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Escaping from the pandemic years and emerging with news that they’ll be returning to Australia in 2023, Las Vegas-based post-hardcore legends Escape The Fate are set to perform their 2010 self-titled album in full alongside plenty of fan faves when they hit our shores in April next year.
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With a passionate connection to their fanbase, millions of monthly listeners, and previous tours in their wake alongside the likes of Avenged Sevenfold, Papa Roach, I Prevail and many more, Escape The Fate ultimately cemented their status in the metalcore realms since releasing their groundbreaking 2008 album This War Is Ours. And, as Escape The Fate vocalist Craig Mabbitt recently revealed to Hysteria Magazine, their excitement to return our way is equally on par with the rapturous reaction from fans upon the tour’s official announcement earlier this year.
“We’re very excited,” enthuses Mabbitt. “I mean, the fact that we’re still around and still able to tour internationally, at least now it’s starting to open back up a little bit, is incredible. We just got back from the UK and now we’re planning to come to Australia again – it’s just so exciting!”
“I know a lot has happened in the world. A lot has happened in the band, a lot has happened in my personal life. But I’m just so very excited to get back to Australia. It’s been one of my favourite countries to tour in over the span of my whole career.”
While the news that Escape The Fate are confirmed to play their 2010 self-titled album in full when they hit our shores next April, the fact that there’s still a decent amount of months before they arrive also bodes well for some other surprises for fans in the lead up – including the potential of some shiny new Escape The Fate material.
“Without giving too much information or revealing what our big plan is,” Mabbitt says, smiling, “Australia’s still in April, and we do have a big US tour that we haven’t announced yet. And the plan is to have some new music out by then. So, by the time we do get to Australia for this self-titled tour, for anybody in Australia that wasn’t watching videos online of us doing this self-titled tour in South America or the US: we do play the album, then we come out and we play some more songs. So, I’m guessing we will be ready to premiere that brand new song during the Australia tour. We might premiere it stateside, but I’m sure it’ll be ready by the time we do come to Australia at the bare minimum. So that’s exciting!”
“It’s awesome because we didn’t even know, we announced this tour before we were even done recording the album in the studio. The fact that we now might have new material ready by the time we get to Australia is very exciting.”
Returning to Australia in 2023 following their previous visits, including a 10th anniversary tour for 2008’s This War Is Ours, Escape The Fate’s linkage to Australia is also particularly pertinent to Mabbitt’s own journey with the group.
You should always have a good time. But yeah, my good times before getting sober were not good times anymore.
[ Craig Mabbitt ]
“My fondest memories of Australia is that I went there for my first tour ever with Escape The Fate,” Mabbitt reveals. “They had some shows booked, and once I joined the band, they were able to tour overseas. But I had broken my ankle right before we were scheduled to tour Australia. The doctor specifically told me: no travelling, definitely don’t go on a plane because, you know, the altitude or whatever is not good for the cast. So he is like: don’t do any travelling like that. And I did not tell him that I would be travelling and it would be the longest flight ever.”
“My first tour ever with Escape was in Australia and I was on a crutch the entire time,” Mabbitt laughs. “All the Soundwave memories there as well are really, really good. And adding on that This War Is Ours 10 year tour as well before COVID was amazing.”
“Bondi Beach is always my favourite place to go. I go to Moo Burger there on Bondi Beach, and I get the Mootella shake every time I go. I don’t know if it lasted through COVID though, that’s a big question I have! I really, really hope that Moo Burger is still open.”
Sharply focused on charging into 2023 with new music and even more tours on the cards, the long-awaited return for Escape The Fate to be able to even perform live at all following the hurdles posed by the pandemic meant a fluctuating mix of nerves and excitement for Mabbitt who had personally been touring non-stop since the age of 16.
“It was a mixed bag of emotions,” says Mabbitt of the first Escape The Fate live show after the unexpected pause of touring. “The excitement obviously was still there, but then there was also nerves and me wondering: do I remember how to do this?”
“For us, I mean at least for me, I haven’t had a break from touring like that since I first started touring when I was 16 years old. So, it was nuts! And I went through a lot of personal changes. I got sober during COVID, which also meant there was the added nerves to that. Like: oh my god, do I remember playing or remember how to do this? And do I even remember how to do this without drinking a bunch before the show, you know? It had just become a normal thing, you know, show up, wake up, have some drinks, go to the bar, have some fun, and then just get up there and do your thing. With the first show back, I was definitely in my head a lot.”
“There was a lot happening going into that first show back,” Mabbitt continues. “But you just rip it off like a bandaid. And for that show, I was nervous about good things instead, you know, I was focused on the performance aspect of the show instead of just getting up there and having a good time. You should always have a good time. But yeah, my good times before getting sober were not good times anymore.”
“Muscle memory did me favours. The loss of time during the pandemic, and the realisation of how much time had actually gone by during the pandemic was the hardest thing to get over. I mean, you celebrate birthdays, but when you’re touring 10 months out of the year for 14 or 15 years straight…it’s happening, but you don’t actually realise it’s happening.”
“To be able to take a step back and think about everything, I’m like: oh my god, we just did a tour for This War Is Ours. I’m approaching my mid-30s, I’ve been touring that long. My oldest kid has two years left in high school and then they’re done. What?!”
“Touring for me after COVID has been such a blessing because I’m so grateful to still be able to do it and there’s a whole newfound appreciation for it. It’s like: wow, I’ve been letting all this stuff just zoom right by me. And I still have the opportunity to appreciate it now. It seems like I got a whole new lease on life from it and a second chance to really go for it. I’m eternally grateful and I’m so excited to get to Australia and experience that for the first time completely sober.”
Continuing his journey with Escape The Fate as well as other creative pursuits, including his current tenure as lead vocalist for the American metalcore supergroup The Dead Rabbitts, Mabbitt’s musical memories are only set to rapidly accrue as he continues on into 2023. But for a man who has been so heavily involved in the music industry since such a young age, there’s still a key and wholesome central aspect that propels him forward after all these years.
“It’s a combination of everything,” says Mabbitt of what he loves most about his ongoing musical endeavours. “But the moments that really stand out are the live shows where there’s just that connection there that you can’t really explain. And it doesn’t matter if there’s five, 500, 5,000 or 50,000 people in the crowd. Those shows where everyone is just on it. Everyone’s screaming at the top of their lungs. You feel a real connection there. And everyone in the room, from the band to the audience, is just getting lost in the music and forgetting about life and all the BS that life has to offer. And they’re just sharing that beautiful moment together.
“Those are the moments for me that remind me: this is what made me wanna get into it. This is why I still do it, this is fantastic. Music is so healing and I call the shows, at least for me personally now, it’s my stage therapy session.”
And, as luck would have it, these musical therapy sessions are something Aussie fans can expect to experience together with Mabbitt in 2023.
“Australia, I love you so much,” Mabbitt conclude. “Thank you for having us back and I cannot wait to see you again and hopefully show you some new music and show you some of what’s to come next for Escape The Fate.”
Catch Escape The Fate live in action in Australia in April 2023 with D.R.U.G.S. and The Beautiful Monument
Tuesday 18th April // Magnet House // Perth
Thursday 20th April // The Gov // Adelade
Friday 21st April // Metro Theatre // Sydney
Saturday 22nd April // The Tivoli // Brisbane
Sunday 23rd April // 170 Russell // Melbourne