A Midnight Tragedy Suffers More Than Just Tragedy....

Over the course of their musical careers A Midnight Tragedy has kept to what they have always loved and enjoyed doing writing and recording music and it has all come down to this.... The writings and recordings of their newest album "Lost Under Infinite Sorrow". Vocalist/guitarist Dallas Sanchez took the time to discuss this release and the band's plans for the remainder of this year.

1. Introduce yourself, tell me what you do in A Midnight Tragedy, and how long the band has been together.

Dallas: My name is Dallas, I sing and play the guitar in A Midnight Tragedy.  We have been together for 8 years and do not plan on stopping anytime soon.

2. Where is the band based out of and what is your music scene like there? Are there any local bands you could recommend?

Dallas: We are technically based out of Kearny NJ, however, we spend more time touring than we do playing in NJ.  Usually our closest venues are based in NYC.  That scene is a little more our style.  Unfortunately the NJ scene is a different scene than it was when I started playing, then again, I started playing out 15 years ago.  Nowadays a big hardcore movement has emerged which is awesome, it's just not our thing.  The NYC crowd is an older crowd for us, we've been around a while, our fans have grown and so we've had to grow with them and that's been a great ride.  As far as locals I would recommend, I would have to say 2 bands we've come across while touring recently have been the Arc City Angels and most recently The Little War Twins, both amazing bands and super cool people too.

3. Who produced Lost Under Infinite Sorrow and what was it like working with them?

Dallas: Anthony Santonocito, he is the head producer over at Westfall Recording Company out in Farmingdale NY.  It was amazing working with Santo because he really taught us about ourselves and our sound and helped us really explore our creativity.  He didn't try and change our sound and who we were like our last producer did, Santo let us have complete control of this project and acted as a fresh ear and helped us learn our craft.  That's the whole point of working with a producer, it teaches you about yourself and how to one day be in that seat.  I have a lot more confidence in my ability to produce music and how to write as well.  Definitely a better producer than our last producer, better album too.

4. Is there any story or concept behind the Lost Under Infinite Sorrow title?

Dallas: There's a definite story behind the title and only people who know me and know certain things that happened in my life over the years can probably pick up on the title.  As far as a story behind the album, this entire album is the finale to a trilogy.  If you have listened to our last two albums then you will feel the connection to them.  Lost Under Infinite Sorrow is simply the end to a story that I've spent 8 years telling, a story about pain, suffering, coping with change, addiction, loss and trying to rise above that hatred to leave Infinite sorrow (Hell) and rise to Eternal Bliss.  I took what caused me to start AMT as well as what I was going through at that moment in time and fit it into a story that is bigger than an album.  I actually wrote this as a musical, it was never meant to be part of AMT's catalog at all.

5. Who did the cover art for Lost Under Infinite Sorrow and how much input did you have on it?

Dallas: My dear friend Ana Santos is an amazing photographer and worked with us on a photo shoot for Alternative Press Magazine.  When looking for a photographer for that shoot a bunch of "friends" from high school who have become iPhone photographers all wanted the chance to get their names out there and were trying really hard to get the gig and being sketchy and trying to act like we've been friends for years when we weren't even friends in High School.  Ana on the other hand shot me a very professional self nomination message simply putting her name out there and linked me to her work.  Rather than try and take me out for drinks and try and convince me, she let her amazing work speak for itself.  Ana and her partner Elissa Higgins (The Model on our new album) who actually designed our new logo, are cosplayers and do amazing work.  As a comic book nerd and lover of all things spooky I made the great choice and chose Ana and Elisa and never looked back.  When it came to fruition that we were going to immediately release our next album I wanted to do something huge since the album was the most conceptual one yet, so the 3 of us went on a diner date and after hours of talking we came up with some amazing ideas to connect the art with the music, I can't wait for the world to see the finished product.

6. Why did you go the concept album route on the new album?

Dallas: For the most part I write conceptual music, I grew up on musicals and Disney movies so I really like the idea of a world where everything is interpreted through music and dancing.  I mean really how bad could a world filled with music really be?  I've also been through so much horrible stuff and have seen even more horrible stuff since my last job was in the funeral business, I just needed an outlet to turn that horror into something fun.  Also, like I said earlier on, this album was not meant to happen, I spent 2 years perfecting a treatment for an off broadway Gothic Musical based on Dante's Inferno.  It was meant to be kinda like the musical Rent, a Meatloaf song and that book, only our Drummer Dan even knew I was working on it, as a band we were working on our last album "KILLER" with Wil Francis and just based on that experience I was looking for an out and working on this musical as a means to an end for the band.  Eventually, Justin Autumn over at Westfall found us on some music site and immediately contacted me and introduced me to Santo who I eventually introduced the band to.  We decided not only to go and work with them but we also decided to go big and pull off the impossible, we were gonna put out a musical for our 3rd album.  Now that it is finished I can tell you with complete conviction that this album will definitely blow the world away.

7. How did you challenge yourself sound wise to fit this concept?

Dallas: It was more about knowing when enough is enough, with an album like this that isn't written like a rock n roll album but more like a musical, you have to factor in the fact that a lot of people aren't into showtunes and musicals, how do you please the everyday listener and stay true the artistic inspiration that caused you to write the album in the first place?  I think we did a good job on that.

8. Did you get the album you wanted? Is everything on there or were there some things that were just impossible to pull off?

Dallas: After a lot of back n forth with Santo and Justin we were able to convince them that there were some things that just needed to be on the album regardless of how insignificant they might seem and they let us try them ideas out and for the most part we kept everything.  Nothing is impossible if you believe in yourself, we made it work and I couldn't be any happier with the finished product.

9. Is the concept of the album going to develop into any other mediums like film or graphic novels?

Dallas: It's funny you say that, I have been collaborating on a book with Ana and Elisa which will consist on all the dialog in the album , lyrics, skits etc., as well as photos and drawings by myself and Ana and Elisa.  It will tell the story in a visual sense.  There has also been talk of releasing a film either in stop motion animation, regular animation or maybe simply releasing music videos for every song like a musical.  This story is too big to be just another rock album by another rock band, it has to be more if it's going to mean anything.

10. What's your take on Lost Under Infinite Sorrow as a whole?

Dallas: "Lost" was my therapy.  I was in a very dark place in my life and I began writing Lost as the conclusion to a trilogy.  I had a horrible series of personal tragedies occur in my life and it reflects in Lost.  In my life there was a happy ending, in the album it's a little more up in the air and lets the listener pick how they interpret the meaning.  It just takes everyday emotions that we all feel and delivers them to a much larger and more animated world.

11. What's the story behind "Nightmare"?

Dallas: Nightmare is the true theme to the album.  The antagonist says throughout the entire album that he must escape this nightmare.  He is very early into his journey and still doesn't believe it to be true so nightmare embodies that.

12. What's your favorite song on the album right now?

Dallas: It depends on the mood I'm in, right now I'd have to say Rapture, but for the most part Living Hell, my very good friend Valerie Manascalco is introduced as the voice of Nora in this and we share a vocal intensity that balances throughout the entire album and you really see it on Living Hell and also our duet track If you Don't Believe.  Val sings so much on this album and truly is a vital part to the sound of this album, I don't think I could have found anyone better for that part.

13. Is it important for you to paint visual pictures with the songs?

Dallas: Absolutely!  Visuals are key, they are completely detrimental to the album and it will be very obvious as to why when it comes out.

14. What would be the cinematic equivalent of Lost Under Infinite Sorrow?

Dallas: I wouldn't even begin to know haha.  I'd say maybe the animated film Dante's Inferno, I actually borrowed some footage for a promotional lyric video I put together for the song Torment.

15. Where is the new material headed?

Dallas: Hopefully in the right direction.  We have been a DIY band for a while and then we worked with Wil Francis and learned a lot, good and bad.  Then we met Santo and Justin down at Westfall and from there we ran into Tom Derr and Rock Ridge Music with whom we signed with in March.  Now with RRM backing us the possibilities are endless and I think people are going to be shocked with the result, I for one am very excited.

16. What is it you’d like a listener to remember the most when hearing your music for the first time?

Dallas: I want the listener to know how much time and work we put into our music.   I want the listener to remember that we don't take it for granted, we do this because we want to provide them with an option, a different song to hear.  There is so much music out there that sounds the same, we simply want to be the alternative.  Fallout boy wanted to save rock n roll, and failed... We simply want to save music in general, it's time for a change.

17. What plans do you have for the near future as a band?

Dallas: Right now we are touring locally with a string of shows to promote the coming album.  We also have a show coming up in November with the Misfits and are giving away tickets to that on our instagram page.  Once the album comes out we plan on supporting it with a big tour, we will take this show on the road and hopefully get our message out there to as many people as we can.  We are a band that thrives on hard work and plan on continuing that tradition.  I already have started writing our 4th album as well haha.

18. Where can we listen to your band and where can we buy your stuff?

Dallas: Our music can be found at www.facebook.com/amidnighttragedy and www.reverbnation.com/amtband . Our full catalog is on iTunes and Spotify.  We have a big cartel page www.amidnighttragedy.bigcartel.com for merch and what not.  We constantly upload videos to YouTube as well.  You can check us out on the Rock Ridge Music site www.rockridgemusic.com as well.  Soon enough you will be seeing more of us.

19. Any final words of wisdom?

Dallas: In this world it is important to stay true to yourself.  When you are honest with yourself you are honest with the world and people like honesty.  Lost is a true story of the Hell my life had been for so many years, I want to share that with people so that hopefully they can rise from the ashes of their false reality and make their lives exactly what they want them to be.  I was able to gain enough faith in myself to escape my nightmare, in the end that's what life is about... Faith in yourself.

20. Is that your final answer?

Dallas: Of course not!  You'll never break free from the chains that bind you to your misery if you don't believe in yourself.  I was once Lost Under Infinite Sorrow and I simply looked in the mirror and said to myself this is not my destiny and I never looked back.

"I'm through with all this guilt, all this misery, it's time to take a stand... A stand for my Faith, a stand for myself in this Hell, it's time to take a stand for my faith, a stand for myself in this Hell, and change my destiny..." - An entry from my journal from February 16, 2011 which became part of the song Take a Stand...

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