Underoath’s Spencer Chamberlain talks addiction, ditching the band’s ‘Christian’ label, moving back to St. Pete and more

Underoath. Photo by Dan Newman.
Underoath. Photo by Dan Newman.
Published April 23 2018

HGTV fanatic that he is, Spencer Chamberlain sees a metaphor for his band in the ever-evolving St. Petersburg skyline.

"When you go downtown and you look at the ONE, that used to be a dirt parking lot," said the singer, referring to a 41-story condo tower under construction at First Avenue N and First Street. "That's what Underoath was. We had this rickety old building in the best part of town. We had to knock it down and figure out: What's the best thing we could do with this?"

For Underoath, the answer lies in new album Erase Me, which this month debuted near the top of the Billboard 200 albums chart. It's the Tampa metalcore band's first LP in eight years, and first since a three-year breakup that ended in 2016. They'll sign copies at Daddy Kool Records on Monday; click here for details.

For Chamberlain, it marks the first work since a series of changes in his life. He's now sober after more than a decade of drug use. It's Underoath's first album since collectively deciding to no longer identify as a Christian act, a move that has shocked some fans. And it's his first new album since moving back to St. Petersburg last fall.

"My life got kind of worse for a while, and then it just started to turn around at one point," said Chamberlain, 34, sipping iced coffee in the shade outside Bandit Coffee Co. "I think I leaned how to love myself, to be okay with who I am again."

For more of our interview with Chamberlain, click here.