INTERVIEW: Of Mice & Men

IMG_0003watermarkHard to believe that just a few short years ago, the name Of Mice & Men would have been associated with a novel you were forced to read in high school instead of a hardcore band. Since their formation in 2009, Of Mice & Men (the band) have been making a name for themselves with their high-octane live shows and unmistakable melodic hardcore sound.

The band reissued  their second album The Flood  back in July with four new tracks, giving fans a taste of some new material the band is working on. Currently on tour with August Burns Red, we chatted with OM&M frontman Austin Carlile before their show in Denver and we talked about the new songs, what OM&M do in their non-existent time off and his love of country music and Disney songs.

You guys just re-released The Flood with four new tracks, kind of giving fans a taste of the new material you are working on for your third album – What has been the fans’ response to the new material?

They love it. From what I see online, on tumblr and twitter, instagram – people have been putting pictures and GIFs and things like that. We’ve been playing “The Flood” and “The Depths” on this August Burns Red tour and its been going over really well. Those two songs are just insane. I didn’t really expect it to go over that well.

And has the feedback influenced the direction you are taking with the new album?

No it hasn’t. We already knew that we wanted to include the sound we have of the three new songs and kind of meld them into the sounds of the first and second album, to just have the third album be an accumulative sound of all three of those.

Can you give us any more details about the new album? I know you have had a lot more time to write and record the third album?

Austin Carlile
Austin Carlile

We’ve obviously started working on it, like demos and stuff in the back lounge but we haven’t been doing anything like pre-production or anything like that because we’ve been on the road. We had three weeks off after Warped Tour and now we are back on the road. We have another tour after this and then after that who knows? But definitely on our break November and December, we will be writing a lot.

What is the one thing that people who listen to Of Mice & Men should take away from the music and live performances?

For the music, I think I just want them to take away whatever they feel. Whatever they feel from each song, whatever affects them differently from each song, it was meant to do that. That’s one of the main reasons why I like making music and why I like performing. It’s because they can take away their own twist or their own spin on the songs and what the songs mean. As far as our performance, we go hard. Everybody gives us a hard time because we go harder than most people we ever tour with. You can just tell that while we are onstage, we are just having a lot more fun than all the other bands.

You just got off Warped Tour, now you are touring with August Burns Red and then you have a headliner in the UK – with such a hectic schedule, how do you guys like to unwind?

We are constantly going that’s for sure. We’ve been on tour for like the past two years. When we are home, we just like to hang out with friends, go to the beach and go to the beach some more, go shopping and go to the beach. Eat lots of sushi and then go to the beach.

What artist/band would everyone be surprised to find our your ipod, iphone or mp3 player?

George Strait, Kenny Chesney and Frank Sinatra. I love country music and classic music. I love Nickelback. I think they are the epitome of a rock-n-roll band and I’m jealous of Avril Lavigne right now.

*(I am 99% sure that Nickelback comment was sarcasm.)

I grew up listening to George Strait haha. What’s your favorite George Strait song?

“Amarillo by Morning”. Everybody would probably say that but his whole Greatest Hits album is amazing.

Alan Ashby

Of Mice and Men was originally the title for a Steinbeck novel, how many of the band members have actually read the book your band is named after?

We all have surprisingly. We were all pretty well-educated kids that did well in school….except for Alan (Ashby). He probably doesn’t even know how to spell Of Mice & Men. I based the band name off the book because it is about living the American dream and pursuing what you want, and getting there no matter what it takes, no matter how much hard work you have to put into it and that’s what I do with the band.

 Your tourmates August Burns Red are getting ready to release a Christmas album – would Of Mice & Men ever release one?

No. Definitely not haha. Maybe like an acoustic song for the fans but I don’t think I would ever want to put out a whole Christmas album.  Maybe a country one or “Disney goes Of Mice & Men” album haha.  We’d cover every Disney song. I want to do that….if anybody does it before me, you got the idea from me and you know it because I’ve been talking about it for awhile.

The Flood Reissue is now available on iTunes and Amazon as well as retailer near you. Keep your fingers crossed for that Disney album because who doesn’t need a melodic hardcore cover of “A Whole New World” or “Hakuna Matata” in their lives? I know I do.

You can catch Of Mice & Men on tour with August Burns Red, The Color Morale and The Overseer at these select dates before they head over to the UK for their nearly sold-out headliner:
09/20 Reno NC – Knitting Factory
09/21 Bakersfield CA – The Dome
09/22 Anaheim CA – House of Blues
09/23 Tempe AZ – Marquee Theater
09/24 Farmington NM – Top Deck
09/26 Odessa TX – Dos Amigos
09/27 Tulsa OK – Cain’s Ballroom
09/28 Springfield MO – Remington’s Downtown
09/29 St Louis MO – Pop’s
09/30 Louisville KY – Expo Five
10/02 Asheville NC – The Orange Peel
10/03 Knoxville TN – Valarium
10/04 Raleigh NC – Lincoln Theater
10/05 Norfolk VA – Norva
10/06 Huntington NY – Paramount Theater