Canoga Park, CA
Interviewed by: Bella Silva
Video Recorded by: Kevin Silva
Alex Pearson: So, coming up with a band name is one of the hardest things you can do as a band. We basically just sat around for ages and ages. It took us so long. I think Coops, [our guitarist] watched this movie called the Science of Sleep. It’s like this french dark house film. And basically this guy has this recurring dream about having this massive hands…and he has this conversation with his mom. He says, its like hands like towels and then he gets corrected, and she says it’s "hands like houses" so it’s kind of just a line from that.
Q (Bella): Did you guys have another name before like a weird name?
Alex: There was one thing that we did settle on...
Matt Parkitney: Wasn't it like Glass Tiger or something? Glass Animal or something (laughs)
Alex: It just wasn’t what we wanted (laughs)
Q (Bella): So, was Rise Records the main record label you wanted to sign with or was there another one in particular?
Alex: I don’t think we really had any idea. We probably wanted to sign to like Sony or something like that.
Matt P: I think when we first started any sort of attention was just great. We were just band just hanging out, trying to write songs.
Alex: Actually, Rise would of been one of the ones. Because, Rise had all the bands like The Devil Wears Prada and all those like "scene bands" that we knew growing up.
Matt P: We were excited to get the material out there and see what would happen.
Alex: Everyone was pretty happy when Rise said "let’s sign you guys". We were like cool. We’ll sign. We’ll do that.
Q (Bella): How was it touring with Craig Owens and the rest of bands?
Alex: It was really cool. I was really surprised. We didn't really know how to take it. We loved them as a band. So, like touring with someone that you listened to when you’re 16 can kind of be a daunting thing. And, we hopped on halfway through the tour which can be a little bit weird sometimes. But first day they come up, and said “We’re really happy to have you guys on tour, and we’re looking forward to you guys jumping on".
Matt P: They were very welcoming and very positive.
Alex: (to Matt) You get along really well with Derek.
Matt P: Yeah, Derek is a cool guy. I met Derek a while back. So, knowing that we were going to tour with him...I was excited to catch up with him. I didn't know the other guys too well. But, everyone just got along really quickly.
Q (Martese): That was our first interview. Craig Owens at the House of Blues.
Alex: Really? Nice! Ahh He's an angel.
Q (Bella): I know you guys are from Australia. Touring other places-Where do you feel most welcomed?
Alex: Pretty much I would say anywhere. There’s no where we haven’t been [where we haven't felt welcomed]. America is always super welcoming. Like every time we hop off the bus, everyone is always smiling. The accent, I feel like, has a lot to do with it.
Matt P: Yeah, we've been very lucky. No matter where we go people have always been very positive and very welcoming.
Q (Bella): What’s your favorite venue, so far, to play at?
Matt P: House of Blues is always really good. Staff is really good. Catering is really good. I’d say the Ace of Spades too. Rad venue. Trees in Dallas is also a great venue.
Alex: Soma was really good last night, as well.
Matt P: I feel like some venues are really run like a community. It’s great seeing that, and they’re just like "What do you guys need help with? What can we help you do?". I love venues like that.
Alex: And, they give you showers and food. So, they win pretty quickly. (laughs)
Matt P: We transform into normal people after a shower. Otherwise it's like, you just think we’re tanning, but it’s actually just a thin layer of dirt. (laughs)
Alex: We did shower today.
Q (Bella): When you all are coming up with new songs-who comes up with the ideas? How do you combine lyrics together?
Alex: Generally, for like our average song, Coops and I will sit down. And, I’ll have an idea and write a song around it, or he’ll have an idea and do the same thing and send it to me. And, we’ll go back and forth, for like a week or so or sometimes like a couple of hours depending on how productive we are (laughs). And then it kinda goes from there. Lyrics are usually one of the last things that gets done. because Trenton tries to find the lyrics that suit the song's feel or vibe. Which can be frustrating sometimes because, we're like, "Where are the lyrics? Where are the vocals?"
Q (Bella): Do you write songs about stuff that happens to you guys or how tour is going?
Alex: Definitely, on Unimagine, there have been more songs I think that have come from personal kind of experiences. But, usually there are personal aspects to it, but Trenton kind of finds a way to hide it so it’s not like, “I miss my girlfriend" (sings while pretending to strum guitar).
So, [the lyrics] aren't so blatantly obvious, and it’s [written in] a little bit more of a poetic way. (Pauses)
That was a really good song. That might be on the next album.
Alex: It's different enough from the rest of the heavy music that’s been flowing around. He [Caleb Shomo of Beartooth] just has such a pop sensibility of writing songs...it’s heavy music that's written smartly and really catchy.
Matt P: Even the melodies and stuff-everything about it. It is heavy music, but it’s different, just a whole different vibe. All the guys in Beartooth are just legends.
Q (Bella): To make an album, how long does it take?
Alex: (laughs) It should take a lot longer than it does. It always depends. For us, the first album took a long time because we didn't really have any time constraints.
Matt P: But originally, we didn't plan on making an album. We were just going to make an EP.
Q (Bella): So, what are the things you like donating or helping out with-like what other charities would you like to help?
Alex: I think Men’s health and mental health. I know being a man and dealing with depression and stuff…There’s this social stigma that you’re a weaker person for having something like that so just having the means to give people support. I know over here, in Austrlia as well, but homelessness is a really big problem. It’s a lot more evident here.
Matt P: My biggest point where I saw people that were homeless was in New York. That was a big eye opener. You do see a lot on tour. We don’t go to hotels very often-so you see it on the road and near venues. You see it everywhere. It's a big thing. We feel very passionate about things like that. So, we’d love to help out in any way we can.
Alex: And, I think we’re getting to a point where we can as more of a like established band.
Q (Martese): When we plan outreaches, it’ll help various causes. But mental health, how can that be helped? Is that more of a money issue?
Alex: I’d say money and awareness. Money is always a hard thing, because when you're donating to charity sometimes it’s hard to know exactly where your money is going and what exactly it's getting pushed towards. I think also purely raising awareness can be a great thing to do, as well.
Matt P: Education
Alex: Getting some sort of knowledge can be just as helpful as "Here’s a $1,000". I think it’s hard to know what to put your effort to.
Matt P: I think raising awareness is very important in this day and age though. A lot of people look over things too quickly without knowing the deeper more important meanings behind what happens...Awareness is definitely the biggest side to it. Education itself. People may see people as mentally ill or whatever, [and] some people are really shallow-minded and they just don't understand it or they haven’t gone through it themselves. Give the opportunity to say like, "Hey, this is what happens." or explain it...I think awareness could change a lot of things.
hands like houses official music video
Huge thanks to Bella for interviewing the band and kicking ass! Also, thanks to Kevyn for taking control of the bloggie and making sure we got great footage :) Of course, this couldn't have been done without Alex and Matt of Hands like Houses. Thank you two, so much, for participating in the Skully Serves interview. Filled with many laughs!