On June 1, Hawthorne Heights will play the kickoff show for its national summer tour right here, at The Auricle in downtown Canton. Available that night will be the band’s new eight-song EP “Hope.
They’ve scored two gold albums and a gold single, had an album debut at No. 3 on the Billboard 200, scored a hit single with “Saying Sorry,” and even performed on “The Tonight Show.”
They’ve weathered the death of their lead guitarist and a protracted legal battle with a record label.
And after more than a decade together, the guys in Dayton-based band Hawthorne Heights are still recording vital music and playing rowdy concerts around the country.
“Maybe we’re too dumb to know when to give it up,” drummer Eron Bucciarelli jokes, when asked about the band’s longevity. “Some of it is just being very persistent. We have an amazing fan base that fuels our fire.”
On June 1, Hawthorne Heights will play the kickoff show for its national summer tour right here, at The Auricle in downtown Canton. Available that night will be the band’s new eight-song EP “Hope.”
Q. It must be a blast to play aggressive rock ’n’ roll music live and watch the crowd erupt.
A. Anytime you get to witness people react to something you created is a very, very powerful feeling. It’s not limited to aggressive music, either. We did a stripped-down, acoustic tour where we rearranged all of our songs, which focused the audience’s attention on the lyrics a little more. And we got almost the same energy. Watching everybody sing along was really powerful.
Q. But I imagine you play some wild rock shows.
A. Oh sure. A few weeks ago we played a one-off show in Cleveland at Peabody’s that was sold-out and it was just chaos. There were fans climbing poles. It was so much fun. Even if you’re tired or your hands are hurting, an amazing crowd fuels you.
Q. Has your sound changed a lot since your early records?
A. I think if you asked our fans, half would say yes and half would say no. We have a really polarized fan base. Half appreciate our poppier music and half like the heavier stuff. I like to think the new one is somewhere in-between. It has some of that pop-punk element from our pre-Hawthorne Heights days when we were called A Day in the Life. I wouldn’t say it sounds exactly like the early material — obviously, we’ve changed a lot as songwriters, musicians and people since then. But it’s real uplifting and positive lyrically.
Q. Are you guys prolific songwriters?
A. We always write way more songs than we actually put on the album. When we were going through our lawsuit with the label (Victory Records) and the death of our guitar player (Casey Calvert in 2007), songwriting was really the only thing within our career that we could control.
Page 2 of 2 - Q. Do you consider Hawthorne Heights to be emo, screamo, post-hardcore or any other categories?
A. I always had a beef with the term emo. It was used to lump us together with My Chemical Romance and Fall Out Boy and we didn’t really sound alike at all. We certainly have our roots in hardcore, pop-punk and DIY music, but labels are limiting. We want to stretch our creative wings. We’re a rock band, pure and simple, with all these different influences.