After several weeks on the Warped Tour, SPB got a chance to catch up with Moneen singer/guitarist Kenny Bridges about Vagrant records, the military, songwriting and cats.
Scene Point Blank: How did you end up signing?
Kenny: We were really lucky for Vagrant to find us. I think how it went was our first full length got put out through Hopeless Distrubution in the States, which then fell into someone's hands, which then passed it onto another person, who then gave it to someone else and kept happening until it ended up in Rich from Vagrant's hands. He ended up calling us and asked if we would be interested in working with Vagrant. We always had a lot of repect for Vagrant and the bands they worked with, so it was a great day to get that call. We have been so happy ever since. The Vagrant family has changed since we have signed but we feel like a true part of the family. Sometimes I feel like this is all a big joke on us and they are going to pull the rug out from us. "Oh sorry Moneen, we were just joking about that whole signing thing". But even if that happens, we have made some really good friends and would still be able to have some great handball games.
Scene Point Blank: Do you miss playing at small venues?
Kenny: No... because we still do. ha ha. We are excited, we get to do a small club tour in the fall with our friends in Alexisonfire. I really like playing smaller venues. There is a different feeling in the air at those shows. There is nothing like having kids falling onto the stage and on the pedal boards. I may sound like I am joking, but I love crazy shows. When things get out of hand, I get pure stokified. Warped Tour was so fun, all the big tours we have done have been amazing, but all we want to do is some small rooms where we get to play longer set to the people that want to see us. Does that make any sense? Basically, we like to play to people who want to see us.
Scene Point Blank: What was it like covering Alexisonfire on the split EP? Did they do a good job doing your songs?
Kenny: That was a really fun recording to do. there were no rules, we got to do whatever we wanted to do. It was really fun to be able to ruin someone else's songs, but in a way that would not really ruin them. It seemed like an inside joke that went way too far. I am glad that we got to let everyone else in on our joke though. We made a video for the split as well... that was a whole other story right there. This may be one of the most expensive inside jokes ever made. An album and 3 videos in the end. We are still laughing.
Scene Point Blank: Have you ever changed your perspective on a song after it had been written?
Kenny: Yeah, it happens all the time. There are a few songs on the Red Tree that have changed for me since we recorded them. That is really powerful when that happens. Songs become more than you first realize. It is a great feeling when songs really mean something when you play them live. It is easy to get caught up in the whole "big business" of being in a band. when that happens you forget about why you are playing the songs in the first place. That is an issue I have always battled with, remembering why we play and how to keep it pure and honest. Letting it get away from you is too easy these days. Another reason why talking to fans of music can really help keep things in perspective as far as honesty in music. Taking a few minutes to talk to a fan can make you realize how much the music really means to people.
Scene Point Blank: What is the thing that you write about most?
Kenny: It changes, it is all over the place. Sometimes my life, sometimes other people's. Really depends on what is going on at the time. I always want the songs to really mean something... so I will never start writing songs about my cats even though I love them.
Scene Point Blank: What do you think about having military booths at Warped Tour, when so many people there are anti-war?
Kenny: I only saw one of those booths once. so it seems like 1 pro war booth versus hundreds of anti war booths (meaning most bands on Warped Tour) is pretty fair. I am not one to speak out against or for war. Being Canadian I will most likely never have to worry about being forced to fight in a war that i dont believe in. I feel lucky in that sense. I dont think by having an army booth is all that evil. Kids can decide if they want to go to it or not. There are lots of booths with people who have their own beliefs and views. That is what this scene of music has always been about. Speaking your mind. Which means we can not shun someone for thinking something different when that is what we try to protest all the time ourselves. So, no I never went to try to burn down their booth... but you would never see me doing chin ups there either.
Scene Point Blank: What CD have you been listening to the most lately?
Kenny: Two... Gil Mantera's Party Dream: Bloodsongs. An amazing two piece pop dance band we saw play the Warped bbq one night. Muse: Black Holes and Revelations. Muse does not care about anyone else... they make music for themselves without ever worrying.
Scene Point Blank: Do you have any pets?
Two cats... I am very happy to be with them at home now. White cat named UDASKAMALA and a black cat named MEEMERS. They are brother and sister, but dont really like each other anymore... it makes me sad. But they are still great cats.
Scene Point Blank: What's something most people wouldn't know about you?
Kenny: Well... I am not sure. I am a pretty straight up sort of guy. But Erik our bass player, on the other hand, has a secret life in the world of Magic: The Gathering. Yup, he plays magic cards and loves it! He was playing a lot with MO from Protest The Hero. They even entered a magic card tournament on a day off in some small town. That was pretty funny. I think Erik came in second or third or something. Mo came in last... so erik obviously has mOre geekdom points over MO.
Scene Point Blank: What's your favourite snack on tour?
Kenny: HMMMM???? I don't eat that many snacks usually. But I did spoil myself on Warped with poptarts... I really like pop tarts. I know they are not good for me... but I eat them anyways... sometimes you need to push the limits.. .for me it is pop tarts.
Scene Point Blank: Where is your favourite place to tour?
Kenny: I really like going overseas... except it is harder to tour Europe because it is not as easy as jumping in a van and just going. But I will have to say since we do well in Canada, that would be my favorite place to go. Maybe we will never leave home ever again.
Scene Point Blank: What's a good memory you have from High School?
Kenny: Being a complete moron at all times. I never took anything seriously. And god bless that fact. I had so much fun in school. Running through the halls in just underwear... duct taping boxes to me for a walking breakdancing suit. Failing math constantly... it was great.
Scene Point Blank: Which band do you frequently watch on Warped Tour?
Kenny: EVALINE, MUTE MATH, ALEXISONFIRE and UNDEROATH.
Scene Point Blank: What is your favourite book?
Kenny: Ha ha ha... I dont really read. Sorry... not a mentor for the kids, that's for sure.
Scene Point Blank: And, last but not least, what is your favourite reality TV show? (if any)
Kenny: Hmmm? I dont watch that much TV since we are never really home. But I love watching DVD series like 24 and Lost. I just finsihed Prison Break on this tour...so good. All those shows are great for taking me away from reality. I like leaving reality. Sometimes the real world brings me down.
Interview by Katie