Heavily influenced by extreme melodic metal icons, the duo JAy R (vocals) & Xtina (bass) laid the foundations of MisophoniA back in 2017. After line-up changes, demos, EPs, a music video, and unleashing their forces upon the live scene, the Scottish headbangers landed a record deal with Sliptrick Records and dropped the 2 part maxi single “Sorrows of Yesterday” which they described as
“Sorrows of Yesterday, we hope serves as a reminder that not everything is lost regardless of how you feel and is a middle finger salute to negativity”
We were lucky to have a chat with them about their influences, future plans, and latest singles, so let’s see how it went.
- As seasoned musicians who’ve been part of different projects before Misophonia, I’d like to know more about your influences? And what made you choose extreme, melodic metal as your sound?
Jay – Originally Cristina and I were working together trying to ressurect a former Industrial metal project of mine. It was however very generic, simplistic and very dated. As well as my multitude of Industrial influences I also had a growing love for melodic death metal such as Dark Tranquillity, Children of Bodom and Arch Enemy. These melodeath influences were coupled with a love for Black and Doom metal. Influences here being My Dying Bride, Paradise lost, Evadne, Behemoth, Primordial and Satyricon. When the Industrial metal project was laid to rest it was only natural that I try to evolve, just as my musical tastes were evolving.
MIS – Even here in 2022 almost 2023 we are still trying to find ‘our’ sound. The influences amongst past and present members have always been vast and varied. We have always gone with a very definitive ‘we don’t want to be a carbon copy of our influences’ approach. We just want to try and create something dark and unique.
- What’s the story behind the band’s name MisophoniA?
Jay – The origin of the band name actually goes way back to 2014-2016 when Cristina and I were working together on an EP for TRAUMa INC (the aforementioned industrial metal project). This EP was to be called Misophonia… The actual definition of Misophonia varies, but is essentially a disorder in which certain sounds trigger negative emotional psychological responses, the music I was writing was creating a lot of the above. (Other definitions put it hand in hand alongside Melophobia which is a morbid fear of sound.)
When it came to starting a new project, Misophonia was too good a name and too good a concept to not use as the new band name and Misophonia was born…
- How does usually your writing process go? And with the release of your epic 2 part single “Sorrows of Yesterday” , can you tell us more about what influenced its writing?
MIS – The writing process is normally quite simple. A typical song with us usually starts with a rifff or a full blown idea shared via email, be it be something written by Jay or Neil (as much as Jay is vocalist and keys player he also writes on guitar for the band, guitar is just not his live instrument of choice). If a song is good then the band will work on it as a unit. If it is just a simple riff or a collection of guitar tracks that have been put forward, Jay usually steps in and arranges them in to a song demo/idea using programmed drums, adding and layering with keys or vocal melodies, then he will share that with the band and we will then work on structuring from home, such is the joy of modern technology the band don’t need to be together in a room to progress with things. Everything can be done individually and then we meet at practice with songs ready to go and we simply tighten it up as a band.
MIS – Sorrows was originally 2 separate pieces, that were brought to the band by former guitarist Justin Laidlaw, Jay being Jay was messing about and put the tracks side by side and played the songs back to back and in his mind it worked as a 2 part piece. The song originally utilized a very poor attempt at a clean vocal throughout, but the clean vocal was ultimately dropped for a frantic and pleading harsh vocal but coupled with an emotive almost spoken word chorus but breaking with the emotion it was trying to convey.
Jay – Cliché as it is, depression is a powerful tool when utilized properly… As soon as I heard what is now known as Sorrows of yesterday pt i, I was blown away by the piano work and fell in love with the piece, the same goes for pt ii as soon as I heard the guitars the lyrics came quite easily. The piece is essentially falling into the darkness (Sorrows pt 1) and escaping into the light and being born anew (Sorrows pt 2).
- Can you give us a glimpse of what to expect from your upcoming album? How can you describe its sound?
Jay – With regards to what to expect. Recently Misophonia have experienced a lot of uncertainty with who we are and what we want to achieve. As a result of this we parted ways with both our short term guitarist John and longer term drummer Ken (of whom had been with us since 2020) The album therefore has a dark, hopeless and heavy emotional uncertainty about it. However there is also a welcome change and closure. With Ken departing the band a window was closed and fortunately opened the door for our original drummer to return and reclaim their place behind the kit. Even though she has been away from the band since 2019, having her back behind the drums though, it is as if she never left. The band has a reinforced/re-invigorated energy about it again. The recent drum demos for the hopeful album tracks feel 1000% above what they were previously. Ideally this album will release and show us as a band emerging through a dark time but also once again with an awakened sense of purpose and hunger, essentially a reason for us to feel alive again.
- If you would select one song off your catalogue for someone who wants to get into Misophoniawhat would it be?
Jay – I think everyone’s track selection here will be different. Our catalog is so diverse, but for me it would be ‘Grieve’ from our live from the studio release Exposed ii – A Live Trilogy. If I could add a second track I would go with ‘The abandoned babes of Tuam’ (Tuam for short) The whole horrifying historical fact based lyrical concept for that song could take up a page and maybe even an album of its own and the track composition is sublime.
Cristina – The abandoned babes of Tuam, we are yet to record this in a fully realized form but we are very very confident of this being portrayed as such on the album.
Jura – Good question. I feel that The abandoned babes of Tuam, being more progressive and epic, this type stuff is more the direction we’re going in now so probably that.
Neil – Still Feel As blind was the song that made my ears perk up and go that is interesting that is different, I can get onboard with this. Here we are 5 years doing what we do but with a record deal and a label behind us now.
- Your music projects a lot of energy and emotions and I believe this drives people crazy in your live shows. Are you planning any gigs/tours in 2022/2023?
Mis – Unfortunately the heavy metal scene in Scotland don’t really ‘understand’ or ‘get’ the band it seems. We struggle to get shows unless we book them ourselves, even then it is a struggle with our work life balance. The Scottish heavy metal scene is currently thriving, but there is still no interest towards us, so fans and shows for us are almost non-existent in the UK.
When we released our single
‘El Silencio Serà Eterno’ back in April we saw next to no reaction from the UK, except from 2 radio shows, however that song saw us land radio airplay in Spain, Portugal, France, Germany, Italy, America, Argentina, Mexico and Brazil. The same single also saw us offered 3 record deals from various European labels. It seems we have an audience everywhere but home…
JAY – Fortunately for us our label Sliptrick Records have an amazing Europe wide booking and promotion agency at their disposal who are both available to us should we wish to turn some heads and hit the road… The band have talked about a potential summer festival run, so we may be seen hitting a few Festivals in Europe but all in due timE for now we have an album to record.
MIS – Lastly before we go we just want to say thank you for your time and for wanting to interview us, we hope we didn’t disappoint. Also mega shout out to Sliptrick Records and a few friends of ours Profit Zero, InGraves, Bastyon, Anomos, Corrupt the System, Godthrymm,
Oceans on fire and Nocturne Wulf.
Also shout out to our recording engineer and producer Ronin@Lachunkystudio, mastering engineer extraordinaire Andy@BlackCave and an extra special shout out to our good friends and avid supporters Teri Morris of EGH Rocks Radio, Enzo, Mark and Marcin of @Comharra and @ComharraMusic without whom none of this would have been possible!!
MisiphoniA Dec 2022
Jay – Vocals, keys, programming
Cristina – bass
Neil – Guitars
Jura – Drums
Looking forward to more from you guys, cheers!