‘Friends’ – Seattle version: Bree McKenna (bass), Lelah Maupin (drums), Emily Nokes (vocals) and Eric Randall (guitar)…
Tacocat, the kooky Seattle bubblegum surf-rock band has been around since 2007 but thanks to their excellent and critically acclaimed new album ‘NVM’ they’ve been noticed by a much wider audience in the US. Their mighty exciting pop punk hooks combined with smart lyrics about politics, feminism, relationships and ‘fun fun fun’ have now also earned them a lot of attention in Europe. So the quartet jumped into their van earlier this week for their first tour across the ocean. They should be causing a riot somewhere in Germany by now. And… next Tuesday they’ll hit my hometown Ghent. This screams for a Q & A !
50third: Who came up with the band’s name?
Tacocat: “It was Bree. She had a list of palindromes and someone said, “That sounds like what a grade-schooler would name their band. Perfect!”
50third: What made you form a band anyway?
Tacocat: “We all loved music and each other and that’s pretty much it. Eric and Bree were jamming and wanted to start a band. Lelah and Emily were going to school together and are pretty inseparable. Lelah had a drum kit and Emily liked to sing. We weren’t really aiming very high, just having fun. Being in a band and making music with your best friends is the greatest!”
50third: How does four people decide that they gonna play the music they end up playing?
Tacocat: “We definitely have a lot of the same music tastes. Everything from early Riot Grrl to 2014 radio pop hits. Right now we are listening to a mix that goes from Paul McCartney to Miley Cyrus to the Wallflowers to Charli XCX to David Bowie. We also have similar instincts I think, and ideas for what we want to go for.”
50third:Is Eric in the band to avoid the label ‘Grrrl Riot’?
Tacocat: “Haha well, there was a boy in Bikini Kill you know. No, we didn’t start out intending to sound or not sound like anything. We were and still are just being ourselves.”
50third: Men rule the world since day one and wars are still fought every day all over the globe. What is their problem?
Tacocat: “The patriarchy is a complicated subject and to be fair, in many cultures, women were actually the leaders and rule makers. War is fucking stupid, but unfortunately more of a human thing and a corrupt political thing. Greed and anger and small-mindedness can be found in both sexes unfortunately. The patriarchy sucks though, and should be taken down at every possible opportunity.”
50third:Suppose tomorrow every male political leader is replaced by a female one. Wouldn’t that be the greatest revolution ever?
Tacocat: “That would be pretty great. Then we would for sure get paid time off every month.”
50third: The incredible catchy ‘Crimson Wave’ off the new album is about menstruation. Did you write that one, Eric?
Tacocat: “Haha no. Emily wrote those lyrics. Eric is extremely supportive though. He’s one of the future-dudes for sure. A buddy who will buy you tampons without blinking an eye.”
50third:The new album’s title NVM refers to Nirvana. I suppose you’re all fans?
Tacocat: “It’s text speak for never mind, and yeah, it’s definitely a Nirvana wink.”
50third: Would you tour with Foo Fighters if they asked you?
50third: Any other artists you want to share the tour bus with?
Tacocat (deep breath): “Miley Cyrus, Fiona Apple, OutKast, Pony Time, Eve 6, DMX, Drake, Jacob Dylan, Elliott Smth, Girlpool, Childbirth, Slutever, Forever, ELO, Jimmy Eat World… “
50third: What’s the best album of 2014 so far?
Tacocat: ‘” ‘Cool Choices’ by S is really good. The new Stickers album ‘Swollen’ is so good! And new Cherry Glazerr songs are great, but I don’t know if they put out a proper album yet this year. Shabazz Palaces ‘Lese Majesty’. Childbirth’s ‘It’s a Girl’. The new Ex Hex ‘Rips’. Oh, and ‘NVM’ of course…”
50third: Who’s the best surfer in the band?
Tacocat: “Bree. By default. She’s from California and is the only one who has ever even tried to surf !”
50third: What comes to mind when I say ‘Belgium’?
Tacocat: “Ummmm. Chocolate. Waffles. Beer. These are all great things.”
50third: What should Belgian fans expect from a Tacocat show?
Tacocat: “We just try to have fun. Dance a lot. Get silly. You know – we hope the fans do the same !”
50third: Do you want to conquer the world and get filthy rich or is it just sex, drugs and rock ‘n roll?
Tacocat: “We’re just in it for the fun, but if someone wants to throw money, sex, and drugs at us, we’re not complaining.”
50third: Are lovers waiting alone at home?
Tacocat: “Haha well, we have been on tour many times and have had relationships along the way, and it can be hard. Right now we have some loved ones at home, but with texting and Facetime and all that, we’re usually in pretty good shape. Lots of emojis. They understand.”
50third: Who’s gonna kill who at the end of the tour?
Tacocat: “We’re more likely to miss each other when we get home and want to have sleepovers and hang out in our van together. We’re a pretty tight-knit bunch.”
Many thanks to Tacocat for making time for this Q&A and I’ll see you definitely next Tuesday. Wham Bam…