Guest Blog: The Devil Wears Prada Vocalist Mike Hranica, Part 3

Mike Hranica is the frontman of metalcore act The Devil Wears Prada. Recently, Hranica wrote a short fictional book, Home for Grave, which you can purchase on his website. The Devil Wears Prada’s most recent album, 8:18, was released earlier this fall. The band is currently on a headlining tour of the country and dates can be found here. Below, the vocalist and writer contributes the third in a series of guest blogs.

It seems that most people have a tendency to periodically segment their lives. Most often, one will hear folks categorize specific events as to when they were in college, or when they were single, or working a different job, or this, or that.

For the past six years, since the cessation of my time in high school and the commencement of full-time The Devil Wears Prada, I’ve sectioned everything into tours and record cycles.

Following the end of Warped Tour 2008, I got my dog, Marj.

Sweet Brag Tour acted as the predecessor to our third full length, With Roots Above and Branches Below, which is right before I moved to Chicago.

When we acted as direct support to Killswitch Engage (or Philswitch Engage), I made the decision to stop eating meat.

New relationships, new cities, new habits–all can be partitioned to that certain tour or that certain album.

I thoroughly inspected this inevitably monotonous process and “the tragedy of routine” while concocting the song and short story, Home for Grave. Nonetheless, not until recently did I realize that my own evolution and life span may be just as painfully mediocre as to that of “the normal man.” While the steps I’ve taken and the means of categorization may be less ordinary than that of most, one would be blind to not notice the repetition.

2014 awaits. 8:18 will continue tour after tour, each with something new or a different story. It takes years to realize that it all tends to blend together from a distance. Although, I believe it is grace that acts as a beacon in what is to be remembered.


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  • Blake Cunningham

    I suspect we segment our lives because language requires such segmentation. Language is narrative-driven, with a beginning, middle, and end, and we, as a result, follow suit. We did things, we do things, we will do things. This, of course, causes us to think in a linear fashion, and that is rather problematic because it forces the cause-effect binary to dictate our existence. When all our actions, all of the affects, are considered, our lives move in a variety of “ways” (not necessarily “directions” since that is adheres to linearity), simultaneously. Yet, since language is such an essential part to our existence, we perceive our lives progressing forward.

    I sense a hint of distaste in how you’ve segmented your life thus far, and that is characteristic of pondering one’s existence. We could save ourselves the trouble and opt out of language, but I am not even sure that is a possibility since everyone around us would still utilize language. The only thing more troublesome than language is a lack of language. However, that does not mean we cannot break character—so to speak. One thing I noted in “Home for Grave” was the way the narrator would interrupt Mitchells’ thoughts from time to time. It was as if the narrator was reminding the reader that this is not necessarily Mitchells’ narrative but a narrative about Mitchells’ narrative (I think that makes sense. I read over it a few times to make sure). Anyway, at any moment he tries to break from the narration, the narrator pulls him back in. Fortunately for us, we are our own narrators so we can break the narration at any moment we want, we just have to have the strength to do so. I don’t know if anyone has the strength to do that, but if you are stuck in a series of narratives, existing in one universe, at least you are not alone in the “painfully mediocre” routine of existence. That “grace as a beacon” might have divine connotations, but it also has one of solidarity: there are points where we all exist and there are points where we all existed. It is a cycle we experience together, and that might be the most gracious part about it.