Editor’s Note: Gainesville, Florida’s own Mike & The Nerve released the lyric video to their single “Captive Audience”. Gainesville is home to legendary punk acts Against Me!, Hot Water Music and Less Than Jake. Mike & The Nerve mix elements of classic rock with punk and folk and they also cite The Gaslight Anthem and Frank Turner as major influences in their music. In this mental health conversation with Madness To Creation, Mike & The Nerve discuss how they got started, mental health awareness and their lyric video for “Captive Audience”. Fans can find Mike & The Nerve at the following locations:
Madness To Creation: How would you describe the mix of folk and punk music?
Mike & The Nerve: Our band is influenced by a lot of different types of music, and it affects the way we write, record and play our songs. Punk, folk and rock ‘n’ roll are all ingredients that make up our overall sound. While we have certain songs that will showcase one facet of that sound more than others, I do think that “melting pot” approach has helped make the band what it is now.
Madness To Creation: Three biggest influences in terms of you making music?
Mike & The Nerve: Tough question! Collectively, I’d say Green Day is one of the bands that has influenced us the most. From my side, I would add Against Me! and Bruce Springsteen to that list as well.
Madness To Creation: How does Mike & The Nerve come together for the writing process for a song?
Mike & The Nerve: Typically, I’ll come into band practice with a fully-written song and the rest of the band will add their contributions on top of it. The end result of that process is what you hear on the recording. Our drummer Josh does a particularly good job of taking what I’ve written and crafting drum parts that elevate the songs even further.
Madness To Creation: You all released the lyric video for “Captive Audience”, take us into that song and lyric video.
Mike & The Nerve: It goes without saying that 2020 has been a pretty crazy year for everyone, and not in a particularly positive way. While I knew that I had my own criticisms to convey about how I thought things were going, I found the concept of telling a two-sided story more interesting from a songwriting perspective. Out of that thought process, I wrote the song from the perspective of two people from two different ideological perspectives experiencing the same trials and tribulations that this year has brought, showing the lens through which they each view those hardships and the ways they would differ and overlap with one another.
We reached out to visual artist and fellow Gainesville local JD Pounds to do the lyric video for “Captive Audience”. We provided a general concept of what we were looking for, and he came back to us with an amazing end result. He’s an awesome visual artist and we’re super glad that we got the chance to work with him on the video.
Madness To Creation: We cover mental health awareness at Madness To Creation, what helps you get through the difficult times in life?
Mike & The Nerve: While I think there are a lot of answers to this question, I think that playing music, practicing self-care and leaning on the strong support system that we’ve build around ourselves have helped us get through difficult times.
Madness To Creation: What’s the big plans for Mike & The Nerve heading into the holiday season and 2021?
Mike & The Nerve: We just released our new single “Captive Audience” (available everywhere now) and we’re super grateful for all of the support and positive feedback we’ve been getting on it. Thank you! We’re nearing the end stages of recording our second full-length album, which will be released sometime later in the spring. We’re really excited for people to hear those songs as well. Like many of our friends in bands, we hope that next year will provide us with the opportunity to play more shows in front of a live audience, while still keeping everyone safe.
Madness To Creation: What else would you like to add?
Mike & The Nerve: Times are crazy right now and we hope everyone out there is doing okay. Check out our new song “Captive Audience” (and lyric video) available everywhere now. And stay tuned for more new music next year!
And there you have it! Check out Mike & The Nerve via Spotify below, give them a few streams for Christmas!