Born from the metalcore movement of the 1990s, Atreyu is group of six musicians who value the origins of their hard-rock ways and treat each other and their fans like family.
The band formed in 1999 when its members were in high school in Orange County, Calif. From an early age, they knew they found their niche and dedicated as much time as they could to writing music and performing.
“I mean we were highschool kids, I’ve know these guys since I was in eighth grade,” said drummer Brandon Saller. “We were your local band doing shows every weekend, trying to drive to Arizona and Vegas to do shows where we could.”
Nineteen years and seven studio albums later, Atreyu is a nationally touring band respected for their musical skill and adored for their rough n’ rowdy live shows.
While the band has certainly evolved its sound over the years, Saller described Atreyu as “genre-bending” yet staying loyal to their metal roots.
“I think we have kind of blended a lot of different styles together,” Saller said. “We have a lot of influence from metal and hardcore and punk and ’80s rock. We’ve always been a band that made it a point to expand and grow with every album and have never had a fear of doing so. Our fans really love that about us. We are taking them on a journey and it is always a question of where are we going to go next.”
Their latest album, In Our Wake, is one such journey. Keeping in line with their tried-and-true metalcore structure, Atreyu delivers a new level of dynamism as they experiment with acoustic instrumentals and even an have an appearance from a violin choir.
Next year, Atreyu celebrates their 20th anniversary. Saller said they plan to focus on promoting their current album, but they might have a few tricks up their sleeve to commemorate this milestone.
Not only is 20 years of performing a profound accomplishment in itself, but according to Saller, Atreyu is essentially made up of its original founding members. Their secret? They are not just bandmates, but have become a family.
“It’s like having a brother or sister. You have a different relationship and love for them than you do with your friends,” Saller said. “We have respect for each other and like doing what we’re doing.”
As the band members grew older together, they also collectively grew and developed as musicians.
“Like anyone else, we’re just grownups. We’re still the same people, we still want to play music, we still love playing in a band together and writing music together and playing shows, we’re just adults now. We’ve been able to get better and better and continue to grow our love for what we do.”
Atreyu takes their youthful roots and refined hard-rock know-how on stage with them to deliver an impressive, yet playful, performance.
“We just like to have a good time,” Saller said. “Obviously we take playing seriously, but we don’t take the show too seriously.”
Their goal is simple: to show everyone a good time.
“We want everyone in the crowd to leave smiling. I think people who come to our show know it is very high energy, you definitely will have a smile on your face the whole time. It is a very fun atmosphere.”
Atreyu are bringing their hardcore charisma to Fort Wayne on Dec. 1 at Piere’s Entertainment Center. Doors open at 6 p.m. with the show starting at 7 p.m. The bands Memphis May Fire, Ice Nine Kills, and Sleep Signals will also join them on the stage.
“It’s gonna be a ripper,” Saller said. “We’re excited to be there. We always have a lot of fun in Indiana, so we’re excited to come back.”
Dec. 1 is bound to be a night to remember, but Saller said it is up to Fort Wayne to bring the heat.
“If any town deserves to have the wildest show of the tour, it’s gotta be Fort Wayne. I think that we can make that happen on our part, it’s just about the population of Fort Wayne coming and delivering on their part,” Saller said. “Bands always have tours and they are like, ‘Chicago and L.A. are the best shows on tour,’ and they look over places like Fort Wayne and that’s not fair. Let’s put some shows on the map, that’s what I’m saying.”
Or more simply put, “Fort Wayne, come ready to party.”