest stage presence. When asked what they would be doing in five years they said “celebrating the five year anniversary of you asking that question”… and of all the animals he could be, Mike thinks he would most like to be a giraffe, mostly because of the physical resemblance to himself (pointing to his neck). Mike thinks if he were a cocktail he would be a sex on the beach while Tony finds himself a flaming Dr Pepper.
I may not have asked about what their band name means or what music means to them; other interviews seem to have covered that pretty well. These boys are out to have a little bit of fun so I am glad I was able to be a part of it for a few minutes while we baked in the sun on the sidewalk outside the Vans Warped Tour.