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Sweat It Out: American Fangs Set To Take A Chunk Out Of The UK

Wednesday, 04 December 2013 Written by Huw Baines

Talk to American Fangs frontman Gabe Cavazos about playing live for any length of time and one word will quickly become a running theme: sweat.

The band, Houston natives currently in the UK opening for Papa Roach, play a glutinous mix of rock ‘n’ roll, punk and grunge and exhibit the sort of ‘leave it all out on the field’ attitude that many lay claim to, but few actually manage to pull off.

“When you’re off the leash and you can just be you, I live for that,” Cavazos said. “You love an artist’s album but when you go see them live you want to really see it pour through them. That’s what I want to see. I want to believe it, I want to believe what they wrote.

“There are punk rockers out there who wear that badge proudly. For us it’s a natural thing. Live is where we thrive and it’s really difficult to keep it tamed. It’s completely different from the album and, personally, I think it’s even better. It gets pretty rowdy, man.”

Having been drawn together from Houston’s developing music scene five years ago, the band’s early days were characterised by chaos. In a recent interview with Subba Cultcha, Cavazos admitted that their shows often ended with them "trashing stages and not paying our bar tabs”.

After grinding to a premature halt, American Fangs - completed by drummer Micah Miller, bassist Kyle Shimek and guitarists Chris Goodwin and Kenyon Puntenney - eventually picked up the pieces and attempted to focus their anger and energy into something a little more stable. Their first UK release, the 'Pomona' EP, arrived in October, while they were personally asked to accompany Papa Roach on their current jaunt.

“Early on we needed to harness the best things about our band and try to not focus so much on being the rowdiest, the messiest, the most obnoxious,” Cavazos said. “It almost became a little bit too much and overshadowed the music. Now we’re focusing on how we sound, keeping it 100 miles an hour and veins popping out while not compromising the music. We put it all into the songs and performance and hope that shows through.”

Accompanying their anarchic streak was a desire to kick back not only at what they perceived as their own limitations but also the scene that surrounded them. Cavazos describes some of their formative choices as ‘spiteful’ and admits that they found resistance while trying to shed their skin.

“It was on a local level, but at the same time it was a reflection of what we had been doing personally the whole time, playing the game,” he said. “We were a dime a dozen, there were just so many bands that were like us and we were like so many bands.

“Not to say there’s a huge difference between what we’re doing now, but there is something a little bit more unique and authentic. We were lashing out. We were probably projecting more than anything. Within our scene, people didn’t like it at first. That was us just saying, ‘we’re trying to strip away everything we’ve done and start over, this is how we’re going to do that’.”

Papa Roach and American Fangs UK & Ireland Tour Dates are as follows

Thu December 5th 2013 - MANCHESTER Manchester Academy
Sun December 8th 2013 - GLASGOW Barrowland
Mon December 9th 2013 - NEWCASTLE UPON TYNE O2 Academy Newcastle
Tue December 10th 2013 - LONDON O2 Academy Brixton

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