Antiskeptic first burst onto the scene twenty years ago. Formed out the back of a record store in 1999, they shot to the forefront of the early naughties’ rush of exciting Australian rock bands like Gyroscope, Kisschasy and Parkway Drive. Their impressive run saw the band release three albums, tour relentlessly and gather a hugely dedicated fan base, becoming Triple J darlings in the process thanks to their 2002 Hottest 100 hit Called. Now they’re going on tour with For Amusement Only and Seraphs Coal. Nick Coppin answers some questions about the tour for Hi Fi Way.

Awesome line up, how did this tour come about?
Over the past year there seems to have been all these bands reforming from that early naughties Aussie punk/rock scene. Its purely coincidental that it has happened at the same time but we thought it would be stupid not to team up with our old buddies Seraphs Coal & For Amusement Only for some shows, considering we did so much together back in the early days. There was something special about the scene back then and so many people have so much of their youth, friendships and good-time memories tied up in these bands, their music and the shows they used to go to, so I think there is quite a bit of excitement that we all get to do it together again!

Do you find not touring as much, or not at all, that you actually do miss it?
Yeah it’s weird, I found myself missing the things I used to hate about touring, like driving endless hours along highways in stinking buses or the early mornings with little sleep. Since we’ve been back I have been trying to appreciate each and every moment a lot more than I did back then. I feel really lucky that we get to be doing this again, it’s been such a trip!

Has there been a lot of fan pressure to tour again?
We didn’t muck around with booking shows in…we’ve done a few things in Melbourne now, a little East Coast tour with The Get Up Kids and obviously have this tour coming up. We are getting a lot of noise from Adelaide as we haven’t been there yet. Adelaide was always our home away from home, so we are definitely excited to get back there and are working on something really special for those guys.

How did Antiskeptic celebrate the twenty year milestone?
We put on a big twentieth anniversary party in Melbourne! Man, it was fun! We put on two of our favourite bands Wishful Thinking & Goodnight Combat Fighter, it sold out a month before the show and was packed with so many old, familiar faces, who sang along in full voice, so it was just a great reunion for everyone and a really special celebration for us.

What achievements stand out most for the band over the twenty years?
To still be going after twenty years and over one thousand shows is pretty incredible I reckon. For people to come up and tell us that our music etched itself into so many good memories throughout their life is something I really value more than anything these days. As far as an achievement that stands out, I’ll always be proud that we had a track that made it on the Triple J Hottest 100, I think that’s something that is getting harder and harder to do… it always gives me a bit of cred when talking with younger kids who’ve never heard of the band, haha!

Do you think this tour will lead to something more regular?
We are all dads now and live in different states, so our priorities have certainly shifted from how they used to be, but the three of us are just excited to be playing music together again. You won’t see us playing every weekend, but if it’s something that sounds like fun to the three of us and we can work it around our family lives, we will be keen to do it. It’s been nice, plotting out the past year with fun events on the calendar to look forward to…each show we do now is really special because they are so few and far between.

Is new music on the cards?
I can say with much excitement that there are some pretty incredible song ideas floating around at the moment. We are hoping to start working on them over the second half of this year.

Will there be a bit of competitiveness between all the bands on the bill?
Haha…We’re just going to do our thing. I reckon we’ve all got our own things going on and are quite different bands, but being born and bred in that punk/rock scene we’ll all be bringing bucket loads of energy.

Is there an arm wrestle or rock paper scissors to work out who headlines each night?
Seraphs and FAO are weedy, skinny dudes…bring it on! They’ll have no chance at beating me in an arm wrestle!

Do you get to compare rider requests?
This tour is gonna be more like a party, so I’m all about the communal riders. As long as there is good beer flowing, I’m happy!

Who do you think will be the biggest prankster on tour?
Oooh, it will be a toss up between Seraphs and FAO I reckon, I’m sure many shenanigans will be had. I just hope someone is there to film it!

Interview By Rob Lyon

Catch Antiskeptic on tour with For Amusement Only and Serpahs Coal on the following dates, tickets through OzTix

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