Attack Attack! is a band that has greatly influenced the metalcore genre since their formation in 2007. Even after a breakup and many line up changes in the last sixteen years, Attack Attack! is back and they are definitely not slowing down in 2023. The band consists of vocalist Chris Parketny, guitarist Andrew Whiting, bassist Cameron perry, drummer Andrew Wetzel, and guitarist Ryland Raus. I sat down with Cameron to chat about new music, tours, and his explanation of “crabcore”.
A: Hey! How are you doing? How is 2023 treating you so far?
C: It’s going good. We are starting to get the year mapped out.
A: Pretty busy so far?
C: Not yet, we are starting things pretty slow.
A: I am sure that will ramp up for you guys, though. I see you guys are planning a lot. So looking back, how was 2022 for you both personally and as a band regarding getting back into touring and playing shows?
C: It was pretty good. I can’t believe it was the first year back from COVID. It feels like that didn’t happen, but it was good. I toured less this year than I did pre-covid personally, but I know the band is working things out. I think we’re only going to do a few tours this year because we’re going to focus on some music this year too.
A: Yeah, I see updates on social media and have been eager to ask about upcoming plans!
C: It went well for us this year, so I think we’re going to keep trying to just go harder and get bigger.
A: Yeah, for sure. Which tour/event stuck with you the most from this past year?
C: My favorite tour we did was probably that first one we did on the east coast with Conquer the Divide, Until I Wake, and Across the White Water Tower. And then I think Blue Ridge was my favorite festival.
A: So as we have already said, you guys have some new music coming this year. How does the new stuff that you have coming this year compare to the stuff we’ve already heard from you guys?
C: Compared to pre breakup or after?
C: Compared to self-titled and The Revolution and Someday Came suddenly, I mean, it’s different because it’s been over 10 years since this came out, but I think as a fan of the band before I was in the band, I think that this is where the band would’ve been if they just stuck together the whole time. Just seeing how Whiting is writing and how Wetzel is writing too. I think that this is just the natural progression of things. I think it’s really coming together now. Everything’s kind of forming and we are finding what we want to do.
A: So to clarify, you don’t think that the breakup and all the lineup changes really would’ve made a difference, you think this is where it was going to go anyways?
C: I think so.
A: So in addition to new music, you’ve also talked about touring this spring with heavier lineups than we’ve seen before. When that’s announced, do you think we will have expected it, or do you think future lineups are really going to, I guess, surprise us?
C: I think especially this next one is going to be a big surprise to some, and some people will be like, okay, that kind of makes sense. But I think it’s going to be good. It’s going to be a good mix of, I feel like we’re going to be the middle band of Heavy. There’s going to be some bands that are lighter than us, some bands that are heavier than us. We’re going to be right in the middle.
A: Is this going to be a headlining thing or are you supporting somebody?
C: We’ll be headlining.
A: Oh, very cool. So how did you find Attack Attack personally, and how did this come about? How did this dynamic form between you and them, because you are new considering you had other projects before?
C: I was a big fan of them when I was in high school, and I remember when This Means War came out, and that was my favorite record by them. And then they broke up shortly after and I was pretty upset. But I met Wetzel in 2015, maybe 14, because he was in a band with one of my best friends, who is Chris Parketny. He was in a band with Chris after Attack Attack broke up and so I met him through that. We just kind of clicked on a lot of levels and we just continued that friendship. Then whiting hit Wetzel up and asked if he wanted to get the band back together and Wetzel was like, let’s do it, and he was like I know a singer, and I know a bass player.
A: And you have been in the band how long?
C: I think 2020, maybe late 2020 or early 2021.
A: Wow, so right around when Covid happened? Are you the newest in the band?
C: Yeah. It was Whiting, Wetzel, Chris, and then they had somebody named Jay play for them for a little bit. Then they got me, and then we needed someone to play guitar alongside Whiting. So me and Chris have a friend, his name’s Ryland and we suggested Ryland because he’s one of the best singers that we know and he can also play guitar. So we’re like, just get Ryland in on this.
A: So you guys are, are super goofy on social media. Is this just reflecting your personalities as people or is it a reach tactic?
C: We’re all kind of just like that. Then especially when we get together on tour, it gets even dumber. I know Wetzel will just look at us and be like, you guys are idiots but it’s hilarious.
A: I know a lot of most bands are honestly just work mode on social media and all that, but your stuff is just funny.
C: Yeah, we wanted to not be taken seriously as a band, and we wanted to be not so serious and cookie cutter with all of our social media. A lot of bands are, or a lot of labels that runs band, social media pages are so we just wanted to just be ourselves since we didn’t have a label. We just wanted to do whatever we wanted to do. Sometimes it seems like it’s kind of being natural and being yourself works on the internet. I know it doesn’t always, but sometimes it seems like it does with the algorithm
A: Yeah, that’s a good point. So, describe an Attack Attack! show to someone that hasn’t been to one before. So having photographed y’all before, y’all were in safari outfits and played out a little skit with dance music as interludes. Is that a theme for every tour?
C: It was for that tour. It’s like, we’re doing this every night. We’re going to commit to this goofy theme and see where it goes. But I don’t know what we’re going to be doing in the future. It might be something totally different, but we want to have a theme but not be so goofy about it, just so people kind of take us a little bit serious. . We don’t want to go over people’s heads and be like, oh, this is just a joke band. We want to be like, this is us and we’re here again. We don’t have a boundary, we just do what we want.
A: So again, for those that don’t really know who you guys are, especially after your time off, explain your whole crab core thing that you guys have going on. And I know backing off what we just said, it’s just goofy and fun, but explain that, especially to the younger ones that really may have just discovered y’all.
C: The crab core thing was coined when I was still a fan of the band, probably when I was in middle or high school, and I don’t know where it really came from. I think it was just like, because attack attack really paved the way for kind of synths mixed with metal core music. I think that was just the best name they could give to it because whiting’s signature move of doing the crab move. Yeah he actually looks like a crab. I think it came out of that. I don’t know.. I haven’t talked to the guys about it, but I don’t know if whiting coined it or if it was just a fan thing
A: So what are your favorite tracks to play live? I know you’ve listened to these tracks since you were in high school and now you get to play them. But what are your favorites to do?
C: I definitely have a few. I really like A for Andrew, Renob Nevada, I really like All My Life from the newer songs and Brachyura Bombshell.
A: So I have to ask, since you put out a poll to your fans on twitter. Are you a Stick Stickly or a Smokahontas kind of guy?
C: Probably Smokahontas. I mean, I was really into, someday came suddenly, but I think I grew with the music changing. I became a really big fan of Self-titled, and then I was a huge fan of This Means War and then they broke up. We played This Means War songs on the first tour, and those songs were really fun to play, but the crowd didn’t seem like they were very into it. A little, I guess note about the Safari tour since you did that one. Our sound guy, our front of house guy, Jesse he hated putting the trees on stage. I mean, to be fair, it’s not his job, but he would do a lot of that work for us.
A: It was just so funny. I have all these pictures of you guys basically in a forest in safari outfits.
C: A lot of the lighting guys at the venues killed that tour.
A: What did the other bands think of it?
C: They thought it was funny.
A: Awesome, well thanks for coming on, this was fun and I am sure I will see you this spring!
C: For sure, I will let you know when we hit the Carolina’s!