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Hawthorne Heights Not Letting Legalities Get It Down

Of the Oakland Press

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Hawthorne Heights has a couple of mantras these days.

“We don’t want people to forget about us” is one, according to drummer Eron Bucciarelli.

Add to that, “When we first started, this band wanted to play music and do it professionally. We’re not gonna let something like a lawsuit get in the way of that. We’re gonna pursue our dreams.”

Suffice to say it’s been an odd year for the Dayton, Ohio, quintet. Though the group’s sophomore album, “If Only You Were Lonely,” debuted at No. 3 on the Billboard charts in 2006, it’s been mired in legalities since suing its label, Victory Records, claiming damage to the group’s reputation and its relationship with its fans. The company countersued, effectively putting Hawthorne Heights in limbo — although a federal judge in Chicago ruled that the group can indeed record for another label but does owe Victory another two albums.

On top of that is a recent breach-of-contract lawsuit from the group’s former management company, Michigan-based Wild Justice Records.

“It’s tough, very stressful,” says Bucciarelli, 28. “You sort of question whether or not it was the right decision every day. It sucks that it’s taking so long, but in the end, we’re gonna be way better off.”

The drummer says Hawthorne Heights already has about 25 new songs written and even did some pre-production earlier this year with producer Howard Benson. The group hopes to be in the studio in early 2008 and have its third album ready to go in short order.

“It’s not really a matter of us being prepared,” Bucciarelli says. “It’s a matter of us working out some of our (legal) situation right now. Once we get that resolved, we’re gonna be in the studio as soon as possible.

“We’re just concerned with making a new record, getting it out there to our fans and getting back in the swing of things, basically.”

Hawthorne Heights, Escape the Fate, Amber Pacific, the AKA’s and the Secret Handshake perform Friday (Nov. 23) at the Majestic Theatre, 4140 Woodward Ave., Detroit. Doors open at 6 p.m. Tickets are $18 in advance, $20 at the door. Call (313) 833-9700 or visit www.majesticdetroit.com.

Web Site: www.majesticdetroit.com

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