Q & A With After The Calm

Q & A With After The Calm

XS ROCK: Tell me about the latest band news? Any new projects coming out, live shows or announcements?

 Jonathan Habermacher

“The new music video that we just released, “Stuck on Repeat”, is the last release of the three different songs released this year. Our next big show is one that we threw together ourselves to raise money for the Arizona Humane Society and is our 3rd year in a row to donate to them. The show is on November, 10th and is over at Pub Rock Live.”

Kody Rattler

“We’ve released three new singles in the last few months, check those out on our YouTube! As for the next show, we’re hosting a benefit show for the AZ Humane Society. Tickets are $10 each and all proceeds will be donated to the shelter. This is our third year raising money for AHS and we’re hitting it harder than ever!

 

 

XS ROCK: So how long has the band been together?

 Jonathan Habermacher

“I believe it has been about 4 years, I do remember that the first practice was on memorial day.”

Kody Rattler

“We’ve been playing shows around the Phoenix Valley for about 3 years now, though we spent the first year forming the line up and writing songs that we could take to the stage. There was a lot of prepping that went into the band before our first show, mostly just making sure we were well rehearsed.

 

 

XS ROCK: What was your main motivation for originally starting or being in a band?

 Jonathan Habermacher

“Music has always been a massive part of my life and it wasn’t until high school until I really got into it and saved money to buy a guitar and amp to teach myself how to play. After feeling confident with guitar this opportunity just came up to try to create music and I jumped on it.”

Logan Miracle

“Ever since I could remember, I’ve always been in love with music. There is literally nothing else in the world I want to do more than music. I believe it’s one of the most powerful things on this Earth.”

Kody Rattler

“I always enjoyed playing various instruments throughout my childhood, but as I grew older I realized that my talent could take me places. I devote myself to the band because I believe that we can achieve whatever we desire.

David Nunez

“My main motivation has been to get my music to as many people as possible. I want to be able to know I was able to touch them emotionally in some way. I think that’s something all artist want on some level. For me it’s the only thing.”

Henry Cota

“To do something out of the norm. No one I knew at the time was creating music with others. Most people just played in their room alone.”

 

 

XS ROCK: What is your music background?

 Jonathan Habermacher

“I started playing guitar at age 16 and have been teaching myself ever since. I never really knew anyone that was in the music industry but I knew that I just wanted to play because I love what music can do to people. It’s gotten me through a lot of hard times and I wanted to do that for others.”

Logan Miracle

“I did Choir all throughout school starting from 5th grade. And within that time I played in one other band for about 2 years.”

Kody Rattler

“My first instrument was the trumpet in 5th grade. I bounced to percussion for a couple years, then picked up a bass and guitar. Throughout high school I played in guitar classes and after graduation I continued to dive into the drums. I’ve only been in one other band prior to ATC and that was more blues-rock than anything. I feel like I’ve come a far way and being able to recognize that tells me I can only go further.

David Nunez

“I Started in grade school. My first instrument was the clarinet. I wanted to play the drums and my very sensible dad decided to buy me a guitar when I was 15 because drums are loud and he likes his sleep lol. I’ve pretty much been playing guitar ever since.”

Henry Cota

“Started off beginner guitar class in high school. Learning finger placement and chords on a acoustic. From there mostly tabs from the internet, learning by ear and playing thousands of hours of bass and guitar in my room. Nowadays YouTube.”

 

 

XS ROCK: What image do you think your music conveys?

 Jonathan Habermacher

“I hope that it conveys that everyone is human and everyday we deal with others whether it be a good or bad experience. These good or bad experiences with others shape who we are and you need to learn from everything to try to make yourself the best person possible.”

Logan Miracle

“For the listener, it depends on the song they are hearing and what message or story we’re trying to put across to the listener. But for me, I look at all my songs as points in my life. Whether the be good, bad or crazy. It’s made me who I am today.”

Kody Rattler

“I feel it depends on the song. When writing a song, we will often think about what we want out of the song, whether its starting a mosh pit or getting people to jump. I think we’ve been getting better at telling a story, most recently with Porcelain and Stuck On Repeat.

David Nunez

“I think it conveys we are real and that we go through the same things as everyone else. We know we aren’t perfect but we try to be the best possible people we can be.”

Henry Cota

“I believe our music is honest and real. We never try to upset or hurt anyone lyrically, even when the specific son is about a negative situation.”

XS ROCK: What are your current music career goals?

 Jonathan Habermacher

“I want us to be able to start touring around the country and be able to make this a full time career for all of us. One where we can solely focus on our music without having to work full time at other jobs.”

Logan Miracle

“I really just want to travel the world and play music with my best friends. I’m not looking to take over the world. Just wanting to have a fun time making a difference in it while I’m here.”

Kody Rattler

“The next step for us is to start expanding outside AZ. We have a grip of friends from all over the place, but as far as playing in front of specific markets, we’ve only really dipping into Arizona. I look forward to the day we tour for the first time.

David Nunez

“It’s time to wreck house outside AZ. It’s time to show the rest of the world that we are a group they need to keep their eyes on.”

Henry Cota

“Touring and sharing our music outside of Arizona.”

 

 

XS ROCK: Which do you prefer? Writing new songs and recording or playing for a live audience?

 Jonathan Habermacher

“That is such a hard question because there is nothing like playing a live show for a debut EP release after recording. If I had to choose one then I would say that I prefer playing for a live audience. At our shows we connect so many people and a lot of new friendships are formed. There’s nothing better than having all our friends, family, and new people in the room altogether at once.”

Logan Miracle

“That’s hard. I love them both. I’d say playing live. Just cause it’s such a euphoric feeling being up there giving it your all. And if you’re lucky enough to have someone out there who’s jamming and singing along, it makes it even more worth it.”

Kody Rattler

“I enjoy both, but in that order. It’s awesome to go into the studio. We can get everything that we’ve worked hard on down into a polished mix. Then to release that song to the public, later to play it live. It’s full circle. There’s nothing quite like performing for a crowd that knows your music.”

David Nunez

“I love making new things and recording. To me nothing is more satisfying than to hear it all come together. BUT the fans are what fuel the tank. You really can’t have one without the other.”

Henry Cota

“Writing specifically. That’s the time when all of our minds are connected.”

 

 

XS ROCK: What are your songs’ lyrics about? (What specific themes do they cover?)

 Jonathan Habermacher

“Logan does all the lyrics but from what I’ve gathered most of all songs are about people in our lives and experiences we have had. Some are about how we deal with these people and feelings that we get from them.”

Logan Miracle

“Experiences and lessons from our own lives.”

Kody Rattler

“The songs often vary because we write what we feel at the moment. We often give ourselves a goal with the song, asking ourselves what the end goal is. I’d love to see what we can do with an album, but we haven’t had the funds to cover a full length. I’m not in any hurry there so long as we’re still working on our continual growth.”

David Nunez

“Typically it’s an experience Logan has gone through. I’ve been working on an acoustic song that relates an experience of mine. But so far they all have been pretty personal.”

Henry Cota

“We pull from events that have happened in our lives. There are songs about good times and not so good times but you can’t have the good without the bad.”

 

 

 

XS ROCK: What is the single most important thing to you as a musician?

 Jonathan Habermacher

“The fans, I know that it is cliche but they are everything. If we want to make this a career we need a dedicated fan base that believes in us as much as we do. Every action I take, I keep in mind what they would want and might like.”

Logan Miracle

“The fans. Plain and simple, they are the reason we are able to play shows and put out music. Without them, a musician is nothing.”

Kody Rattler

“Support from those around me. I feel like it’s so easy to get inside your own head and judge yourself; to think that you should be doing better than you are. Having support helps you see through that. We’re just people after all and I can often be my own worst enemy.”

David Nunez

“I don’t think there is just one, this is my career. When you achieve success in a career it’s because of the hard work you put in all of it.”

Henry Cota

“Without having fans who support the music there would be no After The Calm.”

 

 

 

XS ROCK: Do you have any outrageous tour stories from the road? If so, please fill us in.

 Jonathan Habermacher

“So far we have traveled to play in Flagstaff, Tucson, and California. Probably the craziest is when we went to do a U-turn to go back to the venue after we passed it and since it was night we didn’t see the median. Luckily the trailer didn’t come off the hitch but man did we all bump up and down like crazy.”

Kody Rattler

“Thankfully nothing outrageous, no. We did learn a valuable lesson on our trip to Tucson this summer. The sound guy never showed up and the venue didn’t have sound gear. Luckily for us, the locals of the night brought their own PA system with mics. Now we know the importance of having that gear at the ready.

David Nunez

“Well there’s this venue in California called Gotti’s. It was our first out of state show and to be blunt it was a mess, the promoter never showed. We played to like five people, but that wasn’t the kicker. After the show was done and we took off, one of the other bands that played that night ended up stealing part of the PA system! They took a mixer and some other things. We were contacted by the venue. It was pretty crazy time.”

 

 

 

XS ROCK: What’s the strangest request that you’ve ever received from one of your fans?

 Jonathan Habermacher

“There really haven’t been any weird moments like that yet. We have had a random interview before a show where this guy asked us super random questions that didn’t really make sense but that is about it.”

Logan Miracle

“A fan asked me to cover a song from Frozen.”

Kody Rattler

“Free Bird.”

David Nunez

“A cover Baby Shark”

Henry Cota

“We sign a lot of shirts but once a fan asked us to sign a shoe.”

 

 

XS ROCK: Are your friends and family supportive of your choice to play in a rock band?

 Jonathan Habermacher

“Yes, but mainly because I have a main job that I can support myself until hopefully the band will turn into the full time job that can support me and my band mates.”

Logan Miracle

“Definitely, my friends are always excited to hear new stuff or news about the band. And my family is all for it but they still keep me grounded and make sure I’m thinking about a career to fall back on.”

Kody Rattler

“Yeah. My mom tells me I’m cool; that’s all that really matters.”

David Nunez

“Yeah my dad has always been. It took a little bit for my mom to get on board but they both support what I do.”

Henry Cota

“My friends and family are unofficial members of the band. They support us when we play live by doing the merch and doing some of the behind the scenes.”

 

 

XS ROCK: What advice do you have for new bands trying to get started?

 Jonathan Habermacher

“Make sure everyone band member understands that it is going to take years for the band to turn into a full time job, unless you guys are rich and have a lot of money to spend on getting your name out there instantly. It is so much more work than you can ever imagine so make sure everyone is completely committed because most people just do this for fun on the side.”

Kody Rattler

“Find a solid team of invested individuals. It’s impossible to be successful if everyone isn’t pulling their weight. Also, practice as much as possible. Make sure you really know your parts before hitting the stage. In the gaming world they say, ‘A delayed game is eventually good, but a rushed game is forever bad.’

David Nunez

“Kill the ego, being in a band isn’t a place for a narcissist. Make sure the decisions that are being made are democratic. No one person is bigger than the band. Your band is only one part of the team that will make you successful. Friends, girlfriends/boyfriends, family, fans, managers, publicists, are all part of the journey and your team.”

Henry Cota

“In the end it’s music business. Consider the band a job. Set deadlines and create expectations.”

 

 

XS ROCK: What are your favorite tracks to play live?

 Jonathan Habermacher

“Definitely our heavy songs get me going like Captive, Tierra Buena, and False Idol.”

Logan Miracle

“Probably the newer songs, I feel like we’ve really started honing in on our sound when writing new material.”

Kody Rattler

“My favorites seem to be the newer ones, probably because they’re fresh and on people’s mind.”

David Nunez

“My favorites are bragging rights and an unreleased song that is technically old lol”

Henry Cota

“Bragging Rights is the first song we wrote when I joined the band, its always had a special place in my heart.”

 

XS ROCK: Which band or artist inspired you to perform? Why?

 Jonathan Habermacher

“System of a Down is my favorite band of all time and listening to them just puts a smile on my face. Once I realized how powerful music can be I knew that I wanted to see if I could do that for others.”

Logan Miracle

“I’ve always been into bands. But I think A Day To Remember was the first time I saw what the scene looked like and I was hooked instantly.”

Kody Rattler

“Blink-182 was always there as I was growing up. Most of my interest in music stems from seeing how much fun they had.”

David Nunez

“Blink-182 for sure. Their Take Off Your Pants and Jacket tour was my first show. Ever since then I wanted to be in a band.”

Henry Cota

“Thrice inspires me as a musician and a person in general. After 20 years and several albums and tours their fan base is just as strong and they are still on the radio for a new audience to discover.”

 

 

 

XS ROCK: If you could design a dream tour for your band, who would be on the bill?

 Jonathan Habermacher

“Currently, I would love to go on tour with Incubus, Ded, and Assuming we Survive.”

Kody Rattler

“Dream tour usually includes massive legends, but I think I’d have a mix of bands. I’d ask our friends in RIVALS, The Story So Far, Avenged Sevenfold, and Waterparks. Shit’s weird, but you left this up to me.

Logan Miracle

“(In no particular order) The Story So Far, A Day To Remember, Knuckle Puck and Beartooth.”

David Nunez

“Incubus, Thrice, and Foo Fighters. Let the eargasms begin.”

Henry Cota

“Blink 182, +44, Boxcar Racer, The Transplants”

 

 

XS ROCK: What do you consider your greatest accomplishment so far?

 Jonathan Habermacher

“Playing Warped Tour this past June was amazing. We played early on in the day and just to see people filing in and turning their heads to our music to join the crowd was beautiful. Strangers that never heard us joined our crowd because they liked what they heard and that told me that we are on the right path.”

Logan Miracle

“Warped Tour, I’ve dreamed of it for years and I finally got to live that dream.”

Kody Rattler

“Warped Tour was pretty cool. I am proud that we played our hometown date on the last year, but I’m eager for much more.”

David Nunez

“Warped Tour would be the greatest accomplishment for 2018. But next year it can be anything.”

Henry Cota

“Playing The Marquee Theater, it’s a venue in Arizona that I would dream about playing as a kid. It’s my most enjoyable moment, so far.”

 

 

XS ROCK: If you weren’t performing in a band what kind of career do you think you would have?

 Jonathan Habermacher

“The job I currently have is creating content for Kaplan, whether it be writing math or science.”

Logan Miracle

“I really honestly don’t know. Like I said before, music is all I know.”

Kody Rattler

“I’d likely be recording bands in a personal studio.”

David Nunez

“A&R rep for some label or designer working for PIXAR”

Henry Cota

“I believe running a music venue or bar would be ideal. I enjoy a routine and I have been on the other end and know what a band needs to play a successful show.”

 

 

XS ROCK: What type of equipment do you use for live shows?

 Jonathan Habermacher

“Since I mainly play Rhythm guitar I focus on a really crunchy distortion sound so the power chords and palm mutes really kick. I have an ESP LTD Eclipse 2015 40th anniversary guitar that I use for drop C songs. I got it a few years back along with a JCM 900 Marshall head and speaker when I knew we were going to start playing big gigs. Kody has been nice enough to lend me his awesome Les Paul Gibson until I can buy another guitar that I use for drop D songs. My pedal board is pretty simple, I have an overdrive, wireless tuner/input, the Holy Grail, noise gate, and one that presets channels for all the pedals.”

Kody Rattler

“I have a Pearl Vision set, nothing too fancy. I do use double kick pedals, as well as a drum pad for triggering audio. Also always wear my shades during performances, it’s just as important as having the snare.”

David Nunez

“EVH 5150 iii with a 2×12 cab. My guitars are a PRS Vela and Schecter C-1 E/A. Pedals I use a BOSS Compressor, TubeScreamer, MXR Carbon Copy Delay, BOSS Harmonist and a Decimator ii. I’ll be adding more.”

Henry Cota

“My basses are both MusicMan Sting Rays, been in love with their tone since the first time I heard them. My Amp is a Ampeg Portaflex 800, best of new and school technology.”

 

 

XS ROCK: What do you think of the current music scene?

 Jonathan Habermacher

“It has changed so much since I was in high school. The internet had such a huge effect. I kind of miss the days when bars or venues would straight up pay bands to come in and play. Back then you could play multiple gigs every month without them interfering with each other. Now since everyone knows about every show you have, we have to only play a show every 2 months so we can guarantee tickets sales for each show and that is how we get paid. There are a lot of genuine people that I have met but also a lot of fake people as well. I have enjoyed our current music scene a lot but do miss the olden days.”

Logan Miracle

“A lot of it is almost like a fad or what’s popular at that time. It’s rare that you see newer bands and artists stick around very long. In another sense, here in AZ there is a bit of a big whole friend group amongst local bands, which is nice.”

Kody Rattler

“I’ve seen a lot of bands come and go, as well as several continue to grow. We fit in well with those around us, there’s plenty of more bands I’d love to share the stage with. It’s mostly just a matter of time, shows don’t happen every day.”

David Nunez

“I grew up in the scene of the 2000’s and although there was great music, no one helped each other out. I feel today the community is thriving, which is making the scene explode. Arizona has so much talent, so if we help each other out we can make some serious noise.

Henry Cota

“I’m always reading articles that says the rock is dying. Perhaps on a commercial aspect it is but live is a whole other story. There are so many opportunities every weekend to go to a show and listen to live music.”

 

 

XS ROCK: For anyone that doesn’t know you, what would they be surprised to know about you?

 Jonathan Habermacher

“That I grew up extremely shy and kind of nerdy. I’ve always been into math so much and never understood how to talk to people well and always struggled with words. It’s taken me so many years to overcome the shyness and just to slow down and talk instead of talking too fast and stuttering, even though it still happens a lot.”

Logan Miracle

“I’m very critical about myself, even when it may not seem like it. I have the curse of always caring about what people think about me. But I’ve learned to try to use it for good and a motivater to work hard.”

Kody Rattler

“I’ve got this weird eye twitch thing when I move my lower jaw. My right eyelid lifts if I move my jaw forward. I only recently showed David and Jon and both of them did those stunned 360 reactions. I also like long walks on the beach, which is surprising because of how pale I am.”

David Nunez

“Maybe that I can draw lol I don’t know. I’m an artist and the guitar is just one tool I use to express myself.”

Henry Cota

“I have a 7 year son and his legal middle name is Danger.”

 

 

XS ROCK: Is there anything that you’d like to promote or say to your fans out there?

 Jonathan Habermacher

“Just that we love all the support will releasing these 3 different songs this year and really hope that we have made a difference in your life. Come out on November 10th and support animals for the fundraiser!”

Logan Miracle

“Thank you for everything, words can’t express enough how thankful my band and I are of every bit of support we’ve been given in these couple of years. We love you all.”

Kody Rattler

“Be nice to one another, please. Thanks!”

David Nunez

“Thank you for supporting us and we have some surprises for you in 2019. When the rest of the band reads this, they won’t even know what I’m talking about. It’s a surprise for them as well lol.”

Henry Cota

“We would be nothing without the support from you guys, thanks for everything!”

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