By Nicholas Jason Lopez
No, This Is Patrick!
In the hashtag age, “fear of missing out” is more of a disease than happenstance. People announce engagements and put their lives on social media. It’s essentially a Netflix show where you must tune in otherwise you won’t know what to talk about when you see the person in real life. Scrolling has become the new smoking.
To keep somebody’s attention at a show can be an even harder task, especially when you’re a pop-punk band from Nashville, Tenn. named No, This Is Patrick!. While hometown heavy-hitters like Paramore from nearby Franklin, Tenn. have came and went, being relatively new has its disadvantages.
“People are just so engrossed in their phones when they’re at the show,” said drummer Truman House. “Even if they’re not filming it, they’re just sitting there scrolling as the bands are playing. That can be pretty frustrating, or just seeing them film, which is also a good and bad thing, because that way, the bands get more exposure, but I think for in the moment, that person is not getting as much as they could out of the show. I’m a firm believer in that.”
In addition to Truman, No, This Is Patrick! consists of Andrew Dorn (lead vocals), Matt Isaacs (guitar/screams), Sean Naples (guitar) and Henry House (bass). Influenced by bands like Four Year Strong, Haken, A Day To Remember, New Found Glory and Blink-182, they look to continue that trend of upbeat, heavy music built to inspire. Their name also happens to help.
“We get a lot of people who are like, ‘I’m giving this a chance just based off the name’ because it makes them laugh, which is part of the reason why we chose it,” said Isaacs.
The name existed even before the band was official. In a discussion with a friend who had trash-talked heavy pop-punk, as a joke/rebuttal, it was suggested they start their own easycore band with a silly name similar to Chunk! No, Captain Chunk! which was a reference to a quote from “The Goonies.” As an homage, they went with No, This Is Patrick! and the rest was history.
The group thrives off brightly-colored apparel almost straight out of Bikini Bottom. Early lineup changes and schedule coordinations among five people to finish a record are just some of what they’ve overcome in their short time on their journey to pop-punk relevancy.
“There’s more good music than ever now regardless of what just people in YouTube comments may say,” said guitarist Matt Isaacs. “If you look for it, there’s incredible music everywhere, so we just have to stand out and just fight against a system that’s going through growing pains – the music industry.”
The video for “Where’s The Giant, Mansley?!” was released on May 1, 2019 on YouTube. The band was depicted entirely as puppets, which Isaacs constructed by hand himself. He wanted to make a video with puppets for a long time, ever since the band became serious. Before a Haken show in Chicago, Isaacs hung out with one of their guitar players, who told Isaacs how he made puppets from scratch for their “Cockroach King” music video. Isaacs felt it was an appropriate way to be unique and pay tribute to one of his favorite bands.
“We’re different genres, so I felt like I wasn’t stepping on their toes too much and I made them look different and just spent basically the whole last year of 2018 while I was at work in a mattress store, just chipping away at styrofoam heads and stuff while we were also recording and mixing the album,” Isaacs said. “I was just doing it in my apartment because once I committed, I was like ‘I have to at least finish this. I hope people will think it’s funny,’ because even if the video looks dumb, they’ll laugh and maybe they’ll also like the song.”
One of the first songs the band wrote, the choice for “Where’s The Giant, Mansley?!” was easy to be both the first single and opener for their self-titled full-length debut, which came out May 14, 2019 via Valinor Records.
“It’s kind of that great intro song, though we’ve laughed about how almost all of our songs are great openers or closers,” joked Isaacs. “While I was filming the video, I just did it to that song just because it was supposed to be us playing and just a little bit of a twist on your classic ‘band in front of a backdrop playing the song’ and I did my best to make them look like us.”
According to Isaacs, their songs generally have real life stories associated with them and look to convey an overall feeling of positivity.
“It’s a very high-energy record,” said Truman. “Most of the record is of the mood where you can just listen to it while you’re cruising down a highway.”
If the band had to come up with words to describe their release, among them would be “energetic,” “rewarding” and “persistent.”
“When I listen to music, I want to feel the energy even if regardless of what kind of emotion that energy comes from,” said Isaacs. “It’s definitely a pop-punk record, but it’s different. The songs are pretty eclectic as far as feel and everything and topics, so I think ‘energy’ kind of encompasses all of that.”
Isaacs has also used social media himself as a tool to engage with fans, whom were able to see a track-by-track breakdown revealed each day on the group’s pages. A huge fan of movies, he wanted to take a “directorial” approach for people to appreciate the way the band saw the songs and not take them at face value.
“Studio films for bands making records are part of the main reason that I got into playing music,” Isaacs said. “The two things that got me was the ‘Box Car Racer’ album from Tom Delonge’s side project and then at the same time that I was listening to that, before I even got into them as a band, I watched the making of ‘Crack The Sky’ by Mastodon and the way that they talked about creating music was just so appealing and fun. I was just starting to learn guitar a little and I was like, ‘This is definitely what I want to do,’ so part of the fun of actually having a real band is getting to make those things that I enjoy so much and annoy my band mates by filming stuff.”
The band then released the video for “Come Around” on Jul. 29, 2019, which provided a comedic look at modern speed dating. They’ll continue to slowly expand their territory beyond Nashville, Tenn. as time passes, but it’s clear that their overall chemistry and blend of pop culture/pop-punk are already a keen aspect to their success both in and out of the studio.
“It’s such a blessing to have a group of guys who are such amazing friends and just fun to be with,” Isaacs said. “Especially because Sean and I went through kind of a rotating door of flakey people for a while before we found Truman, Henry and Andrew and now being able to just be close and all on the same page is amazing and it kind of hearkens back to all those documentaries I used to watch about bands and how they’re talking about being on the road with your best friends and finally getting a taste of that is really incredible.”