From "Grand Theft Autumn/Where Is Your Boy" to "Thnks fr th Mmrs" these four dudes from Chicago most likely played a crucial role in your teenage pop-punk years. If you spent countless hours standing in the rain at Warped Tour just to see them play, or were a member of their actual fan club Overcast Kids (yes, it existed, and we even got our own membership cards) then you probably panicked in anticipation over their latest album, American Beauty/American Psycho, which unsurprisingly debuted this week at No. 1.
If a new album wasn't enough, they just announced a summer co-headlining tour — Boys of Zummer — with Wiz Khalifa and special guest Hoodie Allen. So with all this excitement ahead, we had the guys stop by BuzzFeed NY to chat all about their new album, life on tour, and their favorite memories throughout the past decade.
1. What's the one thing you have to bring on the road with you?
Patrick: Always need a wallet. We need guitars, and drums and things.
Pete: Baby wipes. You know? It's like a shower.
2. What's the best way for a fan to get your attention at a show?
Joe: Just give me a call. Pick up the phone; we'll chat.
Patrick: Hello? How is the show going?
Andy: Just say hi.
Joe: Or walk up on stage, say hi.
Patrick: (shakes head) No.
3. Are you for or against fan signs at shows?
Patrick: It's very hard to read signs on stage. People are always like, "Yeah! Look at the thing!" And I'm just like, "I am! I don't see what it says! But I'm glad you wrote."
Pete: Funny signs are great. I love when kids have like legitimately great senses of humor. The giant heads are cool too, but I feel bad for the people behind.
Andy: Yeah, I mostly feel bad about signs, because it obscures people's view.
Like those giant light-up signs.
Patrick: I always wonder where the light comes from. Where are they getting their power?!
4. What are your favorite snacks to bring on the tour bus?
Joe: Whatever my mom packed me for lunch.
Andy: Potato chips.
5. What’s the weirdest fan request you’ve ever gotten?
Patrick: Once, someone asked me to sign their pacemaker. And of course I did, because why not? That's awesome.
6. What was the most memorable concert you’ve ever played?
Pete: The time that we played Obama's inauguration and the Secret Service said if we ran, we were a potential target. (laughs) The show was awesome.
Patrick: There are snipers — if you run, you may be shot. Be prepared.
Pete: I think that's one of those things where you don't even sign a release. It's just like, "You got fuckin' shot, sorry."
7. Do you have any rituals that you do right before you go on stage?
Patrick: Human sacrifice.
Joe: Yeah, I burn potions in the forest.
Pete: Prayer circle, black magic.
So you guys are like The Craft, just the male version.
Joe: Yeah, just four chicks just hanging out, being ladies. You know, that's us, The Craft!
Patrick: Casting spells!
Pete: Light as a feather, stiff as a board.
8. What's your favorite music video that you've ever made?
Pete: I'll just answer for Patrick: "Thanks for the Memories."
Patrick: Going off of that, I really liked "Take Over, The Breaks Over" because it was the shortest shoot we've ever done.
Joe: Actually, American Beauty/American Psycho [was].
Patrick: Oh, yes! Oh my goodness. That's easily my favorite video to shoot.
Joe: That was like a 15-minute shoot. Literally.
Pete: Or the "My Songs" video might have been. It was so short it was almost like we weren't there.
Andy: I don't like wasting my talent on videos with these guys, I want to play Star Wars all day. That's where my talent belongs.
9. What was the last song you forgot lyrics to?
Patrick: I forget a lot of words. That happens on a regular basis. The other day I did a little cheer when I got through two new songs in a row, because I was like, Yay, Patrick! You remembered all those words!
Joe: The acoustic shows are the ones that I remember.
Patrick: Yeah, yeah, yeah. I forgot an entire verse and it's an acoustic show, so there's nothing you can do. You just hear everything, and I just couldn't not call it out — I was just like, Yeah, I don't remember. I just don't. You're supposed to pretend like it was a plan and be like, Yeah, everyone, you sing it! Sing along! I'm gonna follow you now! But I tend to just let it happen — I like when we make mistakes because then you know that we're real.
Pete: I get a lot of side-eye when it happens.
Patrick: Because I know he's got some smarmy thing he's gonna say! He's gonna be like, Oooh, good job, Patrick! And I'm just like, Don't!
Pete: And good job implies bad job.
Patrick: Yes, sarcasm.
10. What’s your favorite Wiz Khalifa song?
Pete: There's already a mashup of "Sugar We're Goin' Down" out there that people should check out that some kid made. I like all of his last record. We're working on some stuff!
Any chance you'll do something on stage together?
11. What’s your favorite Uma Thurman era?
Andy: Kill Bill.
Pete: Yeah, Kill Bill era.
Joe: I like Pulp Fiction.
12. What's your favorite movie: American Beauty or American Psycho?
Patrick and Andy: Star Wars.
Patrick: Between American Beauty and American Psycho we'd say Star Wars, yeah.
13. Is there a song you wish you had put out as a single?
Patrick: All I know is that every time I have an opinion on what song should be a single, what song should be on the record, I am always wrong. Always. So, guaranteed we shouldn't listen to me. I write some songs, and then I have no good opinion about them.
Pete: But lots of opinions!
Patrick: Oh, yeah. I don't mean to misspeak here. I have lots of opinions, I'm very opinionated about it.
Joe: The reality is, we're a band of four people and we also have other people we look to for counsel, and it goes through a lot of people.
Pete: Sometimes Patrick's opinion is like a grease fire and we do keep throwing water on it for a minute.
Patrick: It's fun to watch me sizzle.
Joe: To be fair to Patrick, I always end up liking our B-sides a lot. And I always have regrets about — I'm the only one that regrets — them not being on the record.
Andy: I like our B-sides too! I regret that too.
Joe: He's the only one that regrets it, actually. I don't regret it anymore. I've lost my regret.
14. Was it a conscious choice to go from sentence-long song titles to one word?
Pete: I think at some point, everything about it's the art and the expectation becomes — you know people expect a certain thing all time, and you've gotta sorta challenge that as an artist. But it's not like, Now there will never be a long one!
Patrick: Just when it's the novelty of like, Oh, what kooky song titles are they cooking up now!
Pete: When someone becomes more a fan of the song titles than the songs, it's a problem. (laughs)
15. What's your craziest Warped Tour memory?
Joe: Just how warped the whole thing was.
Pete: The time our bus AC broke down and it was 100 degrees at night and I threw a fan down the hall, and our buddy stuck his head out and the fan comes [by him] and he just moved right by. Serendipity.
16. You're known for very verbose song titles — are there alternate titles that you wish you had used or not?
Pete: I wish we had named on a song on this record "Where Are the Fucking Guitars." (laughs)
17. What were your AIM screen names back in the day?
Andy: I had a lot. I'd just think of cool stuff from comics and put X's all around it.
18. What's the most embarrassing thing to happen to you guys on stage?
Andy: These guys have all fallen at various times. That's embarrassing for them — and me.
Patrick: It's embarrassing for me to be associated with them!
Andy: I'm a professional. I don't mess up; I don't have these things.
Joe: Yeah I feel very embarrassed for Andy.
19. What band that you've toured with do you consider your closest friends?
Pete: Yeah, I would say Metallica from that show we played, but we played way before them.
Patrick: We didn't actually meet them that time, um, or ever. But they're our closest friends.
Andy: For real though, there are a lot of bands that we're really good friends with.
20. What song of yours are you sick of?
Andy: We're not really sick of any songs. We all favorite different songs at different times so it kind of keeps it fresh.
Patrick: Yeah, it's fun to play any of the songs, the only thing that sucks is, like, for me singing, there are some songs that are just really hard and when we get to them I'm just like, Uhh, this one again. But in general, I'm not tired of them.
Pete: [It's like] the teenage kid that, like, really gets on your nerves and then turns out to be a great guy.
Patrick: I have no idea where you're going with that.
Pete: The song! You know what I'm saying. It's like you really look at it and you're like, Ah this fucking teenager. But he ends up turning out great at the end.
21. What's your favorite song you’ve ever written?
Andy: Our upcoming single "Uma Thurman" is the best song we've ever written.
Patrick: The best song ever written.
22. Can fans expect you to play some of your super old stuff on this upcoming tour?
Joe: Yeah, we always play some older stuff on tour.
Andy: It'll be fun to figure out, now that we have so many songs, to figure out how to have a good mix of old and new.
Joe: Yeah, I think it becomes like a challenge sort of. It's a cool challenge to also realize we have a mass catalog to choose from.