“We jokingly call each other ‘Bounce Punk’ because we have such high energy, always have a good time onstage and, in reality, we’re just an upbeat dance band,” says guitarist Tyler Plazio of the Virginia-based duo Soldiers of Suburbia as he discussed their two shows in New Jersey next week.
“We are super stoked to come up and meet the other bands that we’re playing with.”
Currently on a two-week mini-tour, Tyler and drummer John Brooks are looking to expand their fan base beyond the Virginia and Washington, D.C. borders as well as promote a 10-track CD due at the end of January called The Depressed Storm Trooper. “We have the Mill Hill Basement in Trenton on Dec. 28 and then The Chubby Pickle on Dec. 29 in Highlands,” said Plazio. “The Chubby Pickle gig, we’ll be releasing our first single, ‘Pulp Fiction,’ and then the album is set to be released on Jan. 26 in Vienna, Va., at Jammin Java.
“We’re trying to get out of the D.C. scene a bit. We’ve nothing against it but there are always so many things going on there and people are hesitant, for whatever reason, to come to D.C. We felt that we needed to branch out a bit and we booked some shows up here in N.J. Originally we were supposed to play three shows but the one in Asbury Park was cancelled; so if you know anyone looking to book a band next week, please hit me up (laughs).”
The Depressed Storm Trooper is a unique title from a unique band with a unique name, all derived from unique circumstances.
“I started playing in bands about six years ago,” said Plazio. “No matter what band I’ve been in, I’ve always carried the name with me which came from the song, ‘Jesus of Suburbia,’ by Green Day. We were having a text conversation about names for the band and somebody threw that song title out there and since they really got me into music we changed one word and went with it.
“We think it fits because we all live in the suburbs and we’re fighting to be heard and get the music out there. The album was kind of another one of those things where we were brainstorming titles and with the new ‘Star Wars’ movie coming out we thought, ‘That’s kind of cool.’ So basically we just kind of found it online; I wish I had a better story for you but I don’t (laughs)! I do know this, we are really excited to put it out.”
Plazio says their sound has derived from multiple influences and has evolved over their time together as well as their struggles to find a bass guitarist who fit them to their liking.
“Early Green Day, early pop punk, Weezer all kind of aided in our sound development; some people have compared us to the Black Keys because we’re guitar and drums — which is cool, but we don’t really sound like them. I play guitar and also play bass at the same time, sort of,” he said with a laugh. “We tried to find a bass player but it was becoming difficult to do, so I work a bass sound off of my guitar through a pedal board and it has been working out pretty well.”
For more about Soldiers of Suburbia, visit soldiersofsuburbiaband.com.