Boston-based Trophy Lungs consists of three average Joes according to themselves, who will deny anything when asked. But once they get their weapons of sonic destruction out of the shed, all hell breaks loose. Their latest release “Day Jobs” on Bearded Punk Records is another example of fierce punk rock that even almost led to an award. If that hasn't drawn your attention yet, then it's time to meet up with Trophy Lungs and their favourite drinking game.
- Hello, Congratulations with your latest album, “Day Jobs”. It was released in October last year, how has the response been so far?
I think the response has been better than any of us could have imagined. So many people have been awesome enough to include us in their ‘best of 2015’-lists, and even though we (rightfully) lost, we were nominated for Punk Artist Of The Year by the Boston Music Awards. All of our friends and family have been super supportive and we’re just glad it’s finally out.
- For the European CD release you teamed up with Bearded Punk Records, a new label from Belgium. The vinyl is on another label. How did you get connected to them?
Bearded Punk reached out to us saying how much they loved the record and asked if we had any interest in releasing it in Europe. We obviously said yes, and within a month “Day Jobs” was out on CD, in countries we never thought our music would be played in. Gregory and Bjorn are two of the nicest dudes we’ve ever had the pleasure of working with and we’re incredibly stoked on what they have planned for us later this year.
- The album title “Day Jobs” refers to the fact that you all work fulltime jobs next to the band. Could you tell us what you do in the daily life when not living out the rockstar fantasy?
Most of us work in the hospitality industry. Growing up in working class families and living in one of the most expensive cities in the states, it’s hard to maintain a decent paying job while taking the time off to be in a band. Finding a balance isn’t easy, but playing shows and going on tour is something we absolutely love, so we’ll always find a way to make it happen.
- You all played in different bands before starting Trophy Lungs in 2012, any bands that we should know of?
Definitely not [laughs]. Interestingly enough, everyone in this band was a drummer before we started and we all came from different cities playing different styles of music I think that’s one of my favourite things about writing with these guys. You can really see the different influences come through when we’re playing.
- If the band was to play a special occasion playing a cover set of the band that influenced them, what band(s) would you cover?
We actually did that a few years ago. We were going down to Fest in Gainesville and played some shows along the way, including an Alkaline Trio cover set for a pre-Halloween show in Brooklyn. If we had to do it again, I’d say it would be a tie between Dillinger Four and Banner Pilot.
- The song “Bathroom Graffiti” on the album is about losing people and how you remember them. But what artists that are no longer with us would you like to encounter if given the chance?
There’s a lot of powerful musicians who weren’t afraid to write about controversial topics that we’ve love to sit down with if they were still with us. Joe Strummer had a lot of guts to name a record “Sandinista!” at the time when the US government was at war with a group of the same name. Joe Hill was a labour activist who was killed by a firing squad in 1915 because his songs were too powerful. Given the chance it would be incredible to sit down with musicians who knew music could be a lot more than noise.
- Trophy Lungs is considered pop punk by most. Do you agree on that or would you call Trophy Lungs different?
I think people get way too caught up in genres and titles. You shouldn’t have to fit a certain niche or style to be a good band. We really just write music that we think sounds rad and is about things that are important to us. Let’s not forget that ‘pop’ is short for ‘popular’ which is something we certainly are not.
- You refer to the X-Files in your online bio. The new episodes are coming soon of the X-files, after almost two decades. Do you believe Mulder will find the truth (and Scully)?
Just like the opening credits say: “The Truth Is Out There”.
- Now that the album is out in Europe, can we expect Trophy Lungs on trip across the pond soon?
We’re incredibly lucky to be part of the Bearded Punk family and we’re so stoked to say that they’re working on a two-week European tour for us later this year. All dates and venues will be announced later on but I can definitely say that it’s going to be awesome.
- Any last words, plans or maybe even crazy stories you want to share with us?
Please let us introduce the game ‘Firehat’ to Europe. Originally told to us by our buds in The New Warden, this is a drinking game that involves beer, fire, and brown paper bags. What you do is get at least three friends to stand in a circle. Twist the top of the paper bags into hats and place them on your head. You then proceed to light the top of the hats on fire and the first person begins to drink their beer. After every gulp it’s the next persons turn to take a gulp. The point of the game is to finish your beer until the fire gets down to your head. And to get drunk. Good luck, you’re welcome.
– David Marote