|The Charm City Devils Take On Doomsday|
Charm City Devils' singer John Allen and his bandmates – guitarists Vic Karrera and Nick Kay, bassist Anthony Arambula and drummer Jason Heiser – sit in a van enroute to North Carolina under "clear blue skies" where they will open for Theory of a Deadman the same evening. With a yawn, Allen groggily recalls the night before in Silver Spring, Md., where CCD and TOAD entertained a capacity audience at the Fillmore. He admits, "It was a pleasure to play in our home state and in such a nice venue."
Of course, with the looming apocalypse on Dec. 21, the frontman reckons each day is a blessing and to "have fun and cherish every moment," stock up on your favorite libation, and head to your final destination rather than blindly float in space after the geomagnetic reversal!
"If I didn't have to gig, I would roll down to the Bahamas or somewhere in the Caribbean and relax on a white sand beach with my lady. Oh, and drink Captain Morgan Private Stock on the beach."
However, no such luck for the frontman, as the Devils play in Covington, Ky. – just across the murky Ohio River from Cincinnati – on Doomsday. Not exactly pristine beaches with sifting warm sand under your bare feet and a calming surf, but Allen doesn't mind, as long as his final moments are face-to-face with an audience. For him, the "End of Days" is just another day at the office.
"Making a connection to other people is a real benefit of the job, if you can call it a real job. As long as we get to play in front of new people at every stop and turn them on, it's just awesome."
With a few weeks remaining before the Mayan prognostication, the band plans to continue its tour in support of the current release, Sins, as well as the next single and video, "Unstoppable." The WWE (World Wrestling Entertainment) already claimed the balls-out tune for its "No Way Out Official Theme Song 2012," and the song climbs the music charts, even in the face of adversity...and it's not the kind the Mesoamericans expect the world will experience on Dec. 21. According to the singer, it's far worse than that for the Charm City Devils!
"We're clawing and scratching our way up the charts, and all the big Christmas releases are coming out. All the big boys are stomping on us: Aerosmith released a single, the Rolling Stones released one...who's next? Is Led Zeppelin putting out a record at Christmas? We move up one spot and somebody like Soundgarden releases and knocks us down. I mean come on, give some to the little guys," Allen laughs.
With the band's new label, eOne Music, he hopes the little fishes will soon become the big fishes in rock's pond, since he considers "the band to be so fortunate" that they're "on a label with the likes of Pop Evil, Chickenfoot and Zakk Wylde's Black Label Society. It's fantastic to have a label with that kind of roster and with that kind of commitment to rock that they have. Most of the major labels are trying to get rid of it (rock music), and eOne is actually embracing it."
Additionally, even though Allen playfully suggests that there may something more sinister surrounding the apocalyptic prophecy – "People smarter than I have it all figured out and are not telling us! It's all a conspiracy" – he soundly states he and the Charm City Devils will embrace the future, Mayans be damned.
"If the end of the world doesn't happen on the 21st, then life goes on and you keep moving forward, and that's what we plan to do. I am lucky to be in a band where we're friends; we enjoy being in this band together and the camaraderie between us, as well as being out on the road. Not to be overly dramatic, but we are out on the road risking our lives, away from our families, but it makes it worth it with that hour or half-hour you spend onstage, turning people on and meeting them and having that instant connection. That is what feels really good, and we plan to keep on doing what we've been doing and enjoy it."
So, if a new winter's day dawns on December 22, Allen says the band will "write new songs, continue to tour, and keep on truckin'" through 2013 and beyond...until the next apocalypse rears its ugly head.