Interview: Erik Jensen & Matti Hoffman of Escape The Fate

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Story: Trenton Worsham

Photos: Dylan Fipps

Escape The Fate is no stranger to the road or big shows. The band is currently on their massive Rockzilla arena tour tearing it up alongside Hollywood Undead, Papa Roach, and Falling In Reverse. Lots of bands on the level of Escape The Fate have seen and done basically everything there is to do as a band but nothing can replace an intimate show, going back to the roots of where you came from.

While the band is not from South Carolina, they made a stop at the Radio Room in Greenville, SC for a one-off headline show in an intimate setting that the Rockzilla tour doesn’t have due to its sheer size. These types of shows allow support bands for the tours they’re on to connect with their fans and play songs they may not get to on the tour while getting a new experience in which the crowd becomes people and people with faces and names and stories rather than a sea of a few lit faces on the floor and darkness elsewhere.

I was able to catch up with two members of Escape The Fate at this show supported by local artists Seven Year Witch and Parris Bridge. Erik Jensen and Matti Hoffman sat down to talk about this show along with their tour, new music, and their experience joining Escape The Fate.

Matti Hoffman/Photo: Dylan Fipps

SLMAG: Thank you guys for sitting down with us here in Greenville, SC. You guys are playing the Radio Room tonight on this beautiful, overcast day.

ERIK: Oh today was a GREAT day finally. It’s been rough the last few days with the weather and our bus blew a tire and had the roof leaking in the rain so today has been much better for us

SLMAG: So what you’re saying is, touring doesn’t get much easier in a bus and it’s not as glamorous as one would expect?

MATTI: Yeah that’s rock n roll baby

SLMAG: You guys are currently out with some other awesome bands on the Rockzilla tour which has Papa Roach, Hollywood Undead, and Falling In Reverse. Tonight is different as it’s more intimate, how do you guys feel about these shows vs those massive ones?

ERIK: We just love the energy. I can feel the crowd and see them and they give it their all. The big arena shows are cool too but the energy of these types is insane

MATTI: Yeah I agree, I can see everyone and I have the most fun at these types

Photo: Dylan Fipps

SLMAG: Speaking of big shows while on that topic, there has been lots of discussion and disappointment from fans who may want to come to see a tour like Rockzilla but can’t get tickets due to the reselling and shooting the price up. What can you say about that if you can talk about that?

ERIK: What happens is lots of people buy the tickets and just resell them for higher prices preventing others from going or having to pay that higher price. It sucks but that’s what happens with those.

SLMAG: You two are the two newest members of Escape The Fate so what was that experience like coming into a band like this one where they had a huge following already?

MATTI: We have actually been in the band, each of us collectively, for a handful of years. Now, Erik has been in the band longer than I have. It’s just surreal because I grew up listening to Escape The Fate and I found them when I was 16 and I’m in my 30s now.

ERIK: Yeah same, I grew up with the band as a fan, and joining has allowed me to take what I’ve loved as a fan and have my influence be used in the music. I joined under some unique circumstances but it’s been awesome.

Erik Jensen/Photo: Dylan Fipps

SLMAG: One of the songs you’re playing tonight and on the tour is called H8 My Self which is the new single. With the way the word hate is spelled, is there something going on with that? What can you say about the new album?

ERIK: New single H8 My Self, eight, eighth album. Definitely intentional, it is out now, and our new album is opera-rock-emo-metal

Escape The Fate: H8 My Self LIVE Greenville South Carolina

SLMAG: So basically Sleep Token

ERIK: Ah, I do not want to go into the greatness that is Sleep Token, but we really don’t have a release date yet and Matti here is a virtuoso and 12 of the 15 songs we have done have solos in them. He will just get an idea and say he’ll be back and come back with just the most awesome stuff.

MATTI: Aww thank you, you’re a virtuoso too!

SLMAG: It’s February and just in the blink of an eye it’ll be the fall again, so what else do you guys have going on before we let you go here?

MATTI: Yeah we have Blue Ridge Rock Festival this year, going to Australia, some shows in Europe so we will be going everywhere!

ERIK: H8 My Self is out now on Spotify, Tidal, Apple Music, Deezer, just everywhere!

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About Author

Since 2014, Trenton has been a journalist for Soundlink Magazine. He specializes in interviewing bands for both video and podcasting formats while writing various pieces.

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