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A phone call with Partycat

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What’s up world, ready to party with these cats?

I hope so because they are going to bring the claws out on Friday and thrash Luneta. Partycat is coming to make the girls purr, and generally fuck shit up. Birthed from the Greater Toronto Area these five guys have been going steady for four years and, if my conversation with guitarist Steve Sapienza is any indication, they will not be slowing down anytime soon. Here is a little taste of the Partycat mentality…

You guys claim that you are all about having fun and not taking things too seriously, the name of your band speaks volumes about that comment. Did you guys have negative experiences in other bands to finally just say “well that’s that, let’s just shred shows and have fun”?

In the public eye this band always is and always will be about having fun. We’re all on the same page, and our basic action plan is thought out each day. We do a lot of like, organized chaos, so our live shows are crazy and we’re always having fun but there’s professionalism to it. This is definitely something we all want to do on a career level, but we’re not quite there yet. We want this to be fun but at the same time we do treat it seriously every day.

Currently on tour in the East Coast, what is your favorite aspect of that environment?

Yeah we’re just driving from PEI to Moncton — this is our third little banger out East. Obviously the first time we had zero expectations because it was our first time being out and touring — but the first time was amazing. We obviously had some bum shows but the fans out here don’t generally get the bigger acts, so any band that comes out here is big for them. Not many bands want to drive all the way out to Charlottetown, but we’re Canadian and we’re working on building a solid fan base, so we’re trying to hit every city we can. This being our third time, we always expect shows to be good but at the end of the day we want to play music and have a good time whether its 10 people or 100. We just played a show in PEI last night that we thought might suck, next thing you know it’s the craziest show of the tour.
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Have you guys experienced anything out of the ordinary while on tour yet, any wild characters or stories you’d like to share?

There was one dude in particular. We met him in Sydney, Nova Scotia at two separate shows. His name was Seagull, he was just the drunkest skunk we’d ever met. He was like “I don’t like your guys music, you’re not my scene, but I like you.” He looked like Deaner from Fubar. 

I saw a photo on your Facebook feed of you guys cleaning dishes; can you elaborate on that photo?

Well basically we were staying with our friend Erin in Fredericton New Brunswick, and she was really hospitable. She was out at work for the day or whatever, so we figured the least we could do was just clean up and do the dishes for her.

Is it difficult to find sleeping arrangements on tour?

To be honest we’ve been pretty fortunate in this band. We’ve been on almost 10 or 11 tours now and we’ve never had to sleep in the van. Sometimes we find places where two of us might have to crash in the van, but we’re pretty sociable guys so usually right when we get to a show we start asking people if we can crash with them or whatever. I just emailed someone at four in the morning today. I knew this place in Moncton where we’d played with an apartment over the venue, so I just asked someone I knew if we could crash at the place regardless, and if the venue is available can we pick up another show. They hit me up by like eight in the morning, and they were like “yeah you guys are in luck, we have the venue and the apartment.” I was like “fuck yeah, we’re on the way.”

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What do you think about the Ottawa music scene and do you enjoy coming here?

Honestly, Ottawa I think has been pretty good to us. We’ve played there two or three times and the first time we played there was Zaphod’s which was really sick, I love that place. I get stoked to play any city where all the fans come on Facebook and stuff and actually request us to come back.

Why should someone who has never heard of Partycat, or is not familiar with the genre come to the show at Luneta in Ottawa on Friday?

This is what I always tell people when I meet them: you can’t really deny paying 10 bucks to go out for a night and be entertained for an hour. We’re just an entertaining group of guys, even if you don’t like the music. Even if the music isn’t for you, there’s something there that you’ll like. We’re not trying to do something that’s never been done before, we’re not like fucking Hollywood rock stars. We’d never go to a show and be like “we’re too cool to talk to these people because we have more fans than them.” If you’re too cool for your own fans, who are you? You’re nobody. If you’re too cool for them, then you’re saying you’re too cool to be in your own band. Everybody comes to hockey games to see Sidney Crosby, but he doesn’t need the support. You can pay 10 bucks to see the next Alexisonfire or Cancer Bats or Billy Talent, but people don’t want to see these bands when they are small they want to see them when they are big, and even then they may complain about ticket prices. .  But if you wanna have a good time and party and leave being like “wow, I can’t believe there’s talent like this in Canada,” if you want to support local musicians and support talent, you should come. 

If you want to have a good time and see a bunch of guys with no pants on, come to the show!  No we play with pants on, just not in PEI- it stands for Pants Excluded Indoors.  So that’s the only city so far, but you know, if we get some requests or something…

Come see Partycat on tour with Day I Die at Luneta Café in Ottawa, Friday March 7th.

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Interview and words by Oliver Leniuk

The Scene