Rocker Frank Iero is best known for being the backup vocalist and guitarist for My Chemical Romance, but now has a band called Frank Iero and the Future Violents.

The 37-year-old spoke to uInterview exclusively about his new album Barriers, his experience working with famous producer Steve Albini and more.

“He would say that he is a sound engineer… a technician and he is at the top of his craft,” Iero said of Albini. “I mean, he’s a genius, but he forces you to be the producer and that was a role I wasn’t sure I ever wanted to undertake, but halfway through the record, the guys in the band, especially Tucker [Rule], our drummer. He was like, “You know that you’re producing this record right?’ And i was like, “Oh no.” But yes I am, yes i am. So it was an easier job having someone that was so on top of their game, you know, at the helm of at the board.”

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Iero revealed that one of his favorite songs on Barriers is one called “Madison Square Garden.”

“It was one of those songs where I had this idea in my head and it seemed too crazy to attempt,” said Iero. “I knew that it was always going to be hard to explain to people, like how to play this song. I just knew that i heard it and i heard it was great but i had to bring it out of my head and into real life so theres one of those things where i was like “all right this is the gauge. If we can nail this then that means this is the right band and we can do anythings, and if we dont, thats fine, we’re still pretty good, but we’re not the best and it was one of those things where it was just like ‘Oh my God they got it,’ and it became my favorite song.”

Iero also reminisced on his favorite memories with My Chemical Romance, which included performing with former Queen member Brian May, appearing on Saturday Night Live and his relationship with his daughter during that time of his life.

“That’s like a double miracle I guess and then the triple miracle was to be able to do it again in another project and still be able to tour and write songs and have people enjoy it all over the world, that’s unbelievable,” Iero said. “But i mean, there’s so many instances in my life, you know, with my cam and this project that i’ve gotten to do things that i’ve always wanted to do, like those bucket list things that you write down on a piece of paper when you’re like 11 years old, like “wouldn’t it be cool if i got up on stage in front of 100 plus people and play with Brian May?” Like yea, that would be really cool I think. And then you write it down and then that never happens, but that happened, you know.”

“To get to tour through countries that i didn’t even know i would breathe the same air as those people, the people that maybe don’t even speak English to know the lyrics that you know you wrote in your room and have them singing back to you. To be on Saturday Night Live, to do all these amazing things, yeah. There’s some really great memories out there.”

Full interview transcript:

Question: Whats it like working with producer Steve Albini?

Answer: He would say that he is a sound engineer… a technician and he is at the top of his craft. I mean, he’s a genius, but he forces you to be the producer and that was a role I wasn’t sure i ever wanted to undertake, but halfway through the record, the guys in the band, especially Tucker, our drummer. He was like “You know that you’re producing this record right? And i was like “Oh no.” But yes I am, yes i am. So it was an easier job having someone that was so on top of their game, you know, at the helm of at the board. And any requests that i made, any suggestions that i made, were able to be done on the spot and thats really helpful.

Question: Do you have a favorite track on the album?

Answer: I do. It’s hard though, it’s like saying “oh do you have a favorite kid,” which i don’t, but for this one, theres one track thats just, i don’t know, it’s more fun sometimes to play than others. It’s a track called Madison Square Garden and it was one of those songs where I had this idea in my head and it seemed too crazy to attempt. I knew that it was always going to be hard to explain to people, like how to play this song. I just knew that i heard it and i heard it was great but i had to bring it out of my head and into real life so theres one of those things where i was like “all right this is the gauge. If we can nail this then that means this is the right band and we can do anythings, and if we don’t, thats fine, we’re still pretty good, but we’re not the best and it was one of those things where it was just like “Oh my God they got it,” and it became my favorite song.

Question: What do you remember most from My Chemical Romance?

Answer: Very rarely, like it’s a miracle that you’re able to make music in your basement with your friends and have other people hear it and enjoy it, like thats a miracle in upon itself, to do that on such a grand scale for 12-plus years and make an impact on the world and have it continuously still find a new audience is unbelievable. That’s like a double miracle I guess and then the triple miracle was to be able to do it again in another project and still be able to tour and write songs and have people enjoy it all over the world, that’s unbelievable, but i mean there’s so many instances in my life, you know, with my cam and this project that i’ve gotten to do things that i’ve always wanted to do, like those bucket list things that you write down on a piece of paper when you’re like 11 years old, like “wouldn’t it be cool if i got up on stage in front of 100 plus people and play with Brian May?” Like yea, that would be really cool I think, and then you write it down and then that never happens, but that happened you know, to get to tour through countries that i didn’t even know i would breathe the same air as those people, the people that maybe don’t even speak english to know the lyrics that you know you wrote in your room and have them singing back to you, like you know, to be on Saturday Night Live, to do all these amazing things, yeah. There’s some really great memories out there. Some of the best though are the ones that just happened just recently. My daughter wrote this song, it’s called Best friends forever, and it started as this thing where she would use it to talk to her siblings and i decided to maybe try to make a positive thing, and like really write the song properly and show her like “Hey, if you put your mind to this, you can do this if this is something you want to do because you know, youre talented and your smart and creative.” And so we wrote the song together and i ended up recording it and just recently we played a show in Sao Paolo, Brazil and 800 kids in the crowd in that show were singing along to her song and I got a video of it and i showed her when i was home and she was like “wow that’s amazing,”

Q: What’s your favorite tattoo?

A: I have my grandmother’s portrait on my arm and i have my grandfather on my shoulder so those really really mean a lot to me. I have my wife’s name on my hand and my kids initials on my other hand, but those are the number one. As far as aesthetically, i tend to like the ones that maybe were done in a really really dingy backstage room. I have a couple of blowouts that aren’t totally perfect, like i like those a lot.