2019 has proven to be the year of the comeback for many of our favorite acts. From My Chemical Romance to Hey Monday, bands have been sending fans into a frenzy of excitement and eyeliner as 20NineScene continues to cement itself as a massive movement in music. While some of these reunions have required months, even years of preparation, We Are The In Crowd are proving that sometimes the best decisions are the most spontaneous.
In a hilarious and entertaining interview with AP, We Are The In Crowd members Tay Jardine, Mike Ferri and Jordan Eckes reveal what it took to get the band back together for their pending Slam Dunk slot and what may—or may not—be in store for the band’s future.
It’s been a couple of weeks now. How are you feeling following the announcement of your return? Has it all sunk in yet?
TAY JARDINE: Yeah, it’s exciting. I mean, I feel like it sunk in when we all texted. Mike texted all of us and was like, “Hey, you guys wanna do this?” And we were like, “Yeah!” Immediately after, I texted Rob [Chianelli, drummer] and was like, “Are we sure we know how to do this?”[Laughs.]
MIKE FERRI: It was literally decided upon in a span of five minutes. I had been talking to our agent about it. We’ve gotten offers before, but it just wasn’t right. And we’d gotten an offer, and I had talked about it a little bit, but I hadn’t convinced anyone else yet because I didn’t think it was going to work.
Then Tay hit me up about something similar but definitely not as cool. I was like, “Oh, that’s weird. We got an offer to do this,” and she was like, “Let’s just do it.” Everyone else reacted similarly and was like, “All right, I guess it’s that time.” Then I commissioned the horse picture, which is probably the most important part of the experience.
JARDINE: [Laughs.] That’s actually the most important part of all of this: The horse picture happened. It was a longtime dream of Mike’s.
FERRI: It had been my dream for about a week, and I brought it to life.
It was probably the best comeback announcement I’ve seen this year.
FERRI: Yeah. I mean, My Chemical Romance are basically a local band.
JARDINE: Dude! [Laughs.]
— We Are The In Crowd (@WeAreTheInCrowd) October 21, 2019
You tweeted out the horse picture, which absolutely sent fans into a frenzy. Then the Slam Dunk announcement came, and you set the scene aflame. Were you expecting that type of reaction?
JARDINE : Because it happened so fast, I don’t think anybody was expecting anything. It was really fun to watch all the reactions and react with it, but I personally, I didn’t have any expectations. That’s not to say that there were low ones or high ones: I really just was like, “Oh, I guess we’re doing this!’” And it really was all decided in a day. I remember I texted my family group text and told them, and I just added this GIF of a girl riding a bike straight toward a mailbox—she has training wheels on—and as soon as she gets to the mailbox, she just bails.
And that’s how I feel, because I have no idea how I’m going to be able to do this. I don’t know if I even remember these songs. [Laughs.] I’m trying to mentally prepare myself to completely mumble and probably look over at Jordan like, “Yeah, yeah, you get this part because I forgot.” I mean, I’ll have fun bailing on my bike. It’ll be great.
JORDAN ECKES: I mean, all the times I’ve been to the U.K. recently, I’ve met a lot of younger kids that were still young when we were touring out there back in the day when they weren’t allowed to come see us. I didn’t think this would be happening. Now the kids can come out, and hopefully they can afford it.
FERRI: I feel like I was probably the most in tune with everything because I was orchestrating it all. And the reaction was a lot better than what I thought it would be. People give a shit apparently, so I guess we have to go out there and do it all.
JARDINE: I think we should do covers of covers. Like, find other people that have done covers of other songs and then cover those covers. But they have to be We Are The In Crowd covers…No My Chemical Romance covers!
Just do a full MCR set or a set that includes all of the bands who have announced that they’re reuniting this year such as Go Radio and Hey Monday.
FERRI: Oh, my God, a reunion cover set! The funny part is My Chemical Romance are so big, you could come back and just play a My Chemical Romance cover set, and people wouldn’t be disappointed. They’d be like, “All right, I guess that’s cool.” Unless it’s really bad, then they’re going to be disappointed either way.
In 2016, WATIC announced that you would “BRB” while you embarked on new journeys. What has everyone been up to since then? I know the SAINTE bad summer EP released in October.
JARDINE: That’s pretty much my life. [Laughs.]
FERRI: She’s been doing that. I’ve been being a suit, I guess even before the band broke up, so I’m still doing that. Answering the phones for myself now apparently in addition to others. Jordan has been gigging, so he’s still deeply involved in music. Everyone is just being people in their late 20s or early 30s doing regular people things.
I have to ask because some fans were mentioning this in the comments on social media: Are we going to hear any of that famous third album that never got released?
FERRI: A lot of the songs actually ended up on that first SAINTE EP. So it’s half of a forgotten album. A lot of those in-between songs ended up on that. I guess the mystery is probably better, so maybe we pretend I didn’t say that. [The unreleased record] is covered in dust in some airplane hangar someplace.
A lot of fans are talking about it like it’s some big, gigantic secret.
JARDINE: That makes me feel like we are totally going to not give these people what they are expecting. [Laughs.]
FERRI: There’s not even a group chat yet. I have to be the one to make it, and I haven’t done it yet. Knowing us, it’ll probably be May 1. , “All right. So, what do you guys wanna play?”
JARDINE: I’m going to make it right after this.
ECKES: It’s crazy because I saw a bunch of random kids on Halloween night when I went out, like younger kids, and they were bugging out about the announcement. They were like, “Is there really not a group chat?” I was like, “Oh, 100% there is no group chat.”
JARDINE: That’s typical We Are The In Crowd fashion.
I love how spontaneous this whole thing has been for you. Other bands are probably planning their comeback announcement a year in advance, and you haven’t even put together a group text yet.
JARDINE: I think [during] our entire career, We Are The In Crowd were based on last-minute decisions and a lot of accidents. [Laughs.] And so we’re just continuing that trend.
FERRI:: We’re nothing if not consistent.
ECKES: When it comes down to the wire, I think that’s when we really did the best shit.
JARDINE: You know, it’s funny, though. I’m becoming triggered just talking about this, and my anxiety is super-high now thinking like, “Oh, my God,” because I am such a planner. [Laughs.] Spring is going to come, my knees are going to be tapping, and I’m going to be sweating every morning wondering when Mike’s going to make the group chat. It’s going to be crazy.
FERRI: I have most of this figured out already.
JARDINE: I trust you.
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So I guess it’s too early to be asking if you are going to be dropping any new material then?
FERRI: The good news is nothing has been ruled out because nothing has even been talked about.
Have you at least tossed around the idea of adding any additional shows or tours in the next year? I know a lot of people are asking if you guys are going to do anything in the U.S.
FERRI: I think it’s one of those things where if it’s the right opportunity, we’ll do it. Right?
JARDINE: Yeah. I mean, this interview is the most of this conversation we’ve really had. [Laughs.]
FERRI: This is the first time me, Jordan and Tay have been on the same phone call since 2015.
Well, I guess you have to make your group text first, but is there anything we can expect from WATIC or any of your other projects that you’re working on over the next year?
FERRI: Tay is playing two [SAINTE] shows in the U.K. right before Slam Dunk, which means you can expect me and Cameron [Hurley, guitarist] to be there. I bet Jordan will be there hanging out.
ECKES : Mhmm.
tickets & VIP for both of my UK shows are onsale now! these are my first headline shows since 2017 and i can’t wait to see you guys and play these songs live.
VIP: https://t.co/tzuH1rE7OF pic.twitter.com/UIa48iVgc9
— Sainte (Tay Jardine) (@saintesays) November 15, 2019
FERRI: Honestly, though, I think we stopped being a band at the right time, but I don’t think we went out with a bang in the sense that nothing happened. There wasn’t some internet meltdown. No one’s dead or I don’t know, divorced or something. So it feels like there’s no point in doing it unless you want to go back and do it better than you were doing it. So, I guess, expect better.
JARDINE: Yeah, I like that. It’s going to be so, so much fun just being in that world again. I know Jordan’s been touring much more than we have since We Are The In Crowd took our break, but I feel like entering that world again is going to be really exciting, and I feel like it’s going to feel brand new. It’s so hard to tell you what to expect.
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Even emotionally, we don’t know what it’s going to be like. I also feel like I’m probably going to cry a lot. I’m such an empath, and I feel like I’m going to feel so many feelings. I’m also trying to make sure that getting through the songs is one thing, and then actually being there and seeing reactions and fans and really having that experience again is going to put me into a whole amazingly emotional place.
ECKES: The U.K. in general has always been one of the kindest markets to our band. I never thought it would happen. I never thought it would happen in a million years. Then we got the offer, and I was like, “This is going to be dope as fuck.” Some of these kids didn’t get to see us play before.
JARDINE: There’s going to be a completely new demographic, and I think that’s going to be refreshing because we used to go there. I felt like we spent all of our time in the U.K., and I was used to seeing all the same faces. And it’s going to be refreshing to see not only new faces but to see any familiar faces who are probably married with kids. And then there’s also going to be the other feeling of being like, “Shit, I’m old. Why? What am I doing wrong in my life?” [Laughs.]
What would you like to say to your fans prior to your highly anticipated Slam Dunk gig?
FERRI: Please come. It’s going to be cool. Jordan will be there. He’s still tall. He’s still wearing the same fucking hat, so if you saw our band in 2015, it’s still the same hat. What else can you rely on like that? Nothing. You’re going to like it. I guarantee it. Maybe we’ll do some other stuff. Maybe we won’t.
JARDINE: To be continued!
We Are The In Crowd are headed to Slam Dunk in 2020. The two-day festival takes place in Leeds and Hatfield and will occur May 23-24. Tickets are on sale now here.