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Personal struggles and angsty alt-rock music are two things that have always gone well together. Californian four-piece Movements combine the two better than most.
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Following up from their 2017 debut Feel Something with their deeply emotional second record No Good Left To Give, the band clearly know what they’re doing when it comes to writing songs from the heart. According to vocalist Patrick Miranda, heavy themes have always had a way of making it into his music.
“It started off with just me writing songs about the way I felt, and that’s what I do to this day. I just write songs about how I feel, and my emotions, and my struggles with mental illness, and the things that I go through on a day to day basis, and I put them into music because that’s how I have any sort of release. That’s how I just get out the things that I need to get out.
“I mean, it’s something that is extremely important, because I think that our fan base has really latched onto that and has really come to a point where that has become such a staple in our music and they turn to us for that sort of relief, and that sort of, I guess, just that solidarity with another human being to know that they’re not the only person who deals with whatever it is that they’re dealing with.
“And so, I think that will always be a theme in our music just, because it is so much of what makes Movements, Movements,” he says.
However tough it might be to write these sorts of personal messages into Movements’ music, for Miranda, it’s always worth it getting those thoughts out of his head and into the world.
“It’s always difficult,” he laughs. “Every time that I have to sit down and actually talk about and write about the things that I deal with, it’s always a struggle, you know. It’s never fun. It always ends up being positive in the end, but it’s definitely not an easy thing for me to do.
“And it does take a lot out of me, but at the same time, I’m happy to do it. I’m happy to be able to have a platform and a way to have that sort of relief, and that release that I need, that I don’t always get from anything else. And I think writing has always just been that sort of like therapeutic thing for me…
“Often times I’ll write a song because it’s about something that I’ve felt, and then as soon as the song is finished and I’m able to listen to it, it’s like, I don’t even feel that way anymore. You know, those are feelings that have come to pass, and I don’t have to really even worry about them at this point. It’s just my way of being able to take those things and just let them all go.”
Though their music has always had a personal connection to Miranda and his own struggles, the song writing process isn’t something he bares alone, with the whole band having played a big part in the writing of No Good Left To Give.
“Our writing process is very cohesive, you know, the four of us in the band really like to all have a very equal part in the writing process, and so most of the time we’ll get together in a room and one person will bring an idea to the table, a riff or some sort of basic idea for a song, and we’ll just build on it, you know? And it’s cool because there’s not one person in our band who does the bulk of the writing. We all contribute very evenly.
I just hope that people are able to grow with us, because there’s no denying that it is definitely a progression. This album is a different sound than I think some Movements fans are going to be used to, and that some Movements fans might not like, you know, and that’s okay.
[ Patrick Miranda ]
“…it’s cool because it never feels one sided. It always feels like, at the end of the day, we wrote a song that all four of us are really stoked about and proud of.”
No Good Left To Give is certainly a record for the band to be proud of, even more so than their previous effort Feel Something according to Miranda; even if some Movements fans might disagree with this.
“Yeah, I think [No Good Left To Give] blows Feel Something out of the water, and I don’t think that everyone is going to agree with that. I think that there are the diehard Movements fans who are gonna think that, ‘Oh, nothing could ever top Feel Something’ and these songs aren’t as good.
“But, I mean, when you look at these songs from a lyrical standpoint and from an overall sonic musical representation of what this band is, it’s richer and more complex and interesting than anything we’ve ever written, and I just hope that people are able to understand that it’s deeper than just the first listen of a song.
“And you really have to kind of understand everything that goes into these, this collection of songs and why they are the way that they are. And that’s what makes it much better than Feel Something, in my opinion.”
Another judgement that fans and listeners might place on Movements’ as a band in the wake of this second LP is their lack of indie-cred; as a band signed to Fearless Records, a major alternative label, since their debut. While more casual listeners are bound to criticize the band’s authenticity because of this, Miranda’s got no time for those people.
“I think there’s a certain degree of people who might think like, ‘Oh, they’re sell-outs cause they’re signed to a big label’ or whatever, but at the same time, it’s like, fuck em. I don’t care. Like I am doing this because this is my career. This is how I make money. This is how I provide for myself. This is how I’m going to provide for my family in the future.
“I am so stoked that our music is able, because through Fearless Records, to get so much more recognition than we could have ever gotten on a smaller indie label or if we had stayed independent forever. There’s no way that we would be at the position that we are now.
“So, having a record label that has so many resources behind it and such a huge array of, a fan base that we can get pushed to constantly, it’s been a total blessing. That’s something that I will always be thankful for, is the fact that our music is able to reach so many ears that it may not have otherwise.”
Regardless of what listeners might say, Pat just hopes that fans can join the band along this journey into a new chapter of their career and see the change in Movements’ sound as the benefit that it is.
“I just hope that people are able to grow with us, because there’s no denying that it is definitely a progression. This album is a different sound than I think some Movements fans are going to be used to, and that some Movements fans might not like, you know, and that’s okay.
“That’s something that we understand and, you know, music is subjective. It’s not for everybody. You’re never gonna make everyone happy, but it’s our hope that our fans continue to support this band and grow with us even through our style changes…
“It’s just something that I hope that they, more than anything, take away from this record that our band is growing and changing and progressing. And that’s a good thing, not a bad thing.”
A good thing indeed. No Good Left To Give is sure to stand out as a high point in Movements ever-growing discovery and a modern staple of indie-rock and alternative music. As a parting message to fans and listeners, Miranda just hopes that everyone enjoys the new album and looks forward to what’s to come.
“I mean, I just hope people like it, and I hope that everyone is staying safe, and keeping healthy with the current state of the world. And we hope to obviously come back to Australia and maybe even New Zealand at some point in the near future.
“Don’t know how near it’s going to be, but as soon as we can, we’ll be back.”