When and how did ECF really come together?
MARK: Well, it’s kind of a long story, haha. It was basically through the internet. I was in a different band, playing bass, and really wasn’t feeling it so I decided to pick up a guitar and write some of my own material. Well, I wrote the music for “Remember To Forget” and a couple of other tunes that we no longer play and decided to shop it out to find some quality local musicians to join my new band. First, I found Geoff (drummer) who replied to a post I made on our local music message board. All I did was go to his house, play him my demo, and watch him play for a couple of minutes and we both agreed it was a fit. Next I found Josh (vocals), who also replied through the message board. He was trying out for a couple of other bands and had a hard time making his mind up at first. I tried playing him some of my riffs and it didn’t seem that he was feeling it, so I played him the recorded version of finished songs and he then seemed to change his tune. He agreed to give it a try, but only on one condition. If I let his friend Phil (bass) in the band as the second guitarist, he would join. Josh was so good, I decided to give it a shot without even really hearing Phil play. Last came Joal (guitarist), who at first was filling in on bass for us because he was in a different band. He really came to like what we were doing and decided to stay on with us. Only thing is, he ended up switching instruments with Phil which put them both in the positions they are at now. The funny thing about all this was it was VERY easy putting this band together and that Josh, Geoff, Joal and I all quit the bands we were in at the time to form Eyes Catch Fire. It was a pretty sweet deal, haha.
What other music influenced you guys the most?
MARK: Well, I can’t really speak for the rest of the guys, and it doesn’t really seem like it in our music, but I am in love with the Deftones, Pantera, Glassjaw and other stuff like that. I really wanted to do something a little heavier but still had a pop edge to it so I could hook the audience in. I love the heavy stuff. Joal is more into the lighter song writer stuff like Butch Walker, Third Eye Blind, and junk like that, haha. Geoff loves Hum, Failure, and Deftones. He’s the oldest in the band and likes the originating stuff. Everything that he listens to has huge influence on the transition from 80’s rock to what’s out now. I can’t really speak for Josh and Phil because they seem to be products of pop culture, haha. They like a ton of different stuff, but I don’t really see to much influence from anything specific but the love of music itself. That, and they are two VERY talented musicians and both have some GREAT ideas. They understand what it takes to write the hooky stuff that I personally don’t think about. We all have very different influences, and that’s a good thing because we can write with many different angles.
I think the rest of the country would like to know, what’s it like to start your career in Nebraska of all places? Was it hard to find places to play?
MARK: I love Nebraska. Kids out here love music. It is hard at first to get into good venues, not because there aren’t any, but because there are so many damn good bands out here. The only thing that has really hurt the scene is the Ranch Bowl closing. That was by far and away the venue with the most history. It wasn’t the nicest inside, but it was the sweetest place to play in my opinion. Everyone has played there from Nirvana to Pearl Jam to Deftones. It was just a rockin’ joint. Other than that, it’s really cool out here. You just gotta work hard, write good music, and promote and people here take notice. It is really hard to get noticed outside of Nebraska, but that’s where the internet comes in.
Heart break and love seem to be reoccurring themes in your lyrics, bad breakup/s?
MARK: Yeah, that’s Josh. He’s had some love issues, haha. I think we are going to start going in some different directions soon though. He’s a super creative guy and writes about what is going on in his life at that specific time, and trust me, he’s had one filled with many crazy situations. I can’t wait to hear what he comes up with next, because it’s going to be great.
Describe the feeling of being voted on to the Taste of Chaos tour by the fans?
MARK: That is really indescribable. It’s awesome knowing that the reason we get to play one of the biggest shows of the year, in our genre, is because the fans of our music put us there. It’s going to be so much fun. Like I said before, I love Deftones, and it’s pretty sweet to be on the same bill as your favorite band of all time. We as a band love all those bands and are very excited to be apart of it. Thanks Everyone, haha.
If you could go on tour with one band right now, who would it be?
MARK: Well, we have a ton of awesome friends out there. I could say all types of big name national acts, but we love the guys in Playing With Matches. They are an unsigned act out of Springfield, MO. We actually toured with them for a couple weeks not too long ago, and it was one of the most fun times I’ve ever had. But like I said, there are so many bands we’d love to be on tour with, it’s almost too hard to answer.
Have you guys been contacted by any labels yet? If yes, do you plan on signing with anyone in the near future?
MARK: We‘ve been contacted by a few indie labels, but nothing has really caught our eye. We do plan on signing something in the near future, but it’s gotta be the right thing. I’m sure you’ll be hearing more about this in the near future because we’ve got big plans.
Funniest thing you can tell me about ECF?
MARK: Haha, there are a million stories I could tell you. Most of them are “You had to be there stories” so I don’t really want to explain anything specific, but you could just sit down and have a conversation with anyone in the band and you’ll have blast. I love all those guys, and that’s one of the biggest reasons. They all make me laugh and it makes it really fun to be apart of our band. 9. Any last words? Not really, just wanna send a big thanks out to all of our friends, family, and fans that have helped us get where we are today, which is just the early stages of what’s to come. Thanks again.