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Interview with Tom Gabel of Against Me!

Against Me!
Against Me!
Coutesy of

Against Me! is one of those bands that has had quite an effect on their fans and punk music and while on the road to the Fillmore Auditorium in Denver, singer Tom Gabel was kind enough to answer a few questions before the show.

When you started playing music, you were predominantly acoustic. Ho do you think that influenced your style?

Well, the approach to the band being acoustic was both an aesthetic choice and a choice of necessity, or a lack of choice really. At the time I was heavily influenced by the late 70's early 80's UK peace punk scene, bands like Crass and Poison Girls, Chumbawamba. Some of those bands had drifted into an almost hippy type of vibe with their music, they were all very DIY in their approach and there was also an element of minimalism to their approach that I admired. When I started the band all I had was an acoustic guitar, so it made that choice easy but it was those bands that made me realize how much I could accomplish with what little I had.

You released you first live album Americans Abroad!!! Against Me!!! Live in London!!! in 2006. What is the difference between American fans and British fans? How do Colorado fans compare?

I've found that most people going out to shows or involved in the scene are generally there for the same reasons, the music and the message. There's different trends that you see happening in different scenes and the touring itself can be different, but I've never noticed a difference because of nationality when someone is screaming my lyrics back into my face or shoving me out of the way as they knock the microphone stand over and do a stage dive into the crowd.

In 2008, you supported the Harvest of Hope Foundation. Would you consider working with them again?

We've done many benefits for Harvest Of Hope and definitely plan on continuing to work with them. I admire the people who work for the foundation and think their cause is more than just.

Do you think your departure from Sire Records will influence your writing?

Inevitably I'm sure it will, just because that's it works, your life changes, your music reflects those changes. I'm definitely not changing in approach though as far as thinking that I'm writing for a different audience now though, or taming my ambition.

How do you think touring with the Dropkick Murphys differs from your other tours?

Every tour is unique, its own adventure. We toured with Dropkick over in Europe for a couple weeks back in 2008 and I remember the shows being fantastic, I'm hoping for the same with this run.

You should really go check them out while they are here with the Dropkick Murphys on March 1, 2011. Visit Against Me! and the Fillmore Auditorium for more information.

Read the show review here.


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