Sometimes here at Music Feeds, we just can’t interview every artist we’d like to. So on this occasion, out of equal parts necessity and curiosity, we enlisted them to do our job for us.
Today former Hellions member Matthew Gravolin shared another taste of what’s to come from his new solo project Agnes Manners, revealing ‘Sydney’, a track featuring Trophy Eyes’ very own John Floreani. In celebration of the collaboration, we thought we’d see what would happen if we let them go ham interviewing each other.
Check out the results below.
John Floreani interviews Agnes Manners
John Floreani: What’s the funniest story behind us waking up next to each other?
Agnes Manners: Each of the escapades that have led to me waking up beside you have coagulated into one joy-sodden soup and it’s always funny, so I feel like I have to describe the process that leads to that point in a general way: Our extended group of friends come together at my place or at a bar and there’ll be a conversation or a song that acts as a catalyst for you and I to become one and get straight to work on muddying our shared liver.
We are two Mortys until we’re two Ricks. Some form of chemical assistance seems to materialise out of sheer force of will, repeatedly, and then we’re two Alices on safari in a wonderland of whisky-slicked places and faces, spanning anywhere between 12 – 48 hours.
The one stretch where we locked ourselves out of my place and had to source a ladder to get in through the back door before finding ourselves in a friends music video, then at an arena show, then somehow back at my place (through the front door) keeling over, crosseyed and laughing, arm in arm with Hiro from Crossfaith comes to mind. I think we collapsed and woke up together but there‘s no real way to know.
John Floreani: Can you describe your longest period of sobriety? What was that like?
Agnes Manners: I was sober from birth until around 14 years of age and earth was a befuddling place – t.A.T.u. put out the video for ‘All The Things She Said’ and I thought about it all the time. I felt guilty and aroused. I couldn’t get Proof’s verse in ‘Purple Pills’ out of my head but I didn’t know what he was talking about.
I watched a lot of WWF and when Rikishi, a portly wrestler, performed his signature move Stink Face (an aggressive twerk on the face) on Trish Stratus, I was like, how the fuck could he do that to her? She’s beautiful and seems nice and now this unquestionably authentic, honourable and serious sport has been irreversibly besmirched by that uncouth manoeuvre. It was a deeply troubling time soon to be exacerbated by binge drinking.
John Floreani: What is the meanest online comment you’ve ever received from a “fan”
Agnes Manners: Thankfully I‘ve not seen any negativity for Agnes yet. It’s always there and it always comes but you’ve gotta take it with a grain of salt. The Hellions listenership is comprised entirely of angels but we did have someone say, “holy fuck is there a volume lower than mute” on a YouTube video.
John Floreani: How would you explain the term “touch the sun”?
Agnes Manners: When you left our place with B last Saturday at 2 in the morning, you texted me saying, “Tf is this? I can still see” – meaning that when we’re together we usually pummel ourselves with alcohol and extracurriculars until we can’t see straight. That’s touching the sun.
John Floreani: Fuck, Marry, Kill: Elton John, Martin Scorsese and Gerard Way.
Agnes Manners: Fuck Elton (because he’s the most likely of the three to not be traumatised by the experience) marry Martin bc genius and kill Gerard Way because I have no choice. I hate that I’ve been forced to kill him because I love him.
John Floreani: Who did it better? The Bride – ‘President Rd’ or Trophy Eyes – ‘Chacho’
Agnes Manners: For those that don’t know, The Bride was the band before Hellions – 3 of the Hellions members started the band as teenagers. I’m gonna say The Bride did it better but only because you guys told us that you ripped ‘President Rd’ off to write ‘Chacho’ years after those songs came out hahaha – it is an enduring compliment. Trophy Eyes is one of my favourite bands, so to think we had any influence on you is humbling.
Agnes Manners interviews John Floreani
Agnes Manners: How much do you hate avocados?
John Floreani: On a scale of 1- 10 I’d have to say 11. I don’t know what it is, but I’m actually terrified of them – the idea of it on my skin or in my mouth repulses me.
Agnes Manners: What’s your favourite Thailand story?
John Floreani: There’s so many. I guess it was the night our friend Pat Kudej drove into that giant ditch on the highway. All night we had this plan that we would go to Buckets after dinner. We had a real hankering for it. For those that don’t know, “Buckets” is a tiki bar with a completely different name in a small fishing village in Thailand. They sell buckets of cocktails that are supposed to be shared between four people but I think it was Trophy Eyes that first started drinking one each. The result is this burning tropical fever dream of inebriation that’s a cross between being the drunkest you’ve ever been and letting the Devil himself posses your brain. I think this particular night Pat drank 3 and I drank 4. I’m not going to tell you how many standard drinks that is because, frankly, you won’t believe me.
We got on our mopeds and rode to the beach. We partied with the locals for a little, but I seem to remember it just being Pat dancing and everyone else looking kind of worried. We drove off in search of somewhere that was more suited to our drunken candour and decided whilst riding next to each other and screaming over the sound of the wind flicking in our ears that we should drive north to an all-Thai night club. To do that we needed to cross the highway or “sukhumvit” as it’s called there. Pat came speeding out from a tiny back ally onto the sukhumvit and suddenly vanished in front of my eyes. It was like a magic trick- “the fantastical vanishing Pat”. I pulled on to the sukhumvit following Pat, and was nearly killed instantly but a speeding truck. All I could see was total brilliant white and had actually considered that I was already dead. As the truck passed me and my eyes slowly adjusted to the pitch black that is that particular highway at night, I realised I had parked my bike next to a 10ft ditch. “That’s where Pat must have gone,” I thought to myself. “There’s no way he’s alive” was the thought that followed that one.
I slid down the wet grass to the sound of Pat’s bike puttering on its side expecting to see blood and guts. There was an orange glow from the headlight that illuminated a small patch of grass in front of his bike and I could just make out a figure, doubled over, and wheezing. It was Pat and he was laughing. Laughing like I’ve never seen anyone laugh before. We found a bottle of whisky under his bike seat and shared that in the ditch – sitting there laughing for hours. At one point a stranger peeked down into our ditch from the highway to see if we were alive. There was a brief moment of silence and confusion, and then we laughed some more. After hours of retelling the story to each other from a hole in the ground, we decided it was probably best to get our bikes and leave. Pat stuck his broken flip-flop into the waistband of his shorts, and after trying to simply “ride up and out of the ditch” we managed to push the bike out and ride off into the sunrise. I’ve genuinely never laughed that much in my life and I doubt I ever will again.
Agnes Manners: Is Bruce Springsteen better than everyone or just most people?
John Floreani: I don’t know if he’s better than Freddie Mercury, or like Elvis but he’s’ definitely better than most.
Agnes Manners: Favourite European backhanded compliment / straight-up insult?
John Floreani: Once, in Cologne, Germany, someone said to me “oh you were the f***ot with the windbreaker. We make photo now?” I was genuinely shocked.
Agnes Manners: If our livers could communicate, what would they say to each other?
John Floreani: I imagine they’d bond over shared trauma like Vietnam vets.
Agnes Manners: What’s your favourite Kevin Cross quote and why is it “Oi, that dog looks like Cameron Diaz”?
John Floreani: So for a while, we had this hashtag going to the Trophy Eyes twitter called #accordingtokev because some of the things that come out of Kev’s mouth are just truly astounding, and the best part was, they were all genuine. Some of my favourites were “I’m a fat asshole and I’m stupid” or “I love goose. I love duck”, but the best was always “Oi that dog looks like Cameron Diaz’.