The Matrimonials Rage into Canton June 22 “Usually our songs are about drinking, having a good time, prostitutes, our current celebrity obsession and occasionally Matt decides he has feelings and writes something gay.” I first met The Matrimonials when my band was finishing up a particularly brutal 30-day tour. We pulled into Baltimore on day 28, completely beat and in dire need of a night off from partying. We didn’t get it. Not even slightly. From the first chords of a glorious 45-minute set we connected with these drunken clowns like long-lost brothers. Since then, we regularly share bills in Ohio and Baltimore, epic shows that usually end with both bands and the audience soaked in beer, liquor and smashed Twinkies and cream. The Matrimonials’ songs are anthemic and fun, hilarious and raging. Imagine if Pavement, Sonic Youth and The Raspberries got together on an Adderall-fueled midnight rendezvous and jammed out. These guys ooze rock ‘n’ roll with every drop of sweat. We caught up with drummer Matty Hammond, bassist Chris Howard and nutball guitarists Stephan Kaplan and Edan Perrigo. CB: What kind of music do you scallywags consider yourselves to be? We’ve been classified officially by the Rock ‘n’ Roll Institute of the Galaxy as “Beer-Fueled Rock ‘n’ Roll,” bro. CB: Sounds about right to me. How did you guys get started? Did you meet in a juvenile detention center? [When I first met them, Howard wasn’t in the band.] Edan: Matt, Stephan and Chris went to high school together and have been playing in some sort of band together since. I met the guys through the music scene in Maryland. Chris had left the band temporarily and the other two asked me to join up in his place as a guitarist. About a year later, we thought, “You know, sexy bitch that this band is, it sure is missing something.” So we asked Chris to come back on the bill as a bass player and put a big ol’ booty on her. The band started around 2008. The motivation behind making music together is probably just getting drunk and having a good time, honestly. CB: You guys have very strange songs from the lyrical content to the structures, yet they still sound poppy and rock hard. How do you pull this off? We all write together. Since we all play guitar and pretend to sing, whoever has an idea that sounds catchy/badass puts it on the table and we play with it. Everyone has an equal and appreciated opinion on how the song should go. It’s pretty democratic and a simple and perfect metaphor for how awesome the U.S.A. is. Usually our songs are about drinking, having a good time, prostitutes, our current celebrity obsession and occasionally Matt decides he has feelings and writes something gay. This has been pretty consistent throughout the years. Stephan: We’ve always tried to write music that’s catchy but not monotonous. I think over the years the general structure of the songs has gotten better. They’ve gotten heavier and more aggressive. CB: Is it challenging coming from a large city like Baltimore? Edan: Our biggest challenge as a band has been trying to dig our way into the Baltimore music scene. I think it’s been difficult because this scene takes itself too seriously. There are a lot of really talented people in this town, but there isn’t so much of a concentration on awesome tunes that people can drink and fuck to. Not to sound overly cocky, but we do believe we have one of the most unique sounds in the city. CB: You guys are very prolific. Every time I see you guys, you have new songs and play cool cover songs. What’s a typical set like? We do a few covers; they’ve changed over the years. Right now the covers we stick to are “Can’t Hardly” Wait by The Replacements, “Into the Mystic” by Van Morrison, “Rosanna” by Toto and “The Hole in My Face” by a Baltimore band we love called Young Sir Jim. Check them out. Our total playable song list gets up to the 60 mark, so our setlist changes almost nightly. We try to be relatively consistent so that our fans stay familiar. CB: Where have you guys played? We’ve performed all over Maryland, Brooklyn, various places in Pennsylvania, Tennessee, all over the Midwest [notably Canton, Ohio], West Virginia, Virginia, D.C. Our favorite places are filthy rotten shitholes where people get naked and wake up with syringes stuck in their arm. Ohio and down South have been the best to us. People down there get our humor and approach to music. CB: What advice would you give a band just getting started? Any last words? Be honest with it. Don’t think too hard. Have fun and write what makes you happy/gives you a boner/makes you cry. Sometimes all at the same time. Don’t write for others; write for yourself. Fans-to-be: go to myspace.com/thematrimonials for some bangin’ tracks, and finr The Matromonials on Facebook to purchase a CD. The Matromonials will be at The Auricle in Canton on June 22, performing with The Most Beautiful Losers.