SOMEWHERE OVER THE RAIN BRO
WATERPARKS IT’S NOT JUST AQUATIC SWMRS’ AND THEM. NAMES THAT UNITE TWO THEY’RE ALSO THE MOST VIBRANT, EXCITING 2017 BANDS THAT POP-PUNK SINCE HAS TO OFFER. AND, THEY’RE BOTH CURRENTLY TIME LOW OPENING FOR ALL BETTER IN THE STATES, WHAT AWSTEN TIME TO PAIR UP COLE BECKER KNIGHT AND FOR A LITTLE CELEBRATION BROUGHT OF THAT FACT. WE THEY THE PARTY POPPERS. BROUGHT THE WEIRD…
If there’s a it’s crackle in not just the air this Awsten because afternoon, Knight and Waterparks SWMRS Cole frontman are setting Becker from streamer off party Of Blues in guns backstage poppers on Anaheim, at the and heads, the California.with House fact energy that these in the room novelty hats two themselves friends comes from a little have the the various celebration decided to have surrounding platters of kinship. of fruit and Or, given to tables, perhaps vegetables bonhomie. that on the The should most be a banquet aside from surprising the thing about despite being excitable this a babbling bromance, hadn’t even teetotaller, Awsten met is that its musters pivotal at the moment beginning constituent of this bros supported came in All Time March, when year.that and Ireland Low on a the two – the U.S. 17-date bands several dates leg of tour into. which of the UK Despite they’re the currently names, liquid we’ve synergy preamble heard on between to the their bands’ sw their grapevine im ming first that the ly as their encounter Eager to didn’t go find out friendship as, ahem, headgear, more, would now rustle we up don our suggest. sticks, and some cheese most garish try turn our and to party bullshit pineapple with this detectors on pair of up to full as we motormouths…
WE’VE HEARD THE BUILD THERE’S A UP TO YOUR STORY ABOUT FIRST MEETING…
Cole BECKER: play “So, Awsten I was in came the because to see a same high he had a school cousin school cousin that and as me. He went to that me do Legally came to point we see his didn’t Blonde The were musicians, really know Musical.at Awsten but we that one KNIGHT: just hit it another musician “And when off.” too, all I I found we can could out he was open for think was, a the same ‘Hopefully band one day together…’ ”
PRETTY SURE YOU’RE PULLING OUR LEG…
Cole: “We are pulling we’re having your leg, you’ve trouble trying but only heard…” to figure because out what story
WE HEAR THAT ON WAS SICK, THE UK TOUR ABOUT AND YOU CATCHING GUYS WERE AWSTEN DIDN’T MEET FOR WHATEVER WORRIED HE HAD, A WHILE… SO
“Ha! The funny thing about it is that we were in
such close quarters and because we were Awsten was in sharin Awsten: his bunk asleep “Yeah, I the whol tried to keep my and crank it out U.S. sleep that way by sleeping day, trying to not for 14 be sick. So when I was like,‘i’m sorry!’” I finally di Cole: “We did a phone interview early on, but I think together p the first point that off our gas masks we t to avoid catching probably about three his germ or four shows in to th
WHEN DID YOU ANOTHER’S FIRST HEAR ABOUT BANDS?
Cole: “Probably when Awsten: we first announced “I know that I th that, heard your though.” name bef Cole: “Actually, I heard [Madden], about you guys from but I hadn’t listened realised how to fucking you.when cool the pairing was, be
we’re from two different zones within the alternative music world.”
WHAT WERE YOUR FIRST IMPRESSIONS OF ONE ANOTHER?
Cole: “I thought Awsten was buff…” Awsten: “Buff?! Fuck yeah! I was pretty zoned out, so I was just worried about getting you guys sick. My first impression was… nothing bad! So that’s good, right?” Cole: “Of course! I thought Waterparks were younger than us, but it turns out they’re actually older.” Awsten: “That’s because we drink baby blood like Jared Leto from 30 Seconds To Mars.” Cole: “Is that a real thing?” Awsten: “It is! Google ‘Baby blood makes you young’.” Cole: “Does Jared Leto actually drink it, though?” Awsten: “I’m pretty sure he does.”
GIVEN YOUR BANDS’ WATERY NAMES, YOU TWO HAD TO GET ALONG, RIGHT?
Awsten: “If anyone is remotely moist regarding their band name then we’re immediately tight.” Cole: “It’s the law!”
WHAT ONE THING MIGHT SURPRISE PEOPLE ABOUT THE PAIR OF YOU?
Cole: “Awsten can beat anyone on this tour at arm wrestling. True fact!” Awsten: “Anyone except Zack [Merrick, bass] from All Time Low. I won’t arm wrestle him, because if I do then we’d be down one guitarist. He’s very big.at one point I was talking to him about workout stuff, and he said,‘wait. Do you work out?’ I said,‘yes…’ and he just laughed.”
WHAT ONE QUALITY DO YOU SEE IN EACH OTHER THAT YOU’D LIKE TO HAVE YOURSELF?
Awsten: “Well, Cole’s got this horse necklace that’s making me pretty envious right now. I also regularly miss my pink hair, which is what he’s got going on right now.” Cole: “I miss having blue-green hair, which Awsten has.”
PERHAPS YOU COULD TRADE OVER WITHIN THE COURSE OF THE TOUR?
Awsten: “Hmm… for the sake of my branding, I’d have to say no.”
WHAT HAVE YOU NEVER TOLD ONE ANOTHER THAT YOU’D LIKE TO SHARE RIGHT NOW?
Awsten: “The first horse that I ever rode was called ‘Smokey’.” Cole: “I’m going to Disneyland tomorrow.” Awsten: “Oooh, nice – I’m not, so I’m pretty envious.”
CAN’T YOU GO TOGETHER?
Awsten: “Maybe.the possibilities are endless when you’re in rich bands like us.” Cole: “(Sarcastically) We’re so famous in America that we just get free everything.”
As you can probably already tell,awsten and Cole don’t take themselves, or the interview process, particularly seriously. Even the most cursory glance at either of their Twitter feeds shows their penchants for irreverent humour.these are, after all, men who tweet stuff like ‘OH RIGHT ITS “ROMANTIC” WHEN VAN GOGH CUT HIS EAR OFF BUT THE SECOND I MAIL MY GIRLFRIEND MY “EYELIDS” SHE WANTS “A LOT OF SPACE”’ (Awsten), and ‘If u a rock band then there should be no more than 0 computers on stage’ (Cole).
So what about the aspiration stuff? What are their hopes for the future? How would they like to build on the success of their latest albums, 2016’s Double Dare (Waterparks), and Drive North (SWMRS)? What would they even define ‘success’ as?
It’s time for these guys to get serious.they, however, have other ideas…
YOU’RE ON TOUR WITH ALL TIME LOW. WHAT HAS THE EXPERIENCE TAUGHT YOU ABOUT YOUR OWN ASPIRATIONS FOR YOUR RESPECTIVE BANDS?
Awsten: “It’s taught me that I want way more lasers in our show.” Cole: “Zack taught me that I really want to be hungover all the time.”
AWSTEN, AS SOMEONE WHO DOESN’T DRINK, WHAT’S IT LIKE HAVING TO DEAL WITH DRUNK PEOPLE ON TOUR?
Awsten: “I’m used to it: I’m in a touring band.we’re surrounded by beer right now.” Cole: “Awsten gets a lot of free beer. If you’re reading this and you’re down on your beer supply, then hit up Awsten; he gets given a huge amount of beer, even though he doesn’t drink.” Awsten: “It’s how I make friends. I’ll be talking to someone and suddenly say,‘yo, you want 10 drink tickets?’ To which they say,‘fuck yes I do, new friend.’”
WHAT HAVE BEEN YOUR MOST MEMORABLE MOMENTS ON TOUR TOGETHER?
Awsten: “It’s really, really weird going on a ferry… I don’t think I’ve ever done that before.” Cole: “It was pretty tight when our tour bus driver
walked in and said such wildly inappropriate things to someone hanging out with us. If he’d been younger, it would have been gross, but he was old – like a rough-as-fuck old pirate.when we go back to the UK I hope he drives us, because I love that guy. He gave me a West Bromwich [Albion] jersey.”
COLE, YOU’VE BEEN TWEETING AND ENCOURAGING FANS TO ENJOY CIRCLE-PITS AS A SAFE SPACE. HOW IMPORTANT IS THE EXPERIENCE YOUR FANS HAVE AT YOUR SHOWS TO YOU?
Cole: “It’s everything, right? Rock’n’roll music is such a live, show-based form of entertainment, so to be able to make sure that everyone there is able to have a good time is important.we love a good pit at our shows, but we always encourage circle-pits because they’re the most orderly version of chaos possible.” Awsten: “I think it’s tight when fans feel safe – I just like to be able to yell at them as much as I can between songs. If they want to talk to me, that’s good, because it’s weird when it’s quiet and I have to awkwardly say,‘so… next song, I guess…’”
WHAT DOES SUCCESS LOOK LIKE FOR YOU?
Awsten: “Being able to feed my future poodle everything it likes, and everything I like.and a saltwater pool, so I can actually swim in it without chlorine because it would turn my hair a weird greeny-orange-brown colour.” Cole: “Being able to get up onstage and play music for as long as possible means so much to me. At the same time, I’d want to try to give as many people as possible the kind of positive and cathartic experiences I’ve had at shows.”
WHICH SHOWS DID THAT FOR YOU?
Awsten: “My first show was Green Day…” Cole: “Tight [Cole’s SWMRS bandmate, Joey Armstrong, is Billie Joe Armstrong’s son]!” Awsten: “It was the tightest fucking thing. I also saw My Chemical Romance on The Black Parade tour. I’d never painted my face before, but I made myself into a skeleton-looking dude for that.” Cole: “I saw Norah Jones recently.that was tight because I got a wine and was just sitting there in the Greek Theatre in LA, enjoying the most beautiful chardonnay music I’ve ever heard.”
TELL US ABOUT THE MOMENT YOU THOUGHT YOUR RESPECTIVE BAND WAS A VIABLE THING…
Awsten: “When we started doing headliners this year.with our U.S. headliners, the majority sold out. One of the shows was a 600-capacity one, and it sold 586 – son of a bitch! Anyway, seeing that we can actually go out ourselves, since then we’ve taken that as a sign of being a success.” Cole: “We had this eight-track tape recorder when we were about 12. When Max [Becker, SWMRS bandmate and Cole’s brother] and I first made a recording on that, it sounded like shit, but we had so much fun that we thought,‘this is what we’re going to do, whether people want us to or not.’”
YOUR BANDS ARE ASKED TO COLLECTIVELY CURATE A ONE-DAY FESTIVAL BILL. WHAT ARTISTS ARE ON IT?
Cole: “Culture Abuse.” Awsten: “I’m going to bring out all the sassy people, so I’ll have Beyoncé. Actually, no-no-no… Bruno Mars!” Cole: “Fuck yeah! I’d put Sonic Youth from 1991 on there.” Awsten: “I like Jason Derulo, so he’s going in.”
AND WHAT WOULD YOU CALL IT?
Cole: “Water Festival.” Awsten: “#Wet.”
WHAT ARE THE CHANCES OF YOU TWO COLLABORATING IN FUTURE? WHAT DO YOU THINK YOU’D BOTH BRING TO THE TABLE?
Awsten: “Who’s to say we haven’t?” Cole: “Like him spitting a verse on one of our songs?” Awsten: “Let’s do it!”
WHAT ARE YOUR OTHER ASPIRATIONS FOR THE FUTURE? WHAT’S ON YOUR BUCKET LISTS?
Awsten: “To be on an Acura [car] commercial, and to sell more CDS than Michael-fucking-jackson.” Cole: “I’d like to get a dog that I can train well enough to bring on tour.we’re going to put out another album, and hopefully people listen to it and think,‘damn! SWMRS really tried hard to make something cool.’” Awsten: “No, SWMRS made something cool – not tried to.” Cole: “You’re right.‘swmrs made something cool, and I’m going to latch onto this piece of culture.’” Awsten: “I hope my heroes see us.” Cole: “I want to have my cocaine and hookers phase, too, where you’re going to nightclubs every night. Everyone’s got to have a piece-of-shit phase.” Awsten: “I don’t like drugs, so I’m going to have to fake it.”
And with that, the party comes to an end, with the duo blowing kisses at K! (Awsten) and showcasing their impressive dance moves (Cole) as they claim to head off to one of the planned “Downward Spiral” hedonistic periods they suggest awaits them. While we’d strongly question whether either of them will be doing that in the future, one thing is definitely on the agenda: a sold-out show in front of 2,000 people with ATL, and the potential to win some new fans for their bands. So what happens after that? That’s a future in the hands of two men last seen using theirs to simulate firing guns after Awsten, a Texan, suggested he was good at shooting. We wouldn’t worry about these two; their weirdness obviously hasn’t held them back at all – it’s already got them this far.
WE DRINK BABY BLOOD LIKE JARED LETO!” AWSTEN KNIGHT