Interview With Eric Pottle Of Ekotren
Cape Coral, Florida's unsigned dynamo, Ekotren, unleashed a firebrand performance on June 25, 2006 at the latest installment of the venerable Vans Warped Tour in Orlando Florida, clearly provideing the harshest of musical critics with all the proof they need to assess that this is a group of young musicians who are now clearly on their way to making a breakthrough in a metal genre that has seen it all before. Well, almost everything. They haven’t seen Ekotren.
“I dont know if fame and fortune is where we are going. If it comes, it comes. Both of those are not things that drive us. We are shooting for success, and if those come, then they come. But I don’t see them affecting us or our music. We live music and there is truly nothing I see getting in the way of us doing what we do,” offers Ekotren’s lead guitarist, Keith Finnell.
Now, that’s some true Rock N Roll spirit.
Initially founded in the Fall of 2000, Ekotren are passionate young artists that strive to put out a positive life message through their freshly offered hook-laden, melody driven songs. After having the usual band member shuffle occur, the band consists now of its most potent lineup to date with guitarist Keith Finnell, bassist Sean Fiene, Eric Pottle on drums, DJ/keyboardist Steve Chin and vocalist John Sheldon.
And while they certainly shoot more into the realm of Linkin Park's all out pop metal approach at times, this is a heavy music band that certainly offers its fair share of deep, brutal themes and a maturity level well beyond its years.
From the recent metalunderground.com review of their debut EP “The Tables Have Turned”:
"The Tables Have Turned," an independently released debut album from Cape Coral, Florida’s Ekotren is flat out one of metal music’s most original and fresh sounding recording’s for 2006. In a year that has seen the once darker themed Korn lose all its edge and every old thrash or speed metal group from the 80-90’s dusted off and put back on the road and into the studio for more of nothing new, Ekotren has thrown its hat into the ring with a simply smashing collection of seven radio-friendly but extremely, provocative-themed songs.”
No one can deny that the stage is set for Ekotren to take it to the next level.
I got some Q&A in recently with their drummer, Eric Pottle.
Rocket: Are you originally from Cape Coral, Florida?
Eric: I was born in raised in the great state of Massachusetts in a city called Worcester, which is about an hour west of Boston.
Rocket: When did you start playing drums?
Eric: I started taking interest at the age of about 9 from seeing my father jam with his buddies and got my first kit when I was 10.
Rocket: Did you take any lessons? If so, who was your teacher? And tell us about the experience.
Eric: I'm mostly self taught but I did take lessons at my high school from a man named Bill MacGillivray. I did a little bit of reading but he mostly showed me different grooves and techniques of drumming because I could pick up on things quickly. Most of the grooves were latin, funk, and fusion inspired which helped me create my own style by putting those styles together with rock and metal grooves.
Rocket: Who are a few of your biggest drumming influences past or present?
Eric: In no order, because these are all great drummers, Morgan Rose, Josh Freese, Dennis Chambers, Justin Foley, Chad Smith, Brain, Ray Luzier, Tony Royster Jr. and tons more!
Rocket: What kind of kit are you playing on? Please give us brand and specs.
Eric: Gretsch Renown Maple 6 piece in cherry black burst with 8, 10, 12, 14 toms 22in kick and a 14in gretsch black nickel snare. I play all dw hardware and pedals and a mix between paiste prototypes and zildjian a series cymbals.
Rocket: Who are some of your favorite metal bands past or present?
Eric: Killswitch Engage, Pantera, Trivium, Lamb of God, Slayer, Devildriver, Slipknot and just too many others to list!
Rocket: You guys recently kicked some ass at Vans Warped Tour. Tell us about that experience.
Eric: It was hot! We had to drag our gear around the whole place and on the side of the street but once we got set up and everything, we rocked the hizzouse! There were about 10 different stages so it was pretty crazy! More and more people crowded around our stage as we got started and we got a good response, again this was a great experience for us, and i had a blast!
Rocket: What's the funniest thing that's ever happened to you while performing?
Eric: Nothing really that funny, I've popped the lens out of my glasses a few times but thats not that funny.
Rocket: No, it wasn't. Not very Rock n Roll either. Ha! Couldn't you have just made something up? So, what's your favorite metal album for 2006?
Eric: It's too soon to say, still many albums to come out, but I do have to say the In Flames album is pretty good but I'm just waiting for Killswitch!
Rocket: Too early? We're almost in August. Haha. Yeah, no, Slayer and Lamb oughta be real interesting. Do you ever answer any of your MySpace fan mail?
Eric: I get on there every so often I have my own myspace I go on as well.
Rocket: I know Ekotren has a debut EP just released called 'The Tables Have Turned'. Has that been selling well so far? And how can fans purchase it?
Eric: Yeah been pretty exiting, we have been getting a great response from our fans. Everyone can pick up a copy on our website www.ekotren.com or myspace site www.myspace.com/ekotren and you can get them at our shows as well.
Rocket: What are some of the upcoming Ekotren shows?
Eric: Friday July 28th we are doing 2 shows in one day here in Fort Myers at the United Methodist Church first and then in Naples at the Ridgeport Pub. After that we are off to Winter Park the next friday August 4th where we play at The Haven. There is plenty more information about all the shows on our site and myspace so hope everyone reading this checks it out!!!
Rocket: A full throttle metal band playing a church. Now that's some unholy shit right there!
Give a shout out to your biggest supporters.
Eric: My parents and sister, my bandmates, The Edge Factory, The Metal Den and all my friends, you know who you are!
Visit Ekotren on the web:
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