Interview: Behind the Facade’s Danielle Minch tells story behind Bitter and Better
Pop-punk quartet Behind the Facade made one of the strongest debuts of 2016 with Bitter and Better. The genre-hopping album, which we reviewed here, was a powerful and forward-thinking statement from the Queens, New York group.
Front woman Danielle Minch reveals the storyline in the album, which follows the stages of a doomed relationship. She shares the inspiration behind the album highlight track “Cached” and gives the secret to rocking out on rhythm guitar while holding down a vocal part.
Behind the Facade explore new writing direction with “Cached”
“Cached” was a very interesting song to be included on the album, because of how different it is from the previous material. Can you tell me about how it was written?
“I wrote the song about a relationship with someone who was so different from me. It didn’t exactly make sense, but it also did at the same time. Anyway, I just grabbed my acoustic guitar while I was having a ‘moment’ and “Cached” was born. Everyone liked the idea of having a song that didn’t fit the mold, and everyone totally wrote their own parts. This one is definitely a band favorite.”
From what I’ve seen the band hasn’t booked extensive tours at this point. Is that something that’s a possibility in the future?
“We all have full-time jobs and are not signed – everything is out of pocket – so doing a full, at least headlining, tour given these circumstances is tough. We did just fly out to Alaska to play Road to Vans Warped Tour, so we’re definitely open to cool opportunities if the circumstances are right.”
What kind of response have you gotten back following the release of Bitter and Better?
“Generally good responses! We are definitely happy with the album, it’s our baby. We learned a lot about each other, first and foremost. We spent so much time together! We also learned what our sound is, although that’s an ongoing and ever-changing one, and how to best write together – still trying to perfect this.”
How is the music written in Behind the Façade?
“Typically, I’ll write the music and then the guys will tweak their parts to their liking. For Bitter and Better, we had our own practice space that we could access almost whenever, so it made collaborating and writing together much easier.”
Developing the story behind Bitter and Better
Is there a storyline running throughout Bitter and Better?
“The album is definitely a story. The sequencing of the songs are in the order that the events occurred in my life. It’s about a relationship; from the optimistic beginning, then the downfall and destruction, to the attempt to grow from it and move on.”
Is the story something developed later in the process or did you set out with an idea of writing a cohesive story for the album?
“In general, I like the idea of telling a story through an album. I always appreciate that in other bands’ music. I guess that was always my plan but when I was living through the experiences, I just wrote as a creative outlet, and because I wanted to.”
The album feels a bit like a diary. Does it come naturally to you to write very personal lyrics?
“Writing these songs definitely filled in my need for a diary! It comes naturally but I also find myself being drawn to bands that do the same. I always appreciate a good metaphor but sometimes describing things exactly as they are is even more poetic.”
Danielle on moving beyond genre restrictions
At first glance Behind the Facade might seem like pop punk but there’s a lot more going on. Did you plan on covering a broad array of styles or does it just come out that way?
“It just comes out that way. We don’t ever plan to write a [insert genre here] song. We just write and if it sounds good, we record it.”
There’s quite a lot going on guitar-wise in Behind the Facade. How difficult is it to pull the songs off live while playing and singing?
“I’m a firm believer in muscle-memory. I don’t care how hard the song is; if I practice it enough times, I will eventually be able to sing and play it at the same time. It’s definitely difficult at first, though! When we write/practice, I usually just play guitar until I feel comfortable doing both.”
What’s next for Behind the Facade?
“We will probably do around two more music videos for Bitter and Better, definitely plan to start writing a new album in the very near future, and continue to play shows and expand the fan base.”