I was reading an article on Relevantmagazine.com about Underoath leaving the Warped Tour. There were other reasons they left the tour but one reason may have been "Fat Mike" from NOFX. Here's his quote:
Mike also admits that his constant mocking of Underoath got to them, but he doesn't think it was a reason for them to pull out of Warped. He attended one of the band's Bible-study sessions as a joke but claims he was nothing if not respectful.
"I didn't help their cause at all, but I wasn't the main reason either," he said. "They're a weird band. I was going to go after them as soon as I found out they were on the tour."
Now, why would a 39-year old lead singer willingly admit that he had mocked a band of young Christian dudes? First of all, lack of maturity. When you're on the Warped Tour and keep a nickname that is a left over misnomer from the 1980's... I'm guessing you aren't the most mature of men. Then I think it's a matter of ego- here are young, talented guys who have an album selling like hotcakes. Fat Mike is successful, (he has several side projects including Me First and the Gimee Gimees, and owns his own record label) but nonetheless a dude that is not on the same par right now with Underoath. Last, and most important, I think that he is a man in search of a savior (a nice way of saying he's a sinner like all of us) and when he's confronted by light it hurts. He was seeing in the light of these young guys who don't look like Bible-toting missonaries, he could see everything that his heart really desires- Jesus. His initital reaction being to attack. He was on the defense.
I suppose part of me wants to be really mad at him and I question why it's okay to openly admit being mean to Christians, but what if it would have been a Muslim band? Hardcore Islamic Rock sounds like a musical movement on the verge :) Why is it alright? The amazing part is that he says with no problem that he willingly went after Underoath because they are 'weird'. So much for punk fueled tolerance.
I doubt that Fat Mike is the only reason the boys left the tour, but I know that it is hard to stand up to constant mockery. It just hurts after awhile. But that's what Jesus promised in the first place- they're going to hate you, too. Even if you're talented, young and successful.
I might be Biased and I really like Underoath, not always for their music but for the way they remind me of the "fun guys" at Christian college or Cameron's good friends that are in a band. They are decent young guys making good, clean music for the kids. :)
Maybe in the end they took their own lyrics to heart:
Hey unfaithful I will teach you
To be stronger, to be stronger.
Hey ungrateful I will teach you
To forgive one another.
After all, they are the same as Fat Mike- humans with broken hearts, the only difference is that they've found their savior.
5 years ago