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ANBERLIN

RacketBoss Jonathan and Racket Caitlin headed over to the Glasshouse to hit up Anberlin’s Stephen for an interview. For not having an interview prepared, I think we did pretty good.

Racket Jonathan: So uh, Steven, you’re the singer of Anberlin?
Anberlin Stephen: No, Bayside.
Racket Jonathan: Bayside?
Anberlin Stephen: No, I’m just kidding.
Racket Jonathan: Yeah, I was like Bayside didn’t call me back.
Anberlin Stephen: Oh they’re right in that room. You should go punch him.

RJ: No, no, that’s violent, man. What do you want to talk about?
AS: Let’s talk about what books do you read.
RJ: What books do I read? Comic books.
AS: Do you really? Ah, let’s do it! Let’s go for it. I’m all in to it. Have you seen 300 yet?
RJ: No, she has, and I’m totally…
AS: Wasn’t it freaking phenomenal?
Racket Cait: It was fantastic.
AS: But you’re a girl…I mean not that that’s bad thing.
RJ: [Laughs] Oh ho ho…
AS: No no no! I’m saying like girls I know, I would never recommend it. Because it’s like all boys, bloody murder & slashing bones…
RJ: But it’s also like half naked dudes.
Racket Cait: Yeah, that’s part of it.
AS: Half naked dudes and all hot. All CGI-ed ripped abs and all that.
RJ: I don’t know about all CGI-ed.
RC: I’m not a typical girl. I like that kind of thing.
AS: Oh, that’s awesome.

RJ: Yeah we talked about comic books the last time we went to a show.
AS: My brother, my youngest brother is all into like the comic con, and he dresses up and does like the live action role playing. I mean he is comic booked.
RJ: Who does he dress up as?
AS: I don’t know. See I don’t know all the anime people. It’s some guy with a big cross.
RJ: Oh, you don’t know what that guy’s called?
AS: He’s got like a cross… I can see him in my head.
RC: I don’t know, I’m not into anime.
AS: His like cross turns into a gun…
RJ: Yeah yeah, it turns into a gun.

(*Editor’s note: Turns out that the preacher with the big fucking cross/gun is called…Preacher. Damn, I feel retarded. – Racket Jonathan)

AS: So whatever that guy is. But, he does live action role playing like all the time stuff like that. Actually, Gerard from My Chem is huge into comic books and live action role playing.
RJ: Yeah he’s writing one coming up soon.
AS: Oh that’s awesome.
RJ: Yeah, yeah.
AS: Very cool.

RJ: Yeah, I’ve been all into Criminal Macabre. It’s written by Steve Niles and drawn by Ben Templesmith.
AS: I’m not too much into names. Except for like Keith, you remember he used to do the old Wolverine stuff, and I don’t know, stuff like that. I’m not up to date on the NEW, new new stuff. I’m into traditional like you know, I don’t know, like X-men, X Factor, Rob Liefeld, you know what I’m saying, that was my ending point. I still have everything, like first appearance Wolverine. Wolverine was it for me so I have everything
RJ: You a big Wolverine guy? Wolverine your guy?
AS: It is, but he’s like everybody’s guy. Like when we were kids I didn’t know any better. It was the first comic book that someone gave me. It was a Wolverine like number I don’t know 46, it was just something cheap. And I just looked at him like this guy is so bad ass. And then so maybe that’s the reason. But I love like Gambit, like the whole nine. I heard Gambit, you know Sawyer from LOST, he’s going to be Gambit.
RJ: Whaat?
AS: Yeah, I know right? And what a great personality, what a great character, he would be awesome.
RJ: I’m so bummed out because Nightcrawler’s my character.
AS: He’s my little brother’s character.

RJ: Nightcrawler’s the shit, and when I saw him wearing like pajamas in the movie… He had like a trench coat and like stripe-y pajamas.
AS: But the trench coat…
RJ: The trench coat is cool…
AS: The trench coat is very comic book-y.
RJ: Yeah, but he should have gone with like black pants. If the government sends him out to be an operative to assassinate the president…
AS: But he wasn’t thinking though…
RJ: If the government sends him out why would the government send him out in footie pajamas?
AS: But that’s not even him.
RJ: I know, but I’m talking about the government. I mean it’s just another screw up that the government’s up to.
AS: That’s true but… they probably just did it because they wanted to show that he’s like out of his mind. But man did you ever read how like Nightcrawler began when his mom slept with like Satan?
RJ: Yeah yeah yeah!
AS: That was such a great series man. But I don’t know, I guess I love the art you know like the drawings and stuff like that. I was never really into the storyline as much and I would flip through and watch the art and stuff like that. You know who Keith is? You know Keith (Giffen), he does the grotesque bigger stuff. He makes everything look big. I don’t know, I can’t explain it.
RJ: Mark Silvestri is the guy I like. His shit’s all like really jagged, really stylized and I dig it.

AS: Have you seen the new 300 book?
RC: That’s Frank Miller.
AS: Frank Miller!
RC: Frank Miller’s amazing.
AS: Keith is a lot like Frank Miller. He’s really cool.
RJ: That shit’s bad ass. That and Sin City.
AS: You mean the movie Sin City?
RJ: Both! The movie and the comic book.

(The latter half of Meg and Dia pops in)

AS: Hi Dia!
Dia: Hello!
AS: You guys are wearing dresses today? Are you wearing a dress?
Dia: Yeah.
AS: I’m pretty excited for you guys. Well, your sister, it was the first time I’d ever seen her in a dress, I was like freaked out. This is Dia.
RJ: Hey!
AS: We’re doing an interview.
Dia: An interview? Oh, sorry!

(Dia quickly exits the room!)

RJ: Come do one with us! No, come back!
AS: She’s is so funny because they’re both like, this is pretty much their first big tour.
RJ: She was cute, bring her back!

AS: They’re all still nervous on what to do and how to act and stuff like that. The first time we met she like didn’t talk, she was like hi and that’s it and I was like, “You can hang out.” So we’ve been like trying to hang out and incorporate them. They’re good, good people. So yeah so, I must have about $3000 worth of comic books, well like back in the day. I guess there’s always, uh, I don’t like the old… he did Spawn
RJ: Oh, uh, McFarland? Todd McFarland?
AS: Yeah! Remember when he did Spiderman, I think it was number 300, the bagged edition? Dude I have like 12 of those. I loved McFarland.
RJ: I’ve been digging Josh Whedon, the guy that wrote all the Buffy and Angel like T.V. shows and the Buffy the Vampire Slayer movie. He’s been doing like X-men, it’s been great dude. It’s so funny.

AS: Wow. Funny? It’s been funny?
RJ: Like there’s so many times where you laugh. Where he takes like stereotypes, like he’ll take Colossus, and Colossus is all quiet and whatever. And then like some point comes up where it’s totally serious and Colossus makes a joke but people are like, “What the hell?” and he’ll be like, “This is why I don’t make jokes.” And I’m like, yeah that’s awesome. Just like that, I’ve been digging him.
AS: Good, very cool. Who’s your favorite though?
RJ: Nightcrawler man.
AS: Oh Nightcrawler? Who’s your favorite?

RC: Colossus.
AS: Is it really?
RJ: She’s into Russian hunky guys.
RC: Yeah, what can I say…
AS: That’s awesome, no that’s cool. He’s definitely like a pretty boy.
RJ: Did you ever have a crush on a comic book character?
AS: Yeah, Psylocke. Probably the hottest of all time.
RJ: Dude, in like 5th grade I had the biggest crush on freaking Kitty Pride
AS: Really?
RJ: Hell yeah dude.
AS: She’s not that cool. She may be cool but not like that cool.
RJ: She was cool ‘cause she had a dragon and that was enough for me.
AS: I dated a girl…
RJ: With a dragon?
AS: No, I wish. I dated a girl just because she reminded me of Psylocke.
RJ: [Laughs hysterically]
AS: Not just because though, but I was just like, “Oh my god, she reminds me of Psylocke.”
RJ: Did she have this weird/hot leotard?
AS: And then I was like, “Hey, you remind me of Psylocke,” and she was like, “Who?” and I was like, “Nevermind.” Because it’s horrible you know, if she wasn’t into comic books and I just said you remind me of a comic book character and she’s was like, “What? It’s over.” We dated a couple of times. It was awesome. I was totally into her.
RJ: Did you ever get her to hold like this glowing pink sword?
AS: No, that’d been awesome! That would be awesome. Like, “Just hold these honey, I just want to take a picture.” “What are we doing?” “Um nothing, don’t worry about it.”
RJ: You ever run up with like knives between your fingers? Let’s go!
AS: I tape three butter knives around my hands just hold these lets fight. Snikt! I just said snikt! Let’s fight! I just saw 300, man I really want to get into a fight, you know what I’m saying? Dude really.

RJ: Really?
AS: Dude really really. It’s so funny, we all got out of the theater and we’re all just like, “Oh god, Spartans!”
RJ: Oh man. You got to watch out. I lost a tooth in a fight.
AS: Oh wow you did.
RJ: That was like my friends and I got drunk and watches Fight Club.
AS: That was another one!
RJ: Like drunk and we’re all like 17 and in my front yard at like 11 o’clock at night. It went downhill from there.
AS: I bet. Yeah that’s my favorite movie. And Empire Strikes Back is too.
RC: Have you read the book?
AS: Have I read the book? No, but I’ve read all his others like Lullaby, Monsters
RC: Survivor?
AS: Yeah, and Choke.
RC: Yeah that’s my favorite.
AS: So I mean I don’t want to read that book because I love the movie. I don’t know why.
RC: It’s exactly the same.
RJ: No it’s not!

RJ: Man. That was the first time I’m looking at Brad Pitt and I’m like, “Fuck, that dude’s ripped!”
AS: He’s not really ripped, he’s just kind of like…
RJ: He’s like totally toned. He has like those little hip things where it’s like little channels going down to his crotch. She’s all, she knows exactly what I’m talking about.
RC: I’m gonna keep out of that.
RJ: Alright, so that’s comic books. What’s next?
AS: I don’t know. I thought we moved onto movies for a second there.

RJ: Ok, let’s go to movies.
AS: Oh we did. What is your favorite movie?
RJ: I like comedies. I love like the really dumb comedies.
AS: Oh really? Then dude I got a movie for you. It’s called Idiosyncracies.
RJ: Oh I saw that, it was called “Idiocracy”! That was awesome.
AS: I hated it. I thought it was the worst movie of all time. I like either really dark humor or really like, I like intelligent humor.
RJ: Like dark humor like what?
RC: What about like Wes Anderson?
AS: Dude that’s what I’m talking about that’s genius, that’s my favorite.
RC: Royal Tenenbaums is my favorite movie.
RJ: What is?
AS: Well Rushmore is mine just ‘cause it was the first one I saw of his, and then I saw Bottle Rocket, and then I saw, you know what I’m saying, like down the line. But Life Aquatic, that’s my kind of humor. You don’t really laugh like out loud. Just not everyone’s cracking up in the theater, you’re just kind of like entering genius. Like how do they just keep writing this stuff?

RJ: The same kind of humor like that, like my favorite T.V. show right now, I mean right now ‘cause I mean it always changes, is Arrested development.
AS: Oh that is genius too.
RJ: I was so bummed out when it like…
AS: When they cancelled it? Dude I was thinking like remember when family guy got cancelled and then they brought it back in a DVD set? I’m just thinking dude every one of my friends has Arrested Development. Why is this not back on the TV? But another really good one is The Office UK.
RJ: Yeah yeah, The Office UK is way better than The Office America.
AS: The Office UK is so smart, you gotta see it. I don’t like British humor. That’s not even dark and that’s not even like unintelligent, it’s just kind of like, what is British humor doing? Like no one gets it.
RJ: Did you see Little Britain? It’s so weird.
AS: And it’s like huge in Britain. It’s just like, what is going on? I don’t even like like Monty Python. I know people are like ooooh…
RC: The Holy Grail, that’s another favorite movie of mine.
AS: You see it’s kind of alright. But like then when I saw the UK British Office, I was like this is a hit, it’s so great.
RJ: You know I was watching Little Britain last night and Racket Mike’s totally in to it, and we had quite the drinking binge last night, and there was times where they were talking, I mean its like English cause they’re in England, I couldn’t understand a word they were saying. I was like, “What the fuck is going on?” I’m like, “Dude they’re not speaking English.” He was like “Dude, that’s English.” I was like, “No no no no I don’t understand what they’re saying man.” But It sucks ‘cause I don’t get to watch new shows because I don’t have channels. I have a T.V. but I don’t pay for cable and I live too far away form civilization to get broadcast cable. I just have to rely on my friends’ Tivo to see what’s new and good.

AS: Right right, I’m big in to LOST right now. And Heroes. You would love Heroes.
RJ: Oh it sounds awesome! Everyone’s talking about that damn show. I haven’t seen it yet.
AS: It’s good. I was a huge Lost fan like the first season.
RC: It’s so hard to follow.
AS: Now it’s like a soap opera almost. It’s like, why are we still here on an island? So I’m like I’m with Heroes because it reminds me of all the comic books I’ve ever read, super powers and bad guys. You’re gonna love it dude.
RJ: Oh, I’m gonna download it. With like T.V. shows like LOST and shit and soap operas, do you ever watch soap operas?
AS: No.
RJ: No? I had chicken pox in 9th grade and so I had to stay home for like 2 weeks ‘cause I was all like scabbed up. I was nasty, I looked like I had the plague. So I’m sitting there in like my PE clothes in 9th grade, watching soap operas with my mom- she was like a stay at home mom- and I asked her, we’re like watching Days of Our Lives, “What the hell are you watching?” “It’s so like real life drama.” At that point in time there was a chick that was possessed by the devil, there was a dude who was a werewolf, and Passions had just started up. I got like to see the first episode of Passions, which had a witch and a talking walking doll and since then, I’ve thought my mom was insane.
AS: Yeah, that’s real life drama.
RJ: Yeah, now I think my mom’s a witch.
AS: You have a talking doll?
[Mild interruption by someone asking about backstage passes]
AS: Anyways, good times.
RJ: Yeah, so we hit movies, T.V. shows, soap operas and comics. What about tunes?
AS: Oh good call.
[At this point in time, Steven ditches us on a phone call. Cait beckons Dia to the interview to fill in]

RJ: We were talking about God knows what because we don’t really prepare too well for interviews.
Dia: That’s ok, neither do I.
RJ: Ok, good I’ll ask the same question to you I asked with him, which is what do you want to talk about?

Dia: Umm I want to talk about … hang on let me think about this for a second. I think I want to talk about how your family affects you when you grow up.
RJ: Ok, go. Run with that.
RC: This is a deep conversation.
D: Have you ever seen like a…
[Steven returns with friend]
RJ: She’s in the interview now. The topic is how family affects your growing up.
D: Just the other day I saw like this two-year-old boy had like a tattoo already. Like on his neck.
AS: What? Two?
D: Yeah! Well, he had to be two, he was like this big. [Gestures the size with her hands] I know you can’t hear how “this big” is.
AS: Was he from like New Zealand or something?
D: No it was in Utah, actually. It was like a spider, and I was just like that’s so interesting because he’s like two years old and he has a tattoo already and his dad was like totally like, like you know…
RJ: Metal?
D: Like full sleeves and piercings and stuff, which is totally, cool but I was just like that kid is gonna be so different than how he would be if he was raised in my family, or he’d be different if he was raised in like some like Buddhist family.

RJ: They don’t have tattooed two year olds in your family?
D: No we have Pokemon obsessed people.
RJ: Are you Pokemon obsessed?
D: No, but I used to be sailor moon obsessed.
RJ: Oh yeah?
D: Yes, but anyways I was just like yeah, um, it really affects how your family is and how you grow up. I think it has so much to do with whether you are a good person or a bad person and essentially, the whole point of living is to be good or evil, says John Steinbeck.

RJ: How do you feel about that?
AS: She’s got a point.
RJ: Yeah? You think there’s only good or evil?
D: Yeah, that’s the whole point of living.
AS: Wait a minute, what?
D: Is to find out if you want to be good or evil. And I choose to be in the middle!
RJ: But then you already broke it. You already broke the rule.
D: What do you mean?
RJ: If it’s a good or evil there’s no third choice.
AS: Good point. He’s got you philosophically.
D: I know actually, I don’t choose to be in the middle, but I don’t think I can be all good.
AS: I don’t think anybody can be all good.
D: That’s true but I just don’t exactly know what I think all good is.
AS: What’s all bad?
D: Well I don’t know I mean… You know…
AS: You’re destroying the whole gambit.
D: Anyways, that’s Anberlin and his friend.

RJ: Hey friend…
D: He showed me a picture of you on his phone.
AS: No I didn’t!
D: [Cackles] He totally didn’t. And he didn’t say you were cute.
AS: [Turning a lovely shade of crimson] DIA!
[Dia runs out of the room]
AS: Can I just go punch her real fast?
RJ: She caught you.
RC: I’d like to take this moment to point out how red his face is.
AS: [Turns more red] I’m not, it’s not.
RJ: It’s very pink.
AS: Alright, Alright, so we were talking about music.
D: [Pokes her head back in the room] Steven is awesome, put that in there.
AS: Wow. Not funny.
RJ: Alright, tunes.
AS: Yeah man, a lot of stuff I’m listening to lately is Creed.
RJ: Really?
AS: Yeah, they’re like one of my favorite bands right now.
RJ: Really?
AS: No, absolutely not.
RJ: Oh. ‘Cause it was a blow to my heart when I heard Creed broke up.
AS: Oh yeah.
RJ: I was freaking out ‘cause I was all excited. I didn’t like Creed, but then they turned into two separate bands and they multiplied exponentially. And that makes me sad.
AS: Yeah, it gets worse. Its like a disease, they just keep spreading and multiplying.
RJ: Bad times.
AS: I hope they don’t have children. Um I don’t know, wow, what was I listening to? Have you heard of Sia?

RJ: Who?
AS: Sia? S I A?
RC: Yes, she rocks.
RJ: No.
AS: She’s phenomenal. She’s fun. You need to check her out. And then, um, some of my favorite bands are Mew, M E W, and Blonde Redhead.
RJ: You know Blonde Redhead’s playing here (The lovely Glasshouse in Pomona, CA), right?
AS: Are they really? I’ve never seen them live. But like I guess overall like my favorite bands would be the Smiths and the Beatles. Have you heard of the Beatles?
RJ: I’ve heard of them, they’re like some British guys.
AS: They’ll be big some day.
RJ: Alright.

AS: What are you listening to?
RJ: That’s a good question. For some reason I used to be like really really into metal when I was in  8th grade, and then like 12th grade I met this girl who introduced me to the Indie scene whatever, like Phantom Planet and Rooney and stuff like that where they were playing like 20 person crowds in LA. And then lately, I’ve gotten back. I listen to like either like the new Modest Mouse or like this evil metal band called Malevolent Creation.
AS: I’ve never heard of them.
RJ: It’s the most evil, crazy fast drumming.
AS: That’s awesome.
RJ: And it’s weird, especially like when I like do interviews with bands. And I know a lot of people do it where you can listen to a CD and it’s like alright, well that’s a good CD. And then you see a band live and it’s just like totally amazing and then the CD has a whole new perspective to it.
AS: Right right.
RJ: And there’s a band call Mon Frere and I loved their CD when I first got it. They’re from Seattle, they’re really good. I saw them play at the Knitting Factory in LA. And just blew me away, and I was like yes, this rules. And they broke up like two weeks later.

AS: But Johnny Marrs from the Smiths is actually playing in Modest Mouse now.
RJ: I know.
AS: I’m anxious to hear what that’s gonna sound like.
RJ: Yeah.
AS: Definitely gonna be different.
RJ: But I saw Blond Redhead in San Diego a few years ago.
AS: Are they as good as the CD?
RJ: They are. And it’s really weird because when you get the CD and you see like two names, you don’t realize that the guitarist and the drummer are twins.
AS: Really? Dude, the drummer looks so much older.
RJ: They’re twins.
AS: Weird. Oh my gosh. Doesn’t he have like gray hair?
RJ: I don’t know what the deal was. The girl, the bassist, like her and guitarist kept making out during the set. I don’t know what was going on, if they were together or if it was just a stage deal. But I was like “what the hell?”
AS: That’s awesome.
RJ: I mean good job dude that’s cool.
AS: Actually, we’re gonna try that tonight. Just random people in the band go and make out.

RJ: But I wanna go off on twins for a second now. Would you ever date a twin?
AS: I did actually, in high school.
RJ: Did you?
AS: Her name was Karen Moore. Did you ever see that gum commercial with the twins? She was one of the ones like rowing the canoe.
RJ: Are you serious? I could never do that man. Here’s what I fear if I start dating a twin- I think I’d see her in the distance and I’d come up and either wrap my arm around her or like cop a feel…
AS: No, you would know…
RJ: And then just either one of two things will happen from there- either I get slapped because she’s not my girlfriend, or she goes with it because she has a secret crush on me. And then you’d cheat on your girlfriend with what looks just like her and is genetically the same person. And then you’re like, “Well shit, can you really hold me accountable for that?”

AS: But I mean, you can tell after you hang out with her for awhile.
RJ: No man, there was a bunch of twins in my high school, there was even a set of triplets. I could tell one triplet apart ‘cause she had like a chipped tooth. I think she didn’t get it fixed so people could tell her apart.
AS: Oh really? That’s a not good excuse to cheat.
RJ: Oh man, I don’t know how you did that.
AS: It was easy man. It was alright. It worked out fine. I don’t know where she is in the world now… but yeah, it didn’t work obviously… can you recommend any good restaurants around here? Food?
RJ: Yeah…
RC: There’s a barbecue place up the street.
RJ: Yeah, right at the corner of Garey and Second is a good barbecue place according to her. But if you go out this back door, go to the street, make a right, and if you look like slantwise, on the corner over there, you’ll see like a Mexican restaurant. It’s freaking good.
AS: Well I think I’m gonna go hit that. Thank you so much guys….
RJ: Peace!