i don’t want responsibilities i want to nap instead
Nothing has ever been so accurate.
Jimmy Eat World -Electable
An Evening With Brendan Murphy of Counterparts
- When Counterparts first started did you ever imagine it would become what it is today?
Brendan: No, it’s really weird how it all happened, I think it’s fucked, man. When it first started we legitimately started in Jesse’s basement, we just started writing songs and because we were going to shows we thought “whoa, being in a band seems like a good idea right now” because I guess we were young and stupid. The stuff that we were writing back then was so bad, it sounded awful but it didn’t matter because we were actually doing something. We weren’t that band that went and played a show with just covers, we said fuck that and wanted to write our own songs. The growth of our band hasn’t plateaued yet, luckily enough, I mean there’s days where it feels like we have, but when you look at the grand scheme of things you can zoom out and take it all in - it’s like, you can see that we’re still growing and there’s still a lot of room to grow in to. To go back and think that we were in grade nine or ten when we first started the band, we were opening shows at The Underground in Hamilton, to now we’re headlining shows at The Underground that’s close to selling out, it’s just so weird to think about. No part of me ever thought we’d get big, I mean, I use “big” loosely - I don’t think we’re very big to begin with but, I never thought we’d make it out of Hamilton, I guess.
- How do the music scenes aboard, such as Europe and Australia, compare to back home?
Brendan: Honestly they’re all pretty much on par, there’s just little different, weird things that you’ll notice. For example, say in Europe if your band is playing before nine o’clock at night or even before eleven o’clock at night, no one’s there. If your band plays at one o’clock in the morning everyone’s there in the venue. Every place we go to is pretty comparable to Canada, like I said, there’s just little things you notice and pick up on that make you go “oh shit, I wish Canada did this”. I guess everywhere has their own subtle differences in the world. If I was totally content with the Canadian music scene I would tour Canada once every three months and make a living off that and never try to cross the border.
- Do you feel like Counterparts is more appreciated when you leave Canada?
Brendan: Yeah, a little bit. I don’t know if I would say appreciated but it’s more so, if we play a show in Toronto obviously it’s going to do well and all our friends are there and it’s really cool. But say we play a show somewhere in California they’re like, “okay, I’ve never seen Counterparts before, I might never see them again” so everyone buys one of everything we have in merch and stuff like that. I feel like everyone in Ontario kind of appreciates us because they were the ones that saw us take our first steps as a band, but people outside of Canada are more stoked because they look at it as Counterparts is from forty, fifty hours away - or Counterparts is from a twenty hour plane ride away, I guess they think it’s really cool, they treat us really well and make us feel at home.
- The songs on The Difference Between Hell and Home show a very personal side of you, why do you choose to share such intimidate details about yourself with the whole world?
Brendan: I chose to talk about them in this medium because it’s the medium I feel more comfortable with. I’m definitely more comfortable with not going and talking to a bunch of people I’m friends with, for whatever reason I can’t find comfort in that, so I have to find a hundred random people a night to tell that I’m miserable. It’s weird, I don’t know why I feel like I can get on stage and tell people about my problems when I can’t look at my friends in the eye and tell them that something’s wrong with me. I guess people have their own way with coping with that and they deal with things differently, it’s just how I feel the most comfortable by writing about it and turning it into lyrics. I don’t know, maybe I should try the other way, maybe I’ve been doing it wrong for the last five or six years.
- You’ve given people living with mental health disorders, such as depression and anxiety, a voice and someone to relate to. How does it feel to know that you’ve had such a huge impact on people you’ve never met?
Brendan: I think that’s weirdest part, and I don’t mean weird as in a bad way or an unappreciated way, it’s just definitely the weirdest part about being in the band. To know that people feel strongly about something I’ve written or I’ve just said, that people can take that and relate to it so well, that’s also the coolest part of the band because I never thought it would happen. I feel like, I appreciate it and it’s totally awesome that people care that much about my band, I also feel like I don’t want to be this weird sort of mascot for helping, as cool as it is and as awesome as I think it is, I also don’t want to people to look at me and be like “Brendan, save me, help me”. Yes, I agree that listening to music and finding a constructive outlet for how you’re feeling is good, I just don’t want that guy all the time.
- When Counterparts is referred to as a “Tumblr Band” does it bother you at all?
Brendan: It doesn’t really bother me, but it’s like, there are so many bands that are more “Tumblr” than us. It’s not a bad thing at all, in fact, now Tumblr’s a big part of how your band is perceived and how big your band is or how big people think your band is. Yeah, it’s really weird when I look at a video of us playing Evansville, Indiana and there’s like, you know, fucking nine thousand reblogs, it’s weird, but it doesn’t really bother me because at least nine thousand people cared enough, I mean, that rules. My issue with Tumblr is I don’t like how people use it as means of like “my personality is this website” or “my life is on this website”, that everything that happens in real life is second best to how many followers I have and how many reblogs I have. That’s why on my social media I treat everything as a complete joke, oh, like, you know this many people want to see what I have to say so I’m going to give them the worst shit I can think of and get them to unfollow me, but I guess it backfired. Tumblr’s alright, I mean, some of it’s dumb, like reblogging sex gifs and saying “yes please this” it’s just like, come on, grow up. Tumblr isn’t about creating something new, it’s more of “I like this so look at it”. When I had Tumblr I’d post my lyrics, I’d post pictures that I took from on tour, I would post questions and stuff like that. I know I can’t hate on people for it, I just like the idea that there’s other websites and other means to be like “look at what I created” instead of looking at something someone else made.
- Why did you never succumb to the constant cycle of trends plaguing the hardcore scene?
Brendan: I just don’t care. It’s like, I’ve been going to shows since 2005, I’ve seen every possible trend, I’ve seen every band go from bullshit with everyone laughing at them and saying no way this will get popular, to now them being the biggest band. I’ve seen it happen so much, I mean at least in Ontario, I just can’t keep up with the trends, it’s too exhausting, it’s become “oh, last week this band was popular but now they suck”. I want to listen to Converge and Smashing Pumpkins and that’s about it. I don’t care about what band is really cool and really hype, I don’t care about their limited fucking cassette, I don’t care about how much you spent on a shirt off eBay. Music is music, support the band, it’s like Haymaker used to say “love the music, hate the kids”, that’s very much how I look at it. I love hardcore, hardcore absolutely came into my life at a perfect time where I had nothing and it filled the void, still to this day fills the void, but a lot of the kids that take it for granted and treat it as another trend piss me off, that’s why I’m very vocal about my hate of those kinds of kids. I find that eventually those kinds of kids grow up, break edge and become EDM drugheads and I’m still here, I’m still the dumbass kid who hangs out at shows and moshes to Exalt.
- Tonight is Alex Re’s last hometown show ever with Counterparts, how does it feel to lose such a long standing member of your band?
Brendan: It’s bittersweet, I’ll say that. Nobody in the band wants to see Alex go, but he’s at a point in his life where he’s got other things and for him the band can’t come first anymore. He’s got a girlfriend he’s probably going to marry, he’s got a full time job, he’s going to school full time, at least he’s not leaving the band as a “fuck, I hate you guys” kind of thing. In his mind I like to think that he now has time for him to take that next step, to progress and become an adult, a real human being, he can’t keep playing smelly venues and living off Taco Bell anymore. He was honest, he came to us and told us what was up and we have the utmost respect for him, there’s no hard feelings whatsoever. I like to think we have someone else lined up so we’ll see what happens with him, but Alex will always be a major part of Counterparts and we know there always comes a time when everyone has to move on. Tonight was his last show with us so tonight will be the start of the next step of his life and we can’t hate him for it, love the guy, one of my best friends, always will be.
- With 2014 just a couple weeks away I’m obligated to ask, what can we expect to see from Counterparts in the new year?
Brendan: We’re going to Japan in January for four shows, it kind of came out of nowhere, but like, fuck it, we’re down to go, I’m going to go buy old panties from vending machines in Tokyo, that’s my thing. February we’re going to Europe with Being as an Ocean, Hundreth and Polar. In March we have a tour that’s happening, I don’t know how much I’m allowed to say, but it’s an American tour with a bunch of sweet bands, so that’s March and April. In May and June we’ve got Canada set up and after that we’ve got more American stuff, we’re pretty much booked up till summer of next year. It sucks, I wish I could give real names and specific dates but I can’t, but I can say we’re going to be busy. I just hope our van will last, that’s my New Year’s wish, I guess. I just want to find a van that won’t fuck us every time we leave.
mind blown by a 13-year old kid…
when i’m married my partner and i will have:
- morning sex
- afternoon sex
- dinner sex
- after meal sex
- i made pancakes sex
- good morning sex
- the kids are at school sex
- shower sex
- bored sex
- make up sex
- monday sex
- tuesday sex
- wednesday sex
- thursday sex
- friday sex
- saturday sex
- sunday sex
- there is nothing on tv sex
- i love you sex
I MADE PANCAKES SEX