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     interviewed by robby sumner  
Band Website
Label - Kickball Records
MP3 - "Next of Kin"
       Interview with Phil
       October 18th, 2004

Kelvin Cruz -
Jeff Harber - Vocals, Guitar
Phil Nguyen - Guitar, Vocals
Justin Powell -
E: Phil, you're in the band A Thorn For Every Heart... is it fair to say that your band spends a lot of time on the road?
Phil: Yeah, we've been on the road for the past... month, straight. About a month and a half straight.
E: Have you been playing with a number of different bands?
Phil: Well, we've been on two tours since then--actually, three tours. We've been on the Vaux/Hopesfall/Head Automatica Tour, and from that we jumped onto the Taking Back Sunday tour with Matchbook Romance and Fall Out Boy. And right now we've on the Emery/Brazil/Down To Earth Approach Tour.
E: Do you think that what bands you play with affect how your performance goes at shows?
Phil: It's like... we've played with, like, Head Automatica, and they have a totally different style from us, you know what I mean? But the kids were really responsive to us and to them, so I don't really think that it matters.
E: Were your original reasons for becoming involved with a band more because of the recording or the touring aspects?
Phil: More just being in the band. Like, these are all my friends that I've known since the first grade, you know what I mean? So it's just like... we're just jamming together, just writing music we like. And it's just to play, really.
E: Do you write songs while on tour?
Phil: Yes, actually, we do. We have a little amp that we kind of just run off a battery sometimes to jam along in the van and stuff.
E: So do you generally keep the same musical equipment throughout the whole tour?
Phil: Pretty much, yeah. We have the same equipment that we've been using for the past... probably five or six months now. If something breaks, of course we're going to replace it, but if it ain't broke... why replace it?
E: Are there particular parts of the country that you think are important to hit while touring nationally?
Phil: Of course, I mean, we want to cover pretty much everywhere. There are a lot of cities that we have been to that a lot of bands don't really touch. For instance, we played Baton Rouge the other night, and kids were thanking us for coming out because a lot of bands just skip their city, you know what I mean? It's just important to hit up every city because there's fans everywhere--there's kids who listen to music in every city and every town, so it's good to cover as much as you can.
E: Is it your belief that the city that you come from has an impact on the band?
Phil: I think it does. For instance, A Static Lullaby, who comes from our state... we live, like, five minutes away from each other. We're all grouped together, we were all bands together before the bands that we are now. It's just like... we're all music-lovers, and we're just doing what we love with the scene that we have back in Chino Hills. Everybody's pretty much on the same page for music.
E: Would you rather have a band buy your CD or go to your live show?
Phil: Well, I think... you know... a CD gives a good representation of us, but live... you can actually feel the power. Like, our energy... you feel our emotions, live.
E: Would you say that you generally keep the same emotion throughout all your songs?
Phil: Yeah, I think we do. We just write about we know. Not everything is about a girl, you know what I mean? We just write about life experiences in general.
E: What would you call the great occurrence of the past year?
Phil: For us... just being able to be on the same tour as Taking Back Sunday... that's a great moment for us, right there.
E: How would you describe your pattern of releases?
Phil: We actually have not released an album--we just put out an EP, of which we made a limited number of copies... like, 3,500 to 4,000 or something like that. It sold out all over the web--it was only available online through, like, Smartpunk and Interpunk, and it sold out within five months of us putting it out. We put it out in December, and it sold out by, like, May. And now, we're releasing our album, which is due to be released on October 19th, which is... well, tomorrow. And I mean, kids know our songs on the EP, so when they hear the album, I hope they'll be blown away by it, because we are.
E: Listening to the album, are there points that you hear and wish you could go back and do differently?
Phil: Of course; there's always some little things, but the majority of the things are just awesome. It sounds great to us--our producer, Sean Sullivan, did a fantastic job. Of course there will always be those little things, but nothing crazy.
E: What specifically do you think that the band offers that wasn't present before you came along?
Phil: It's just a different style, you know what I mean? With all the influences we're putting together, I think that just brings something new to the table.
E: Well, thanks a lot for taking the time.
Phil: Right on. Thanks, man.