Neverwake have had a busy 2017, most recently hosting the first annual Sleep Walkers Ball as well as the creation of a music video for the single “Suffocate”. It seems as if these guys from Pittsburgh PA never stop trying to make their dreams a reality. We recently had the chance to chat with the guys in Neverwake to find out what keeps them working so hard.
Johnny DiCarlo // Lead Vocals, Guitar
Justin Sanford // Guitar, Vocals
Marcus Giannamore // Drums
George Scott // Bass
Chimera- So how did you guys get started as a band?
Johnny- We got started way back in the beginning of time. We came out of high school and we were all, well three of us were completely different. We weren’t best friends or anything and we all had different interests. I was into sports, Marcus was in the highschool band…George was into nothing! Haha. We didn’t really know each other personally until the band started. I had been writing some stuff with my friend and we were about to go into the studio. We needed a drummer, so I knew Marcus was a drummer. He was in the highschool band and a very musical person. We asked him to come over and practice. When we showed him our idea he was immediately able to play it back. So, we thought “Yes, he is our drummer now and he is in the band.” We started out in the studio but then realized we didn’t have a bassist. George was a guitar player and he was already trying to get into some bands in the area. We eventually asked him to try picking up a bass instead of a guitar and he worked well with us. We had a great time learning our first couple of songs together. As the years went on, we had a member change, two albums later we needed to get another guitarist in there because our stuff is pretty technical for just one guitarist. So, we had played with Justin before while he was in another band and they had broken up. We sat him down and said, “This is where we are trying to be, and he said, alright that’s where I am trying to be too” I think what brings us together best is that we mesh well. If you can’t get along with your members than it’s gonna be pretty tough. It’s what holds you together.
Chimera- So what is the music scene like where you come from? Is it difficult making progress or do you have a pretty good grasp on your local scene?
Johnny- I would definitely say that it’s taken a while in certain places. We are right outside of Pittsburgh where the music scene isn’t all that large, it isn’t that big but it’s getting a ton better. We have had a pretty good hold there for a while. About a year and a half ago we started getting into Pittsburgh and just like anyone, we had to get familiar with the area. A lot of people didn’t know who we were still. So, it took a little while, now we have promoters calling us to do the gigs, instead of the other way around.
Chimera- So do you tour?
Johnny – We have done a small run of shows, I wouldn’t really call it a tour. We have a lot of shows lined up back to back. We are usually moving all over the place. We were playing at SXSW and Rockfest, Carolina Rebellion. We were in Baltimore after that, just all over the place. We developed a taste for it and it’s something we enjoyed.
Chimera- What would you guys say is the highlight of your career is thus far?
Johnny- I am going to speak for all of us right now when I say our latest EP was produced by John Moyer (Bassist) of Disturbed. That was something I feel like all of us are proud of. Essentially getting in front of someone of that stature and saying, “listen this is who we are” and having them want to be a part of this. That was something, at least for me that Disturbed was one of my idol bands. I have seen them countless times. That is definitely a highlight for me.
Justin- Musically, I would agree. The live end of it, it would be easy to say that Carolina Rebellion in 2015 would be the high point of getting out and playing live for me. Over 40,000 people there that day and being able to bump elbows with bands we are fans of.
Chimera- What did it feel like being on that stage in front of that many people?
Markus – You would think being up there and seeing so many people you would be nervous but it’s super energizing to see people as far as the eye can see. It’s amazing and it feeds back to you.
Chimera – Could you tell us a little bit about the Sleep Walkers Ball and your involvement with that?
Johnny- It’s our first annual Sleep Walker Ball, it’s a charity show that we are going to put on every year. We donate to a local charity, this year we donated to UPMC Children’s Hospital. We are happy to do that and give back. A Halloween show is something we have been trying to do for a while. We are glad we finally got the chance to put something like this together.
Chimera- What is the story behind your band name?
Johnny- We have had this question come up a lot. Here’s the thing, it has nothing to do with death like most people think. When we first started writing music our songs were very different. Our songs were very long and thematic. It was almost like “This sounds like a creepy bad dream, something you can never wake up from” Another more comical way to look at it is, at the time we were making the band name a lot of bands were making these long ridiculous band names. “Promises of Tomorrow” or “Martyrs for my Horse” So we just wanted to do one word, something simple. It’s not even a real word but we decided on Neverwake. To this day I am happy we chose that name. It’s simple.
Any bands you would love to just jump on tour with right now?
George – I’d say a lot of people say we sound like old Bullet for My Valentine or Avenged Sevenfold…Trivium. One of our favorite bands is Trivium. I think that would be awesome to get on tour with those three bands.
Johnny- Yea I wouldn’t know what to do, go out into the crowd or play.
Justin- I am a life long Zack Wylde fan, so Black Label society for sure. I don’t know if we would be a good match. I’d go to that show
Chimera – So, what does the rest of the year going into the next hold for you guys?
Johnny- Next on our list, we have a music video that is already filmed, and it will be released soon. It’s for the song “Suffocate” Suffocate is about us overcoming something that is in our paths. It’s cool how we made the video. We essentially took 4 concepts that each of us has a problem with and in the video, each of us “Go after it” I think a lot of people will think it’s pretty cool. It’s really eerie. After that we are looking to get back into the studio. We are trying to get something done for the start of next year. We are taking the route of small EP but in doing so we have to release quicker. We are looking to get into the studio with Moyer and doing another one.
Chimera- Where do you guys hope to see yourselves in the next 5 years? Is this something you want to take as far as it can go?
Johnny- We are in it. We have always had big dreams. We wanted to go as far as we can go with this, even beyond music. We have had ideas and so much inspiration and it never ends. We just want to keep pursuing this. I speak for everyone when I say “We have no plans to stop until we are there!”
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