The Things They Carried (3TC)

Long Island’s The Things They Carried, or 3TC consist of Steve Schwartz-on vocals/guitars, Matt Sprio on guitars, Eric Pihl on bass, Andy Illiano on drums. They come with a shockwave of energy that will rock your face off! Their First EP “Attention Crisis” was released in 2009 and in 2010 3TC headed into the studio with producer Casey Bates (Chiodos, Pierce The Veil, Isles and Glaciers, Fall of Troy) where they produced a killed album “There’s Something I Can’t Tell Anyone” in 2010. The band’s most current singles are “The Rationality of Failure” and “364 Day Anniversary” that unsurprisingly have streaming and radio play. Ugly Scene had the pleasure of interviewing the whole band. Ugly Scene: Your name is a little bit peculiar and could you tell us a little bit about the name? Steve: The name is based on a book. Not only that I like lyrically I like to talk about baggage that people like to carry but don’t necessarily like to talk about. So basically it’s like the things they carried. We wouldn’t have taken the name if lyrically I didn’t write about that stuff but it just totally made sense. So that’s why this band is called The Things They Carried. Ugly Scene: How did you come together as a band and how did you meet? Andy: Back in I think 2006 I met Steve and we were in a band together for a few years. I’ve known Matt for the last 12 years and Eric for the past nine. Eventually the band that Steve and I were in collapsed and we needed a guitar player and a bass player. I called up Matt and Eric and they joined. Matt: From there we jammed. Eric: Me and Matt have been jamming forever so when they asked us we figured we’d give it a shot and see what happens. Steve: It was pretty awesome. It’s cool that they were all childhood friends and pretty much next door neighbors. It worked out amazingly. We all got in a room and jammed and we were all like yes, there it is. Ever since then it has been The Things They Carried. Ugly Scene: Your music actually remind me a bit of My Chemical Romance and how their music has a beginning, middle and end. What are your influences and how did you come up with the musical style? Steve: My influences are System of a Down, Muse, and Underoath. Those bands are huge influences of mine. Andy: It’s funny you mention My Chemical Romance because I think on our EP, the record before this, I think that was even more evident to My Chemical Romance and 30 Seconds to Mars influence. On this next record I think we left that a little bit and went heavier. More like a system of a down direction. But we still like bands like My Chemical Romance also. I think they are a great band, I have seen them live a few times. Matt: I’m into Thrice, August Burns Red and combined with music like System of a Down, and we combine all our music influences and it makes The Things They Carried. Steve: It was really cool coming into this band because I’m coming in from a little bit different generation. So it was cool to fuse the old school with the new school. These guys brought in the more current metal vibe. I didn’t even scream before I knew these guys and then I got into Underoath and heavier bands through them. Then we all fused and that is what created the new sound. Ugly Scene: How does the screaming effect your voice? Steve: When I first started screaming and I would play live show after show it affected me tremendously. I took some lessons with a vocal coach and she gave me some warm ups that I do every night. Now it doesn’t effected me at all but it took time though to figure out how to scream the right way. UglyScene: Is this your first time in Nebraska? Andy: Our second day. We played our first show in Lincoln and now we are in Omaha for the second night. UglyScene: Is this your first time headlining? Steve: Yeah, most venues put us last. We purposely like to go second to last or in the middle. A lot of times we are playing for locals who are coming to support their bands in their local area and we are trying to get them into our music. So we don’t want to play last so that people leave, we want people to stay. I guess this is a headliner tour but in the meantime not every show we are playing at the end. UglyScene: What do you want the fans to leave with after one of your shows? Steve: I want them to leave with their faces melted, blown away, just shocked by the unique sound that they heard. That’s usually what we get when people see us live. Like man that was really different because I guess kids are used to metal core now these days. We mix it in and bring in a lot of different influences. We want kids to leave with I can’t wait to hear more and I want to see this band again because they are really fresh. UglyScene: Can you tell me a little bit more about the new album? Andy: The new album is called There’s Something I Can’t Tell Anyone. We have songs about depression, domestic violence, divorce and these are heavy topics that a lot of people don’t like to tell anyone. We have a song on the album called I Can’t Tell Anyone so it’s kind of how we named the album. It’s not a concept album but the songs are similar like in that sense. About the baggage we carry with us and things we can’t talk about or tell anyone. UglyScene: One of the purposes for UglyScene is looking at the other side of glam. That comes from the idea that music is inspiring and music can, in my opinion, save someone’s life. Also that if a person hears someone that they look up to musically talk about certain issues they can get the help they need. Would you like to talk about anything regarding this? Andy: As far as advice goes if anyone feels like they are suffering from these problems I’d say you can listen to our album. You can realize that it’s not just you having these problems. A lot of kids parents get divorced and a lot of kids have problems with depression. Eric: We are actually all children of divorced parents. Steve: I’ve actually battled with my fair share of depression and that is why I write about it. It comes and goes and hang in there because I’m sure everything will work out. UglyScene: Any last thoughts? Eric: Check out our music video on Youtube for 364 Day Anniversary. We are on Facebook and our album is on iTunes. Andy: Come and see us on tour. We will be touring for the next ten years. Steve: Also if you have never heard of us and you have discovered us through this interview, you’ve went on your computer, you’ve listened to the music, bought the record. Hit us up and let us know you want to see us live and we will definitely come and play for you because we love to tour. This is what we love.

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