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Making Music & Building Community: Autoignition Wants You to be Part of Their Scene

(EDITOR’S NOTE — With a video shoot for its new single ‘Imaginary Friends’ on Oct. 21 in East Aurora— in which the public is invited to take part — and a new album scheduled for release in early 2024, the punk band Autoignition has a lot happening. Liam Eber, the band’s founder and songwriter, was nice enough to sit down recently and speak with 1120 Press. Check out our story below and if you are interested in attending the video shoot — which also will feature a mini-concert by the band — email for the address. Autoignition is: Liam Ebers-Vocals/Guitar; Cooper Taylor-Guitar; Leo Castle-Bass and Quinn Ebers-Drums. — Photo by Karalyn Hope.)

1120 PRESS: Thank you for speaking with us. This video shoot coming up — and everything involved in it, including a live set — sounds amazing. Tell us how the idea came about, including the community-wide casting call.

LIAM EBERS: The idea for the video shoot came from us really wanting to take the time to do a real rollout to really build some excitement for the release of our first LP. The barn is in the backyard of my family's house in East Aurora and I always wanted to use it as a practice space, or do a show there, because it's a really cool space. It's all been covered in graffiti by the people who used to hang out there back in the 90's, so it's like a time capsule in a way. The idea to have the shoot be an open invite thing was, in part, inspired by a Labor Day party hosted by Donny Arthur. It was really great to get a chance to hang out with people outside of a gig, and I think it was a huge step in building a community in Buffalo. We would be nothing without all of our friends, family, and all of the other bands who have helped us out, so it's really just a way to try and give back to everyone. Another big aspect of doing this was to try and implement what I'd like to see more of in the scene: Music without community or culture is no good to me. I really want to see more of a DIY mentality throughout more of the Pop-Punk and Emo bands in our area. Seeing bands like Pilot-Field, Gas Station, and Robbery Club pop up this year has really given me a lot of hope for that.

1120: You guys have a new LP coming out. How’s that process been going? Can you tell us anything about the new material and when we might expect the new LP to be released?

LE: Our LP is a huge step up for us. We did it with Jay Zubricky at GCR Audio over the summer and it was a really great experience getting to know him a lot better. We still have stayed true to our type of late 90s-early-00s NJ/LI-kind-of-sound, but we went a little outside of the box for us. There's an acoustic track, a few slower songs, and a lot more emphasis on harmonies. I believe there's something for everyone on the record without straying too far out of our roots. Currently, we're still in the mixing process but we're hoping to start the rollout as soon as we have masters. Looking for a release most likely around January-February next year.

1120: How is the album different from your other two previous releases?

LE: This album is definitely a huge step production-wise compared to our previous work, even though I love how raw our second EP is. There's no glaring vocal flubs or missed snare hits this time around. We really combed through everything to make sure it was absolutely perfect. There's a lot more layering of vocals and guitars on this release. Having access to GCR’s amazing collection of gear they've amassed was a lot of fun on this one. I think it'll show that we're capable of a lot more than just writing D-beat songs, even though that's what we love and we're still cooking up plenty of them.

1120: Autoignition started as a very literal one-man band, then shifted to a full-fledged group. How has that evolution informed the growth of Autoignition’s music and the direction of the band?

LE: At the end of the day, Autoignition is always gonna be my baby. There's a very specific vision in mind and I'm very lucky to know people who really understand it and want to help bring it to life, because it's really no fun doing it alone. Leo joining the band is what motivated my brother Quinn to start taking drumming a lot more seriously, which in turn is what allowed us to start playing shows and be a real band. Our new guitarist, Cooper, keeps us in line with trying to make the live set as tight as it can be. So I'm still doing all of the writing, now I just have people to bounce ideas off of, and hopefully create some even stronger material. It's very important that Autoignition is presented as a band and not just a solo project because it's only because of the people involved that anyone gives a shit.

1120: SUNY Fredonia has long had a major impact on the Buffalo music scene and that continues to this day with bands like Pilot-Field, Gas Station, Chelsea O./Stress Dolls, Jake King, Tsunami Surprise, The Weather Might Say Otherwise, Johnny and the Man Kids etc…. Do you ever stop and consider that lineage, and if so what does that it means to you?

LE: A huge part of why anyone is even aware of Autoignition in the first place is because of Fredonia. Autoignition was still just a solo thing that I didn't really promote at all because I didn't think anyone would really care. Jordan Budd at the radio station took notice and had invited me on to The Local Lo-Down, which caused me to start promoting it heavily and start searching for other members. I remember when I first started playing in a punk band back in 2017, Fredonia seemed like the coolest place ever. So now being friends with the people who were really integral to making that scene happen back in the day is super cool. They're all still around, all still making great music, and working their ass off every day to put Buffalo on the map. It's really important to keep the scene going where it's headed and I think in both Buffalo and Fredonia there's a lot of great people putting in a lot of effort to build something great. I think we're all collectively headed toward a really cool time for music in our area.

1120: Is there anything else you want to add that we haven’t touched on?

LE: Listen to Jeweltone, Spaced, Fatal Visions, Halfpace, Final Declaration, Mark of Fatality, Robbery Club, Gas Station, Smash N Grab, Catch the Ghost, TWMSO, Speed Dial, Early Worm, Pilot-Field, Exhibition, Ashford, Face First, and Neetchy.


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