Mustard Plug (Matt Van)

Interviews | Feb 24th, 2005

I know you probably hate this, but for the people who don’t really know, could you give a brief history about Mustard Plug?
It all started about 11 years ago with Colin and Dave. A few thousand beers and a few thousand members and a few thousand shows, we have a solid core of members including M. Bradly “Myron Gates” Rozier, Colin “c-dog” Clive, Dave “dave-o” Kichgessner, Brandon “Gigaloney” Jenison, Jim “Hugh” Hofer, and me Matt “Boose” Van. That’s not really a history lesson, but I tried.

Do you think the new album “Yellow Number 5” is better than your other releases?
I don’t know if I can say better cause the other ones are good in their own right. Its a little more energetic and faster. Song writings a little more clever. Bass guitar a little crazier. If that makes it better than the others, you be the judge. All I know is that this album will rock you socks right off.

What’s your take on the current ska scene? You think it’s making a come back?
Its pretty much where it was back in the early 90s. You have your hardcore/diehard fans who will always come to see you come hell or high water. I don’t think it will ever be the way it was in the late 90s, when ever damn kid made friends with the high school band guys and started a ska band cause it was cool. Kids today are to sad damnit!!!! I wish their was a huge ska revival, the world would be a happier place.

Ok, what’s the deal with the Warped Tour? I’ve heard many different reports on it. What’s your side of the story?
If we had a dime for every time that question was asked!! It was just a clusterfuck to begin with. Everything seemed to fester until the last day in Detroit when it exploded. The stage was way to small for us to rock in our home away from home. We suggested that we be put on the local stage or one of the fifteen other stages that were there, but our pleas fell on deaf ears. About 300 kids were there to rock, the other 400 hundred couldn’t find the stage. The sound guys were being jerkoffs. The security guards were getting a little to powerful with our fans. (yeah the little 14 and 15 year old girls were really tearing up the stage). It sucked for us and Kevin Lymon (the promoter of the whole deal). A lot a fans plus a small stage = nightmare.

what’s more important, writing songs that are more catchy to the public or songs that mean something? Or Both?
Both. That’s why there are more the one song on an album. You can whistle and dance and sing to those catchy numbers then have a listen when there is a song that actually means something. You can have both in a song. You can have neither. It will suck but you can do it. I don’t know, I just write the music.

What are the essentials to bring on tour with you?
Tour essentials: Beer, reading materials (Maxim is usually a band fav.), gold bond, underpants, batteries, beer, music of your choice with a device to play it on (whoever drives gets to pick the music and its not always the best), imodium a.d cause chineese buffets will give ya a case of the runnie bunnies, a mini playstation with a portable screen (best way to coax band members into doing merch) and beer. I would say condoms but were lame.

If you got sick of the Mustard Plug name, what would you change it to?
Captain BringDown and the BuzzKills or Captain Geetch and the Shrimp Shack Shooters. Anything with captain will do.

What non ska-punk music do you enjoy listening to? What are some of your guilty pleasures?
I’m a sucker for Alt. country! Uncle Tupelo, Son Volt, Wilco, Robbie Fulks, The old 97’s. I jam classical music whenever I drive alone. I’ve been getting into a lot of Junior Brown lately too. Hawaiian country music, who woulda thought……..

What was the last book you’ve read?
I read Catcher in the Rye just cause I had never read it and then I read a book called Them by Jon Ronson. Its the best damn book I ever read but I aint into much book lernin.

What’s your favorite holiday and why?
I love any holiday when you get to eat a lot of food and then drink a lot of booze just cause its holiday. I actually hate holidays. There hasn’t been a Christmas I can remember that I haven’t cried. I get so depressed. All those carols and Bing Crosby’s sultry voice, its too much. The day I found out there was no Santa was the day that I found my new giver of gifts, beer.

Do you think Mustard Plug is heading into a different direction now or still sticking with the ska-punk sound?
Ska-punk for life. We know how to write ska song so why fuck it up. Bands who change sounds completely suck. Ooooppps, except The Telegraph cause they rocked.

If you were to lock up a bunch of people in a room, and crank the worse music to torture someone with, what band or Cd would it be?
Top five worst bands ever. 5. Credence Clearwater Revival 4. any generic shit band on the radio today 3. Any rap music Brad plays in the van 2. Creed (give me a fucking break buddy) 1. Scorpions

Anything To Promote, Plug, Final comments?
Buy yellow number 5, always brush your teeth, and from the CDC, watch for syphilis in Detroit cause there’s a big outbreak. That shit will make you itch. I know I used to live in Detroit.