I heard of Divided Minds through a friend of a friend. One Spotify search later, I met their music. One thing was clear, even with a musical leaning toward Pop Punk,  Divided Minds stood in a different class than the bands they seemed to ape.

The vocals of Sean Collins seemed more sincere. The drums of Deven Pele a bit more intentional and inspired. And through the noise Josh Peters seemed more apt to smash his guitar than do a Pop Punk windmill. These dudes sounded different because these dudes are different. 

I got a chance to see them perform at the Nile Theater during Atlas Artist Group’s Pop Punk Prom. The line up was good and Divided Minds headlined.

The only way that I can put it is, on stage, they seemed BIGGER. From Sean addressing the crowd as “Mesa, AZ” projecting this performance was one of many on their dominant tour of pop punker-y, or the lights, or the fog, or the swagger in their entrance….They sounded, performed, and looked different than the other acts.

I caught up with Divided Minds after the show and they agreed to do a Lover & Fighter Interview and photo set for Rocky.

Here is what the boys had to say:

Dale: Okay, cool. So let’s start off with you guys introducing yourself.

Sean: Hey, I’m Sean. I’m the lead singer of Divided Minds.

Josh: I’m Josh. I play guitar… 

Deven: I’m Deven and I played drums.

Dale:  Awesome. Cool. Where are you guys from?

Sean: Phoenix, Arizona. 

Dale: Nice. So, one by one… Lover or a Fighter?

Sean: Ah, probably a Lover.

Josh:  Ah, I’d say I’m a Fighter…I fight for love.

Devin: I’m probably a Lover. I feel like I’m a softy…but I can beat someone’s ass. (LAUGHS)

Dale: So what do you guys do?

Josh: We love to play music. We like to write music. But our main thing, it would be love playing shows and seeing people interact with us. We love interacting with people and we’d absolutely love just finding new places to play and all of that good stuff.

Sean: I mean, I love going on adventures and that includes playing on stage is quite the adventure. That’s so much fun to see people…

Dale: Now you guys are about to be going on about to go out and tour and see a whole bunch of stages. Right?

Sean: Yeah…WHOLE bunch of stages…

Dale: Super. How many dates?

Sean: Uh, for 12, 14 something …

(EVERYONE LAUGHS)

Sean: Between 11 and 15. Two weeks!

Dale: So WHY do you guys do what you do?

Sean: It’s fun…

Josh: Yeah, it’s what I’ve always wanted to do. So, it’s just what I wanted to do since I was 4. It’s just what I have always wanted to do…

Sean: I don’t want a real job.

Dale: Avoid real jobs at all costs. Never grow up gentlemen. Never get old either…

(EVERYONE LAUGHS)

Dale: Um, so who are you guys listening to right now?

Sean: Knocked Loose.

Josh: He listens to hardcore music…

Josh: …Fucking they put out two new songs that are just fucking that some of the heaviest shit I’ve heard ever. But other than that, I mean the radio too. But yeah, I uh, 5 Seconds of Summer their new song is good…

Dale: 5 Seconds of Summer?

Deven: Yeah. I’ve been, I don’t know, I’ve been listening to a lot. I like lots of 5 Seconds of Summer like Pop, like Pop Punk. I’ve been listening to your Country, Rap like a lot of different shit. I just go on like my Spotify, like a “discover” like thing they have. What’s the playlist? The curated one that they do?

Sean: Discover weekly… 

Deven: Yeah. And I listened to that and then like, well I’ll be like, oh, I’m in this mood today. I’ll go listen to whatever.

Dale: Right on, man.

Deven: I just kind of pick whatever I’m feeling.

Josh: Cool. I’ve been listening to you. I’ve been listening about EDM. I’d been listening to like weird sounding music. Like there’s this guy named Liquid Stranger. He’s from here and oh my gosh, he just makes the weirdest bass noises and they just drive me insane. Yeah, it’s just insane. And then I’ve been listening to like Stevie Aoki and like a lot of those house DJ artist, they had all good melodies and their vocals and a lot of cool music in it. I’d be listening to a lot of trap like metal which is like Scream-o and Rap. Pretty cool. Yeah.

Dale: That’s really funny because none of you guys said like Justin Timberlake which, in my mind, will be like a contemporary…

Josh: I mean I definitely like Justin Timberlake and then Justin Bieber. He’s a big inspiration…

Dale: Would you guys say your sound is a mix of stuff that you listened and that that influences your sound?

Sean: Definitely yeah…

Josh: For sure…Like if I’m listening to Trap and like Rap music, I’m going to find a way to make it into art and music…

Deven: I think too that like, cause I think we all kind of came from like listening to like really Hardcore Metal… 

Dale: Really?

Sean: Oh yeah. We all grew up on fucking Hardcore Metal…(LAUGHS)

Deven: And I feel like that is a really good background to go into Pop music with- 

Sean: …weirdly enough, oddly enough…

Dale Why? the way the songs are structured or like the structure.

Josh: Yeah.

Sean: Yeah…

Deven: The structure and then the just like the want of something that’s just crazy hard. But like, then you can like, how do I make this crazy hard song that’s everyone’s going to like, and you have the creativity of like, let’s throw some like really fat synthesizers and then make it like, like a heavy… 

Sean: …plus. It’s going to sound really high concept. But like, GENRE, I don’t know…I don’t think GENRE is like a real thing…

Deven: …that’s fair…

Sean: Not to get to fucking hippy on you. But like it all doesn’t matter. I feel like it’s just a dumb thing to put people into boxes for what they like. But uh, like all music is good and if you have a different perspective for what you’re trying to write, then it just makes it better.

Deven: Yeah. I have a point that builds on that. 

Sean: This is like a Socratic seminar.

Dale: Good.

(EVERYONE LAUGHS)

Deven: But like I feel feeling music isn’t a genre, it shouldn’t be constrained to genres because however you feel like portraying those thoughts you have, that’s just what you “are”…

Sean: Here’s the thing, “GENRE” was only invented so that people would have an easier time navigating record stores and now who goes to a record store anymore because they’re all dying. 

Dale: No shit…

Deven: Yeah, at the end of day, everyone’s writing the same stuff, just a different style. So there’s, to me, I don’t see a reason not to like one over the other because if you like music, you liked the way that person portrays their feelings.

Dale: Verse, verse, Chorus, verse just different…

Sean: I hate when people say they exclude a  genre...”Oh, I love this, but I hate this…” There is something good in there in there, dude. Not to rant but there’s good and bad in every genre.

Dale: Best underground hang spot?

Sean: Lux Central.

Josh: Definitely Lux…

Sean: And they got the best mac and cheese. 

Dale: And so any advice for, you know, The Underground?

Josh: Practice.Practice. Practice…

Dale: Practice?

Josh: Yeah. No matter what. Get really good at your craft because no one wants to see someone that sucks. You just got to make your craft so amazing before you can do anything else.

Dale: Sure.

Josh: You can work on marketing and work on your looks and stuff, but you can’t work on that unless you’re good. I feel like the main thing to do is practice, practice, and then worry about the other stuff later.

Deven: Neil Degrasse Tyson says some really cool shit, like “there’s no like greatness to happen without a passion for it” because you can’t, like you, a lot of times you can’t force something, but when you really care about it, that’s when like the greatest work happens…

Josh: Make sure you care about what you do for sure. We don’t care what you do. I know there’s people out there that are in bands and they hate the band they are in…They’re not going nowhere because they got no love, there is no love and no passion.

Deven: Yeah. So make sure, I guess you find what you’re really into and make sure that you stay with it…

Josh: And I think we are doing that right now with changing our music. 

Dale: What do you guys currently working on? 

Josh: Releasing music, releasing videos, and working on this tour. Getting it as best as possible and tidy as possible. Pretty much it right now and get as much content on the internet as possible…

Dale: And where can people find your work?

Josh: Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, www.dividedmindsband.com … 

Sean: Spotify, Pandora music. Uh, I think …

Josh: …apple music, iTunes, wherever…

Deven:
Uh, Amazon. Yeah. Amazon prime music. Uh, uh, Google play. Uh….

(EVERYONE LAUGHS)

Dale: Cool guys. Awesome. Thank you so much.

Divided Minds: Thank you. Thank you. 

More info about the band and their upcoming tour can be found here:

http://www.dividedmindsband.com/