1. How did you get your band name?
Well, we were all together spitting out band names for a few hours one day in our guitarists basement and we came up with "The Essential". We agreed it was almost okay, but it wasn't quite right, so someone modified it to "The Natural" and we kept it. Really we just hated all of each others suggestions and everyone hated that one least. Also we're all sort of literature nerds, so we thought a book reference would be pretty cool.
2. How did this band get started?
We were all in this band called Here Comes The Neighborhood with one of our best friends ever Mikey Giacobbe at one point, but that band sort of reached a plateau and we decided to put it to bed. Once we realized we were all each other's favorite musicians in the world and that we just had the wrong people playing the wrong instruments we started making music again. Now we have three singers because all of our egos were too big to just have one lead singer like any normal band should and Mike drives us to shows out of the good will of his heart.
3. What bands are you influenced by?
Collectively we're pretty influenced by Say Anything and Saves the day. Our drummer Will is a big Strokes fan and our keyboardist Stephen really likes Forever The Sickest Kids and jazz standards. I (Dustin) try to draw from Motion City Soundtrack and Brand New, or NOFX, or Everytime I Die and the other guitarist Joe is into Ben Gibbard stuff and Dntel style stuff. Our bassist Victor is influenced by meth.
4. If you could tour with any bands, past or present, who would it be and why?
Right now I think we'd all agree Every Time I Die would be a fuckin' blast to tour with. They're the top of the food chain in fun. I'd also want to tour with Fall Out Boy or MCS though so we could shoot the shit about how to be a successful band.
5. If you were a furry, what animal would you be? Why that animal?
A tiger, because who's ever met a furry who doesn't like cats? We're here to please
6. Why should people listen to your band?
Because if you're going to do anything with our band, that should be it.
7. If you were chosen to be in Guitar Hero/Rock Band, what song would you want in the game? How hard do you think it would be to five-star on expert?
Probably "Parachute Trap" because people always ask, "YO HOW DO YOU PLAY THAT SICK INTRO?" Plus it would totally screw you over with the orange key.
8. If you won a Grammy, who would you thank?
All of our good friends and our very concerned families. After that everyone who's ever listened to us and loved or hated us. Haters need love too.
9. If you could change something about the music industry, what would it be?
I'd exchange all our friends on myspace for people that come to shows
10. Memorable tour experience?
Easily playing a porch at this frat at University of Illinois during rush week. We played to like 15 frat dudes that were busy grilling. There were literally more claps for hamburgers than for our set. While dismally packing up our gear some guy said, "hey you guys were good, stick around for beer!" We had never been around for rush week so we didn't understand. The turning point of the night was when I heard someone say "power out at 9", which turned out to be "power hour at 9". From there on out the night included beer pong losses, a blacklight party, losing Victor, faux English accents, Joe's first cigarette, finding Victor, a Toga party, and was topped off with free pizza. Unfortunately our drummer had to leave right after the show so he wasn't involved. We all spilt a little beer for a lost homie.
11. What does AP.net mean to you?
I love AP.net because it brings together all these people that really care about the scene and all these bands. It's a breath of fresh air from all the shitty trend bands and kids that lie about supporting their scene.
12. What is your favorite song to play?
It's really hard to pick one, they all sort of groove differently, but in a good way. Maybe "Rocket With A Beat" because it has my favorite punk beat.
13. What is your vacation spot of choice?
I haven't really traveled a ton. There are a lot of gorgeous places in the world, I'm down for anywhere.
14. What music reminds you of your childhood?
Sticks and Stones by New Found Glory and Weezer's Blue album and The Gorillaz.
15. If you could have any super power, what would it be? Why?
I'd choose to fly, because then you're not really obligated to stop a bad guy. No one would be like, "Something's attacking Times Square! Somebody get that guy who can fly, but is pretty average when it comes to everything else." If something's attacking Times Square call the military, they have huge ass guns.
16. Do you feel that your band has "made it"?
Well, we "made it" to our last show. If all goes well we'll "make it" to the next one.
17. What is something that most fans don't know about you?
Most fans probably don't know how much Metallica I listened to in 8th grade, or how much I looked like Garth from Waynes World my freshman year.
18. What's your favorite holiday?
Labor day because the whole band loves grillin' and chillin'.
19. What do you like to do in your spare time?
Try to stay counterproductive.
20. What kind of hidden talents do you have?
I actually CAN fly