Your name I believe derives from the Eighteen Visions song Motionless And White, how much did Eighteen Visions mean to you in your early years and what was it about Motionless And White that made you decide on the name of Motionless In White?
When we first started playing local shows a while ago, we literally changed our name every week, haha. We were just a young, terrible "just getting our shit together" bunch of kids in highschool and when we finally changed our name to Motionless In White, that was the one that ended up sticking. Eighteen Visions were and still are a huge influence to us and it was something about that title that really stuck out to me. I loved when bands got their names from other songs like Hatebreed did from The Misfits and so many more. I still to this day hate that we changed the "and" to "in" and I can't even remember why we did it. The coolest part though, is that we seem to have the blessing of every member of 18V, so I just let it go.
Chris, you have stated that your influences are bands like The Smiths, Bauhaus and Peter Murphy. So what was it about the UK scene of the eighties which spawned such bands that you really like?
I just absolutely love the 80's UK goth and new wave scene so much. I have an extremely diverse interest in music, but it's bands like who you mentioned and others like The Cure, Sisters Of Mercy and Christian Death that really stuck with me. There is nothing that has come out since those bands that has captured that sound and the aesthetic so well and I really appreciate timeless material. I know The Smiths seem to be the oddball in that list, but they are tied for my #1 favorite band. Everything Morrissey does is gold to me and he was a main influence on me to really not fear what I say in my lyrics. He literally puts EVERYTHING out there for people to hear and it hit me so hard when I first heard. Still after listening to their/his songs millions of times, I get goosebumps. What's not to love about that?
If you could bring someone back from the dead, who would it be and why?
That's such a hard question! I'll go with Edgar Allan Poe on this one. I think it would be interesting to see him alive today to observe and write about what comes to him from living in the world today. I know how much inspiration is taken from your surroundings, so can you imagine what would become of that if he were alive now?
What event in your life has made the biggest impact on you?
I'd say the second time a guitar was ever put in my lap. I never had an interest in playing when I was a little kid. My grandfather bought me a guitar and tried to teach me, but I was just an asshole little kid who wanted to play Nintendo instead. Years later, my uncle who plays, handed me his just to try it and I don't know why, but since then, all i've ever wanted to do was play music. A few months later I had my own guitar, I pestered the fuck out of my parents to buy me a drum set, and I was learning everything I could for 8 hours a day. I stopped caring about school and my life became music only. That fire has yet to go out.
Chris, you like psychology. If you could get inside the head of anyone to really find out who they are, then who would it be and why?
Thank you for acknowledging this of me! I do love observing the way people think and act. I think if I didn't play music, i'd be in school for psychology. To answer your question though, I would absolutely say that i'd like to get inside the mind of Morrissey. He is SOOOO good at manipulating the way people perceive him, but I think there is a whole other world that no one does see behind his eyes. Although after I think about it, maybe I wouldn't want to know all of that, haha.
Of the bands that you have toured with, which band have you had the most fun with?
A few years back we did a tour with my favorite metal band called Bleeding Through. The only tour I ever wanted to do when we started our band, was with Bleeding Through. I almost exploded when I got the call that we were going to be going on the road with them. Watching my favorite band every night and getting to sing on stage with them was so amazing I can't properly put it into words.
Infamous is released on 13th November 2012, Big Cheese Magazine called Infamous ‘Simply Fucking Fantastic’. So how has Infamous been received by the rest of the media so far and what is the one thing that has been said about it that has stuck out for you?
I'm honestly shocked with how well it's being received by media outlets. The record leaked a month early and a LOT of fans hate it, So I was extremely fearful that all the other critics were going to shit all over it too. It's really hard to gauge how to feel about the reception because It has so many fans hating it, but so many critics loving it. I guess it's not the worst situation to be in. I'm just happy it's finally out there. There hasn't been any one thing that stood out to me, it just rules that people are saying great things.
What are the strongest and weakest attributes about you and how have they influenced your success?
For this question, my answer to both the weakest and strongest are one in the same. It's that I can't let shit go. There's so many things that piss me off or effect me emotionally and no matter how much I try to just let them go, it's too hard. I use that to fuel me and motivate me, but at the same time, my head is always a mess. I feel like all the best songwriters experienced the same things, so I guess I don't mind being so angry and full of ambition and passion towards what I do.
Is there anything in life you are holding on to that you really need to let go of?
There's a lot. I have a lot of hate in my heart towards the way the world conducts itself. I don't understand society today. Religion, Pop Culture, Politics they are all such bullshit to me and I have a hard time moving on from specific things about each that really get to me. I have a lot of personal issues too. I've been through some hard times being away from home for so long. I've lost a lot of friends and people I was close to. Touring so much destroyed a relationship I was in for almost 6 years. There's just a lot going on in my life that I can't walk away from easily. I put a lot of the weight on my back and blame myself for shit I shouldn't.
What do you feel has been the defining moment about being part of Motionless In White?
I think just seeing how much people claim that what I have to say moved them. Music single handedly pulled me out of some of the darkest times of my life and to see that I can do the same for someone else is pretty amazing.
For Infamous you have set out to try and reach a wider audience with your music, how have you done this whilst still keeping the heart to your music?
For sure. I would never put something out that was 100% sincere. I pride our band on maintaining our integrity in a business that is so over saturated with fake, hollow, meaningless bands and "icons". I back everything we did on this record all the way. I knew a lot of our fans would HATE it, but I still did it anyway because it's what I/we were happy with. I think people forget that honest bands write music to create something they are proud of rather than just write it to please someone else and sacrifice the bands desire to accomplish what THEY wanted to do.
You have quoted that Bleeding Through is one of your influences Chris, what was it like to work with Brendan Schieppati for ‘If It’s Dead, We’ll Kill It’?
I've tried to figure out what words I can use to describe this… but I can't ever find the words. Bleeding Through and Brandan mean SOOOO much to me it's sickening. Having him on one of our songs is a landmark accomplishment in my life.
What to you is the difference between living and existing?
I think "living" is simply being happy with yourself. It doesn't matter what you do, what you look like, what you're interests are or how much money you have. As long as you are happy and comfortable in your own skin.. THATS living, to me. So many people are so displeased with their own lives and just carry on day to day without making any effort to change it or even take steps to improve it. That's was just existing is to me. Sitting around waiting for something to happen instead of even trying.
What is the one thing that you wish you didn’t know?
I wish I didn't know that YouTube had a comments section underneath every video. It's a gathering of the most illiterate, uneducated, inaccurate and downright fucking IGNORANT individuals on the planet. Moronic all stars of the world unite! *pukes*
Thanks you so much for giving Vampire Freaks this interview, is there anything you would like to add?
Thanks so much for having me. I've been a fan of your community for quite some time and I'm glad I got to do an interview. Thank you!
Chris is such an interesting person! I'm so happy to know that he's fascinated by psychology like I am (I'm planning on majoring in it next semester ). Motionless In White mean so much to me & thank you for conducting such a wonderful interview :3
You cannot know the sweetness of victory without 1st dwelling in the agony of defeat...
This band has inspired me and literally saved my life, their music is like angels singing from God and to all those fans who say that their new album suck well whatever i thinks it fucking rocks!!!!!!!!
I went to your concert this Saturday in san antonio in the white rabbit and i love your performance. I fucking luv you motionless in white your my #1band. Your music helps me stand against the religious insults i get along the day. Thanks you angelo, balz, ryan, ricky, devin, and chris <3 i love ya'll