Heavy on the pop punk

By Amanda Meade

Scene/Mix Editor

Canadian hardcore/metal band Protest the Hero has been rocking out since 1999 with two full-length albums and tours with bands like The Fall of Troy, Alexisonfire, Bullet For My Valentine, As I Lay Dying and Dragonforce.

At the Warped Tour this summer, lead singer Rody Walker caught up with The Oakland Post.

The Oakland Post: So, this year’s line-up kind of sucks. How do you feel about being one of the heavier bands on tour?

Rody Walker: I guess it’s kind of cool. I don’t know. I wish there were more pop punk bands on the tour. Not like Relient K pop punk but you know, like NOFX, Lagwagon, that’s the stuff I miss. That’s the Warped Tour to me.

The Post: Do you get fans of the other bands who come up to you and wonder what you’re all about?

Walker: We get people walking by just be like “what the hell,” but noone ever really says anything. We had some guy come up to the merch booth the other day and was like Protest the Hero, that’s un-American. He was pissed off and we were like, “Dude, we’re not un-American, we’re Canadian.”

The Post: You got to work with one of your influences, Dragonforce, on your last album.

What other things inspire you?

Walker: We’re really inspired by a lot of things. From Internet virus videos, to British heavy metal, Judas Priest, you know, wonderful things. Nu wave British heavy metal. One of our biggest influences is Scandinavian satanic death metal. It’s a whole mix-match of all kinds of stuff, and it’s wonderful.

The Post: How would you distinguish between your last two albums?

Walker: The second album is really just enhancing upon the ideas that we were beginning with on the first album. We based our lives on the idea of constant movement and progression and that’s essentially what we tried to do.

The Post: How do you feel about downloading music illegally?

Walker: Love it. I am a pirate of the World Wide Web. Bands don’t make money off CD sales, record labels do. The quicker the record labels could die the better. You want to support a band go to a show, buy a T-shirt.

The Post: How do you feel about being on the same label as Dashboard Confessional?

Walker: I don’t know, [Chris Carrabba] came out to one of our shows once, it was kind of cool. He’s really short. I liked them when I was in high school. I haven’t listened to him since but whatever, it’s cool. We’re pretty much the heaviest band on the label. That’s kind of what we do. We go out, we try to become the heaviest band in like, pop punk places.

The Post: Any other tours coming up?

Walker: In October we’re coming back with Unearth and The Acacia Strain, and then I don’t know what else.

Go to Myspace.com/protestthehero to keep updated with the band, and listen to a remix of “Sequoia Throne” off their latest album, “Fortress.”