Male Bonding's launch into our consciousness has not been without significant effort and talent. A series of phenomenal fast paced gigs and a succession of sold out singles and splits (along with fellow London favourites Pens, Fair Ohs and Graffiti Island to name but a few) took some fair skill and endurance got us all excited before even releasing a full length album. But it’s paid off successfully – signing to Sub Pop for their fantastic debut album followed by a succession of positive reviews (including the much sought after Best New Music in Pitchfork). Recently, we were granted an audience with one of London’s quickest rising bands.
Hey guys, would you please just quickly introduce yourselves for our readers? I'm Kevin Hendrick. I do bass and sing. John Arthur Webb plays guitar and sings. Robin Silas Christian plays drums and takes the photos. You have been rightly compared to one of my favourite bands, Japandroids. Do you get that a lot? If so does it get old or do you enjoy the comparison? Honestly never heard that comparison so, no comment. Who is Surfdog? A victim of crime. No, a fugitive. Actually more a hostage without ransom. You guys are from Dalston right? The supposed coolest place in London right now. How do you feel about the reputation the place has and how has the local affected your style of music, if at all? Where we live does not directly affect the music we make. We have a lot of friends near us, and some make music. But we all have our own thing. By the way, there really isn't anything particularly "cool" about Dalston. I love it. We love living there. But it's probably not what you think it is. An elderly lady got pushed over outside our house the other day. That's not cool is it? That's really awful and sad. Male bonding = bromance. Discuss? That's a Google thing. Seriously though, it looks like you have a pretty hectic tour schedule lined up. Is there anywhere you dread going and where would you most love to play? We just got back from a very long US tour. We're excited to tour the UK and Europe. We've never properly done it before. And we're just about to play in Sheffield, our first show and they made us a pot of tea during soundcheck. There's nowhere we dread. Honestly. Each day, each place as it comes. We're in to it.
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You just played New Hero with Cold Pumas in Brighton. That must have been a fucking awesome gig. What’s the best you’ve ever played and why? Um, well, let me think...there was this warehouse party in manor house that we played a while back. That really went off. It was amazing actually. There was too many people to get in, but people were content to hang in the car park and surrounding industrial estates. People were climbing over roofs for fun. The police came and allowed us to finish our set. Felt like the stars were aligned that night. We couldn't play properly because we were crowded out. It was awesome. I still have Conan’s (Italian Beach Babes) footprint on the chest of my tshirt. It won't wash out. Fair Ohs played that night too. So did Mazes. They were both amazing. That's a good one that springs to mind. What is your essential festival/gig garment or accessory? Really expensive socks. Where would you like to be in 2 years time? Sewing hammocks in Hawaii. What's the worst thing about living in England? It's not Hawaii. How did the Sub Pop signing come about? We run our own label called Paradise Vendors Inc. we put out a 7" and Sub Pop bought it from us. They liked it; they seemed to like us too. And now we're signed and very happy.
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Finally: If you had to spend a night (not necessarily sexual) with Justin Bieber or Ke$ha, which would it be and why We have kind of already got a little freaky with Bieber. We got stuck in LA because of the volcano ash. So we shot a video. It gets a release next week I think. Anyway, without spoiling this masterwork, it winds up with a Bieber sex-in. But apparently there's some heavy censoring...something about a potential lawsuit. Anyway it'll end any ambiguity surrounding the name Male Bonding. You can visit Male Bonding by heading to www.myspace.com/malebonding Images by Steve Gullick