It’s been a couple years, but Misery Signals are finally back! After numerous side projects and member changes, the band is in the writing process for their highly anticipated fourth album. Currently the band is destroying North America while on the Crush Em All II Tour with Veil of Maya, After the Burial, Within the Ruins and Structures (on select dates). I sat down with guitarist Ryan Morgan, and he caught me up to speed with what’s new in the world of Misery Signals. Check it out:
Tanner Fisher: So this is the first stop of the Crush Em All II Tour… how excited are you to get back out there?
Ryan Morgan: Yeah, I’m very eager, very anxious to go out and do these shows. I feel like we’ve been pent up for a little while since we’ve had this time off. Touring’s been a part of everyday life for years and years, so it feels like we’re getting back to our natural flow of things, our natural habitat. So yeah, we have a lot of backed-up energy to get released on this tour.
TF: All of the members have been pretty busy with side projects, but now are you guys going to focus on only Misery Signals for a while?
RM: Yeah. We’re doing this tour, and we’re working on new material… I mean we still have other projects we’re invested in, but Misery Signals has always been the main one.
TF: I think it’s pretty cool that these younger bands that take some influence from you guys are taking you out on tour. I think it’s pretty cool that they’re showing you that kind of respect… what do you think about that?
RM: I mean, it’s kind of hard for me to speak on that. I think Veil of Maya’s been around for a long time, maybe as long as us, and they’re from the same area as us. We’ve crossed paths with them, and played shows with them before. It may not be so much the case with them, but some of the other bands that are opening the tour…
TF: Like Structures.
RM: Yeah, we’ve played some shows with them, and I can totally see that they’ve taken influence, but I wouldn’t be too quick to give myself credit for influencing most of these bands, but it’s nice being on a tour with bands that are like-minded and want to be technical and push the envelope, creatively. We share a lot of the same goals, and it’s nice to be with that kind of company.
TF: Tonight’s the first show for Greg [Thomas, guitar] and Kent [Wren, bass], right?
RM: Oh, you did your homework [laughs].
TF: A little bit yeah…so are do those guys have any first show nerves?
RM: Well to correct you though, it isn’t their first show. It’s their first show on this tour, but we had a couple shows a couple weeks ago just to get back into the zone. That was in Idaho, where I live now. We were rehearsing and writing out there at my studio, so we did a few shows out there to get back into the mode for this tour. I mean they did great on those shows, and we’ll see how they do on a bigger platform tonight.
TF: How did you hook up with two new guys?
RM: Well Kent has worked for the band for a long time. He’s been a roadie, and just a friend...he’s been out on the road with us for the past three years, so it’s just kind of a natural spot for him to fill. Greg has toured with a lot of bands, and we’ve known him for many years. He was in With Honor and The Risk Taken and Shai Hulud, and we’ve played with all of those bands when he was in them, so he’s a guy that we’ve been friends with for years and years. He fell in pretty naturally too; he’s a guy that takes a lot of the same influences and is into the same nerdy shit as us, so he was just a natural fit, a pretty high round draft pick when we needed a new guy.
TF: Is there any bad blood with Stu [Ross] and Kyle [Johnson] at all?
RM: No, not at all actually. We were just hanging out with Kyle yesterday. We were back in Milwaukee, rehearsing for a while, and then we were just kicking it with him. [Pause] Both of them are close friends, but they were at different points than we were, and they wanted to do something else, so there’s no animosity at all.
TF: Going back to Greg and Kent, have they helped with the writing process of the new material, and what do they bring to the band that might have been lacking before?
RM: Well I guess there’s always an adjustment period when you have new period. I think we’re still there, just figuring out what our footing’s going to be. Up until now, the writing has been pretty scattered and fragmented, so now we’re at the point where we’re putting the songs together, trying to make something cohesive out of it. It kind of remains to be seen what kind of effect they’ll have…right now, we’re just trying to feel the effect of their personalities. So far, they’re really good fits for hang times. They’re both really mellow dudes, but they put on really good shows, and they just fit with us as people, as friends, but we’re still adjusting with them for the writing process, so we’ll see where that takes us. It should be interesting; both of them have really good thoughts and they speak about the new material in interesting ways, so they’ll definitely have an influence in that way.
TF: Is it too early to ask about the new material?
RM: Yeah, it’s probably too early to say. We have some stuff up our sleeves, but it’s still pretty young material.
TF: So then what’s next after this tour?
RM: We’ll probably start to focus more on the new record…finishing writing that and hopefully get it recorded early next year. We’ll see how long the writing process takes, but that’s the next goal.
TF: So do you have any final comments for your fans?
TM: Yeah, if you could guys could come and see the show, check it out. It’s a crazy tour that’s goes a lot of places in the U.S. and Canada, so yeah, come see us live and come hang out with us.
TF: Awesome. Thanks a lot Ryan.