If you typed “waterparks” into your Google search bar four years ago, you’d likely have been sent back local ads for “waterparks near you.” Fast forward four years: If you search for Waterparks, you’ll be welcomed into the rainbow-colored palette created by the Houston, Texas natives.
Three albums deep and a fourth on the way, at this point, there’s really no need for introductions. Awsten Knight (vocals, guitar), Geoff Wigington (guitar) and Otto Wood (drums) have constructed a sonic base centered around the most important thing to any artist—the fans. If you asked Knight, though, he’d almost certainly mock that it’s about wanting to have a “big house” and “nice things.” But obviously, that couldn’t be further from the truth coming from the creator who named an entire album after the band’s fandom.
Over the last year, we’ve all been subjected to staying inside and learning to love live performances through a screen. All the while, Waterparks took advantage of the time they had off the road by making strides in the next chapter of their saga.
BEWARE: Venturing into Knight’s carefully calculated mind may seem like a tangled web, but we wouldn’t have it any other way. After the not-so-lowkey release of “Lowkey As Hell” toward the end of 2020, the multi-hyphenate artist and creator metaphorically led fans down the rabbit hole of theories, album title teasers and beyond. In Knight’s alphabetical fashion, the trio finally announced their highly anticipated fourth studio album, Greatest Hits. Set to release May 21 via 300 Entertainment, the LP will mark the group’s label debut. Despite their heavy involvement in the overall creation of their previous releases, Greatest Hits will also feature Knight’s first producer credit across the band’s discography.
While “greatest hits” often signifies a collection of work previously released by an artist to highlight their career’s most significant accolades, Waterparks are taking the phrase and turning it topsy turvy. But Waterparks’ fourth album is nothing short of the group’s greatest hits. Spanning an intense 17 brand-new tracks, Greatest Hits offers an experimental, mature, band-defining listening experience. Front to back, Greatest Hits creates a kaleidoscope sound, much like Knight’s meticulously colored hair.
In an all-new interview breaking down the album’s themes, production, style and more, Knight has recruited the band’s closest friends and collaborators—but we’re not going to give it all away upfront. Additionally, Issue 394 features a brand-new (safely conducted) photo shoot from Ashley Osborn. While on set for the shoot, the three took a moment to reflect on the album’s release and their virtual album release show.
“The album that is coming out is called Greatest Hits. It’s very fucking good. May 21—standing our fucking ground. It’s dope,” Knight says. “Album release show’s gonna be dope. I can’t crowdsurf on your heads, which is dog shit, but you can still come to it—in a way. Get some fucking tickets. You’re gonna hear the new songs, brand fucking new, in different and cool and dope fucking ways because Geoff’s a good guitarist, and Otto’s a good drummer, so they’re gonna do dope shit with that.”
In addition to the band’s cover story and new photos, Knight and co. worked closely with the Alternative Press team to highlight a number of new artists and voices in alternative music. From the dreamy sound of Zeph to the hypnotizing vibe created by chloe moriondo and the genre-bending Paris Texas, Issue 394 is bursting with a plethora of artists you should have on your radar. The issue also highlights three new artists in the recently revamped AP RECS section and offers artist recommendations from Gary Numan and Stand Atlantic’s Bonnie Fraser.
You can order Alternative Press Issue 394 below or here.