Stories: Onto The Next Chapter (p2)
We’re not gonna lie: when we saw that Sydney shred scene mainstays Stories were calling it a day, we may have shed a tear or two (hundred). It’s been a wild couple of years, watching the quintet rise from the opening act on a seven-band Masonic Hall bill to headline heroes in their own right, and given that their breakthrough debut, The Youth To Become, was released just a month over a year ago, the news comes as a bit of a surprise. Still, as the saying goes, all good things must come to an end. To close this chapter on a high note, the band are heading off on one last national tour supporting Enter Shikari and Hacktivist – before they do, though, BLUNT caught up with frontman Morgan Dodson to steal some hints on what the future holds.
It sort of took us by surprise when we saw that you’d be packing up, because back in April, you guys teased that you were working on some new stuff – was there a second album in the pipeline, or anything you’ve now scrapped?
Nothing would be scrapped. Something that Nic [Dodson, guitar] or I had initiated or started working on – who knows where that could go? That could be something that carries over into new projects that we’re working on. Also, I think an interesting point would be that, through that process of going, “Look, we’re working on some new material,” and telling people about it and getting to work – I can’t speak directly for him, but I wouldn’t be surprised if that’s something that has helped my brother come to the realisation that, “Shit, I’m feeling these different creative energies, but what if that means something? What if that means I should try exploring different projects, and not solely just putting all of my creative energy into Stories?”
Of course, you guys did release one incredible studio album, The Youth To Become! Looking back on that release, how do you think it holds up today?
We’re definitely proud of it, being our first proper album. There’s so many things I love about it, and y’know, as any other musician would say, there’s definitely some things that, looking back, could be changed for the better. But y’know, that’s only a result of the conditions that the album was produced and completed in, and the state we were in when the album was written and recorded. But we’re still completely stoked with it, so happy with the response that we’ve had towards it and love the fact that we decided to go with a style change – we’ve never regretted any moment of just expanding our sound and wanting to capitalise on our maturity.
You’ve got songs on that album like “Shadow Window” and “Alone In The Fallout” that just unrelentingly dove into such a daring realm of sonic exploration that bands seldom do on their debut album. Are you proud of that especially, how different it was?
To be honest, definitely. I’m super glad that we didn’t really hold back when it came to doing something different compared to our old shit. I’m glad that we just went and did what we felt sounded good and that we were all just happy to record at that time.
With that in mind, do you think the world just wasn’t ready for Stories just yet?
I think it was; I think we just gave something – to the people that followed our band – that we felt was right at that time, and I guess we still feel that way. I don’t necessarily believe that everything happens for a reason, like, to the T, but I do believe that as a unit, everyone on this planet is working towards some point in the future – everyone is doing, creating and challenging things at a rate and in patterns that are somewhat leading towards a massive shift in the future; on a timeline. We’re all contributing. Whether someone thinks something is good or bad is not a representation of whether it truly is or not – it’s just a matter of accumulating different experiences.
“Who knows what’s going to happen in the future, but for now, thanks so much for being here with us in this time.”
Sort of a cliché question, but what are some of the memories that you’d say defined your time in Stories?
Definitely, in the last six months, being able to witness myself just come out of my own shell. For the most part, I’d say that’s something that I recognise and I’m definitely proud of that. At first, it was such a hard thing for me to figure out – where I stood as a frontman and how I wanted to connect with the people – but yeah, looking back on it now, I’m really happy with my progression. I truly understand that I was just trying to figure out the best way to connect with people. I’m really happy with where I’ve gotten to and how honest I’ve become.
Of course, you do have one last tour on the horizon with Enter Shikari and Hacktivist. What are you guys doing to make this final tour the most memorable of your careers?
I think it was really important to us to mention to all of our fans before this tour that we were going to finish up quite soon. It was important to let people know that that was going to happen because I think, for the most part, this tour, and our performance, and the experience we’re going to have in every city is going to be like no other experience anyone’s ever had in their lives. I feel that the sort of magic you can create when you’re in a room where everyone knows they’re experiencing something very temporary and unique – something that can never be recreated ever again – that feeling and that magic is going to be like nothing else. It’s going to make that tour so valuable.
And then, of course, you also have one last farewell show in Sydney. What can we expect from this epic final blow-out?
We’re still trying to figure that out, hey? It’s an interesting question: what is the best thing that you can give to the people that want to come and support our band for one last show? For the most part, you’ve just got to deliver the realest thing, which is to be honest and give the crowd your best performance – connecting with them in the strongest way possible. But other than that, what we bring to the set – that’s hard to say.
Is it just that one show, or is there a possibility it might extend to a headline tour?
Nah, just that one show.
Just before we wrap up, is there anything you wanted to say to give the fans one last official send-off?
Just thank you! Just a massive thank you for supporting us and experiencing the duration of our band while we’ve existed. Who knows what’s going to happen in the future, but for now, thanks so much for being here with us in this time.
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