Hailing from Scranton, Eye On Attraction will be performing at 8 p.m. Sept. 27 at the Cell Block, 154 W. Third St. Described as progressive and eclectic rock, the band chatted with the Sun-Gazette about the struggles of juggling being college students and making music, and the joys of being shirtless.
BETHANY WIEGAND: So who are the members of Eye On Attraction, and how did the band start?
EYE ON ATTRACTION: Drummer Andrew Merkle, bassist-guitarist Joe Terry, guitarist-bassist Mike Trischetta, and vocalist Zack Graham. The band started on the first day of college classes in '09 when Andrew (wearing a drum shirt) and Joe (wearing a guitar shirt) happened to sit next to each other in class. "Want to be in a band?" "Yes!" It wasn't long before Mike was added to the lineup and the trio solidified while writing songs, playing shows and cycling through vocalists; trying to find someone as dedicated, skillful and energetic as the rest of them. In December 2011, they had a jam session with Zack and the chemistry was apparent immediately.
Eye On Attraction will perform at 8 p.m. Sept. 27 at The Cell Block, 154 W. Third St.
BW: If I'm correct, most of the band members are in school. How does that affect you all as a band? Is it an added stress? And what are you all going to school for? How do you keep yourself balanced?
EOA: You are correct and it IS an added stress for sure. Mike and Joe are physics majors, Andrew is a psychology major and Zack is a digital media major. That being said, we've all committed to music; it's what we want to do for the rest of our lives so the band comes first. For instance, one Thursday, we started writing a song at 8 p.m. Two of us had huge physics projects and an exam, and Andrew had a 10-page psychology research paper, a review paper on a 500-page book he hadn't read yet and a big exam yea, we worked on the song until 3 in the morning until we'd exhausted our creativity, THEN we freaked out and started working on all of our homework.
BW: What's the atmosphere like when Eye On Attraction comes together creatively? Is it a group effort?
EOA: Our atmosphere has ALWAYS been characterized by open-mindedness. No idea is not worth trying.
BW: What inspires you? What musicians and bands do you look up to-get inspiration from?
EOA: I think one band that we can all agree on is Foxy Shazam.
BW: Is there any new music out there that you're really excited about?
EOA: We have a few massive Coheed and Cambria fans in the group, so their forthcoming album is a big one. Dave Matthews Band is getting set to release their new record as well, as are Muse.
BW: If you could open anywhere for any act, who-what would it be?
EOA: Rush at Red Rocks would be a dream come true! (Literally, since Rush doesn't have an opening act!).
BW: Where have you performed? Have you stayed local or gone anywhere really exciting?
EOA: We started in Scranton, but we've branched out to New Jersey, Binghamton, Syracuse, Stroudsburg, Allentown and more. Opening up for Foxy Shazam was a fun one! Andrew has played in some crazy places for the finals of drum competitions, Nashville and Hard Rock Arena in Miami, most notably.
BW: What's the weirdest-craziest thing that's ever happened on stage?
EOA: Everyone has done some crazy stuff: Mike has been known to play guitar solos behind his head and behind Joe's back, Andrew walks outside of venues to smash cymbals to the ground, Zack has "conducted" the band, Joe has climbed poles and hung upside down from trees for bass solos ... to name a few!
BW: What is one thing you'd do as a band to improve and support local music?
EOA: Give more young bands a shot to play with us. You have to start somewhere and we have played with some killer younger talent over the past few years.
BW: What's your ultimate goal as a band?
EOA: Hey, it'll be nice to play Madison Square Garden one day, but for now we just want to share our music with as many people as we possibly can.
BW: If readers have never heard of you, what three words would you tell them that describes you?
EOA: Energetic, fun, unique.
BW: From your photos, it looks like you guys have TONS of fun on stage. Is being shirtless a requirement?
EOA: We work so hard in the studio and during rehearsals prepping our live show, that it's a real cathartic experience on stage. We let loose and we like the crowd to feel that energy. Shirts have a nasty tendency of getting in the way! Also, it's HOT under stage lights!
BW: What are your expectations on releasing your first full-length album?
EOA: We have a bunch of crazy plans for supporting the album release; all the details will be made available on our website on October 3rd. Keep checking in!
BW: Have you ever been to the Cell Block? What can audience members expect from your show?
EOA: We have never been to the Cell Block, but we have heard fantastic things. As far as the audience goes, they can expect to bear witness to more energy in one room than a large group of kindergarteners on a sugar high! If you want to come out to a show, have a good time and let loose for a night, an Eye On Attraction show is the place to be!
For more information, visit www.facebook.com/eyeonattraction.