Felix Bartlett

Freelance Photographer, Journalist and Print Editor based in London. Usually found in the pit capturing snaps for CLUNK

With Movements third album just released we sat down with frontman Pat Miranda to chat the bands highly anticipated third album ‘RUCKUS!’

Movements have quietly become one of the pop-punk/emo scene’s most cherished bands. With visceral lyrics focusing on mental health struggles, the band have made it clear they were once, clinically, not okay; and that seems to have really resonated with their growing fanbase.

The band have captivated audiences around the world. Hailing from Southern California, this four-piece outfit has garnered a dedicated fanbase and critical acclaim for their thought-provoking songwriting and passionate performances.

We’re joined today by frontman Pat Miranda to chat their latest album RUCKUS! and delve into the creative process behind their music, explore the themes that inspire their lyrics, and gain insights into how they’ve evolved as artists.

How have you guys been getting on? You’ve got an upcoming US tour, and you’ve recently done Slam Dunk Festival here in the UK and a headline show at Underworld, London. 

“Yeah. Slam Dunk Festival was the last thing that we did. And then, yeah, we’re we’re getting ready to head out on tour for September. Yeah, I think we leave like the first week of September and then yeah, we’re gone until like the end of October in the US. Yeah and that’s our headliner tour for the new record ‘RUCKUS!‘ And we’ll be joined by Mannequin Pussy, Soft Cult and Heart to Gold. We’re really, really excited.”

Are you guys all set and ready to go?

“Yeah, man. Well, I mean, we got to start practicing. We’ve got to get these new songs all figured out and make sure that they sound good live. And so yeah, we probably like five or six practices coming up before we leave and then yeah, man, then we’re just out doing the damn thing. So should be fun, should be exciting. Yeah. Fucking I’m excited, dude. It’s going to be really cool. And then after that, we, we go over to the UK and Europe again.”

Epic stuff, we’re all really looking forward to it.
How long have you found learning the new tracks and playing them in a live setting? 

“I mean it’s it’s always a learning curve for sure. You know, you find out what things kind of work and what things don’t necessarily work so well when it comes to like playing stuff live and sort of adapt and figure out how to account for those things. So like certain songs in the studio, you know, might be doable for me to sing and I can do it, no problem, because I’m doing it in takes versus playing live and being, you know; One, moving around because I’m already out of breath, two having already played, you know, half of a set already or maybe even most of the set. And then, you know, figuring out, okay, what songs do we need to put early in the set? Because, you know, I need to make sure that I can get through them and sing them well. What songs drop down a key so that it makes it a little bit more bearable to sing live and keeps the longevity of the set.

So those are all things that we kind of work out in rehearsal and figure out and fine tune and yeah, I mean, it’s like I said, it’s a learning curve for sure, but I feel like we’re one of those bands that’s always kind of consistently had our live performance be on par with like our our recorded performance, not better. So I’m confident that they’ll sound good. A little nerve wracking at first, but I do think they’re going to be great.” 

Do you feel your setlist includes more new tracks or are you still kind of sticking with some of your older stuff?

“It is heavy on the new stuff. But at the same time, it’s only a ten song record and I think we’re only playing like six or seven of those songs. So at the end of the day, like it’s going to be a pretty mixed set. I think we usually aim close to 20 songs in our live sets. So yeah, it’ll be a nice blend of everything, you know, with the exception of maybe like we probably are going to play a whole lot of stuff off of like the EP, not that much stuff off of ‘No Good Left To Give’ just because those songs, not that they’re not that good songs, but I don’t know if those songs really ever connected the way that we wanted them to. And so we’ll probably, you know, play the hits and go from there.” 

Talking of your older tracks how do you feel the band and music has progressed?

“I think we’ve all grown so much. I mean, this band started when I was 19, I’m 28 now, so I’ve done a lot of growing personally, and I feel that I’m the same person that I was when this band started. So I think is very evident in my writing. And, you know, I’m not the same kind of like sad, angsty kid that I used to be. And honestly, like I look back at a lot of the stuff that I’ve written and I sort of cringe because I’m just like, “Man, that was so like, childish”, you know? Like, yeah, those were not things that I needed to be like, so worked up about. But in the moment, like they felt like, “Oh, these are these, you know, big, huge things in my life”. And I don’t know, I look back and I think like, man, I really come a long way and not just in like a maturity level, but also like in my, you know, mental health and like my sort of like recovery in that like I think that nowadays I’m probably the healthiest I’ve ever been as far as my mental health is concerned. 
I think that’s pretty evident in the new stuff as well. Just because there is so much more of like a, I think, uplifting sort of like value to the new record. And on the side of that, you know, there are still the heavier songs and there is like a lot of anger on this record.

There’s a lot of like of frustration on this record, but it’s not so much like of the whole like, “Oh, I want to kill myself vibe” And it’s now more so like I’m angry about things in my life. I’m angry about things in this world. I’m angry at myself for allowing myself to do certain things in my past and I think that comes through a lot on this record. So, you know, there is still that deeper emotional and more raw kind of like depth to this record. It’s just in different ways. And I think there’s there’s less of it now.”

Listening to your first album and reflecting on where you were then and now do you feel that the fans have almost done the same and grown alongside you?

“I mean, that’s like, that’s the goal, you know, or that’s that’s the hope, right? Is that our fans will continue to grow with us and they’ll be in similar places in their life that they can understand what it is that we’re talking about these days, you know, and not just have it be a situation where they’re, you know, so ingrained in what the old music was that they can’t see past it to appreciate the new stuff. And that’s not going to be the case for everybody because it’s unrealistic of me to expect everybody to be on the same page that I am.

But I would hope that even if it doesn’t connect with you right now, that, you know, maybe you keep an open mind and that you give it a chance more than just, “oh, this sounds different. So I don’t like it” and really dig in to what these songs are about and what they mean and try and find that meaning.

Because I, I promise that it’s there. So yeah, I mean, I obviously, I would love for people to continue to grow with us now. I would love for people to be able to apply this record to their lives the same way that they’ve applied our previous records to their lives. But at the end of day, like, if that isn’t the case, like no one’s forcing you to listen, you know, and I think truly and this is not like a diss to anybody, but like, we don’t give a fuck.

You know, this was never supposed to be a thing that was supposed to get as far as it got. You know, we didn’t expect this band to come this far or to accomplish as much as we have accomplished. And because of that, like, we’re never going to pander to anybody, like about what we need to write, you know, like this is quite frankly, like, not about anyone else other than us. And we do this because this is our creative outlet and we are always going to write what we want to write, you know, and that’s that goes for like industry people to, we’re never going to let you sort of like fucking suits tell us like, “Hey, we think you need to be writing this because it’s going to be like”, No, fuck you, We’re not doing it.

But at the same, same time, we’re not going to sit here and listen to people in the comments being like, “Oh, you need to do that again”. Or, “you need to be writing songs that actually have meaning or whatever again”. And I’m like, dude, shut up. We’re having fun. That’s all just meant to be fun.”

Talking of your new album RUCKUS!’ themes, can you go into some of the inspirations and themes you explore in the new tracks. 

“Yeah, there’s like a honestly, there’s a bunch of love songs on this record. You know, there’s, there’s some really happy kind of like uplifting sort of feel good tracks. There’s love songs that are maybe a little sad or a little dark because they’re about loves that didn’t necessarily work out or loves that were maybe a little toxic or abusive in certain ways and that sort of thing. In addition to that, there’s a lot of anger on this record. A lot of me being angry and like just wanting to fuckin, express that. 

There’s also a decent amount of storytelling, too, there’s a couple of songs on this record that are truly just stories that are not even about me personally. They’re just stories about other people’s lives and their struggles or what they were going through and stuff like that. So yeah, man, I think that it’s a, it’s a pretty diverse work and there’s there’s a lot kind of going on. The themes are you know, different than than what we’ve explored in the past. And I think that’s a good thing.”

With regards to the tracks that have a more deeper meaning and explore some of your feelings and experiences how do you tackle those when playing in a live setting? 

“I mean, if I’m if I’m being totally honest, I think at a certain point I sort of have to just disassociate and disconnect from from what it is that I’m talking about in the song and just perform. Because if I’m thinking too much and I’m getting too enveloped in what the song itself is actually about, then it would probably affect me in ways that I don’t necessarily want it to. Historically, we’ve written a lot of really dark, really sad songs. If I was rehashing all of those wounds every single night when I was recording them or when we were playing them, like, yeah, that wouldn’t be healthy.

I think that there is a significant amount of performance that goes into it where it’s like, okay, I’m performing these songs and I’m passionate about these songs, so I’m going to put that into my performance It’s all about the performance side of things.You have to tap into it enough so that it’s honest and it’s real when you’re doing it, but not so much that it’s going to fuck you up afterwards.” 

That was really insightful thanks for sharing that with us. 
Moving back to your new album RUCKUS! what tracks are you most looking forward to performing to your fans? 

“I guess I don’t really know yet, we’re always sort of surprised at which songs really hit and which songs don’t. I think there’s always going to be that kind of wildcard where we’re just like, Oh shit, We didn’t expect the song to pop off so much, but the songs that I’m most excited about personally would be ‘Lead Pipe’, obviously, because it’s just the most kind of like bouncy, fun song that I think we’ve ever written.

Also there’s a song called ‘I Hope You Choke’ which I imagine will be a hit live because it’s just like such, again a high energy a lot of crowd participation, kind of like chanty sort of element to it that I’m really, really excited to see how that one does live because so far we haven’t played it yet. So we’ll see what happens also.”

Nice one, just quickly going back to live shows and with your upcoming US and UK tour on the horizon how do you find both countries live audiences compare? 

“There definitely is a difference, but I think it’s also to do with the fact that we’re obviously not as big in the UK as we are in the United States. The shows in the UK typically are a lot more intimate, which is nice because that’s where we came up, you know, like playing music in smaller sort of club settings, super close to the crowd. There’s a lot of energy. It’s hot. I love that. And I think that I oftentimes find myself missing it when we’re playing big shows here in the US. And there is such a disconnect from the crowd because sure, the crowd is massive, but it’s like you’re far away from everybody. It’s like so much larger.
Not that it’s not amazing. It is so fucking cool. But yeah, it’s just nice to be able to go back into those more intimate settings and experience that again and have that be a nice reminder of how far we have come from. And also like the UK kick out, they’re fun, like they’re rowdy. People like to get crazy.

Everybody likes to chant in the UK, that’s not a thing at home. So we always look forward to that obviously. And yeah, man, it’s cool. I just love being able to be in different places and get to explore and travel and see the world. And the UK is certainly one of those places that I always look forward to going back to.”

It’s great you guys can continue to have a taste of both worlds. I know you’re doing the Electric Ballroom this November I can vouch it’s definitely hot and sweaty in there but it’s fantastic.
Looking forward beyond this year and touring, what are your plans with this this album cycle? Is there any dream supports, any festivals you guys are lined up for next year?

“I mean we’re we are excited just kind of in general. I don’t know how much I can talk about as far as what we are and have confirmed, but I guess dream bands that I’d love to tour with would be Paramore, that would be amazing. Jimmy Eat World, I would even be down for a tour with like fucking Bring Me The Horizon I think that would be amazing. I would love to tour with, like this is a weird one, but like I’d be super down tour with Twenty One Pilots, that would be fucking sick.

But yeah, again looking ahead we just want to push this band to the next level and just seeing how far we could take it would just be incredible. So we’ll see. Yeah, I’m just kind of down for whatever. I think we’re keeping ourselves open to the possibility of anything and whatever comes our way. We’ll play it by ear and see what happens and go from there.” 

Amazing, and with the new album ‘RUCKUS!’ could you share which track you recommend checking out for new listeners? 

Oh man. I feel like you can’t go wrong with listening to ‘Lead Pipe’ first, I think that’s just a good straight forward, like this is what this record kind of kind of sounds like. I would say ‘Lead Pipe

Rounding things off and seeing as we’re in the middle of the festival season here at CLUNK we like to ask what’s the wildest thing you’ve seen or done on tour?

“Oh my God. Dude, there’s so many that it’s like, almost impossible to narrow it down. I have one that’s kind of my go to. There’s like a couple of layers to the story, but we were in Philly on our first tour ever and we were playing a venue that was pretty small and we’d gotten there kind of early. It was maybe 2 p.m. and I don’t think that load in was until like 3 p.m. So we were just sitting in a parking lot next to the venue and this venue was on a pretty major road and the parking lot, like the way that we were parked, was facing the road. 

And so we’re all just kind of chilling in the van and a car like speeds up and like skids to a halt right in front of us. And I don’t think that they noticed that anybody was in this parking lot because it was just us in a like an unmarked white van and an empty parking lot or maybe two vans worth of bands or whatever. And it was this empty parking lot in the middle of the day in this kind of like a weird or sort of like industrial area. So it wasn’t like a lot going on. But yeah, the car pulls up and a woman gets out from the back passenger seat and she just does the craziest thing ever. She pulls down her pants in the middle of the road and just starts peeing in full view of all of us.

So we’re just like, sitting there and we’re like, What the fuck is happening? This is crazy. And as that’s happening, one of the other dudes on the tour is walking down the sidewalk. He had just come back from the venue side door. He was walking the sidewalk and he like, sees this woman and he makes eye contact with her and she doesn’t stop.

She look, she looks him dead in the eyes and she says, “I bet she ain’t never seen no shit like this before. Welcome to Philly”. And she gets back in her car and they drive away. And so we all were like, What the fuck just happened? 

Now, the funniest part about this story is that I told that exact story to a friend of ours, in a band called ’68’ who we toured with a long time ago. Josh Scoggins he was in ‘The Chariot’. His new band is ’68’ and not really new anymore, but anyway, I told Josh Goggin that exact story when we were on tour with him and he is like a very funny guy and he’s like sort of like kooky and weird. And he, he basically was like, “You need to tell that story on stage every single night for the rest of this tour. And if you don’t, I’m going to steal that story and I’m going to tell it as my own story on stage for the rest”. And I was like, Fuck. And so I was like, I don’t know, like, I don’t want to talk about that on stage. He’s like, No, no, you have to. And so I was like, Fuck, okay, you pressured me into telling that story every single night.

He would then come watch our set specifically to make sure that I told that story every single night. But the funniest part about it was that instead of saying Philly every night, he said that I had to change the name of whatever city we were in been playing. And so I told that story probably 20 times. And every single time I had to change the punchline of the story to be whatever city we were in. And to be fair, it was a hit every single night! We’ve stopped that now. I will tell it if like we have technical difficulties on stage and I need to buy some time and kind of stall. You know, I’ve told it a few times since then and it still does pretty well.”

‘RUCKUS!’ is out on now via Fearless Records.

Listen to ‘Lead Pipehere: