Gerard Way bounds into a mobile cabin backstage at the Sydney Big Day Out like a man on a mission. Which, given that My Chemical Romance are due onstage in forty five minutes, he is. Looking lean and talking fast, dressed head-to-toe in black and with his eyes hidden behind dark sunglasses, today he deals in short, sharp answers- but then there are warm-ups to do, and the clock is ticking. This current run of Big Day Out shows represents the end of the touring cycle behind 2010’s Danger Days… album- the perfect time, then, to catch up on what’s next…
HOW’S YOUR 2012 SHAPING UP?
“Really great. We just got a new studio. We rented a building [in Los Angeles], but it wasn’t a functioning studio, so we’re making our own studio. So now we’ll have our own resources to put out a lot more music.”
HAS THE WRITING PROCESS FOR A NEW ALBUM BEGUN?
“Yeah. The cool thing is we’ve spent a lot of time writing new material on the road this time. We didn’t do that before Danger Days…”
WHAT DO YOU PUT THAT DOWN TO?
“I think just not being burnt out. Really enjoying and reconnecting with making music again, just being inspired, whereas after Black Parade we weren’t inspired to do much at all besides disappear.”
HAVE YOU FINISHED ANY SONGS?
“No, we’re still working it out.”
CAN YOU DESCRIBE THE SOUND?
“I don’t describe it.”
CAN YOU COMPARE IT TO ANYTHING?
“That’s the same question! But it’s different. We’re extremely excited.”
HAVE YOU STARTED THINKING ABOUT YOUR LYRICS?
“No. I guess it’s just going to depend on how the next six months of my life go, ‘cause that’s usually what they reflect.”
WHEN YOU THINK BACK ON DANGER DAYS… -ITS RECEPTION, THE TOURING- DID EVERYTHING GO AS YOU’D HOPED?
“Yeah, especially once we had played Reading and Leeds. That was a big moment for that album, ‘cause we leaned heavily and intentionally on it for that set, and it made us really proud of it.”
WOULD YOU HAVE DONE ANYTHING DIFFERENT?
“No, we’d never do anything different. It’s impossible.”
WHAT ARE YOUR HOPES FOR 2012?
“I hope that the construction goes well on our new studio so we can get recording as soon as possible.”
HOW HANDS ON WILL YOU BE WITH THE CONSTRUCTION?
“We’ll hire people to deal with acoustics. Visually, I’ll handle a lot of the stuff- we’ll all have a hand in designing the way it’ll look and feel.”
HOW WOULD YOU SUM UP THE FEELING IN THE BAND?
“Fantastic. Going on ten years now, we love being in the band. It’s something you can never leave or escape or get away from, and that’s a great thing.”
HOW’S JARROD ALEXANDER SETTLING IN ON DRUMS?
“He’s so great, he’s the sweetest guy, great fucking player. We didn’t have a lot of time to learn each other’s intricacies, but now we have and it’s come together very well.”
IS THERE A SENSE OF PERMANENCE WITH HIM?
“We don’t talk about permanent drummers. The band is us [Gerard, his brother Mikey, and guitarists Frank Iero and Ray Toro] and there can never be permanence. It’s impossible to think about it even in the next five years. But we love playing with him.
SO WILL THERE BE A NEW ALBUM THIS YEAR?
“It’s impossible to say. But working early is always a good sign.”
WILL IT BE ACCOMPANIED BY A NEW IMAGE?
“I’m sure- it would be boring if it wasn’t.”
ANY THOUGHTS ON WHAT THAT MIGHT BE?
“No, that would give away a bit of the music.”
From the latest issue of Kerrang! Magazine. Interview transcribed by me (sorry in advance, if there’s any mistakes).