1. How did you get your band name?
The band members had a good friend named Tyler Van Atkins who died in a car accident when Travis (singer) and Drake (drummer) were ending their freshman year of high school. They used to play in separate bands with Atkins, so they took his middle and last name, combined it, and there you have it. A tribute to Tyler Van Atkins (Van-Att-eh-Kuh)...Vanattica.
2. How did this band get started?
Travis (singer) and Drake (drummer) knew each other in high school but didn't play in the same bands. They hooked up with two other guys to start writing music after their first year of college in 2005. It was an immediate success in their minds.
3. What bands are you influenced by?
Four Year Strong, Panic! At the Disco, Periphery, A Day to Remember, Paramore, Pop Bands, Metal Bands, Bands that don't suck too bad. If you ride in the van with us to a show, you'll see what we listen to. It's a range between Classical Music, Kelly Clarkson, Maroon Five, Between the Buried and Me, and even heavier.
4. If you could tour with any bands, past or present, who would it be and why?
Linkin Park, Aerosmith, Foo Fighters, A Day to Remember, and Phil Collins. Linkin Park was a big influence on all of us in the early 00's and they still put on an amazing show in front of 456,039 people. Aerosmith is legendary, nuff said. Foo Fighters still continue to pull people off their couches and into the stands; they are amazing. A Day to Remember is similar to us in that they put in their dues and now they are seeing the success (All the Best guys. If you are reading this, see you in Ocala sometime.) Phil Collins...he's the man. If he were part of the animal kingdom, he'd be a Narwhal mixed with Chuck Norris. Deadly.
5. If you were a furry, what animal would you be? Why that animal?
We'd be a school of 800 pound Blue Fin Tuna. Nobody would mess with us, except boats. And that is the way it should be.
6. Why should people listen to your band?
We offer a change to the monotony of music that has plagued our generation. We combine Pop, Rock, Metal, and actual thought in our music. I promise, if you listen to the band, you will be impressed with at least one aspect of the band. If you aren't, come to a live show and watch us show off. Free cookies at our merchandise table frequent our fans' mouths too.
7. If you were chosen to be in Guitar Hero/Rock Band, what song wouldyou want in the game? How hard do you think it would be to five-star on expert?
We were chosen to be in Rock Band :) I'm glad you asked this question so we can shamelessly plug it. We got two songs from our new E.P. coming out March 15th, 2011, on the game. Good luck kids, one of the songs is damn near impossible to play.
8. If you won a grammy, who would you thank?
We might do a list of people who we would like to not thank. For example, the Champaign Parking Enforcement agency.
9. If you could change something about the music industry, what would it be?
Changes? There are too many shady characters wanting a piece of your pie. This is for all the newcomers with some talent: You will be approached eventually by guys who will claim that they can get you famous quickly, get your songs into video games or television shows, etc. The majority of the time, they will take your money up front and get you nothing. The best thing to do is to keep working your butt off, promote yourself, and contact the "big wig" people yourself.
So to change the industry? Let's get rid of the people who are taking advantage of young bands or just ignore them. Tell them to get a real job.
10. Memorable tour experience?
Touring is epic. Its hard. Its dirty. Its grinding. Its sweaty. Its fun. For some reason, girls like guys who tour. Don't know why but they do. We did our first nationwide tour (self booked) the summer of 2010, and it was amazing seeing the country. We were able to cap off the tour in Los Angeles at the Viper Room which speaks for itself.
11. What does AP.net mean to you? AP.net is a resource available to music lovers to find out more information about bands.
12. What is your favorite song to play?
Our set in its entirety is fun to play, especially now that people are recognizing and singing along with the songs. But for me personally, I like playing "Ready, Set, Stop!"
13. What is your vacation spot of choice?
I'm actually on vacation right now. I've been in New Zealand and Australia for 2 weeks on holiday with my dad. We are both super busy and it was nice to get away and relax for a moment. Future spots for me hopefully include Oregon, Washington State, Mediterranean Sea, and Indonesia for some diving and surf.
14. What music reminds you of your childhood?
Peanut Butter and cheetos. I was a portly child. Cute...but portly.
15. If you could have any super power, what would it be? Why?
I would have the power to change my super power whenever I wanted to whatever I wanted. I would start out being invisible so I could sneak into Kevin Bacon's house and see how he likes it (referring to invisible man).
16. Do you feel that your band has "made it"?
Hell no. We have so much more to do. Talk to me in a few years.
17. What is something that most fans don't know about you?
I threw the discus in college for 2 division one schools (University California at Santa Barbara and the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign). I earned my varsity letters, got my jacket and moved on. I used to be 262 pounds of pure steel. Now, I'm a skinnier version of pure steel at 185 pounds.
18. What's your favorite holiday?
19. What do you like to do in your spare time?
Relax. My life is constantly moving and my free time is spent relaxing or beating up my dog, Grenade.
20. What kind of hidden talents do you have?
This is setting me up to look like a doucher...Thanks for that. I'm a good athlete, I do a lot of voices from cartoons and movies, I'm semi-funny.