On the second night of Bowling For Soup’s mighty Party In Your Pants tour, George got the chance to hang out with a band who ooze the word ‘party’ from every orifice, Zebrahead. He sat down with vocal duo Matty Lewis and Ali Tabatabaee, who discussed their almighty method of getting into girls panties, black pudding, and why they’re afraid of Amy Winehouse…
George: Can you say your name, and what you do in the band?
Matty: My name is Matty, and I sing and play the guitar!
Ali: My name is Ali, and I yell.
George: You’re back on tour with Bowling For Soup once again, how does it feel to be back in the UK?
Ali: It’s awesome! We love coming back here. We’ve actually been here so much now, we know the ways around, we ate here last time across the street, and we went back today.
Matty: I’ve been here so many times, I’ve learned how to speak English.
Ali: Si! Es bueno!
George: How was Glasgow last night?
Matty: It sucked, Glasgow man, there was only a couple of people there, nah, I’m just kidding, it was awesome! Y’know what was awesome about it, we have a friend here, who we’ve known forever, and she came by the show last night, and she’s changed profession, she is uh, into porn now! So, we got to see her perform in her first porn, and it was quite remarkable, I would say!
Ali: Quite remarkable.
Matty: I mean, knowing somebody for so long then seeing them having sex.
Ali: Yeah! It was mindbottling. You know how everything gets stuck in your mind like a bottle?
Matty: Like a bottle. Mindbottling.
Ali: So, that was good, it was like fun!
Ali: …For all of us. Nah, it was a good show, great show, actually.
George: Are people warming to MC Lars and The Leftovers?
Ali: MC Lars and The Leftovers! Yes!
Ali: I just had dinner with MC Lars. He made me eat…
Ali: Black pudding? Black pudding.
Matty: But there’s blood in there!
Ali: It was all blood, I had it.
Matty: That’s disgusting! That can’t be, you just got the HIV!
Ali: No, they cook it, dude!
Matty: So if you cook blood, it’s cool?
Ali: Okay, I had to try it because we had to try right? But MC Lars pushed me to try it.
Matty: Y’know, anything MC Lars would want you to do, like, I trust him!
Ali: Yeah! He’s a very smart guy.
Matty: He is, very smart guy, way smarter than us.
Ali: …And he’s hung like a donkey from what I understand.
Matty: I haven’t seen, but I trust you. I trust MC Lars. The Leftovers are great guys too, actually, we’re sharing the bus with them, and it’s great when you share a bus with another band that aren’t y’know, pricks? So it’s great, those guys are great.
George: What’s Zebrahead been up to over the summer?
Ali: Oh, Zebrahead! (Pronounced in the American Zee-brahead) Um, what did you do this summer, Matty? What did you do on your summer vacation?
Matty: I got a tan, I played some baseball, I got a great farmers tan, and I taught my dog some tricks.
Ali: That’s really cool, man.
Matty: Mhm! What did you do on your summer vacation?
Ali: Y’know, I didn’t really do a lot, I cried a lot because I wasn’t hanging out with you, and erm…
[The band’s tour bus door opens at this point, screams can be heard from outside, which the boys feel the need they have to respond to in the appropriate Zebrahead manner…]
Matty: WOOHOO! YEAHHH! WOOOO!
Ali: WOOOOOOOOO! PARTY! Alright!
Ali: Um, so…I read every single book in Opera’s book club.
Ali: I’m trying to improve myself.
Matty: I think you’re improving yourself every day!
George: You’re about to release Panty Raid, talk us through it; how do you expect people to react to it?
Matty: Well, hopefully, people will actually start throwing panties on-stage. ‘Cause what we try to do is to get into girls pants, we figure, name an album Panty Raid, maybe we’re one step closer to getting into girls pants.
Ali: Well, you know what? You should’a called it Pants Raid. We’re not trying to get into their pants, we’re trying to get into their panties.
Matty: Oh, did I say pants?
Ali: You said pants.
Matty: We’re trying to get into their panties. Thank you!
Ali: You’re welcome!
Ali: ‘Cause that woulda been awkward!
Matty: I know.
Ali: What if you were like “We’re trying to get into your dungarees”
Matty: [laughs] Dungarees!?
Ali: Dungaree Raid.
Matty: Dungaree Raid! Give us your pantaloons! [laughs] Show us your lederhosen!
Ali: Keep going…
Matty: Give me your kilt!
Ali: That’s the one we wanna end on.
George: What made you want to do an all-female covers album?
Ali: Well, y’know, we wanted to do something different, and we’ve actually been wanting to do a covers album for a long time, and Ed, our drummer… It was Ed, right?
Matty: It was you, we have this conversation all the time.
Ali: Okay, well Matty had this idea of doing an all-female covers album, ’cause y’know, I don’t think a dude band has done that, that I know of.
Matty: Not that I know of! So, then we went through all the songs that we thought would be cool, and y’know, tried to do some pop-punk stuff, and also tried to do some rap stuff, and some R&B stuff, just to see if we could. That’s how the album kinda came about, and initially we weren’t gonna put all the songs on, but we were happy with the way they turned out, so we kinda stuck ’em all on there.
George: Are you fans of the artists you covered?
Ali: I love No Doubt!
Matty: We celebrate the entire collection of every artist on there.
Ali: Is there anyone you hate, Matty?
Matty: I couldn’t hate, um, I don’t think I could hang out with Amy Winehouse. I think she would definitely drink me under the table, she would probably hurt me in some way, and probably beat me to a pulp afterwards.
Ali: Well y’know what would probably happen…
Ali: You’d have one drink with her, you’d wake up the next morning in a bathtub filled with ice, and your kidneys would be gone.
Matty: That’s why I don’t want to!
Matty: I mean, it’s not that we don’t like her…
Matty: We’re just a little afraid of her.
George: Can we expect an album of your own material again any time soon?
Matty: Of course.
Ali: Oh, we’re doing that again? I thought we were just gonna keep doing covers!
Matty: What if we just did covers the entire time? Zebrahead cover band. Ooh, what if we do this; we cover Me First And The Gimme Gimmes, so it’s a cover of a cover band.
Ali: Oh my god, dude! You were just here for that, so you know what the next album’s gonna be!
Matty: It’s gonna be cover songs, of people covering covering songs.
Ali: I can’t wrap my head around that one.
Matty: It’s mindbottling.
Ali: So mindbottling.
George: What’s your favourite UK town to play?
Ali: Today? Newcastle.
Ali: I’d say Newcastle.
Matty: Definitely Newcastle.
George: Last time you were here, you were playing the room you’re playing tonight, do you prefer playing bigger venues or would you rather play the smaller venues you usually play in the UK?
Ali: Size doesn’t matter!
Matty: That’s what they tell us, size doesn’t matter.
Ali: Y’know, it really doesn’t, it’s just motion in the ocean, the fast and the furious, anything Vin Diesel’s in. Anything Vin Diesel, or Jebediah Smith.
Matty: Yes! Great reference.
Ali: Thank you. So, it doesn’t matter to us, we play anywhere we can.
Matty: We love shows.
Ali: We’ll come play your basement.
Matty: Do you have basements here?
Matty: We’ll play it.
Ali: We’ll play it! For some beer. For some Newcastle beer!
George: Has anybody actually worn a zebra, or zee-bra, head to your shows before?
Ali: Many times.
Matty: Sometimes they dress up, and they have like two guys, and somebody’s the ass end of the zebra, I feel sorry for them.
Ali: You know what the weirdest thing is though, is when they actually decapitate a zebra, and wear the zebra’s head on their head.
Matty: And the blood’s still dripping? They should have a law against that.
Ali: Well, they make blood pudding with it afterwards.
Ali: But I think it’s a little uncalled for, I mean you could wait for the zebra to die of natural causes.
Matty: Exactly. ‘Cause pretty soon the zebras are gonna be extinct. Especially if we keep decapitating them and wearing them onstage. So I suggest wearing a plastic one. Then we’d be called Extinctionhead.
Ali: Dude. [laughs] Extinct old animal head.
Matty: What is that… on their heads? Those black and white striped animals… What kind of horses are those? Are they unicorns?
George: Do you have any plans to come back over? Rumours are there’s a March tour on the cards…
Ali: Yes, we will be back in March. We’re stoked.
Matty: We are.
Ali: Matty and I are gonna start doing steroids really heavily, right after this tour, and when we come back, we’re gonna just be like so big and angry, that we’re gonna pull the bus from city-to-city.
Matty: Dude, you know how Arnold Schwarzenegger used to look during the Terminator days? We’re gonna kick his ass. That’s how big we’re gonna look. So that’s our plan, that’s why we wanna come back, it’s just an excuse to do steroids.
Ali: As if you need an excuse.
George: Change the record, who should we be listening to?
Matty: The Leftovers, pick up new MC Lars.
Ali: MC Lars…
Matty: Bowling For Soup…
Ali: Oh, and Zebrahead! They have a new album out called Panty Raid.
Matty: Go listen to all those bands.
Ali: Yeah, I would definitely listen to them.
George: Do you have anything to add?
Matty: Just buy the Panty Raid album when it comes out.
Ali: When does it come out?
Matty: I think it comes out first in Japan, November 4th, then everywhere else in December, by the end of the year.
Ali: It’s a great Christmas gift.
Matty: Exactly! It will make a great Christmas gift. And you’re most likely gonna get laid if you buy it for someone you love, and will catch some sort of disease as well.
Ali: But it’s worth it, just ’cause of the tunes!
Matty: It cures the crabs.
– George Cannings.
Zebrahead’s new covers album Panty Raid is out December 9th. The band tour the UK in March with MC Lars, check http://www.myspace.com/zebrahead for details.