Motion City Soundtrack’s Tony ThaxtonFor Motion City Soundtrack’s Tony Thaxton, his drumming career has gone full circle–at least in one sense. Growing up in Virginia as a budding drummer, Thaxton would often find himself behind a kit with a pair of headphones, playing along to his favorite records. In fact, he still does that when he’s off tour and at home. “I’ve always liked doing that,” Thaxton says. “And now I’ll have kids at our shows coming up and telling me that they do that to our record, which is a big compliment!”

The album they’re likely jamming along with is Motion City Soundtrack’s latest, Commit This To Memory. Produced by Blink-182 bassist Mark Hoppus, Commit This To Memory showcases Thaxton’s wide range of capabilities behind the kit.

Citing Nirvana’s Dave Grohl and Braid’s Damon Atkinson as a couple of his favorite drummers, Thaxton also mentions a musician that isn’t typically identified as a drummer: Ben Folds. “He plays all the instruments on the Rockin’ The Suburbs record,” Thaxton says. “And the thing is, he’s not a piano player who’s trying to play the drums. He actually does some really cool drum things. I’ve sat down and tried to play along to some of that stuff, and I’d wonder, What’s happening here”?

For Thaxton, who joined MCS in 2002, performing a strong live set really is all about committing to memory the songs of Commit This To Memory. “If I do think when I’m playing, it usually results in me screwing up,” the drummer laughs. “I just totally flub it every time.”

Waleed Rashidi