Tom Wisniewski , February 2, 2004

 

Written & Photos by: Jason Perlman

 

Jason: You’ve been doing this music thing for a while. It seems that every time you’re out on a tour you got these new bands with you. Do you ever feel like the old wise veteran, hanging around and pitching great games and these new kids are coming on the block getting all the strikeouts and attention?
Tom: Sometimes. Sometimes, I feel like that. Actually, I think it was last night or the night before we were playing and someone from Simple Plan said, “How about the legendary MXPX!” And I was like, “Legendary? What?” It’s pretty interesting.

 

Jason: Didn’t know you were legendary.
Tom: Neither did I, to tell you the truth. Yeah, we’ve been around doing this 11 ½ years and in terms of like experience we’ve got a lot more than a lot of the bands that we end up playing up with most of the time even though we’re like only maybe 1 or 2 years older than them.

 

Jason: During that 11 ½ years, did you ever go into writing droughts or the band in a funk or has it always been pretty fresh?
Tom: It’s always pretty easy to turn out some songs. Mike writes a lot of songs. We have about 60 songs written for this last record, so, only 14 of them ended up on the record.

 

Jason: So, in other words, you can put out records another 20 years...
Tom: Yeah, we’ll have a killer collection to go off of when we break up.

 

Jason: Like you said, you’ve been doing it for 11 ½ years. You’ve played this music when it was underground so to speak and now your sound is almost the new Top 40.
Tom: It’s cool. They can be listening to a lot crappier stuff. They can still be into the rap-metal thing. It’s good to see people listen to better music. Maybe people are getting smarter.

Jason: You put right out there on this record that, you like this music, you play it, you really don’t care about what it brings you. This is the music you love and that’s why your playing it and I think it’s pretty ballsy to put it out there and this is exactly what we’re about and not play the music game.
Tom: A lot of bands are pretty ambiguous. They’ll do whatever it takes to be popular and to make people like them. We just have never really been that band. If people like us, it’s awesome, it’s great because they like us because of who we are and what we actually are instead of like a product we’re trying to put out or a persona.

Jason: With sixty songs and only picking fourteen, how difficult was it to narrow those down? How much fighting was there?
Tom: There wasn’t a lot of in fighting. Once we had it down to about twenty, picking the actual fourteen, it was unanimous between all three of us and Dave the producer. Getting down to the twenty was a little hard, but like I said, when we picked the actual fourteen to put on the record it was like a no-brainer.

 

Jason: How did you go about writing those songs? Was it on the road, was it in the studio somewhere?
Tom: All of the above. Bedrooms, back lounges, studios, hotels, apartments, wherever we were.

 

Jason: You put so much energy into a live show, there’s gotta be some injury along the way. Not knowing where the hell everybody’s at. Has there been any?
Tom: The last show, the day before yesterday. Mike throws the bass up in the air and catches it and stuff, he caught it with the back of his head.

Jason: A little Nirvana relived.
Tom: Not as bad as that. He said he said he was kind of dazed. He actually hit himself right behind the ear, and there was this big lump with blood running down his neck.

 

Jason: Hopefully you have that on film!
Tom: I’ve got a good picture of him after a show where he was spinning his base around him and it came back and hit him in the bridge of the nose and he has a cut right along the bridge of his nose and blood running down his face, I got a good picture or two of that. Me and him standing there all sweaty and him just bleeding.

 

Jason: You just got back from an overseas tour. How was it?
Tom: We went to Australia and Japan. It was awesome. Shows were huge, crowds were amazing, I love Australia and Japan personally and our record had just come out and we were selling a bunch of records and they were all really excited and they want us to come back for like festivals they have down there and everything.

 

Jason: So did you go to the Big Day Out?
Tom: No, we’ve never done the Big Day Out but we might go back for Livid. And then we might go to Japan for Summer Sonic.

Jason: Big day out would be...
Tom: Big Day Out is big. You gotta be like Limp Bizkit or some crap.

 

Jason: When you finally got the record done and you say, ‘OK, now we gotta go play this thing live,’ is there difficulty in that or is it the way you record and the way you write pretty much..
Tom: In the past we used to gear our recordings toward what can we do live. We wouldn’t do things if we couldn’t do them live and on this one we said screw it and we recorded everything we thought of and we had to have our friend Neil and play some guitar on some songs. He’s played some piano on some songs. We worked with it and found ways to make everything work.