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September 2022

Check out Spiritbox's Teenage Kicks playlist, feat. Metallica, Architects, Enter Shikari and more

Take a wander through guitarist Mike Stringer's formative years.
Published: 11:20 am, November 16, 2021
Check out Spiritbox's Teenage Kicks playlist, feat. Metallica, Architects, Enter Shikari and more

When you load up Spotify, a great big chunk of the time you can’t think what to play, right? You default back to your old favourites, those albums and songs you played on repeat when you first discovered you could make them yours.

This isn’t about guilty pleasures; it’s about those songs you’ll still be listening to when you’re old and in your rocking chair. So, enter Teenage Kicks - a playlist series that sees bands running through the music they listened to in their formative years.

Next up, Mike Stringer from Spiritbox.

Alexisonfire - No Transitory

This band was a gateway into music with screaming in it for me. At first, I didn't get it, but something clicked, and I became obsessed. I first discovered Alexisonfire when I was 13, and I'm so glad that I did. Whenever I hear their album 'Watch Out' or their self-titled record, it brings me right back to how it all started for me.

Protest The Hero - Nautical

Protest The Hero is a very important band to me. I owe a lot to this album (Kezia), as it totally shaped the way that I play guitar. When I was 15, some of my friends in guitar class showed me the music video for their song 'Blindfolds Aside', and I immediately went home to try and learn it. This was the most technical guitar
playing I had heard at that time, and I was immediately obsessed with trying to learn as much of it as I could. I spent countless hours of my high school years after school in my room learning Protest songs. I chose 'Nautical' as the highlight track, as to me, it's one of the best songs off of the album, but it's also one of the first ones I learned. I still use parts of it as a warmup before I play to this day.

Underoath - A Moment Suspended In Time

After getting hooked on Alexisonfire, I was introduced to Underoath. This band solidified my love for this genre of music, and their album 'Define The Great Line'. I still listen to this album all the time to this day, and 'A Moment Suspended In Time' will always bring me back to playing in my first band, and being in our van just starting to tour when I was 16 years old.

Metallica - The Thing That Should Not Be

The Thing That Should Not Be is one of the heaviest songs of all time. This was a song that I fell in love with when I was 10. Right when I started becoming obsessed with guitar, this was a very important song to me. It was one of the first songs that introduced me to down tuning, and extremely heavy chugging patterns. Master Of Puppets is one of the best albums ever made, and this song is for sure a highlight from it.

Sikth - Bland Street Bloom

I discovered this band through Protest The Hero. Their guitar player wore a Sikth shirt in a music video, and out of curiosity, I looked them up. It was unlike anything I had ever heard before, and once again, I wanted to challenge myself and try to learn as much of it as I could! Sikth was really important to me, because it taught me a lot about unconventional tunings, and pushing the limits of the guitar. I still listen to Sikth a ton, and 'Death Of A Dead Day' is one of my favourite albums, but learning 'Bland Street Bloom' changed a lot for me.

Architects - Numbers Count For Nothing

I'll never forget discovering Architects on Much Loud when I was 15. Much Loud was an hour-long show, only aired late at night in Canada. It would play an hour of metal music videos, and I discovered a lot of great bands this way. Architects was definitely the highlight of them all, and when I first heard them, I was hooked pretty much immediately. Numbers Count For Nothing has one of the best riffs ever written in it, and listening to this song brings me right back to being a teenager sitting in my room, trying to figure out how to play it.

Comeback Kid - Talk Is Cheap

This was my skateboarding song when I was a teenager. It's driving, heavy, catchy, and still hits hard to this day. 'Wake The Dead' and 'Broadcasting' were very important albums to me, and I still listen to them quite a bit.

Enter Shikari - Anything Can Happen In The Next Half Hour

I found Enter Shikari when I was 15, and discovered their album 'Take To The Skies'. I remember having that "aha" moment where I realized you could combine electronic elements, and heavy music together, and the combination can work really well. Enter Shikari has always been ahead of the curve, and is still putting out amazing material to this day. This song was a big one for me as it's so dynamic, and has so many cool parts in it. Without this band, I don't think I'd look at heavy music the same way.

Taken from the November issue of Upset. Spiritbox's album 'Eternal Blue' is out now.

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