When it comes to achieving your dreams, sometimes having no backup plan is the only way to go. This is what Waterparks’ lead singer Awsten Knight did and everything just snowballed from there. Combining lush pop punk and pop music into one, the trio from Houston, Texas have been quite the buzz in the alternative scene, already taking away respected awards such as winning Best Breakthrough Artist at this year’s APMAs and several media outlets already speculating they’re ‘the next biggest thing’. After releasing their debut album Double Dare almost a year ago and signing to Equal Vision Records’ diverse roster, it can be said that Waterparks have a lot of energy to share and with their upcoming tour to Australia with The Maine, more and more people are going to witness the music they wished they had heard earlier.
I think it’s really exciting that you’ll be joining The Maine on their Australian tour next year. How do you feel about coming up here for the first time ever?
It’s gonna be so cool. I’m really so afraid of your spiders and snakes and all your wildlife. Like, I’m not psyched on that. I’ve watched way too many documentaries and I’m just like “Fuck…!” But I’m psyched to go meet everyone over there. I’ve seen them on the Internet. I’ve seen everybody on the Internet being like “Australia!” and I’m like, “Spiders!” except now I gave in.
Spiders are actually scary though. We have the redback spider, they’re scary af. Otherwise, lots of musicians have visited the zoos and they’ve managed to cuddle up with koalas. They’re fairly friendly under the control of wildlife professionals.
Oooh, I don’t know about that. See, I don’t want to meet a trapdoor spider – that’s like the scariest looking one.
Spiders are the worst though.
Trapdoor spiders hide and they get you really quick and then you have like half an hour to get to a hospital.
Yeah, we have quite venomous spiders. It’s actually quite insane. I think they’re mainly in rural areas though, not so much in the suburbs. But we do get daddy long leg spiders, which are apparently one of the more deadly spiders except they can’t bite the skin of humans – they’re just venomous to animals. [Editor’s note: After researching, this has been confirmed as a myth. I was basing off facts I learnt while I was in primary school. The most venomous spider in the world is The Brazillian Wondering Spider.]
Daddy long legs? That’s so weird. I didn’t even know they were poisonous though.
“I think the biggest thing is you have to make sure you’re conscious about what you want, obviously.”
I think it’s really awesome that since you guys formed Waterparks it’s been full steam ahead for you guys. You signed with Equal Vision Records in 2015 and released your debut album Double Dare. I actually read in a previous interview that playing and writing music was the end goal in your life. Did you feel somewhat scared that you didn’t have a back up plan in case things didn’t work out in the band?
I used to. My parents were supportive and everything, you know. I was going to college and I stopped because one of the main things was I just wanted that time to focus on the band. I needed to put everything into this and then from a music video, from that EP and some demos – the whole cluster, Equal Vision were like “Yo, this is sick” and I’m like “Cool!” [chuckles], but as far as like a backup plan goes, it sounds like lame or whatever but I just tried to put every little thing into the band, meaning like I just studied songwriting. I studied business – all that marketing stuff. I did every little thing. If I tried my absolute hardest and working like 18 hours a day on this and it doesn’t happen then fine. But if I didn’t do that then you know, I couldn’t get that mad if nothing worked or happened, you know.
I also read in a previous interview, in the release of your first EP you actually sold 100 copies of it as well. Prior to that, you didn’t play as many shows. When did you realise how important it was to get your music out there for people instead of like playing shows locally?
I thought it was really important to start doing shows. It’s funny that you mention it because we got 100 copies of the first EP Airplane Conversations pressed and then we put them on a website and right away they all just got like sold and I was like, “Ah, shit.” I was like, we can’t just be an Internet band so… we should probably start doing shows [chuckles] so that’s when [we] kinda got together and it was like, “Okay, now shows can happen” and we’ve kinda just been doing that.
Awesome. What would you say has been the most crucial lesson you’ve had to learn so far in the music industry?
Oh man. There’s always so much more stuff you’re learning. I mean, I’ve been doing bands and everything since I was like thirteen and I’ve always been the one who’s like handled the business end of it so I feel like the whole like watch-out-for-sketchy-ass-people thing came very early. I mean, I think the biggest thing is you have to make sure you’re conscious about what you want, obviously. I think it’s really important to have like different factors on what you’re doing. With a lot of our stuff, it get’s classified as pop punk but I’ve very, very much tried to make an effort to you know, be outside of that. I think it’s just because we have guitars, a white kid with coloured hair and shit – it’s like “Oh, pop punk”. We just went for a second album – I’m ready for it to be out. Again, that will just continue proving that.
Catch Waterparks live as they will be supporting The Maine’s headlining Australian Tour in February 2018. Dates can be found below:
Destroy All Lines, Chugg Entertainment & Killyourstereo Presents
THE MAINE & WATERPARKS AUSTRALIAN TOUR DATES:
TUESDAY 30 JAN – AMPLIFIER BAR, PERTH 18+
WEDNESDAY 31 JAN – FOWLERS LIVE, ADELAIDE LIC AA
FRIDAY 2 FEB – CORNER HOTEL, MELBOURNE 18+
SATURDAY 3 FEB – FACTORY THEATRE, SYDNEY LIC AA
SUNDAY 4 FEB – TRIFFID, BRISBANE LIC AA
Tickets on sale now!