“Their sound is frenetic like early Clash yet their music and lyrics are better groomed, more polished.” - Maxwell Maxwell: Your record label, Cat9 Records, is that exclusively Scarlet Symphony’s or do other bands fall under that umbrella?
ferent bass player. It would be a totally different story. Absolutely. That’s one of the biggest highlights of this band for me.
Aaron: I would basically say that Cat9 Records
goes beyond beyond… yeah you know. That’s a tough question because it’s hard to see from the outside.
is an umbrella for all of us to do what we want. I mean if any of us were to do any projects that we felt that we wanted to release as a group, it would all fall under Cat9. It’s basically a label to serve us putting out our own stuff by ourselves. And if we wanted to sign a band or release a band, I mean, I’m sure we could do that at some point. Basically, it’s existed to release our own projects in various forms. Maxwell: Zachary and Joshua, being twins and in the same band, you obviously spend a lot of time together. Does that prove to be a challenging work environment or do the benefits of twindom out weigh each others’ annoying idiosyncrasies? Aaron: That’s a hard hitting question. (He smiles) Josh: You’re going to make us cry. I don’t think I
would…I think my experience with Scarlet Symphony would be much different if there were a dif12 yesterdaymag.com
Zach: Yes, it certainly does, we have a bond that
Maxwell: After reading an on-line article in CityBeat magazine, my curiosity was piqued by the mystery surrounding your band’s initial break-up. Without name calling or revealing dirty details, can you describe what happened and eventually what brought you all back together? Aaron: No comment.
A few seconds pass by and we’re all quiet. I don’t get the feeling that they’re mad that I asked though, just past it. Zach: It’s a love of playing music and we all missed
it, you know. It’s hard to pass on something that you love in your life.
Maxwell: Do you see a musical revolution happening here in San Diego? Gary: I’ve seen it three or four times. Maxwell: When is it going to happen? Aaron: It comes in waves, there’s waves of bands
and what happens, what’s happening right now is kind of interesting, I think, is that there are so many bands and it’s easier for bands to put out their own records. It’s easy for bands to do records by themselves if they have the ambition or the drive to do that. You can go record your own record; you can release your own record. The truth is, even if you’re not making tons and tons and tons of money because not even big record labels are doing that, you can get your music to the people that want to hear it. And even if you’re giving your record away for free on myspace or whatever you’re doing, the opportunity for that to happen is huge. This is a subject that I can go on and on and on about; I have my opinions on it. This happens in San Diego or in any town where bands start playing, a bunch of bands start playing and right now there happens to be a lot of bands and a lot of bands that are good. So, I’ve heard that this is like the little renaissance
Maxwell’s Maxim of San Diego, it sounds like I’m dating myself but it happens. The other thing is, not only are there a lot of bands, there are a lot of bands doing things. Bands that are making records, bands that are going on tour. There’s buzz bands and there’s bands that stick around, it’s an interesting time, there’s a lot going on. I’m sure when we’re old and gray, we’ll all remember this pretty fondly. Maxwell: How do you guys feel about the music awards? Zach: I think it’s really cool that they do that, it’s
really good for the bands just to be recognized, to get together… Maxwell: Did you like the pig heads? Gary: Oh, I loved the pig heads! That was The
Burning of Rome.
Aaron: I’d say the music awards are really cool, I
think the best part about it is that it raises money. It offers all sorts of things for the musicians. Like especially for the bands that get to play that, it’s like you get to play in front of your community as a whole, whoever is there and that’s all cool, to recognize people for what they’re doing. The coolest part about it is that all money winds up going to charity for music programs for schools and stuff like that. Because that kind of stuff is evaporating and I never…I was in band in junior high but I was on percussion because I wasn’t a saxophone player or something like that but that made a difference in my excitement about music and I hope that, live music is one of those things that has the ability to do all sorts of cool things in the world. That’s en-
couraging, kids growing up to be involved in that, that’s pretty bad ass. The fact they (SDMA) do that is awesome, our government can’t seem to do that right now. It’s cool that somebody is taking the initiative to do that in their community. Maxwell: What is your view on the current global situation? Aaron: You wanna talk for three hours? You just
picked on my favorite subject. The only thing I can say is that I hope that the US government or if not, world governments realize that the next economic revolution is an energy revolution. They can utilize the corporations’ greed and turn it into something positive. These corporations are the powers of the world and they control global economies, and that is bigger than government, so I just hope that they can realize that they can still win and they can still put the bucks in their pocket, but they might be able to actually do something positive while doing that. Because then, it’s a win-win situation, you aren’t cannibalizing the consumer or the citizen, then you aren’t really doing anything wrong even if you are trying to stay on the top of the pile. Josh: About the music awards, I think it is cool
whoever chooses whatever bands for whatever awards but there a lot of bands in San Diego that aren’t recognized at all by that, and I would say some are even more bad ass than some of the bands that were recognized. I would say The Vaginals or Batwings or a whole host of bands. It’s not that big of a deal but it is cool to be honored by people that are around us.
Aaron: I hope next year that they widen their spec-
trum of music. There’s a lot more going on in San Diego than just the bands that play in North Park. There’s a huge thriving hip hop community that gets a little ignored. I hope to see more of that going on, especially in CityBeat or at the Music awards getting represented a little more. There’s great world music, there’s all sorts of things. The San Diego music community is not small but it is small enough that everybody knows everybody else. Scarlet Symphony is an uncommon mix, Aaron’s calm demeanor and eloquent speech contrast with the bouncy energy of the Wheeler twins. Lead singer, Gary was most likely saving his energy for their performance later that evening. Whatever the formula is for Scarlet Symphony, it works. At first glance, they appear statuesque and stoic but from the instant the first note is struck, they’re electrifying. Their sound is frenetic like early Clash yet their music and lyrics are better groomed, more polished. My conversation with Scarlet Symphony was pleasant and I honestly believe that I could probably talk to Aaron for hours about politics, conspiracy theories and the like. I get the feeling though that Scarlet Symphony didn’t wholly let their guard down in my presence. Maybe it was the noisy outdoor setting or the steady parade of scantily clad bodacious women headed towards the trendy hot spot True North that kept the interview from getting intimate. Whatever the cause, the result is that I, Maxwell have finally found a band that intrigues me and I intend to further both my study of and my relationship with the fine gentlemen of the up and coming band, Scarlet Symphony.
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The Paddle Boat “I “I get get as as drunk drunk as as II can can and and II sit sit in in my my room room with with all all the the lights lights off” off” -Jeremy -Jeremy
Maxwell’s Maxim The Paddle Boat On a relatively warm night, I walk into a cloud of cigarette smoke just as dusk hits. Two dark haired girls in skirts talk in line ahead of me. The doorman gives me a once over before opening the door and then I see the members of The Paddle Boat across the way and head over. I like the swanky atmosphere and almost East Coast vibe of the dinner club immediately, the only drawback is the noise, a lot of people are talking, eating and drinking. Jeremy talks to me like we’re old chums while Jackson and Dave relocate us to a bigger table. Bob Dylan’s “Tangled up in Blue” plays in the background and I take a seat on tan leather barstool, photographs of horses adorn red walls and for a slight moment, I feel like I’m at my uncle’s country house instead of The Turf Supper Club. My eyes follow my ears over to Dave who is tapping to the music on his knees. That’s when I notice the lovely Jane, who no joke looks like she just stepped out of high school. Somehow amid the chatter, I learn that Jane did a “Bohemian Rhapsody” sing-a-long at The Imperial Hose to a full crowd. After warming up to them, I admit that the noise in here isn’t ideal for audio recording the interview. Jeremy finishes sipping down his Long Island iced tea as we make our way outside. We cross the street and sit outside of Luigi’s Pizza Place adjacent to a flower shop. Maxwell: Your MySpace lists current members of The Paddle Boat as Jeremy Scott, Jackson Milgaten, and Dave Mead but on your latest release, I Wonder if The Water Ever Tires of the Sea?, clarinetist Jane Weibel is featured on several tracks including vocals on “Just Like a Good Girl Should.” Did she recently leave the band or does she regulate herself to guest appearances?
Laughter from Jane. Jackson: Yeah, Jane is no longer in the band but
she’s on the entire record. She’s over there now (pointing to Jane). We wrote all those songs with her and with a clarinet in mind. When Jeremy and I were arranging those songs, it was definitely, it was premeditated, and we wrote the songs around Jeremy’s vocals and her clarinet so she was a big part of that record. I guess that was a big transition for us. I would say that if you come see us live now, it’s like some sort of fusion between where we’re going and where we were. We still play a lot of those songs but we don’t have the clarinet in them, we do them with a different mentality than we did in the past and it kind of changes the whole end result. We’re
definitely heading in a different direction because of her leaving the band. As Jackson talks, he gestures with his hands. Maxwell: Jackson, Vision of a Dying World is still playing shows Jackson: I play by myself right now. I’ve been do-
ing that for the last six months, I don’t know, it’s been a while. I’m going to start to have other people play with me I just haven’t figured out who yet.
A breeze blows the scent of fragrant honeysuckle towards us and then the sky rips open as a plane descends into Lindbergh Field. Jane excuses herself to go order some food. Maxwell: There seems to be a somewhat incestuous trend in the local San Diego music scene of band members jumping ship so to speak into different bands, is there too much musical talent to be contained in one ensemble or are personality conflicts to blame? Dave: I just think that’s kind of natural just because
everybody who we know is gregarious and enjoys hanging out with new people all the time and then a lot of times the best way to hang out is when you’ re doing something so I like just meeting new people and playing in new bands. Sometimes that does mean that bands start that don’t record and don’t play shows and that kind of thing but that’s just a trial and error situation. Everybody kind of just plays with each other. (He smirks)
people to help you realize your musical vision and because you can’t play all the instruments at once, if you want to play live at least. So, I think that there’s a lot of really talented people, all these different bands, I like to look at each of the projects as a representation of the personality of the main force behind the band and sometimes that can be shared by two people that are propelling it at the same time but usually, it’s one person’s thing, it’s this very physical, tangible manifest destiny. (He furrows his brow in thought) There’s a need even though I love playing bass and I love playing in The Paddle Boat as a bass player/harmonizer back-up auxiliary player and I think I serve my purpose best under that role but I still have a need to write my own songs and to play those songs for people. And I think that can basically be seen in everyone that plays in any of these bands and all the multitudes of projects are just a result of that need. We take a break and I seize the chance to run off to the loo and when I return The Paddle Boat including Jane are saying a rowdy good-bye to a group of friends who look sort of familiar to me. I take a seat at the red and white checkered picnic table and resume questioning. Maxwell: You guys have a very distinct sound; your recordings could be mistaken for something from the 1930s. Do you analyze old recordings for ideas to put in your songs?
Jeremy’s face falls serious, he pauses and looks up to the sky as if for inspiration and a second plane roars
Jackson: That’s what she said.
Laughter. The neon sign of the market across the street plays across our faces. Jeremy: I think you’re going to see that trend any-
where you go. In every city there are artists and they gravitate toward each other and you can’t help but collaborate. You need a band, you’re gonna turn to the people you know. You’re an artist, you meet artists so you can’t help but start a band with other artists. So, I don’t think San Diego is particularly unique in that sense. Jackson: I think that because there’s this kind of
closeness to a lot of the musicians in San Diego whereas in other cities that I lived in, it doesn’t necessarily seem to be like that. And it even bridges scenes or genres of music. I’m friends with so many people in so many different kinds of bands. Maybe our bands have never even played a show together because it wouldn’t make any sense in terms of style but we still have a mutual respect and we still have a friendship. So I think that out of that, you need yesterdaymag.com 15
Maxwell’s Maxim Jeremy: As far as recording goes, yes, we record
with Jackson’s brother Keith Milgaten (Milg-uhtin). I’ve been very close friends with him since I was about 12 years old, we developed musically together and I don’t want to record with anyone else but him. We did go to Oregon and he brought a studio with him to Sonny’s house and we recorded the last record with him and we plan on recording everything we do in the future with him as well. Damn, I bloody butchered these guys’ names. Jackson’s pizza has arrived and he takes a swig of Red Stripe. Maxwell: I’m sure that you guys do not have a huge budget to work with yet your recent video; “The B Side of Life”
“In a way, the project is a collaboration of everyone around us; it’s sort of like a sponge.” -Jackson by. A man wrestles dishes at the table behind us creating a cacophonous symphony. Jeremy regroups his thoughts and begins. Jeremy: As far as recordings from the 1930s go,
Jazz Standards, yes, I am definitely very interested in Jazz Standards in the subtle movement and the cooperation between instruments used in that style of music coupled with the concentration on melody is what mostly influences me. Jeremy: But that’s not to say that I am only influ-
enced by music from the 1930s. I like the sound of the guitar from that era. I love Patsy Cline and the sound of that guitar, I try to replicate a little bit. It is more the instruments working together, guitar solos, they don’t really play a part in this band. Drum solos, I don’t really think we have that. Bass solos only really exist in the Red Hot Chili Peppers. Maxwell: Is there a special place where you like to record? Do you do it yourselves? 16 yesterdaymag.com
Dave: I found recently that recording in a new place
and experimenting is really helpful. Just in a lot of different ways. It kind of helps you understand the song better. We always recorded with a man named Keith who is Jackson’s brother, he was actually just here. He does a phenomenal job but this last recording was done at this beautiful house in Oregon that we brought the recording equipment to. Oh, so that’s who they were saying goodbye to, I thought they looked familiar. I study Dave’s five o’clock shadow as he answers but I get somewhat distracted by the lingerie pin-ups that line the inside of the flower shop just over his left shoulder. Jackson: Santino Romeri’s family.
was very inventive. Who thinks of the ideas and who makes it all happen? Jeremy: A very close friend named Jesse Pellegrino
made that happen. She went to school at UCSD and she was a film major. We worked together and she took an interest in our music. She wanted to make a video and we decided on that song and a friend of hers who works in L.A. came down to help her and we filmed it at the UCSD film studios. Jackson: It was all her. Jeremy: Yeah, it was her concept. She put the whole
thing together; we showed up and did it. Jackson: All that.
Jeremy: Yeah, she’s a genius. She lives in Brooklyn
Maxwell: yeah, I saw the thank you on your vinyl. There’s a lot of You. Tubes of Get Back Loretta at that house.
now and she works on films with such actors as (announcer voice) Harrison Ford, Mel Gibson.
Jackson: They played there?
Dave: Oh, the big three.
Maxwell: No, they stayed there.
Jane: Jodie Foster.
Maxwell’s Maxim Jackson: I would say though that outside of that
video, just in general with creative thought, it’s very much a collective effort. Jeremy definitely writes, he’s the core of the band in that most of the songs are coming from him but, it’s definitely one of the most collaborative projects that I’ve ever been in whereas I feel like when The Vision was a full band, me and Jeremy were just telling people what we wanted and then we’d all try to achieve that and with this, it’s more like, I don’t think even Jeremy really knows what he wants when he brings a song to the table. Jeremy: After this first album, more recently, noth-
ing that’s been recorded yet…where are we going? What is the question? Are we off on a tangent?
Jackson: We’re talking about where our ideas
Jeremy: Oh, I get as drunk as I can and I sit in my
room with all the lights off... Dave: Take acid.
Jeremy: and I light a candle, I pray to my personal
God, Grugen and I fuckin’ come up with a guitar part and I hope they’re gonna like this. Sometimes, I just bring pieces, let’s come up with something.
a picture of some random dude standing in front of an Easter Island statue and I would be just as happy and that’s what’s on the cover of the record. Maxwell: I did notice that. Jackson: In a way, the project is a collaboration of
everyone around us; it’s sort of like a sponge.
Dave: I think that particular visual catastrophe
was an isolated incident and a minor setback and though that was a particularly bad moment in us trying to be visual people, I think that there is a good visual future for us.
went to a party and I made him sing harmonies with me so that I would remember it and I made him promise that I would remember the melody even after we got home from the party and luckily I did. The song just like Jackson was describing before, it’s about us developing songs in pieces. Jackson: The song took us like six months to
Jeremy: It took us forever, we had the beginning
Jackson: Let’s hope.
part, I wrote the harmony with Jackson and then Jane and I came up with the clarinet part at a totally different time. And then we brought the whole thing to practice and it just took forever and it wasn’t going anywhere. Then, Jackson one day…
A third plane thunders overhead.
Jackson: You had another piece of a song and I
Maxwell: “Cotillion” is dreamy and surreal. What is the inspiration for that song?
Jeremy: It’s not in the same key, it doesn’t even
Jane laughs. Jeremy: I don’t know how to answer that. I wrote
that song when I was going through an interesting time in my life where I was trying to find meaning in anything I possibly could and I was drinking a lot of alcohol and I wrote that song before Jackson and I
said why don’t we put that in the middle?
make sense but he said do it and I said fine. And there you have it. Jackson: And the whole song kind of became
pieces put together.
Jeremy: That was the first song we developed as a
band like that. That sort of pointed us in the direction that we’re on now.
Jane: That’s the first song that Dave participated in.
“I wrote that song after I moved into an apartment with a girlfriend that smashed my instruments.” - Jeremy Jackson: And then with the visual stuff, apparently
we’re all terrible at that. Jeremy can draw really well. We made a cover for the record, everyone hated it. It was repulsive to everyone else that looked at it. Dave and Jeremy laugh. Dave: It was awesome. Jackson: I liked it too. Craig Barcolft who I run Sil-
ver Screen with was like, “Oooh, I don’t want to offend you guys but I’m not going to release this cover. “ We’re like, “Okay, we don’t care.” You can put
Dave as if on cue bends over to tie his shoes and makes such a production doing it that he sounds like Cookie Monster.
a John Irving novel. Is this song based on a real life experience? If so, whose?
Maxwell: I like the song “Crazy Horse Medallion;” it strikes me as part love song, part Charlie Chaplin skit. Where did this song originate?
It suddenly falls quiet; I can hear the two pizza chefs talking in the kitchen. Jeremy’s eyes flicker with pain.
Jeremy: I wrote that song after I moved into an
apartment with a girlfriend that smashed my instruments. I was lying in bed while she was brushing her teeth and I was just hearing that melody. I got up and started playing guitar; I didn’t have a job at the time. She was working and I was just writing music and she came home and I played it for her and she was actually playing trumpet on it for a while and that’s where that came from. I don’t know if it’s necessarily about her but she did break the guitar that I wrote it on. Damn, that’s cold. Ladies, you can a break a man’s heart but please have some mercy and never break his guitar, that’s just not right. Yet another plane passes noisily overhead. Maxwell: The lyrics, “the animal sleeping beside you doesn’t think you’re worth marrying.” From the song ‘One Legs’ sound like they’re pulled from 18 yesterdaymag.com
Jeremy: I don’t really want to talk about it.
I get the feeling that it is in not the same girlfriend elaborated on in the previous question but I’m not about to push him even if I am intrigued by the lyrics. These guys are laid back, friendly and approachable and I’m not about to sour that. Maxwell: What’s on the horizon for The Paddle Boat? Jackson: We are doing a West Coast tour start-
ing April 29th and then, we’re going do a larger tour that will probably take us everywhere in the Western half of the country in July. We’re just writing songs and we’re maybe one third of the way to a new record but the songs that we’ve got are definitely taking us in a new direction. A plane thunders over head. Jackson: This one’s going fast. (He makes a sound
Dave: (dejected) Hey, I was gonna do that!
Laughter. Jackson: We’re kind of like, “What the fuck do
we do now?” And we’ve spent the last…however trying to do figure that out. I think we have figured it out at this point and we’re just really starting to fully embrace that and the new songs are definitely a reflection of that and Dave and I are doing more than we used to, he used to just play the drums and I used to just play the bass and we would sing some backups. Now, I’m kind of playing a bunch of percussion and some other different little musical touches on the song for melodica. And Dave is an electronic sampler as well as the acoustic drums. I think that the new stuff sounds less like, it sounds like the 1930s meets Blade Runner. We’re getting our bearings and writing a new record and touring and that’s pretty much the plan for this year, I guess. The Paddle Boat’s music is off the beaten path and that’s what makes it interesting. You’re not sure what is going to happen next and judging by the end of this interview, neither do Jeremy, Dave, and Jackson which is very exciting. These very regular, down to earth guys create textured, ethereal music that is sure to entertain. So as The Paddle Boat begins to plan it’s new course, Maxwell for one will be expecting it to be into uncharted waters.
WEATHERBOX “At one point, I thought that I was a Zombie and that my face had been stomped in. I was fucking crazy and it sucked.” - Brian
In the Bungalow Weatherbox
otoriously known for being late, I arrive at Bar Pink with just enough time to push my way through the crowd to the bar and make it back to the front of the stage (if you can call it that) to hear Weatherbox’s set begin. Lead singer, Brian plays his guitar in sock clad feet and sings with a steady passion that seems to be well received by tonight’s audience. Numerous drinks and a string of good tunes later, I find myself walking down 30th Street to Weatherbox’s van where it feels like a hot box but it’s just heat comin’ off after a rousing performance. I’m in the front passenger seat across from grungy Brian, clean cut Garrett occupies the middle seat and long-haired Nathan is in the back seat. The night around us is alive but we are confined to a little rectangle dependent on quiet for the sake of a voice recorder. Bill: Where did you guys come up with the name Weatherbox? Is an actual thing or a self created word? Brian: Weatherbox is a song name by a band
called Mission of Burma, when I was a young highschooler, I wanted to start this band that was my own solo project so, I decided to call it Weatherbox before I actually had a band or anything. But then I started this other band with my friends called Mr. Valentine, and I forgot about it and then I just used it as an internet name. Like I was on a message board for some scream-o stuff, cross my heart with a knife, 0204 True Scream-o, my name was Weatherbox on that. Then, Mr. Valentine broke up, I joined this other really crappy band, it’s a long story. I then started Weatherbox and decided to use the old name because it just kind of had a ring to it. I also give people this kind of half-baked explanation about it, how the box is your consciousness and the weather is reality. But, I decided I don’t like that anymore so I don’t talk about it. What else does it mean? There’s a band called Butter Glove and that’s kind of similar. Brian’s clear blues eyes glisten in the face of passing headlights as he speaks. Bill: I see you’ve changed the band’s lineup, talk to me about those changes. Brian: First, we started the band at this time in our
lives when I was turning… I was in twelfth grade and I decided to do the band thing and be in a band and everyone else in the bands didn’t really have plans besides college. So, a lot of people went to college or people just couldn’t commit the time that it was taking for us to get big essentially so that we could tour comfortably and succeed. And people, I
don’t know, got over it. But, this is our first show, it’s kind of hard to say, I don’t know….This is my new band, let’s see… Drew’s from San Diego, he’s a good cook. Garrett’s from San Diego, he knows how to mix records. Nate’s from San Diego, he knows how to be a pit boss. That’s about it. Bill Laughs. Garrett: I’ve played music for a long time, I really
liked Weatherbox and Brian, one day, asked me to play in the band. He asked me to play guitar first but I told him I was a bass player so I played bass for the first seven or eight shows that we did. Then, George, who was the old guitarist left and I told them that I would switch to guitar and that’s what I did. And then, Nate came and started playing bass. Nathan: I met Brian a couple of years ago at an
apartment in Del Mar. Brian: Incorrect.
Bill and Garrett laugh. Nathan: And, I didn’t know what Weatherbox was.
We liked the same music and we chilled a little bit and now I play bass in Weatherbox. Garrett: What the hell story is that? Nathan: I liked Weatherbox after hearing them
on myspace through a couple of other friends who liked them and I played drums for quite a while and had been singing in other bands around town for quite a while. I grew up playing drums and after listening to Weatherbox enough, I realized that I could probably play the parts and I contacted Brian because he was looking for a drummer at the time. We jammed a bit and it was fuckin’ sick.
Whoa, this is some deep shit; I’ll need to contimplate it tomorrow afternoon….. Later, after researching on the internet, I found the original quote from the movie circa 1998: “Who’s doing this? Who’s killing us, robbing us of life and light, mocking us with the sight of what we mighta known? Does our ruin benefit the earth, aid the grass to grow and the sun to shine? Is this darkness in you too? Have you passed through this night?” I was right, this is some deep shit. Now, I want to go out and watch Thin Red Line. And these are the types of things that fill the nooks and crannies of Brian Warren’s mind. Bill: In the song titled “...is nice,” why is the guy in the song oozing and bleeding? Brian: Well, that’s where it gets tricky. There was
a time when I kind of flipped out; I guess I can talk about this. It’s really weird; I thought all this weird shit was happening. At one point, I thought that I was a zombie and that my face had been stomped in. It’s kind of a long story and it kind of just sounds ridiculous if I tell little parts of it. But, like I essentially thought that someone had smashed my face in and I was walking around without a face and everyone could see that I didn’t have a face except for me. And they’re looking at me like, “This guy is dead and he doesn’t know he’s dead.” So, I’m walking, I’m hurting and people are confusing me because I thought
Brian: It fuckin’ ruled. Bill: A friend told me that in your song “That M.a.n.n.,” you reference the psychedelic video game Katamari. What is your connection to this? Brian: Well, I don’t want to talk about this. Okay,
this is what happened; my friend plays video games a lot. His name is Mike Rogers; he’s in a band called Crooks. He was playing this game where you roll this ball around and you just pick up shit, like trash and stuff. Then, it goes to these trippy things where this alien is talking. And then one of ‘em just said that. And immediately I was all, “Damn, that’s fuckin’ awesome.” So, I just took it and put it in a song. I stole it; well the next part is The Thin Red Line quote that I don’t really know because I’ve never really seen Thin Red Line but Explosions in the Sky used it too in one of their songs so I stole it from them. The “Who’s doing this? Who’s killing us? Is this darkness in you too?” yesterdaymag.com 21
In the Bungalow that everybody was giving me these weird cues. It was creepy. I was fucking crazy and it sucked. Brian is brutally honest and I have to admire that trait in a guy. Not many people would brave the topic of mental illness and even less would talk openly about their own demons. I tip my hat and raise my glass to him. Bill: While on your myspace, I saw your tour schedule and friend messages from your many out of state fans. What do you attribute your national popularity to? Word of mouth, the Internet or touring?
be a band that was more serious. So then, I kind of got a touring line-up which was different from our first line-up. And, we worked on songs together and that was the other stuff on American Art, it’s kind of more intricate and band oriented because we all bring our own ideas to table. After we did American Art everything kind of went screwy, the band kind of dissolved for the first time and I started working on The Cosmic Drama songs a long time ago, probably in 2006. It was basically all these songs that I just had and I was playing on acoustic guitar mostly; it didn’t really have as intricate of guitar riffing on it.
Nathan: It seems that the music is very meaningful
to a lot of people, certain people….
Nathan: The Internet is our god.
Brian: People mostly just talk shit about us
Bill: Really? Brian: I’ve never heard anything good about
People were commenting on that, saying our guitar has gotten worse or something. But, if you look at the way it happened….
Brian: Fucking Dave C. Dave is evil. A and R schemes. He’s this suit and tie wearing guy from Doghouse Records. Nathan: He might be a shape shifter.
Brian: For the last year, I didn’t have a band so I
Nathan: I don’t know but he might be.
played a lot of shows myself so some of it ended up being acoustic. But, I definitely like to play with a full band so getting the band together was definitely a big, important thing and now it’s back together.
Brian: He’s a reptilian. A lot of bands are doing it
Bill: Do you have any recent influences?
They all laugh.
Brian: I’ve been listening to this band called Fu-
Bill: How has the band’s sound changed over the past few releases and what are your most recent influences and inspirations?
“Not many people would brave the topic of mental illness and even less would talk openly about their own demons.” -Bill
Stars from the Lit and when I drive around during the day, I listen to a lot of Failure. And there’s always a little bit of Nirvana floating around there.
Bill: Is he a reptilian?
ture Left a lot. It’s kind of poppy but it’s really heavy. It’s kind of mean…but like sick.
wrote, I wrote those at this time when I was coming out of this band called My American Hearts, it was kind of poppy music but I was trying to find good poppy music that was big in the world which is pretty difficult because most of it is crappy. So I was listening to a lot of Say Anything and a lot of Criteria and a lot of Cursive and I always listened to Bright Eyes a lot. And I kind of made these six songs really quickly and demo-ed them and people liked them a lot and I didn’t really expect anything. So it seemed to make sense that we should start trying to
Nathan: I’ve been falling asleep a lot to band called
Garrett: It was a different approach to writing.
Bill: Well, we’ve heard good things about you.
Brian: The old stuff, like the first six songs we
he did the sound for us and I really enjoyed the bands he’s played in; Hot Snakes and Rocket from the Crypt. They’re really cool. Also, bands like Pavement, they’re really awesome.
Bill: I like that you released The Cosmic Drama on tape. What inspired you to do that?
Brian: It’s because kids look for stuff and music
aforementioned things that you said in the question. I mean Weatherbox has done a lot of touring. The internet is definitely helpful, that’s how I found Weatherbox. And word of mouth, yeah.
Garrett: John Reese was in there (Bar Pink) and
a lot of Dave Grohl and Nirvana. Our buddy, Rich and on my stereo, I’ll keep Jazz 88.3 on just because it’s really phenomenal drumming on any given group but also it’s kind of mentally stimulating.
Drew: That makes sense.
Drew: I think it’s a little of everything, all the
Bill: (To Garrett and Nathan) How about you guys?
Drew: I have to second that, I’ve been listening to
An awkward pause and then Drew bursts out laughing.
they find. Words and thoughts. All sorts of crazy stuff. They go on the internet and look around and then they see Weatherbox and it doesn’t sound as bad as most music. So they’re like, “Oh.” And then they listen to it more. Then, they get into it.
Earlier, the members of Weatherbox cajoled me into promising to edit out the word sick since they selfprofessed saying it too often but, this one made it in.
(cassettes) and he said it would be good.
Nathan: His eyes are yellow, his blood is cold. Bill: In the song, “I haven’t kissed a Guy in Lightyears,” is that autobiographical or are you writing in character?
Brian strokes his beard pensively and looks out off into the distance before slowly answering. Brian: It’s about really hard stuff in life that wants
to get you down but then you’ve got to rise above it and that quote, I think my friend just said it randomly. And as abruptly as it started, my interview with the newly formed Weatherbox is through. I somehow feel like it was left open-ended but maybe that’s because interviewing them felt like hanging out in a pub with friends. I did get to talk with them a little off the record and Brian’s tell-it-as-it-is attitude was both admirable and entertaining. Oh and did I forget to mention that tonight’s show at Bar Pink was their first live show together? So, yeah, it would be nice to meet with them again after they sowed their wild oats.
DJ Artistic “I “I was was a a huge huge fan fan of of DJ DJ Jazzy Jazzy Jeff Jeff and and The The Fresh Fresh Prince Prince when when II was was a a kid.” kid.”
Published on Mar 31, 2011