Mest Interview

Soundcheck411 writer Eric Walden went to the Mest CD release party at House of Blues in Anaheim on January 17, 2014 with special guests Assuming We Survive, Rebel Revive, and Thorne. This lucky crowd got to hear tracks from the new album Not What You Expected three days before its release. Mest has been a major player in pop-punk scene ever since they formed in 1995. After the bands break up between 2006 and 2008 Tony Lovato, Richie Gonzales, and Mike Longworth are proving that they are here to stay. Their show at the House of Blues Anaheim kept the old school pop punk sprit and had the same pacing as punk rock legends NOFX. It’s nice to see even after making music for almost 19 years Mest is so entertaining and bursting with energy. If the bands lead singer Tony Lovato isn’t stage diving or hopping back and forth from the barricade to the stage, he is running from side to side engaging everyone and making sure even the fans in the back of venue are having a good time. The new album Not What You Expected released worldwide on January 21st 2014 so this writer got in touch with Tony Lovato to see what he does to keep the pop punk spirit alive.

Tony LovatoEric Walden:  If you could do a split album with any current band who would it be and why?

Tony Lovato:  Hmmm that’s hard. Probably A Day To Remember. I respect what they are doing musically and that they know they are a pop punk band. 


Eric Walden:  What Mest song do you think is the most difficult to perform?

Tony Lovato:  Probably all the ones we never play. *haha. Nah, I’m not sure. We are all decent musicians so we can pull them all off need be. 


EW:  You asked Assuming We Survive and Orange County locals Rebel Revive to open the show. How were you introduced to them?

TL:  Rebel Revive was the promoters suggestion. Cool band though. And my bassist Brandon used to play in AWS. Adrian, the singer is a big fan of Mest. We have hung out a couple times. It made sense for the show. It was great night. Good people. Good music. 


EW:  Assuming We Survive lead singer Adrian Estrella grew up listening to Mest and said they had a huge impact on his desire to play music. What band inspired you the most while you were growing up, and why?

TL:  A lot of bands did. From shit like the Crüe to Ozzy to CCR to even early 90’s pop music. I used to love NKOTB (New Kids on The Block)/Vanilla Ice/Hammer. *haha I love dancing, but def. the most influential was punk music. NOFX, Bad Religion, Social Distortion, and Green Day for sure. I mean all the punk rock bands across the board. Melody mixed with rock music. That was it for me. 


EW:  Do you have a source for finding out about new or up-and-coming bands?

TL:  Nope. I’m always late to that party. But with  A LOT of the music I hear coming out these days I think I’m ok with that haha. Mest


EW:  Does Mest have any upcoming tour plans to support the new album Not What You Expected?

TL:  We love touring and want to always be on the road. So yes, but nothing is booked as of right now besides a show in Mexico. Check our FB page or my IG @AnthonyLovato for all that shiz. 


EW:  What inspired you to let your fans download most of the new songs for free on ?

TL:  Why not. I want kids to hear this record more than anything. I’m proud of it, proud of the growth, and proud of staying true to our sound but something that was new and exciting to me. Obviously we are not the first band to do what we are doing but when you’re excited about something you want to show the world. It’s also up for sale now on all digital sites so kids that want to support, can. And kids that want to just have it for free can also. It’s like cool have the record for free, now just come out to a show. 


EW:  When and where was your worst hotel experience on tour?

TL:  Oh god, there were so many. I do remember walking into one in Arizona, where HUGE cockroaches run across the floor and instantly saying “fuck this” and going and getting our money back. But it was Arizona. It was hot. 


MestEW:  In 2001 Mest recorded a live show at House of Blues Anaheim. A large amount of fans that were at that show also went to the most recent House of Blues show. How or why do you think Mest has grown up along with your fans throughout the years?

TL:  I’d say because music is about memories and the times you’ve had listening to it. It brings you back, at least for me it does, And we put on a fucking rad live show. I’ll put my band up against any band live. I’ve had 2 back surgeries. I currently have a fused disc, degenerated disc and a herniated disc. But that shit never holds me back from putting on a show. I’ll be doing flips into the crowd until the day I literally can’t walk anymore. 


EW:  Why do you think Pop Punk has kept a large fan base throughout the years? 

TL:  Because we came from a generation of great bands like the bands I said in the past question. Their is no gimmick to our music. It’s just good honest music.  People appreciate that. 


EW:  At the Not What You Expected CD release party you mentioned House of Blues Anaheim was your favorite venue to play. Why is that?

TL:   Because when I still lived in Chicago and we were coming through and playing it was always beautiful here. The weather, the girls… I just loved it. The shows were ALWAYS great. We’d skip LA and just play Anaheim twice. *haha. I would always say how one day I was gonna move to California never really knowing if I would, but I knew I really wanted to. In 2006 I did, and I’ve been here ever since.