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Movements Dynamo 2023

INTERVIEW: ‘RUCKUS!’ Talk, Childhood Memories & More With Movements’ Patrick Miranda

Movements were recently touring Europe. During that tour, we got to sit down with their singer Patrick Miranda. We talked about how the album RUCKUS! came to be, how they came up with the creative and unique marketing for the album, some childhood memories, some hidden passions, and more.

How are you? 
I’m good. I’m really excited to be back in the Netherlands. It’s nice to come back and be able to play a show. I love Europe, it feels good to be back. I’m a little cold. The weather’s been sort of shitty.

Congrats on the release of your new album, RUCKUS!. How has everyone been reacting to it? 
Very, very well, for the most part. I think that we were a little apprehensive about what the reaction was going to be. Obviously, we felt very strongly about the record being the best record that we’ve ever made. But we weren’t totally sure if everybody else was going to feel the same way, you know, and obviously, we can have our confidence, but you never know until you put it out and see what happens.
I think that overall it’s been insanely positive. I’m hearing people say, “this is your best record. You guys are putting out the best work of your career so far”, and saying that they love the songs and that, not only are our fans connecting with the music, but people who maybe have never heard of Movements, or who would never even consider listening to a band like Movements in the past are being kind of reached through this. 
I guess it extended sort of the new outlook that we have on songwriting and trying to appeal to a wider audience. It’s working, and we’re getting people who have almost no connection to the scene before hearing this, but are coming to these shows and contributing to them because they have fallen in love with the newer music that we’re writing. 
So that’s really cool because we have higher attendance at these shows than we’ve ever seen before. I don’t think there’s ever been a larger demand for this band than with this record. And that’s really, really special to see.  

You’re writing more songs that appeal to a bigger audience. Are there still songs in the album that really hit home for you emotionally? 
Absolutely. And I think that the thing is: just because we’re writing to appeal to a wider range of people, doesn’t mean that we’re sacrificing what the songs are about or what the core values of this band are. 
At the end of the day, we’re always going to write stuff that is relevant to our lives at the time. I mean, for the most part, my life, right? Because being the lyricist of the band, writing 99 percent of the lyrics, all the songs are usually about me, and about things that I’ve dealt with, or things I’ve gone through. There’s never going to be a lack of that, right? 
But what I think the difference is now is that: one, I’ve grown up, right? I’ve matured so much since the time that this band started. This band started when I was 19 years old. I’m 28 now. I’ll be 29 next year, so it’ll be 10 entire years of this band next year. From that time, from being 19 to being 28 now, I don’t even feel like the same person. I completely feel like my consciousness has shifted. To a different mentality or whatever. And I look back at who I was back in the day and I don’t really recognize that person. I don’t really know who that person is, because it’s not who I am currently. 
And there’s a bunch of reasons for that. But one of those reasons is that I’m just simply not as mentally ill anymore. My struggles with anxiety and depression have gotten much, much easier as I’ve gotten older. So there’s less depressing, dark, gnarly shit to write about. 
I don’t think that there is a lack of that, because there’s always going to be something that I could say about those things. But I think when it came down to writing this record, I wanted to be true to what I was feeling in the moment, and what I was feeling throughout most of this was not, oh, I’m depressed, I want to kill myself. It was, I’m feeling happy, I’m feeling in love, or I’m searching desperately for love or something like that. 
Additionally, there’s songs on the record that are very mean and angry. And that’s not something that we’ve really explored in our music in the past. We haven’t really ever had those anger feelings. It’s always been kind of like, sad, I’m depressed. Not, I’m mad at the world around me and I’m going to do something about it. 
So I guess to answer your question, the emotional depth is still very much there. It’s just being plated a little differently, we’re wrapping up that emotional depth and kind of putting it into a new sonic experience. Which I think can throw people off because they might hear it and be like, this doesn’t sound like the way they used to sound. So, therefore, they’ve changed and it must be different. But what I say to that is, if you don’t think that these songs have that same depth, that same meaning, that same emotion, then you simply aren’t listening. Because it’s all there. It’s just being presented to you a little bit different.

What’s the song that hits most home for you emotionally on this new record?
It’s hard to say. I’m running through all the songs in my mind to see which one is the most emotionally weighty for me. Tightrope obviously is very emotional in many ways. But it’s not emotionally sad. It’s just emotional, like big feelings, emotional. 
Additionally, I think I can make the argument that I hope you choke is maybe the one that I’m like really kind of feeling the most, because it’s an emotion that we haven’t explored. So even though this isn’t like, oh like I’m connecting with this because. I know what it’s like to fucking be depressed and want to fucking kill myself. Instead, I’m connecting with this because I’m expressing my anger for the first time, and it’s anger at the things that are happening around me, and the people who are kind of fucking up the world. And making it so that everyday things like human rights that are being fucking taken away from from various groups of people in the world. 
That to me is more where my head space is at these days. I’m less worried about myself. I’m less focused on what’s going on inside of me, and it allows me to focus on what’s happening around me and outwardly, and it allows me to be more vocal about those things and about those issues. So, that song to me is the one that I feel the most when I listen to the record, and when we play the songs live, that’s the one where I’m just like, oh, I’m fucking feeling this shit.

You recently announced that you’ll be playing on When We Were Young in 2024. It’s been massively in the news. With the concept of bands that are playing entire albums. How are you feeling about this situation?
I feel very excited and I feel very nervous because I don’t remember half of those songs. So I’m just gonna have to re-listen to feel something and relearn all the songs because I don’t remember most of them. 
We don’t play the whole record very often there’s songs on that record that we haven’t played in fucking years. So yeah, nervous, because I’m gonna have to relearn all those songs, but very, very excited. It’s an honor to be a part of something as big as When We Were Young, let alone to be on When We Were Young, doing an album play with some of my favorite all-time bands. 
AnberlinNever Take Friendship Personal was the first CD that I ever bought by myself. I went into a bookstore, and back then they still sold CDs and stuff at the bookstores. And you could scan a CD and put on a little headset and preview what was on that CD. I bought it because I liked the album artwork. But, I scanned it and listened to it, and I was like, yeah, I want to buy this. I told my mom “I want to buy this”. She said, “okay, well, you have 10 dollars from your allowance. Are you sure you want to spend it on this?” And I was like, “yeah, I want to spend it on this.” 
That was the first CD that I bought. They’re playing When We Were Young and playing that record in its entirety. And I’m like, holy shit. This is like the biggest full-circle moment that could have ever happened. And that’s just one example. I mean, fucking Underoath is playing that show. Jimmy’s playing that show, like all of like these really formative bands, not just for me, but for the whole band are playing albums that mean so much to us. To be included in that is like, I have no words. I’m just so thankful. 

What’s been some of the best memories from tour recently?
We just got off of a six-week tour in the United States. It was the first RUCKUS! tour. And the shows were unbelievable, easily the biggest shows we’ve ever played. We played three hometown shows. Essentially, the tour started in Los Angeles at a venue called the Palladium, which holds about 4,000 people and it was sold out. And that was to this day, still the biggest headlining show we’ve ever played. It was fucking incredible. 
We did the entirety of the United States. Came back and played two more Southern California shows. But this time we played in a smaller venue. I think it was 2000 people, but we played it two nights in a row. So it was, one show with 4000 people at the beginning of the tour, and then two shows with 4,000 people at the end of the tour. And that was just so crazy to see that amount of support and love from our hometown was insane. 
But then also like the tour as a whole was like, we were on the east coast of the United States, which is the complete opposite end of where we’re from. We’re on the East Coast playing shows to thousands of people every night. And those were selling out and shit like that was fucking crazy. 
Plus, we were just on tour with some really, really great bands. Softcult, who are playing tonight, were on that tour. Mannequin Pussy from Philadelphia, they were on that tour. And then this band from Minneapolis called Heart to Gold, they opened. And every single person in every single band was just the sweetest person alive. And it made hanging out with them so much fun. All the shows were just a great time. So, all around great shows. We couldn’t be happier, truly.

You also got a lot of unique and diverse merch. How did you get to have this plethora of merch?  
We’ve always been a merch band. I don’t know what it is about movements merch, but we’re just one of those bands where people eat it up. There are bands that just crush with merch and for some reason, somehow we’ve just become one of them. But because of that, we’ve established a sort of standard for our merch stores and our merch supply, and we kind of have to continue to meet that standard so that people want to continue to support that. 
So, we like to work with a wide range of graphic designers or artists or whoever to kind of create these really memorable, really special merch items. And we always try to do something special with our merch, whether it be the quality of the garments being super high quality or doing a weird kind of unusual garment that you wouldn’t usually see as merch. We just try to challenge ourselves to really curate a nice spread so that people want to continue to buy it. 

How did you come up with the entire promotion for the new album and Ruckus TV?
I was having a brainstorm one night about what I wanted the vibe of the rollout to be. And I liked the energy of the record and I liked how youthful the record felt. It screamed like fun, not necessarily childish, but youthful energy. So when I think back to my youth and what that was like, I’m like, okay what things can I pick out of this? That I could emulate to create a sort of vibe for the record. 
And what it came down to was essentially putting myself in the early 2000s. I’m a kid. It’s a hot summer night, I don’t have school. So I’m staying up super late. I stay on the couch watching TV, but I fall asleep watching TV and I wake up and it’s like, 3, 4 in the morning. And on TV, whatever channel I fall asleep on is just like the weirdest, most obscure, random late-night television. And you’re half asleep, so you’re like, kind of in this weird dream state, but you’re trying to process what’s on the television, and you’re sweaty and sticky and like, stuck to the couch. And you’re just like, what the fuck is going on? And this is like that in between dream mode, but awake enough to sort of see what’s going on. And then like the TV just being weird. And it all kind of feels surreal almost. That was the exact feeling that I wanted to emulate. 
So when it came to the rollout and even the look of the record. All of the album art is all analog. We projected the logo onto an actual VHS TV and then took photos of the screen. There’s different color variations and all that. That’s all just different settings of putting that shit on the TV. So it was weird, but super cool and fun. 
And then the commercials for the rollout being these weird, nineties-style, infomercial-type things that are fun and kind of weird. All of that was just meant to feel like it’s living in its own kind of network that just exists in that specific memory in my brain. 
And that’s like where Ruckus TV came from. And I don’t know if like we did a great job of explaining all that or having that feeling come across, but that was the vibe and the idea. And I think that it was cool. So it’s like a canon event. We’ve all woken up to some, either, adult cartoon, or infomercial, or softporn, or some shit. It happens to every kid, and I just felt like that feeling was what I wanted to recreate. 

You take a lot of pictures. Where does that originate from? 
That was actually what I wanted to do before I was playing music. I wanted to be a photographer. Well, to be fair, I was choosing to be a photographer because I felt like that was my best shot at a career while still being creative. Cause I didn’t really have a whole lot of faith that music was going to work out, or that art was going to work out in general. I thought to myself, well, you know, photography is something that I can still do and still be creative and still make a living. So I went to college and I studied visual journalism because I wanted to do photojournalism-type stuff. Less editorial, more real life, real world, every day, people kind of, photojournalism. 
And I ended up giving it up because I wanted to pursue music and music ended up working out, but I still have like a deep love for photos, and photography, and capturing really special moments, or moments that just kind of make you stop and think about what’s going on. I’ve just always had a love for it. I got really into film photography back in the day. When I was still kind of working in photo. And then as music got more and more busy, and hectic, I kind of let photography fall to the wayside, and I stopped caring about it as much. 
And then I realized somewhat recently that I just had a significant lack of memories attached to my everyday life experiences because I wasn’t taking photos. And I’m bad about opening my phone and taking photos on my phone. Cause I feel like iPhone photos just look like shit. There’s nothing special. So I’ve been forcing myself, lately, to really dive deep into film photography again. And I’ve been loving it.
I’ve had a fucking great time with it. It’s a very expensive hobby, which is maybe another reason why I wasn’t doing it for a while because I couldn’t fucking afford to, but now  I’m doing all right. I’m making a little bit of money, so I’m like, all right, cool. I can spend a little bit more and fucking get a stockpile of film and pay the ridiculous fees for developing it and all that stuff. 
I’ve been enjoying the work I’ve been putting out. Next year, I’m hoping to make a photo book and actually pursue photography again. Not just like a dude in a band who takes photos, but as a person who could be respected as a photographer.  

What’s your favorite soup? 
My favorite soup? Probably a tomato basil bisque. I love a good grilled cheese sandwich with tomato soup. That’s the perfect meal. Probably because it’s nostalgic, but also that was my rainy day food that my mom would always make. If it was cold and rainy, which was not very often in Southern California, but we had our moments. Whenever it was cold and rainy, my mom would make grilled cheese and tomato soup. It’s always stuck with me. And now to this day, as an adult, I love grilled cheese and tomato soup.

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Aspen van der Wijst