The Devil Wears Prada’s Mike Hranica Talks Latest Album ’8:18′ and the Holidays
The Devil Wears Prada are one of the most intense and dynamic bands in modern American metal. Their new album ‘8:18’ was executive produced by Killswitch Engage’s Adam Dutkiewicz and takes the listener on a dark and compelling journey. We had the chance to sit down with frontman Mike Hranica when the band recently visited Los Angeles. Check out our interview with the lead vocalist below:
Mike, have you been able to gauge the fans’ reaction to the new album, ’8:18′? Are they appreciating what you were trying to achieve musically and lyrically?
I think so. Being so close to the music and being so subjective makes it kind of hard to tell what’s happening. I really wanted to create a raw, transparent, and emotional album and I think lots of people are picking up on those characteristics. Now I have to ask myself, are they picking up on it because it’s real, or because I’ve been out talking about it? You know, we put out some video updates while we were doing it and maybe that started to sort of affect how people heard the music.
It could be a bit of both.
I agree. I think you’re right, it’s probably a combination of both factors but either way I think it’s helped people understand what we tried to do with this new record.
That said, does a lot of it fall on you as the frontman to be out there explaining it to people?
Yeah, that’s true. And I’m not complaining about that. I mean, I always look up to the people and bands that have a certain sense of mystery to them, like Interpol. They don’t talk about the music too much, they just sort of put it out there. I’ve always admired that. It’s certainly not the right persona for this band, but I do like that and I’d be lying if I didn’t say that I tried to incorporate a little bit of that into what we do. But like you say, we do enjoy being out there describing what we tried to accomplish.
‘8:18’ definitely is raw and has a heaviness to it. Is it reflecting many real things in life these days?
I think every time we do a new record it reflects where we are at that point in our lives to a certain point. I mean, we are growing up. Chris and Jeremy are both married and Chris even has a child now. If you’re going to make real music then it has to reflect at least a little part of what you’re going through in life. I think it all comes down to whether or not you want to make a product or piece of art. If you don’t let your life in, you’re just making a product, so be it and that’s fine. But that’s not us. We have things to say and so to not let our music reflect our life is just not within our process. Also, lyrically this time out I wanted to do what I always do which is to push into new directions. The last record was all about love lost and idolatry. This time I got into deeper core parts of my personality and just let it all seep in. You have to grow.
Can you talk a little bit about how your faith and how it’s evolved since you’ve been in the band?
My faith and my struggle has always been about me trying to be a better person and never really has had anything to do with the band. But that said, it is affected in that I am gone on the road quite a bit. That affects my relationship with my church because I lose the sense of community being on the road as much as we are. My church is so important to my being and so being gone so much compromises that a bit. That’s really where the big struggle comes in for me. Not being around to be with my church community.
The band gets a break from the road right before Christmas. Can you give us a sense of what your holiday will be like back home in Chicago?
Well, I have a newfound tradition of being by myself for Christmas, which should not be too big a surprise for the people that know me (laughs). What I will do first on Christmas Eve is go out and get groceries. I’m a big fan of cooking these days. Then I’ll come home and make a huge vegetarian feast for myself. Then, I will go out to the bar and drink. And then I’ll go home. I have this thing with the holidays in that I don’t like them. I think what we’ve done here in this country is to just stretch them so far that we forget what they’re about in the first place. So I’m going to keep it simple. Hopefully it will be snowing and if there are some friends that haven’t left Chicago, that they can join me at the bar.
Thanks to Mike Hranica of The Devil Wears Prada for taking the time to speak with us. Pick up the band’s latest album, ’8:18′ at iTunes.
Watch The Devil Wears Prada’s Video for ‘First Sight’