Escape the Fate Members Talk Touring, ‘Ungrateful’ Album + More
While in New York City at their recent show at Best Buy Theater, Escape the Fate‘s frontman Craig Mabbitt and drummer Robert Ortiz sat down to chat with Noisecreep. The guys opened up about the touring life, what inspired the album title ‘Ungrateful’ and their own way of dealing with ungrateful people in their lives.
Mabbitt and Ortiz also spilled the beans on artists they would love to work and tour with as well as some odd things they have had on their tour bus. Check out our interview with Craig Mabbitt and Robert Ortiz of Escape the Fate below:
How’s touring been going, everybody’s getting along right?
Craig Mabbitt: For the most part, Robert’s a daytime person. The rest of us are night time people. He likes going out in the daytime. He wants to go to sleep around 11:30 at night. He wants to lay in bed and call his girlfriend.
Robert Ortiz: As soon as the show’s over, I’m done and that’s when they wake up.
CM: When the show’s over that’s the time to have some drinks. We’re all going to Duffs.
RO: I’m sober so that’s the only minor challenge that we face. We have respect for each other.
CM: This guy lies, the band even told me, while you were in L.A., you were at Buffalo Wild Wings and Robert’s sitting there with us watching football and drinking beer.
RO: Either way, I’m sober on tour.
The title of the record ‘Ungrateful,’ what does it mean to each of you?
RO: ‘Ungrateful’ is just we’ve embodied everything that was wrong with us. It was suppose to embody everything that we’ve done wrong, opportunities that just ended up being a waste of talent. So we said, “F— that we’re going to get our s— together.” We’re grateful now to get our music out.
CM: Our lead guitarist named the album because he had been ungrateful in the past like cancelling tours, cancelling shows, cancelling everything so he named it ‘Ungrateful.’ Apparently he still is that way and he’s not with us now because he didn’t want to do this tour.
How do you guys deal with ‘Ungrateful’ people in general?
CM: I get very, very heated sometimes when somebody disagrees with me or doesn’t want to be a team player. I immediately just start shaking and s—. I get so heated. I just don’t understand. You want to be in a rock band so why can’t you just play your music especially if you’ve been doing it this long? You’ve got to be used to it, you just have to let certain things go and get your job done and be a team.
RO: I just get in a bad mood. I don’t yell a lot, you’ll know when I’m pissed off. I just try to let things go and be understanding. I’m an on-the-fence person with everything because I’m always able to see both sides. I always give someone the benefit of the doubt. I just figure out the situation as it comes.
What can we hear about who you are as musicians and people today on ‘Ungrateful’?
CM: Maturity. Just growing up and finding out what we really want to be in terms of music.
If you had the chance to work and or tour with any band who would it be and why?
RO: No, wrong. See I was thinking about it, I almost said Metallica — I hold them at such a high esteem in my life that I wouldn’t want it to be tainted by me working for them and I screw something up or seeing them every day and getting bored with their show. I would say Avenged Sevenfold. I still love that band. It’s a band that represents an attainable dream because I saw them from their van days to now playing full arenas and they’re not even the biggest a–holes in the world. To me, they’re humans that were able to become stars. Metallica I just see as stars.
Avenged Sevenfold, we’ve toured with them before. I would love to do it again. There’s so many, even bands similar to us, I would love to tour with Black Veil Brides, Asking Alexandria — those guys are our friends, Bring Me the Horizon and stuff. Their fans are energetic, their music is energetic.
CM: If I could work with any artist, I don’t know about that because I agree with Robert — everybody hates their boss. I wouldn’t want to not like that band anymore ‘cause I’m like, “Man that guy is a f—ing d—!” If I could work with any artist it’d have to be like a Top 40 artist. I’d probably work for and tour with Justin Timberlake because no matter what you’re doing on tour you’re rolling in luxury.
RO: Oh go on tour with Bieber dude!
CM: [Laughs] The catering everyday would be awesome. I think I’d be able to deal with the classiness and the older age-ness of Justin Timberlake’s crowd whereas I don’t think I would love walking through a bunch of teens, pre-teens screaming at the top of their lungs everyday. That sound would get so annoying.
As far as touring with a band, if you take away the fact that any band I love are so big that their crowd hates anybody else that’s playing with them — if you could take that away and the crowd would react to us as they would that band then I would love to tour with AC/DC, maybe Aerosmith.
RO: Well when you put it that way, Metallica.
CM: I would love to tour with these bands but you got to think about the crowd. If a crowd is coming to an AC/DC show and some band Escape the Fate’s opening, they’re going to be like, “Get the f— off the stage! Bring out AC/DC!” If everybody just wanted to have a good time and was accepting then I would love to tour with those bands and play for those fans.
What’s the weirdest thing on your tour bus? It could be a person.
CM: Me. [Laughs] If Robert could have me out of the tour bus…
RO: It’s not you anymore, now it’s more Kevin [Gruft]. Kevin keeps the party going and going.
CM: Yeah I party and I drink a lot after shows so I can sleep through the night but I didn’t know Kevin’s been keeping it going. I wake up and thought everyone passes out the same time I do. The weidest thing used to be pumpkins but we smashed those the other day.
RO: I had fish for a while.
CM: We would have still had fish if we didn’t fly in the first day. Me and TJ [Guitarist Thomas Bell] had Betta fish and their names were Bill and Ted and we’d Velcro the tank inside of our bunk and it actually stayed. So we had fish swimming right next to our heads. It was very classy.
What do you need to have on tour? It cannot be electronic.
RO: I need my hair s— dude. I won’t do the show unless I have my Bumble & Bumble.
CM: Booze, it doesn’t matter what kind. If it says blah blah percent APV on it, I’m drinking it. [Laughs]
Escape the Fate have been supporting their latest record ‘Ungrateful’ and after a fall 2013 trek with Five Finger Death Punch they are kicking off 2014 by hitting the road with Falling In Reverse. For a full list of dates, go here.