Still Phantom’s Mirror Image

Still Phantoms

Orange County based goth dark act Still Phantoms have unleashed not just one but two full-lengths and don't plan on stopping anytime soon! Still Phantoms' previous releases "Translucent Hymns" and "Let Now The Dead Come Alive" were debuted to showcase the "gothic/mythical" style of what Orange County, California has hidden within. Now that the past is behind them- Still Phantoms have gone in several ways to move forward in a whole new direction. Tiffany Milling is their new vocalist and Max Cabler is their new drummer. While the past is dead and gone, Still Phantoms plan to release a brand new EP, “Moth In The Mirror” (Oct. 2010) and will gladly continue to arouse the darkness as much as possible. So be warned and be ready!

Guitarist James Greenwood caught up with me to discuss the band’s newest additions and what the band has planned for the upcoming New Year.

1. Who are you and your band members? Tell your story, for those who may not have heard of you.

James: Tiffany Milling- Vocals, James Greenwood- Guitar, Matt Scully- Keys, Frank Ruiz- Bass, Max Cabler- Drums. Still Phantoms started in May 2009 and we have been writing/recording/playing music relentlessly ever since. We have 2 full length albums available for download on iTunes, Napster, Amazon, etc. We’re currently recording a new EP called “Moth In The Mirror” with engineer/producer Eugene Pererras (Sound Of Animals Fighting, Home Grown) that is due out October 2010.

2. "Translucent Hymns", is your first album and now you've written newer material for the follow-up "Let Now The Dead Come Alive", how do the 2 differ?

James: We recorded “Translucent Hymns” before we had a live drummer or a bassist, so it was mainly electronic sounding. Once we got a bassist and drummer to perform live shows with us, we started working on our follow-up full length album called “Let Now The Dead Come Alive”. That cd was recorded with live bass, drums, guitar, and keys. “LNTDCA” was more of a “rock” sound than “Translucent Hymns”, which was darker, slower with more hip-hop sounding drum beats. “LNTDCA” sounded just like we did playing at a live show, so it was more true to who we were at the time. However, we’ve kept our formula of hip-hop/rock beats, symphonic orchestral string ensembles, spacey/delayed lead guitar sounds, powerful chords and rumbling bass lines.

3. Besides "Let Now The Dead Come Alive", you have another source of brand new material underway with the release of your EP "Moth In The Mirror", with the added additions of new members as well?

James:  “Moth In The Mirror” will be a 7 song EP debuting our new singer and drummer. The record is due out in late October 2010.

4. So can you give a brief summary as to what happened and why you had to swap and get brand new members, Tiffany Milling and Max Cabler?

James: Ashley Martin (our original singer) wasn’t going down the same path we were musically and decided to do a solo project. Aaron Kramer (our original drummer) ended up pursuing another project that was more of his pop/punk style and is currently playing with a new band.

5. How are the new members settling in? Do you think this will be a solid ground and no need for anymore replacements?

James: Tiffany and Max are doing amazing with these new songs. This new record is much more upbeat and faster than our last 2 albums. This member change is a big step for us and these are some of the most talented and down-to-earth musicians that we’ve ever played with. We are honored to have them in the band.

6. What inspired the lyrics for "Let Now The Dead Come Alive" and "Moth In The Mirror"?

James: For “LNTDCA”, Ashley Martin wrote about love, loss, heartbreak, zombies, and darkness. Ashley was lyrically inspired by a video game called “Silent Hill” for the majority of the songs. The lyrics wrote by Tiffany Milling for “Moth In The Mirror” are dark, edgy, and use a lot of metaphors (such as the lyrics in the title track of the album). This record is a lot more “epic” sounding than our last 2 albums.

7. Who writes your songs? What are the main themes or topics for most of your songs?

James: Tiffany Milling (vocals) writes all of the lyrics. James Greenwood (guitar) and Matt Scully (keys) write, compose, and produce the drum beats, melodies and structure of the songs. Frank Ruiz (bass) and Max Cabler (drums) base their parts off of what has already been written and add their own style to the songs. We have a pretty solidified way of writing and recording our music. We write and record at our home studio for demo versions of the songs. These versions have electronic drums and bass. We present these demo songs to the band to start working on everyone’s parts individually. Once everyone has their parts down, then we record the final version in a professional studio.

8. What genre of music do you consider your work to be? Who are your major influences?

James: Our music is many genres put together. We like to call it “cinematic rock”. We have elements of orchestral string ensembles, hip-hop and rock beats, ambient lead guitar, powerful chords and rumbling bass lines. Our major influences are Eye Alaska, Circa Survive and Thrice.

9. Wright Records is in discussion of releasing your EP “Moth In The Mirror”. How did you get in touch with them have you sealed a deal as of yet?

James: An intern of Wright Records messaged us on Myspace asking us if we wanted to meet up with the owners because they were highly interested in our music. We had a meeting with them shortly after and we liked what they had to offer, so we are considering signing with them to distribute “Moth In The Mirror” online through iTunes, Amazon, Napster and all the major online distributors. They also have a great studio and we plan to have them mix and master our new EP before it’s released.

10. What can be expected from this EP that wasn't on your previous works?

James: This EP is more intense and just bigger sounding than our previous records. We have matured, grown and evolved as a band over the last few years. Our newer songs are more intricate in the drum beats, vocal melodies and overall instrumentation on the album. We’re going for that epic, big, orchestral sound with an arena rock vibe for this record.

11. So 2010 for Still Phantoms is pretty much wrapped up? How about 2011 what will be on the horizon?

James: 2010 has been a great year for us. We’ve had some member changes and a hit a few speed bumps, but it has all been for the better. We have grown and are moving much faster now with our current line-up. Our plans for 2011 are to play tons of shows in support of our new EP, make new friends/fans and just keep persevering with playing music. We didn’t let anything stop us before and we sure as hell aren’t going to now.

12. Do you have anything else you'd like to say?

James: Be sure to download our first 2 albums “Translucent Hymns” and “Let Now The Dead Come Alive” on iTunes, Amazon, Napster and all the major online music distributors! Keep on the lookout for our new EP “Moth In The Mirror”, due out late October 2010. Check out for updates, blogs, bulletins, pictures, show dates, etc. Be sure to add us on Facebook as well. Thank you to all our families, friends and fans. We love you! This is only the beginning.

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