On May 8, 2015, ARCHERS HOPE from Williamsburg, Va. released their debut album Broken Anchor, which features 12 tracks packed with emotion and angst both on the surface, as well as in more subtle ways through the lyrics. Led by guitarists/vocalists Drew Mcelroy and Corey Pavlosky , the band is filled out by drummer Ben Wahls and bassist John Schuzler. Since forming in 2012, the band has developed a substantial fan base and are looking forward to what the future holds for their band.

In March, your band released your debut single “Broken Anchor,” which follows the musical direction of early 90s melodic alternative rock. Can you tell me what this song is about?

Corey: The song itself, mostly instrumentally and structurally, was written by me. Keep in mind that this doesn’t necessarily reflect the opinions of all the band members, but lyrically, the song is about a really tough time in my life recently where I wasn’t really sure if I believed a lot of the things that I had been raised up on.

The opening lyrics say, “The true test comes when your ship is sinking,” and that really embodies [the fact that] you don’t really know what you are made of until you have to prove it, essentially. To be frank, it is mostly about my struggle with whether or not I believe in God and whether or not I am still a “Christian.” The choruses are from the perspective of God Himself sarcastically almost. It’s kind of an abstract song.

Why you chose this musical direction for “Broken Anchor?”

Corey: I think we can all [agree] that was one of the more recent songs we wrote on the album, and immediately when we put it together, we came to the agreement that this is the direction we want to go. I’d say most accurately reflects the sound of the whole band on this album and the coming releases.

Will that sound be consistent throughout your debut album?

Drew: Yeah, definitely.

Corey: I would say it’s fairly consistent. I don’t think it necessarily manifests itself in this album as much as it will in future releases because this album is very individually written. We have several songs that were written completely by Drew or myself, but we are very happy with the product so far.

Drew: In my opinion, I think the tone of “Broken Anchor” is throughout the whole album. It varies a little bit, but for the most part, I would say the tone is consistent throughout.

Where did you record your album, and who did you work with on it?

Corey: We worked with a good friend of ours named Clayton Sargent. He records out of Chesapeake, actually out of his house. He is the drummer for a local Virginia Beach band called AMORELLA. It’s a really low-key operation, but it is very professionally done. He goes by the alias Millennial Studios.

This year you are competing in the Battle of the Bands to play Vans Warped Tour. Being such a young band, what do you think your chances are for winning the competition?

Drew: I think being such a new band, it’s definitely going to be tough, but so far, our fan base has been really supportive. They are really loyal, and that has been pretty cool. I think we have a chance. I don’t think we’ve got it “in the bag,” but I definitely think we have a chance given how supportive our friends and fans have been, even people who have heard our music that aren’t friends with us.

Corey: I am a very cynical person, but I listen to a lot of phenomenal local music. I personally think that everyone in the band and all the fans see that we believe in our stuff, which has instilled a kind of camaraderie, if you will. I think that helps us out.

Are you competing to perform in Austin, Texas?

Corey: Kind of, but we’ll go with no (laughs). We were when we started it, but with the upcoming album and shows, we decided to put that on the backburner for next year possibly just because we have a lot of things to focus on closer to home.

You just released a music video for another new song, “Canvas.” Why did you decide to go with a live recording rather than a more traditional music video?

Drew: Honestly, it kind of fell in our lap. We were doing a show at Shaka’s, and we got an email saying that if we sold [a certain number] of tickets, you can either take the money or put that money into a live music video, so we decided to do that. The reason why we chose that song is because people seem to respond to it.

Are you happy with the way that the video turned out?

Corey: Very much so, especially for the amount of establishment that we have. It was honestly more than we could have asked for.

Do you have any shows coming up or any other announcements you would like to make?

Corey: Coming up on May 30, we have a show with AMORELLA, M.T. NESTER, and AUDIOSTROBELIGHT at O Herman Bar and Grill. We have a headliner show set in stone at The New Club Relevant at The Refuge on June 27. The lineup is still to be announced.

For more updates on ARCHERS HOPE, be sure to visit their website, “like” their Facebook page, follow them on Twitter, subscribe to their YouTube channel, and check out Broken Anchor on Bandcamp.

Joe Fitzpatrick

Joe Fitzpatrick

As editor-in-chief, Joe is very passionate about promoting music and culture in Virginia and DC. A resident of Falls Church, Joe enjoys going to shows, checking out local breweries, and trying new foods with friends.

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