After a long road, Minneapolis's punk pop quintet, Motion City Soundtrack, is calling it quits as a live band. "We've reached the point where we've done this constant touring for 15 years. We called this the So Long Farewell tour to tell the people and let them decide if they want to be part of our last hurrah." Justin Pierre, Motion City Soundtrack's talkative singer and guitarist told New Times. Pierre stressed there was no bad blood between his bandmates, they're just drained. "We're looking forward to permanence. I'm looking forward to being a dad and a husband. It's an opportunity to do other things. We might still record and make music together. We haven't really discussed it."
Motion City Soundtrack has roots in the last time Pierre tried quitting music. "I'd been in a bunch of bands since high school. Every time we got a new bass player, we would change our name. We called ourselves Slide Coaster in 1993 when I started singing." When that band ended in 1997, Pierre said he was going to take a different route to express himself. "I was going to become a filmmaker. I was going to quit making music and start making movies. Josh (Cain, Motion City Soundtrack's other guitarist) liked my singing and talked me into starting a band."
It was the right decision. Since 2003 Motion City Soundtrack's six albums have found a wide audience, mostly due to constant touring — including many stints on the Warped Tour, opening for Blink-182 and headlining shows. Pierre easily discusses his most tortured memories of touring ("There were mental breakdowns on stage where I was unable to perform our duties."), his most cherished moments, ("First time we played First Avenue where I saw all my favorite bands growing up, we actually sold it out), and his most rewarding experiences ("The owner of our record label took me under his wing and made me get sober.").
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Pierre says you won't get these kind of reminiscences when the band plays The Culture Room August 12. "We don't talk about it ending. It's a celebration where we just play as many songs as we can."
Will Pierre now seek to become the filmmaker he once aspired to be? "I don't know. It's easier and cheaper to make music than movies. I've directed four short films and a lot of music videos. I've written short stories, music, and screenplays, so I'll do whatever medium strikes me."
Motion City Soundtrack: So Long, Farewell Tour.
7:30 p.m. Friday, August 12, at Culture Room, 3045 North Federal Highway, Fort Lauderdale. Tickets cost $25 plus fees; 954-564-1074; cultureroom.net.