“Total world domination,” laughs Spags, drummer for the up and coming New Jersey band End Of An Era, when asked about the goals of the fast rising band. They have just released their latest and strongest effort to date, and plan on spending the rest of the year supporting it with shows throughout the region, as well as throughout the U.S. They’ve covered most of the eastern half of the country, and even made it as far as Brazil.
Joining Spags in the band are Jeff Wallace on lead vocals, Jeff Brogan on guitar, Chris Matsinger on guitar and Justin Mazyk on bass.
The group was formed out of the ashes of several other bands. “Most of us knew each other from playing in crappy local bands in the Jersey Shore scene when we were younger,” Spags says. “We had always wanted to play together and when the opportunity arose, we took it. A few years later we recruited Chris, who had been playing with the popular Philly band Carfax Abbey. “
Carfax Abbey was a highly acclaimed goth metal band in the Philadelphia scene that drew both critical acclaim and a large following during their heyday. End Of An Era draws on those influences, but has incorporated others as well, citing Nine Inch Nails, Depeche Mode, Muse and Stabbing Westward as artists they draw on, among many others. “It's difficult for us to describe it directly,” Spags relates. “Our genre labels on websites are alternative, electro and rock. But we refer to it as ‘sex pretzel.’” Others have referred to it as “Sci-Fi Disco Punk for the new millennium.”
The new, self-titled album has been a total group effort. All the members had input in every step of the process, and they feel it allowed them to come up with things that they hadn’t previously tried to do. They also spent a great deal of time on the writing process, much more than was their usual way of operating, and it paid off in what they all feel is an album superior to anything they’d previously done.
Thus far the fans have reacted strongly to the new material, and group members are enjoying the opportunity to play the songs live as well. Some of the standout tracks include “The Walking Dead," "The Good, The Bad, And The Better" and "No Tomorrow."
They recently shot a live DVD at The Saint, and plan on continuing their touring as long as possible. “Every day on the road with us is a drunken adventure,” exclaims Spags. “In October, we played a Halloween show in Massachusetts. Afterwards, a few of us were bored during the load-out and accidentally lit an entire box of fireworks on fire... inside the van. We scrambled to get the box out of the van, and upon the impact of it hitting the ground, it burst into flames just outside the door. Ten-foot flames shot up, along with a flurry of roman candles shooting in every direction. The promoter of the show ran out to see what was going on, saw the flames, and instead of yelling at us, he proclaimed us rock gods, gave us extra cash, and told us to leave before the cops showed up.”
The group has parlayed its aggressive DIY work ethic into an impressive resume. They’ve performed in front of 30,000 people at Giants Stadium, and played over 350 shows in the last five years. They were the winners of the 2007 Bamboozle contest, won the 2010 JerseyShows Jersey Showdown, been nominated for Asbury Music Awards, and opened for groups such as My Chemical Romance, Muse, Paramore, Linkin Park, The Misfits, Coheed and Cambria, Snoop Dogg, Biohazard, Type O Negative, Nonpoint and MC Hammer.
The name of the band alludes to the end of something, rather than the start, so what possessed the group to go with such a moniker? “It started out as just something that we thought would look cool on t-shirts and posters,” Spags explains. “Since then, it's really defined our beliefs and our message. We're basically disgusted with a lot of the world around us and with the way people treat each other. It's time to end it all and start over. Destroy the world for the better.”
You can get the latest End Of An Era album from iTunes, Amazon.com, Jack’s Music Shoppe in Red Bank, Underground in Sayreville, or just about any digital outlet on the Internet. You can get some of their music for free at endofanera.bandcamp.com, see their profile at facebook.com/endofaneranj.com, or get the latest news at facebook.com/endofanera or myspace.com/endofanera.