INTERVIEW | The Metatrons

ASK A SPOOKY QUESTION…

The Metatrons’ debut LP ‘Between Planets’ marks out a territory between the eighties noise pop of Jesus & Mary Chain, the ‘90s alterna-rock of Throwing Muses/Sonic Youth and ‘70s punk/new wave sounds in the Ramones tradition.

In anticipation of their appearance at this weekend’s Day Of The Dead Halloween Party, Rogue joined Hitchin’s fastest rising local rockers for a plate of homemade Mexican tacos and some silly questions taken from an old Smash Hits annual.

The Metatrons (L-R: Polly, Simon, Dez, Steve) - Enchilada Da Vida


Rogue: Introduce yourselves

Simon: Hello I’m Simon and I play guitar in The Metatrons.

Polly: Hello I’m Polly and I sing in The Metatrons. Can I ask that we don’t have any questions about vomit in this interview? Smash Hits tend to have a lot of those.

Steve: I’m Steve and I play the drums.

Dez: I’m Dez and I play the bass. That’s Dez with a Z.

Polly: I’m Polly with a P.

Simon: I’m Simon with a Z.

How do you like to travel?

Simon: Quickly.

Polly: I like to walk in my brand new pink DM’s.

Steve: I do like a walk, it’s good for the soul.

Dez: What was the question again? Oh, I like to travel by bicycle.

Did you pass your cycling proficiency test as a child?

Everyone: Yes!

Simon: We’re all solid citizens. I passed it second time though.

Polly: I passed my driving test the fourth time. But I’m really good now…

What colour is happiness?

Steve: Cadbury’s purple isn’t it?

Simon: That’s corporate happiness.

Steve: Light blue.

Polly: Oh no, Communist red.

Dez: Black with little flecks of red.

Did you have a nickname at school?

Polly: Pollingtons? Someone used to call me Pol Pot.

Simon: Not particularly flattering though is it?

There’s a Communist theme running through your answers…

Steve: I was called Shaggy for a bit.

Dez: You wish you still were.

Simon: As opposed to Limpy.

Steve: There was a teacher who said “Look at your hair, you look like a shaggy sheepdog.” But I kind of associated it with Scooby-Doo, and I was well into that, for many years.

Do you believe human beings can spontaneously combust?

Dez: Yes.

Simon: I really hope so.

Polly: It happens more often in London apparently.

Steve: There was very recently a case in Ireland where for the first time the coroner’s report said that it was a case of spontaneous human combustion.

Dez: So, the coroner has to be right and so it therefore has to be true.

You’ll be pleased to hear that you are absolutely correct. Have you ever heard voices in your head?

Polly: Songs quite a lot rather than voices – other people’s unfortunately, rather than inspirational new ones by me.

Simon: The question would have to be when have I not heard voices in my head.

Steve: None that I can think of, just me – the involuntary nagging. A poking with a mental stick. Self-loathing, you know.

Does your mother play golf?

Polly: She plays piano.

Dez: My mother climbs mountains.

Steve: My Dad played for a little while, but not my Mum.

Simon: My Dad’s just learning how to play golf and for Christmas we got him one of those indoor golfing things that you lay across the carpet with a big load of felt. It’s got these pretend bumps in it and the idea is it’s a miniaturised version of the things you’d come across on a real golf course but condensed into a small piece of rolled-up cloth. He was very pleased with it.

Steve: Does it have a bar at the end?

Simon: No just a hollow plastic box, which could be a metaphor for golf in its entirety I suppose.

Have you ever thought you were a bus stop?

Steve: I’ve stood at many bus stops and certainly thought that I was becoming as one with the bus stop on occasion. But I don’t know if I’ve ever thought I actually was the bus stop..

Dez: ..Otherwise buses would have certainly stopped.

Polly: Thing is you’re looking for one and then three bus stops come along at once.

[Silence]

Steve: If you don’t want to be quoted saying it, it’s probably best not to say it…

If you were a kangaroo, what would you keep in your pouch?

Polly: Vodka.

Steve: A baby kangaroo probably.

What would you do if you were Prime Minister?

Dez: Wear a top hat.

Polly: Tell myself to resign.

Simon: This is going to be a long answer. I can’t answer it without getting angry, so I’ll just say this: I’ll make this country a better place by introducing a lot more kangaroos and a lot more bus stops that look like Steve.

Steve: I am at one with the bus stop.

Polly Metatron models the Smash Hits annual

Have you ever been so violently sick that you… wait we’re not doing vomit questions are we?

Polly: No.

Okay, where do you think all the missing pens go?

Polly: They go to the same planet as the socks. I think they’re stolen by a cat along with winecorks and cigarettes.

Simon: A lot of them end up in our kitchen and then defer to the other room. But most of them don’t work by the time they arrive here. We’re like a home for broken pens.

Steve: Bring us your huddled masses of broken pens. I will take them in and throw them round the room when they don’t bloody work.

Do flowers scream when you pick them?

Simon: I’d hope so.

Dez: You’d have wasted all that time otherwise.

What keeps you awake at night?

Steve: The question before last.

Simon: It’s hard to get the voices you hear in the day to stop sometimes.

Do you know anyone called Tarquin?

Steve: Yeah.

Polly: Really?

Steve: Yeah, I mean I shouldn’t say his name really..

Simon: Yes, maybe you shouldn’t elaborate any further.

Steve: He’s the only person I’ve ever known who spent his dole cheque on drugs. When his parents found out, he said he’d been mugged. And then he had to go out and mug himself.

[Steve’s phone starts ringing]

Polly: Is that Tarquin calling?

Simon: He’s going: “What you sayin’ about me?”

What TV programme do you always turn off?

Dez: There are so many. They’re evil.

Polly: Adverts. Always adverts.

Simon: Question Time makes me quite angry. I can barely get through 15 minutes of it without getting incredibly self-righteous. So we turn it off and watch Family Guy instead.

Polly: I nearly cried during Question Time the other day.

Steve: I fell asleep and woke up when Dancing On Ice was on and I was all OOARRGH! Where’s the remote?!

Polly: It’s a horror film.

Speaking of which, we’ll do some Bonus Halloween questions now. What is your favourite horror films?

Polly: My favourite is Aliens, but I’m not sure it’s a horror.

Steve: One of my favourite films is Eraserhead because it wasn’t a horror film in the conventional sense but it just made you feel eurrrrghhh inside. It’s got this permeating awfulness about it.

Polly: I couldn’t sleep for weeks after the Grudge.

Steve: I watched Let The Right One In the other day.

[Everyone agrees it’s a brilliant film for about 2 minutes]

Polly: I’m fine when I’m watching stuff like that, but it’s later that night when I go downstairs and get really scared of what’s in the back garden.

Steve: See that’s the mark of a good film..

Polly: I often check behind the shower curtain after watching Shaun Of The Dead to check Peter Serafinowicz isn’t hiding there.

Dez: I quite liked Labyrinth…

Is Labyrinth a horror film?

Dez: The Del Toro one… Pan’s Labyrinth.

Polly: But that one’s so horrible!

Simon: What, the one with David Bowie?

Polly: There are some frightening mullets in Labyrinth.

Steve: Pan’s Labyrinth’s excellent.

Dez: A different kind of horror.

Simon: Coronation Street’s quite scary.

Steve: Have you seen Hollyoaks recently?

Simon: Yeah, it’s the same thing except with a load of corpses dribbling blood out the side of their mouths while attempting to make a living through acting. That’s a programme I will not watch. It’s disgusting.

What else scares you?

Steve: Politicians. Anybody who’s got that amount of self-interest. Politicians are like people who want to own machine guns – they should be barred from doing it because the sheer fact they aspire to being a politician is wrong and they should be stopped immediately.

Polly: Celine Dion’s quite scary.

Steve: What about you Dez?

Dez: Most things scare me. The outside. The inside. The walls.

If you could dress up as anything for Halloween, what would you dress up as?

Dez: A tyrannosaurus rex. Full size. Otherwise it’s just a cat with spikes on.

The Metatrons (L-R Steve, Dez, Polly, Simon): Thinking about young people and pop music.

What did you do last Halloween?

Polly: We did the same as we’ll be doing this year. There was some band playing…

Simon: The same as this year, with different trousers. A number of us also play in [Luton Cowpunk band] Trailer Trash Orchestra who played Rogue last year.

I’d honestly forgotten about that.. So what music is scary?

Simon: Pop music now, especially the stuff that’s been designed to sound like a ringtone. That’s scary because music doesn’t seem to exist in the same way as when I first started to like it. So these young people now, young people…

Polly: You sound like you’re 150…

Simon: I am 150. These young people are getting into this stuff that literally sounds like it’s made for commercials. Yeah. So basically it’s music I don’t understand that’s scary.

Polly: I don’t understand it, so I fear it!

If you were to have a Halloween party, would you play pop music?

Polly: We’d just play Bauhaus repeatedly.

Steve: And Steps.

Simon: The Cramps are good for that.

Dez: Or just hide a theremin in the room so it goes “WOOOOO” when people walk past.

Simon: We’re scared by pop music and the possibility of having a theremin in the room.

What’s the scariest thing that’s ever happened to you?

Steve: I used to navigate over Bodmin Moor using OS maps cos it’s a better way of finding the quieter roads. I got vaguely lost, so I stopped to have a wee. I got out and tied to a fence in a cruciform shape was a live crow. So I stopped what I was doing, zipped up my trousers, got straight back in the car and said “right, let’s go find somewhere else for a piss”.

Simon: Are there any questions about the band?

Nope.

The Metatrons were interviewed by Charlie Frame. They will be playing this Saturday 29th October at Rogue’s Halloween ‘Dia De Los Muertos’ Party at Club 85, Hitchin.

For more information please go to:

www.themetatrons.moonfruit.com | www.myspace.com/themetatronsrock | www.twitter.com/themetatronsvox

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