Scene Point Blank: How do you stay healthy when you are on the road? You’re always traveling.
Mikey Erg: I try to get up and run every day. If I’m eating fast food I try to make it something like Subway or go to a Whole Foods or something. It’s so difficult. Once I’m home I have a routine. That is my saving grace. But I pretty much try to get up and run every morning.
Scene Point Blank: I didn’t know you were a runner.
Mikey Erg: Yeah, I try. When I am home I absolutely run every single day. Depending on what our drive is that day, I’ll normally get up and at least do 5k.
Scene Point Blank: Wow. When did you pick up that hobby?
Mikey Erg: I got home from a European tour and I just felt super sluggish. This was in 2011, maybe 2012. And I was like, "I gotta do something." I was definitely gaining a lot of weight and generally feeling shitty. So, I just decided to start running and then you kinda get addicted to it.
Scene Point Blank: Yeah. All those endorphins.
Mikey Erg: Yeah. Now it’s at the point where I don’t feel good the rest of the day if I haven’t gotten in a run.
Scene Point Blank: Amazing. Awesome. So, what is going on with each of your most active bands right now?
Mikey Erg: Worriers just finished recording an album. That should be out sometime [this] year. I play in this band Early Riser in Brooklyn, and we just finished recording a record. And we’ve been playing some local shows. And I play in this band called Hat Rabbits with my friend Fid, and we just finished – I mean, every band I’m in has made records this year.
Scene Point Blank: Nice.
Mikey Erg: So they’ll come out at various times. And we just play locally because we don’t have a set line up. It’s kinda just me and Fid.
Scene Point Blank: On guitar and drums?
Mikey Erg: Yeah, I play drums. He plays guitar. And we kinda just fill in everything in the studio. Eventually we hope to flesh out a line-up and play a little more.
Scene Point Blank: I saw that Early Riser is playing on Halloween with Anti-Flag. Have you ever played with Anti-Flag before?
Scene Point Blank: Worriers just did a European tour with them actually last year, and they were super super fucking cool. Really, the nicest people. And Early Riser’s record is on A-F, so it makes sense to us.
Scene Point Blank: Right, but it –
Mikey Erg: It might be a little strange, but we’re looking forward to seeing what it’s gonna be like.
Scene Point Blank: Are you a fan of political punk?
Mikey Erg: Yeah, I am. I can never -- I don’t know much about politics. I try to stay in tune with it, but I couldn’t write those type of songs. But one of my first favorite punk bands was Propagandhi, and they taught me a lot about a lot of different things. And I love listening to Anti-Flag stuff. I’m always down to learn about shit I don’t know about.
Scene Point Blank: I was gonna ask, what’s the most political you’ve ever gotten in your lyrics?
Mikey Erg: Honestly, I don’t think I’ve ever…I can’t think of anything that I’ve ever written that’s political.
Scene Point Blank: How has your lyric writing process changed over time?
Mikey Erg: I’m always trying to…you try to grow up a little bit. I still write about the same things. You just try to think of better ways to say what you’re trying to say -- more thoughtful ways of saying things.
Scene Point Blank: Is there any lyricist that you particularly look up to?
Mikey Erg: Elvis Costello has always been the hugest lyrical influence. Andy Partridge from XTC. The wordplay is one of my favorite things about his lyrics. They come up with these brilliant lyrics. Just like, “How did you even think of that?”
Scene Point Blank: Do you think it’s fair to say Early Riser is the most different from your typical repertoire?
Mikey Erg: Probably. It’s funny because we consider ourselves a punk band. Kiri pretty much writes poppy punk songs, but there’s just a cello doing what the lead guitar would typically do, and there’s an acoustic guitar…I think it’s the coolest thing about us. It’s the same songs we would normally write in another band, but that’s the instrumentation. It’s the most, like, non-distorted thing that I do.
Scene Point Blank: Good point. Do you work outside of bands?
Mikey Erg: Not really. The last actual job I had was The Chris Gethard Show, playing music. I’m usually on tour so much that I can’t really. But, I’m getting to the point where I might not mind settling down a little bit, and getting something around here.
Scene Point Blank: What would that look like for you?
Mikey Erg: I don’t know. I have no idea.
Scene Point Blank: What would you consider doing?
Mikey Erg: I don’t know...I’d love to do something that like…The Gethard Show was a TV show…
I’m not thinking that would ever happen again, but something like that where I could play music but be around here more often...I haven’t really had time to think about it.
Scene Point Blank: So as far as these Ergs reunions, how did you decide where you were gonna be playing this small handful of shows?
Mikey Erg: We just had a band meeting and we were talking about how crazy it was that DorkRock was 15 years old and how it kind of became a record that people liked. And we just thought we should do something for it, and we talked about just doing the album in Asbury Park, and then it kind of snowballed from there. I mean, I can tour but the other two have families and kids and stuff. So we couldn’t do a 60-day tour. So we were like, “Where should we go?” and we kind of picked the closest places we could go that we did well in when we were around.
Scene Point Blank: And you got the offer from Riot Fest?
Mikey Erg: I can’t remember if we got the offer or put the offer out…’cause one of the last things we did before we broke up was play Riot Fest in 2008. So we had done that before.
Scene Point Blank: Nice callback.
Mikey Erg: Yeah. [We] thought that would be a cool thing to do.