ACRN’s Battle of the Bands 2019 Winner Q&A: Gorilla Party

By Liz Partsch, Contributor
[Photo by Harley Wince, Visual Media Director]

Q&A with bassist Preston Frick, drummer Tyler Tompkins and guitarist/vocalist Carson Dunlap of ACRN’s Battle of the Bands 2019 victor, Gorilla Party.

So, what do you guys plan on doing with the prize money?

PRESTON: We already put the money toward T-shirts, which we are gonna pick up later today, actually.

What were you guys doing before Battle of the Bands? Different venues around Athens? House shows?

PRESTON: We played at The Union once, before the Battle of the Bands. We did a couple house shows. We did one in Zanesville and did a house show in Athens, too. So yeah, just played some shows around. 

Did you enjoy your first experience?

PRESTON: Yeah, we did—all the bands were really good. Carson can agree it was a lot of fun.

Are you guys working on any new music?

CARSON: It’s kind of hard because Preston is down here in Athens, and Tyler and I are up in Zanesville. We just get an idea together and send it down to him.

Should we expect more SpongeBob music on the new album?


PRESTON: Definitely. 

What are some of your musical influences? What would you say is your style/genre?

PRESTON: Together, I think we listen to a lot of pop-punk. Like our drummer, Tyler, he got us into Remo Drive, which is pretty cool—we like that. He got us listening to some hardcore music too, like some alternative style. We listen to some rap together, too. 

CARSON: Alternative emo. Tyler, what’s our genre?

TYLER: We argue about this a lot; I don’t know. We are definitely a form of indie, but there’s some emo influence. 

Are you guys excited about the My Chemical Romance reunion?

TYLER: I have mixed emotions. 

What do guys see as the future for Gorilla Party? EP? Tour eventually?

PRESTON: Yeah, that would be really cool. I think just for right now, we are trying to keep it modest—just kind of find shows to play at, and then record eventually and put it out there, see what people think about it. And just see where it goes from there.

TYLER: It’s weird, but I definitely want to get bigger. It’s really cool that people we don’t even know come up to us and go like, “Oh wow, I really like your guys’ stuff.” It’s really, really cool. 

Athens really seems like the town to be able to do that stuff and put yourself out there. 

PRESTON: Definitely, yeah. It’s small enough where people go to all the parties and everything and be able to catch up with the band afterward. It’s really neat how people come up to you and say “Hey you’re good” at parties and that they like your stuff.  

CARSON: It’s eye-opening to play to a crowd that actually appreciates music. 

Yeah, there’s also a lot of music venues around and lots of opportunities.  

CARSON: Yeah, where we are from there’s like no music venues. It’s like you go out to the bars and drink, and music is in the background. But at The Union, it’s pretty cool because the music is the thing there. I appreciate that. 

Like Gorilla Party on Facebook to catch the latest news and updates, and stay tuned for ACRN’s in-studio session with the 2019 Battle of the Bands winners.

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