Violet Mayugba of Destroy Boys on how the coronavirus lockdown is getting her down

Destroy Boys, Violet Mayugaba, Vi Mayugaba

Destroy Boys, Courtesy: Kai Mosley.

Editor’s note: Destroy Boys were supposed to support Against Me! this spring, but the tour was postponed due to coronavirus. Instead, the Bay Area band released a new single, “Honey I’m Home,” on Friday. The band has described it as being about the feeling of being trapped. The original inspiration was a toxic relationship, guitarist Violet Mayugba writes. But it’s also a good fit for these times.

As of now, Destroy Boys are still scheduled to tour later this year with All Time Low, The Story So Far, The Maine and more.

Most of the songs I write, if not all of the songs I write, are about love and romance. “Crybaby,” one of Destroy Boys‘ singles off of our second album, Make Room, is about a devastating crush I had at 16 on one of my friends at the time. I wrote about my fantasies of him writing a song about me and confirming he felt the same way (he never did). Even before that, I wrote the lyrics to our TikTok anthem “I Threw Glass At My Friend’s Eyes And Now I’m On Probation” about being painfully conflicted about my feelings for an older boy in my school. You get the point—I am always wanting something more to envelop my heart. However, my perspective changed when I turned 18 and started crushing on people that were bad for me in every way shape and form.

“Honey I’m Home” is a direct account of how I felt while being metaphorically trapped in a disastrous and all-consuming situation. I was constantly stuck between begging myself to leave and forcing myself to stay. People who have been in truly poisonous interpersonal situations understand the harm these kinds of circumstances can cause and the way they change your life forever. I wasn’t even able to end it until I was literally on the other side of the United States. Even though I wasn’t physically trapped, I wrote about how I viewed my life at the time: waking up to seeing bars over my windows, stepping through booby traps on my steps and floors that could go off at any second and being told to walk backward over a cliff and trusting the person instructing you.

Touring was always my escape, even before I wrote “Honey I’m Home.” Touring and playing shows has been the most magical experience the world has ever graced me. Alexia [Roditis] and I started playing acoustic shows together as Destroy Boys in high school when we were 15 years old (we’re both 20 now). Our situation quickly warped into doing a couple full U.S. tours a year, plus shows in between. It may not seem like a lot, but to someone who just turned 19, it feels like winning Powerball and Mega Millions in the same day, with the prize delivered to you in a horse-drawn carriage—I promise.

Destroy Boys

Violet Mayugba of Destroy Boys perform at The UC Theatre in Berkeley on Oct. 27, 2018. Chloe Catajan/STAFF.

Having the opportunity to see the world and use music as the catharsis I so desperately needed, with my best friends in a van, was everything I’ve ever wanted. So, getting notices of cancelations—2020 was going to be a huge touring year for us—felt like going through a break-up, getting kicked out of the house and being yelled at by your mom, all at once.

I’m lucky that I don’t have to use touring as an excuse to escape my situation anymore, but if I’m being totally honest, touring was my escape from every aspect of life at home, not just shitty interpersonal garbage. The road is a perfect utopia for someone like me. I see my bandmates every day (and no one else); the entire day is laid out and scheduled the same way (drive, load-in, soundcheck, eat, show, drive, hotel); and I get to play the living shit out of my guitar most nights. I can avoid most things on the road, until that inevitable drive on I-580 west back home.

I’m glad we chose to release this song in the middle of a worldwide shelter-in-place, because the situation feels so similar to what I experienced while writing “Honey I’m Home.” The entire world seems to be suffering from paranoia, which also happens to be an American specialty. When I was stuck in an apartment, unable to make any choices on my own, I was scared and confused. Being stuck at home now almost feels grossly familiar. I’m trying my best to take this time to write new songs and interact with our lovely fans, but it is incredibly frustrating to not be out on the road. I hope folks can find some solace in this song and take out their quarantine frustration by bedroom-moshing to it.

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