Don’t Beg the Exalt Guy in a Hatebreed Sweater for Free Swag
It takes a brave individual to man the merch table before or after a show, peddling their creative life's work for taco money. In today's Merch Madness, we barter and moan with Tim Waugh of metallic hardcore powerhouses Exalt.
What band shirt will you never throw away, no matter how gross it gets?
I have a Jane Doe shirt I usually wear when I play. That thing has had liters of sweat rung out of it over the last couple years, has a bunch of holes in it, the print is chipping off, but I'll never toss it. It's still one of the coolest designs ever, in my book.
Has a stranger ever stopped you on the street to ask about your band shirt?
All the time, and it's not as annoying for me as some people think it is. Kids will be at a show we play and want to know what band shirt I was wearing onstage or just walking around the venue in. You can tell they just love music and wanna know more; I love that.
What’s the dumbest question you’ve ever been asked at the merch table?
"I don't have money for a shirt, but can I just have one? I'll rep it every day, I promise," is my favorite. I would never ask a band that; it's just insulting. People repping our shirts doesn't put gas in tanks and Taco Bell in stomachs. Always down to cut a deal for a kid who is stoked on our band, but to ask plainly for free stuff when I don't know you is real weak.
What’s the most money you’ve ever spent at a merch table?
It wasn't a lot, honestly, but the Hatebreed sweater I bought on their Perseverance anniversary tour was $50. That's the most I'd spend on any band shirt anyway.
Do pastels belong on a band shirt?
One-thousand percent. A bunch of our shirts have them, and that shit looks cool.
Have you ever bought a record at a merch table and immediately broke it?
Never. Once that thing is in my hands, it's going in the car. Kids that stand in the pit/close to the stage holding LPs stress me out.
What band shirt makes you jealous that you didn’t come up with the idea first?
I wish I was the first guy to make hockey jerseys for my band. It's just the hands-down sickest thing ever. I'm hoping we get to make some in the near future because I've been planning it since we started being a band, basically.
Do you approve of ironic band shirts?
Very seldom; usually it just looks corny as hell. It has to be hilarious or very clever to not make me want to light it on fire as you're wearing it.
What’s the most obnoxious item you’ve ever bought (or sold) at a merch table?
I saw Crowbar in Toronto last year and bought the hockey jersey they had for sale, bringing my two passions of hockey and ass-beater riffs together. The back says NONE HEAVIER with 0 as the number; so badass. Kirk the singer actually sold it to me and was stoked: "Oooooh, I knew we'd be sellin' somma theeeese in Canada, heh heh heh," in his harsh but charming voice. Super cool dude.
Describe your favorite band poster.
I have a Deftones poster I'm trying to find a frame for from when the self-titled came out. It's the skull with the band's name in cursive with some other red shit goin' on in the back. Nothing special, really, but that poster represents my favorite band and all the good they did for me growing up. Every time I look at it, I just feel better.
Exalt's latest album, The Shape You Took Before the Ache, was released in early September on Good Fight Music.