I don’t remember too much about this one. Hell, you probably don’t even remember there WAS a band called Scary Kids Scaring Kids. They were in that whole mid-2000s wave of post-hardcore. That was a time, wasn’t it. Hell, the guy I interviewed from the band was their KEYBOARDIST. Remember when keyboards were still a thing in post-hardcore? It was like how every nu-metal band in the late 90s and early 2000s got themselves a DJ, only to find they contributed nothing – they either learned how to play keys or they fucked off. Anyway, nothing too brilliant about this interview – or this band, for that matter, although they did have a couple of decent tunes. Just throwing this up here for completion’s sake. Mawsh.
– DJY, July 2013
Scary Kids Scaring Kids don’t exactly seem like the happiest of dudes – especially given their musical subject matter is frequented by despair, abandoned hope and the evil that women (and, occasionally, men) do. Thankfully, this kind of pained imagery belies them – today, at least. Keyboardist Pouyan Afkary is in high spirits as we begin our conversation.
“Feeling really good, man!” he enthuses. “Just got off the road with Anberlin and now we’re on our way down to Australia. Really looking forward to it!” You can understand why. The band are hitting our shores as headliners of the Versus tour, alongside those good Christian boys Haste the Day and Californian pop-rockers Halifax. Afkary definitely sounds excited to be on tour with two bands he is close with.
“We’ve known both bands for many, many years,” he comments. “It’s gonna be a pretty wild tour. Haste the Day are more like our bigger brothers who guide us in the right direction and have a very positive influence on us. Halifax, on the other hand, are the band that really bring out the party in us.” Which side of the line SKSK themselves will fall is anyone’s guess; even for Pouyan himself. “It’s like the devil on one shoulder and the angel on the other,” he laughs.
The tour is not only the band’s second visit to our shores, but also their second visit this year. The band rocked the mainstage of the Soundwave festival back in February. “It was great fun; beautiful place,” Afkary says with great positivity. “Can’t wait to be back.” With this notion made, it must be asked why the band have returned so soon? “There’s a promoter out there who thinks our first headlining tour would be successful, and so far ticket sales have been great,” explains Afkary. “Obviously, his faith in us is paying off!”
Scary Kids have been on the road supporting their latest release, 2007’s self-titled release, for quite some time now. “It’s been great, man. The tours have been very different – we’ve toured with a lot of – œparty’ bands, we’ve toured with a lot of Christian bands, and equally we’re connecting with all of them a lot.” Asking for some of the best memories of the tour so far sees Afkary temporarily stumped. “That’s tough,” he muses out loud. “I’d say the first headliner tour we did on the back of the self-titled album was one of the best, but also the Versus tour we just did with Haste the Day. We have a real camaraderie with them.”
Scary Kids Scaring Kids is certainly a record that the band themselves are especially proud to be touring on. The band’s first record, 2005’s The City Sleeps in Flames, is described by Pouyan as being “really rushed”.
“We only had thirty days to write it, and we’d just gotten a new guitarist [Steve Kilby, who did not play on the band’s debut After Dark EP], who was just getting comfortable with our vibe,” he recalls, before adding, “I think in the two years between albums, he got the time to become comfortable with the band.” So what was the next step for Scary Kids? “We locked ourselves away for a month and a half in a secluded place and focused ourselves entirely on the record,” Afkary continues solemnly. “What we wanted to play had slightly changed in that past two years and we really wanted to grow. It was a very conscious effort to make growth from the last album.”
With such a positive state of mind that the band are now in (touring an excellent sophomore release, playing with good friends, seeing the world), certainly Pouyan must be exhilarated to be back in Australia? “I dunno, man…” he says cautiously. “I’m actually kinda nervous. I always stress myself out about making next time bigger and better, y’know what I mean?” Nerves aside, one can rest assured that Pouyan and his five fellow Kids are set to put on some memorable shows this week, with all shows close to selling out at time of writing. Having said that, Afkary is still not without his reservations. “I don’t think I’ll ever get really excited unless we’re, like… KISS or something,” he jokes. “Or AC/DC, in your case.”