Havoc Jack

Havoc Jack

BandRockAlternative

Havoc Jack is an independent Rock/Alternative band from State College, PA. Our music flourishes through poignant lyrics, cutting melodies, surging harmonies, an edge absent from our contemporaries, and ever-blossoming artistry. Our performances are raw energy, encompassing all.

Biography

The origins of Havoc Jack lie within the weary walls of the music school at Penn State University. In a spring 2008 chance encounter through Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia, the national music fraternity, Pete Macartney and Joe Engers laid the foundations for what would become their greatest musical endeavor. The convergence of the duo lead to a number of jam sessions, which concluded with three finished songs: “Time,” “Love Songs,” and “Well Anyway.” Those songs were performed at the end of that semester for the brothers of Phi Mu Alpha’s Alpha Zeta chapter. The positive reception of the songs solidified Macartney’s and Engers’s transcendence from Rachmaninoff to Rock and Roll.

Macartney and Engers reunited at the onset of the fall semester of that year, and they had written and—for the first time—recorded the song “Almost,” by the end of the second week in September. They began to write and record a song nearly every Tuesday and Thursday for a month as well as recording the 3 songs from the prior semester. As the material disseminated through their circle of friends, their success and drive gained momentum. The two named the group “Havoc Jack” as a combination of their fraternity nicknames, and they began to play at open mic nights both on and off of Penn State’s campus. Finally, toward the end of the semester, Drew Bastian was recruited on drums after hearing the duo’s music and coming forward. They concluded the semester and year with a performance in a basement show. The success had a profound effect on the group, and it set the path for the next semester. Before going on break, the trio recruited Tony Hemming, having formerly played with Engers, to play bass for the gigs they were lining up for the spring.

On January 31, 2009, the full band played their first show at the Phi Rho chapter of the Delta Kappa Epsilon fraternity to a packed house. They continued to play at events ranging from Penn State’s Founder’s Day celebration to benefit concerts for organizations including Relay for Life. Even through the summer they continued to play sporadic graduation parties and other celebrations. The next semester, artistic differences paved the way for Cale Plute to replace Hemming on bass, and the group has continued to grow since. Notable performances after the switch include Penn State’s Homecoming celebration and a benefit concert for the Make-A-Wish Foundation. They are in the midst of self-producing higher-quality demos than they could in 2008 to get their music out to more professional recipients, ranging from festivals to producers.

Each member of Havoc Jack has an eclectic taste in music that differs from the other members’ preferences in music just as significantly as their tastes overlap. Engers’s most prominent influences include: The Who, Jimi Hendrix, Weezer, The Mars Volta, The Decemberists, and We Are Scientists. Macartney’s most prominent influences include: Fall Out Boy, Dave Matthews Band, Incubus, Eddie Van Halen, Richie Sambora, and Tim Reynolds.

Havoc Jack’s music parallels particular aspects of bands including: Fall Out Boy, Incubus, OK Go, Rooney, and Weezer.

Lyrics

When You Can't Erase, Drink

Written By: Joe Engers

I don't know
I don't know what I want any more
I have laid it all out on the floor
And it'a all unfamiliar

I can see
I can see all the shadows still cast
By the things that I held in the past
And it's all a bit frightening

And my hands
And my hands are clenched, covered in red
As I pull them away from my head
Where my crimes are committed

I'm with her
I'm with her and I know that I'm set
There is nothing I have to regret
But there's still something funny

'Cause I'm stuck
'Cause I'm stuck thinkin' 'bout someone else
I am probably going to hell
And it don't even phase me

And I can't
And I can't hide these dark scarlet stains
And I can't write the wrongs in my brain
Someone hand me a drink then

Cheers! Cheers!
I'd rather hear this buzzing over all my thoughts
Here's, here's
To trying to drown these thousand problems that I've got
Can't erase my name
Can't revoke my shame

Can't erase my name

Cheers! Cheers!
I'd rather hear this buzzing over all my thoughts
Here's, here's
To trying to drown these thousand problems that I've got
Can't erase my name
Can't revoke my shame

Fire and Ice

Written By: Joe Engers

Remember the time you flashed those eyes
In my direction, ice-blue reflection
To match the fire inside my own stare
Hotter than most could bear
Remember with time we grew to love
Or so you said, lying in bed
Until your heart froze like your eyes
You killed me with icy lies

Hey! She is a liar like the rest
At least now I see things right
Fuck any desire I have left
I'm gonna set myself free tonight

I realize that my demise
Is just a given, fatefully driven
But I would rather burn than freeze
A massochist's choice for ease
I realize my time is up
Don't fake your care, no don't you dare
Won't let you lie to me no more
Forget you, I'm out the door

Hey! She is a liar like the rest
At least now I see things right
Fuck any desire I have left
I'm gonna set myself free tonight

I put unfounded faith
In your fiery, hot hiss
I put unfounded love
In your icy, cold kiss

Hey! She is a liar like the rest
At least now I see things right
Fuck any desire I have left
I'm gonna set myself free tonight

All Will Be (Hold On)

Written By: Joe Engers

We can't change what has passed
Can't fight what's born to come
I feel so claustrophobic
I feel like I should run
But I've got nowhere to go
There ain't nowhere to hide
I can't dodge these looming storms
Like a ship that's lost to tide

Hold on, the world will turn its way
Hold on, every day
Hold on, just close your eyes and breathe
Hold on, and all will be

We can count our money
Arm ourselves with any gun
Nothing like false safety
When the fight just can't be won
In the end the hands of man
Will barely leave a mark
However bright we make the light
It will always fade to dark

Hold on, the world will turn its way
Hold on, every day
Hold on, just close your eyes and breathe
Hold on, and all will be

The Failed Crop of an Amateur

Written By: Joe Engers

I sit and wallow in the sorrow
Of my thoughts about tomorrow
Another day to honor all I've lost
I have nothing I can turn to
There's no pill, no drink, no guru
To tranquilize my mind and all its costs

Every seed I've sown's run barren
It's left me cold to any caring
I've given up on any sharing
I'm too damn tired to be that daring

Sometimes I feel I've been forgotten
Sometimes I feel my soul is rotten
Is it paranoid when I have so much proof
It's cause I've pushed them all away
It's cause I've led myself astray
I've lost it all myself, and that's the truth

Every seed I've sown's run barren
It's left me cold to any caring
I've given up on any sharing
I'm too damn tired to be that daring

I wish I'd burst into a million little microns
Like lightly aspirated secrets simply sent
To haunt the conscience constantly forbidding any
Peace

Every seed I've sown's run barren
It's left me cold to any caring
I've given up on any sharing
I'm too damn tired to be that daring

Set List

Here is a sample of a recent bar set list of ours:

Set 1

• My Own Worst Enemy - Lit
• Semi-Charmed Life - Third-Eye Blind
• Havoc Jack - Original
• Flagpole Sitta - Harvey Danger
• Come As You Are - Nirvana
• The Failed Crop Of An Amateur - Original
• Pinball Wizard - The Who
• I Will Survive - CAKE (Gloria Gaynor)
• Almost - Almost
• Stacy’s Mom - Fountains of Wayne
• All The Small Things - Blink 182
• Once It Starts - Original
• Say It Ain’t So - Weezer

Set 2

• When You Can’t Erase, Drink - Original
• The Middle - Jimmy Eat World
• Cheesy (Is My Favorite Flavor) - Original
• Hey Joe - Jimi Hendrix
• Beat It - Fall Out Boy (Michael Jackson)
• All Will Be (Hold On) - Original
• Shake It/Cupid Shuffle - Metro Station/Cupid
• Californication - Red Hot Chili Peppers
• Larger Than Life - Backstreet Boys
• Fire And Ice - Original
• What I Got - Sublime
• Use Somebody - Kings of Leon
• No Need For Tidals - Original