Motionless in White to visit Scranton during last cross-country Warped Tour
Source: Motionless In WhiteMotionless In White - Warped Tour Short Documentary
Northeastern Pennsylvania-born metalcore group Motionless in White has been nostalgic about its connection to the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton area since celebrating its 10th anniversary as a touring band in 2016, but the impending end to one of the U.S.’s most popular alternative music festivals has frontman Chris “Motionless” Cerulli in an even more fond-of-home mode.
Motionless In White is currently performing on the Vans Warped Tour, which makes its stop at the Pavilion at Montage Mountain and surrounding grounds in Scranton on Thursday. The gothic quintet will perform on a bill that includes Frank Tuner, Reel Big Fish, Four Year Strong, Less Than Jake, The Amity Affliction, Every Time I Die, Doll Skin, As It Is and more. Announced last year, the 2018 campaign will be the last to travel extensively, ending Warped’s 24-year run as a nationwide festival.
For MIW, Warped Tour has been an opportunity to grow, ever since the then-burgeoning band first appeared on the bill in 2005, after winning a pop-up contest.
“Warped Tour has been quite integral in our success in that many of the bigger moments that have come of the band have been the result of Warped Tour,” Cerulli said. “Each year seems to be a different positive outcome for the band, whether it’s just seeing fans showing up and supporting the band, helping to keep us motivated that we’re doing something right, or taking it to the late 2000’s, being ‘discovered’ on Warped Tour.”
Cerulli, a Pittston native, recently released a short video of him touring the grounds at Montage Mountain and reminiscing about the band’s progression at the festival, graduating to larger and larger stages as they built a following.
“We’re not so self-righteous that we think we did this on our own,” Cerulli said of the band’s success. “Some of that is true, but we couldn’t have done it without that platform. We’re so appreciative.”
That the festival stops in Scranton, where MIW can perform in front of hometown fans — many of whom were in their early-career audiences at local venues like Wilkes-Barre’s now-shuddered Cafe Metropolis and the Wyoming Valley Sports Dome — is special for Cerulli, who has had NEPA on the mind since writing and releasing single “570” two years ago.
“It all basically stems from the realization, or simple acknowledgement, that we were a touring band — what we like to call a ‘real band’ — for 10 years at that point,” Cerulli said. “There’s a lot that happens to someone when they realize they’ve been successful at something … for 10 years.
“When I looked back, I found myself clinging to things that happened in our hometown area. It wasn’t playing in Australia or London that were the amazing memories. They are, but it was the memories that centered around home that hit the hardest.”
Cerulli, who spends much of his time off tour in Los Angeles because of the close proximity to the band’s regular producers, said MIW’s pride in their roots and appreciation for their beginnings still brings them to their home region.
“There are periods where we all still live in NEPA,” he said. “We will get together and work on stuff at whoever’s house and sort out some things for when we do get to L.A. ‘570’ was written on my kitchen table in Pittston. I wish we were able to film the music video in the area as well, but sadly, we weren’t.”
The band, which has been writing music for a new album since the beginning of the year, has tentative plans to begin recording during their scheduled time off following Warped Tour, but for now, MIW is enjoying the final cross-country excursion.
“It’s been pretty special in that you can tell everybody recognizes that it’s the last one,” Cerulli said. “It seems like the crowds have been bigger than the last couple times we’ve been on it. The Warped Tour might be ending for the band, and it feels like a chapter is going away, but we have a lot of years left, and we’re looking forward to many years to come.”
Reach Matt Mattei at 570-991-6651 or on Twitter @RMatthewMattei.
IF YOU GO
What: Vans Warped Tour featuring Frank Tuner, Reel Big Fish, Four Year Strong, Less Than Jake, The Amity Affliction, Every Time I Die, Doll Skin, Motionless in White, As It Is and more.
Where: The Pavilion at Montage Mountain and surrounding grounds, 1000 Montage Mountain Road, Scranton