Chris Motionless: “It’s annoying seeing the Kardashians in Slayer T-shirts”

(Image credit: Press)

Like the champ he is, Motionless In White mainman and all-round goth-metal figurehead Chris Motionless has agreed to face your questions on everything from veganism to his secret country music fantasies. Take it away, people…

What inspired you to go vegan? Was it a difficult change? Alexandria Ross (Facebook)

“It’s been four years and five months and at the time, I was already transitioning to going vegan. I was a vegetarian from 2005-2007 and at the time we weren’t making any money and we were on the road a lot. I didn’t have the money, refrigeration or oven to cook food, plus the vegan options weren’t as good as they are today, so I wasn’t able to keep it up on tour. A couple of years ago, my dad had a heart attack and the biggest reason was high cholesterol so that put me on the path of healthy eating and helping my dad. I started watching documentaries and reading all this information, it felt like everything I believed in with environmentalism and health was pointing towards a plant-based diet. How could I tell my dad to eat healthier and not go through it myself? It wasn’t a hard transition at all; I really wanted to do it and I’ve never looked back.”

If you could play any other style of music in a side band what would it be? John Embry (Facebook)

“I really like old-school country music like Johnny Cash and Elvis Presley, so I would love to take a shot at writing some classic Western storyteller country songs. I don’t have the voice for it but it would be cool. I’m already on my way to the store to buy my cowboy hat!”

What was your main inspiration for the Disguise album? Valeria Cedillos (Facebook)

“If there’s one thing behind Disguise, it’s that we wanted to find a way to make an album that both feels like we’re still moving forward as a band, but also takes into account everything that the fans have liked over the years. We listen to what fans don’t like, which is very helpful because if enough of your diehard fans aren’t feeling something you’re doing, you want to pay attention to that. We dropped the things that we felt were putting fans in a weird state when they listen to our music while we pushed bringing to life the positive things they liked. All of this is happening while we’re trying to make a new atmosphere for the band going forward. It’s trying to represent all the eras of Motionless while still doing something new.”

(Image credit: Press)

Where did you learn to do your make-up? It’s always so on-point. Jemma Bryant (email)

“I wish that were true! I started doing it in high school because I wanted to look like Davey Havok from AFI and all the other band guys like the Misfits that wore make-up that I wanted to look like so bad. I started putting eyeshadow on and, as time went on, I had female friends that were really good at make-up who suggested trying this and that, foundation to look more pale etc. One by one, friends helped me out over the years and YouTube tutorials came into play eventually.”

With high street brands selling Marilyn Manson t-shirts and models wearing spiky collars on the catwalk, what does it actually mean to be a goth today? Devin Jonas (email)

“It can be annoying to see the Kardashians wearing Slayer and Iron Maiden shirts, then all these other models that have no affiliation with goth or metal. That shouldn’t obstruct people who really live that lifestyle from enjoying that or to feel ashamed by it, or worry that others will steal their style. They make look like it and wear it, but they don’t live that lifestyle and until they do, which they aren’t going to, they’ll move onto the next trend. I think anybody can find solace in that it’s just a trend, it’s something to be angry about, but don’t let it get too deep in your mind because they will move onto something new while you can continue as you always have.”

Who would you say is your favourite Star Wars character? @Pricer31 (Twitter)

“I have to say Han Solo because I think he’s such a badass and I love that he’s an outlaw. You’re always rooting for him even when he’s not in the position where you should be sometimes. Chewie and Han could definitely benefit from some group therapy over there!”

If you weren’t a musician, what would you be doing? @xNevaehJonesx (Twitter)

“I didn’t want to do much before music, but I had fleeting interests in going to school to study psychology and becoming a history teacher. Music completely took over and I’m so happy I didn’t go that route. If I wasn’t in music now, I’d try to pursue videography or directing anything from music videos to movies. When we work on videos, I’m always in the thick of how it’s being directed, to the point I’d love a chance to do that myself and see what would happen having full control over it.”

Which bands would you most love to tour with in the future? Lizzie Burgess (Facebook)

“I don’t know how we’ve pulled it off but somehow we just keep touring with all these bands that are the bands we would’ve died to tour with over the years. We’ve toured with Slipknot, Korn, Breaking Benjamin and so many amazing bands and I’m so grateful. The one band that’s left for us is Rammstein. I’m sure we’d look like little ants compared to those giants but I don’t give a shit, I just want to be out there touring with them, that’d be a dream come true.”

How does somebody deal with toxic people in their life? Steph Bones (Facebook)

“I try to question if that person matters to you so much that you’d like to take the initiative to change the toxicity of your relationship and make things better. You have to get to the point in your mind where you either want to try and fix it or understand that the relationship is harmful to your mental or physical health and walk away. If you want to fix it, you can sit them down and say your piece, ask if they’re willing to work with you to improve the situation and if they show no effort on their part, the relationship doesn’t mean anything to them and then you have an answer to what that relationship means as a whole. You can’t keep putting in effort for both of you, a relationship has to be a two-way street. Letting go is harder than confronting them because you can feel you’ve lost out on what things might have been, but you have to recognise that you lose weeks and months of your time and mental health over that person.”

What’s your most meaningful tattoo? Alex Booker (Facebook)

“The guitar and cowboy hat I have on my leg are a memorial to my grandfather who spent a long time trying to get me interested in playing music as a kid, but very sadly I showed no interest in it at all back then. Years later when I finally got into music, I still credit him for planting the seeds of interest, I definitely paid attention and I was listening to music from a very early age. The guitar tattoo is the guitar he wanted to buy me but didn’t because I just didn’t want it, so it’s tattooed on me instead. I really wish I’d played guitar, it would’ve been great to bond with my grandfather over something else.” 

Published in Metal Hammer #324