Gimme Your Answers: An Interview w/ The Felix Culpa

The Felix Culpa
On October 17th, The Felix Culpa will play their their first venue show together since 2011. The rock trio — comprised of Joel Coan, Marky Hladish, and Tristan Hammond — are headlining the second half of the No Sleep Records Tour this fall with Aviator and Rescuer. With much anticipation for the tour, A Music Blog, Yea? had the opportunity of speaking with with Marky to discuss writing new material, connecting with crowds, thwarting muggers in Ohio, and their return — enjoy!

AMBY: Hey The Felix Culpa, welcome to our site! To get acquainted, how would you describe each member of the band in one word?

The Felix Culpa: Hey Alicia. Thanks for having me. I’d like to instead relate each member of the band to a character from the History Channel show Vikings. If I (Marky) was Ragnar, Tristan (bass) would be Rollo, Joel (drums) would be Floki and Dustin (former 2nd guitarist) would be Bjorn because he left home to go become his own man and start a band called Cut Teeth. Hopefully they don’t watch that show cause I probably just really pissed everyone off.

AMBY: For the first time since 2011, you’ll soon play your first venue show as a band. How have the rehearsals been going?

The Felix Culpa: Since we all live in separate states, we won’t actually start practicing until about a week before the tour. But we are currently writing new material via email and we’ve had some Skype type sessions and that stuff has been going great. It’s obviously a bit slower, but the end results have been awesome. We might even play some new material on this tour. Again, we’ll see how that all comes together in these upcoming practices. No promises.

AMBY: Which songs do you think you’ll enjoy playing the most? Which still heavily resonate with you?

The Felix Culpa: The newer stuff, like the stuff on the split we just put out, is always the most relevant but there are a handful of older songs that are really special that will always resonate with us that we’ll probably always keep in the repertoire. Songs like Our Holy Ghosts and I’m Still Learning… songs that the crowd feels connected to as well. It’s really hard to pick and choose from 10 years worth of songs and put it into a cohesive 40 minute set. It’s also been equally challenging to try and rethink some of the songs that we want to play without the elements that Dustin brought to the table.

AMBY: What’s one of your more memorable touring experiences as The Felix Culpa?

The Felix Culpa: There are so many. We’ve thwarted muggers in Ohio, gotten our trailer stuck in a sand trap in Florida, played Warped tour to 1000 people at a time, and played a show to 4 kids in a tiny bar who were the best crowd we’ve ever had. Probably my favorite story is one of our first tours to the east coast I was pulled over by a police officer at like two in the morning for going 75 in a 55. Then he discovered that we were driving with an unregistered trailer with faulty wiring, had a headlight out on the van and on top of that I couldn’t find my wallet in my duffle bag so I couldn’t even give him my license. He called for backup and they started digging through the van looking for whatever incriminating things they could find. Obviously they found nothing since we were honestly good kids. None the less, he detained me and told me that I was going to have to post bail on the following Monday. For whatever reason I was actually able to convince him to let me go with nothing but a warning. I can safely say we’ve grown up a bit since then and we have our stuff together now. Moderately so at least. Haha.

AMBY: Where would your dream festival take place and who would be in the line-up?

The Felix Culpa: Oh man. That’s dangerous… Obviously it’d be somewhere warm. Not Chicago. I’d love to play a festival with reunited post hardcore bands like Sunny Day Real Estate, Hum, Engine Down. Jimmy Eat World can play too as long as they play only Clarity era stuff. Our friends could all play too… bands like O’Brother, Cut Teeth, and Into It. Over It. Some current bands like Daughter and the National and Wye Oak would play just because I’d want to see them. And it would rain whiskey and the stage would be made of pizza.

AMBY: You finally released a new split (with Foreign Tongues) which includes two new tracks. Can fans expect a record or EP anytime soon? Are there plans for more releases?

The Felix Culpa: Wellll… interesting that you bring that up. We did just record a new song for a soon to be announced release on our current label No Sleep. Also, there will be a brand new special re-issue available for the first time ever on this upcoming tour. Possibly a vinyl release… shhhhh.

AMBY: If you could be a fly on the wall at any given time or event, where would you want to be?

The Felix Culpa: I would be at the Harlem Square Club in 1963 to see Sam Cooke play his set that night. One of the greatest live recordings of all time. If you haven’t heard it, look it up. Raw.

AMBY: Lastly, what’s something about The Felix Culpa that nobody knows yet?

The Felix Culpa: Drake ghostwrites all our hits.

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Thank you The Felix Culpa, for giving us your answers!

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Interview by Alicia Atout | @AliciaAtout

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