Features Interviews Against Me!'s Andrew Seward

Interviews: Against Me!'s Andrew Seward

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SPB: (haha) Do you think Against Me! will still be writing and performing 10 years from now?

Andrew: Uh … I hope so! The band–‘97—since the beginning with Tom being 17 years old, is on 13, going on 14 years. I wouldn’t—but here’s the thing, when I joined the band, almost 9 years ago, I never thought about it. I never thought, “Oh, will I be doing this for 2 years.” I was just like, “Fuck man, just keep it going. Keep it rolling and keep it new and keep it fresh,” and I think we’ve done that. Not putting out the same record back to back and stuff like that. I don’t think it’s selfish either. We just … we keep it interesting for us, and in turn I think that keeps people interested as well. I dunno—I don’t think it’s a selfish thing. I just think it’s a necessary thing where the minute it becomes boring to us, I don’t think it’ll exist anymore. You understand?

SPB: Yeah, that makes sense.

Andrew: I mean who wants to put out the same record over and over again—not I.

SPB: What do you think the state of the music industry will be like by then?

Andrew: Fucking, that’s a total crapshoot. I have no idea. It’s all gonna be—I think records will always exist. Like actual vinyl records. I think CDs will probably be dead by then. I dunno. I’m no prophet or anything.

SPB: It’s going to be a flip where CDs become the collectible thing (haha).

Andrew: Fuck that, no way (haha). That’d be funny if they—I mean people are still putting out tapes. Being like, “Oh, it’s cool to put out cassettes!” I’m like, “You know if you think so it is,” but all my tapes when I was a kid just got all fucking mangled and warped and they just go (warping sound). I dunno. I think a lot of the future could be streaming. I wouldn’t put that past. You know they’ve got all these fancy services in Europe. I think it’s a Swedish thing called, “Spotify.” It’s like “Pandora” you know? The streaming one that you do on your phone and shit, but apparently, it’s a hundred times better. You pay 10 dollars a month, and like I wanna hear White Crosses. Boom! You got it. Actually, it’s gonna make a lot of people lazy. We’ll put it that way. It’ll make a lot of people lazy.

SPB: Probably shut down a lot of music stores too.

Andrew: Oh man, music stores have been in trouble for a long time.

SPB: Yeah.

Andrew: Like, there’s a majority of people who buy records and stuff like that. You know, like casual people? I think country music is—are the only people who buy CDs because I don’t—hopefully this won’t get me into too much trouble, but I think their fans aren’t really smart enough to steal music. And punks are smart man. Punks know how to fuckin’ rip and steal and do all that shit, so there you go braniac punks.

SPB: We’ve got some more general questions. What have you been listening to a lot lately?

Andrew: Well believe or not, I’ve actually been listening to a lot of Peter Gabriel lately. Which might seem a bit weird, but it’s not. What else have I been listening to? I listen to Off With their Heads quite often, but that doesn’t count because they’re friends of ours. Man, they’re total dicks.

SPB: Yeah, I follow the twits—the tweets.

Andrew: Oh yeah? Yeah you can put that in there. “Ryan Young: complete dick.” He won’t care.

SPB: What’s your favorite album of all time?

Andrew: You know what’s funny? Not bullshitting you, I was actually thinking about this the other day. I would say—kind of like that desert island, stranded thing—I’m gonna give you two records. I’m just judging this on the sheer amount of times I’ve listened to these. This band called The Old 97s. They’re kind of like an old western—they’re a band from Dallas, Texas. They’re kind of just rock and roll-country, but the album’s called, Too Far to Care. Super—super—good record. You should check it out! And the other one I’d say is The Afghan Whigs. The album’s called, Gentlemen. If I could somehow categorize how many times I’ve listened to both those records, it would be astronomically large.

SPB: On your last.fm they’re way—the bar’s far larger than the others (haha).

Andrew: Oh yeah! I haven’t really done that last.fm thing. I know what it is, but … yeah. Sorry. I don’t use that.

SPB: Last good movie you saw?

Andrew: Last good movie I saw? Bah-bah-bah-shit. Dammit, I can tell you the last bad movie I saw. That train movie with Denzel Washington, Unstoppable!

SPB: I haven’t even heard of that movie.

Andrew: Well, the train stops. Therefore, it’s not actually unstoppable.

SPB: So, was it like Speed, but it actually stops?

Andrew: Kind of. Like some train with a bunch of chemicals on it roaring through Pennsylvania and they eventually stop it.

SPB: Like Speed, except it’s chemicals instead of a bomb.

Andrew: Yeah, and it actually happened. Unless Speed was based off a true story, and I just don’t know about it. I hear Speed 2 was based off it.

SPB: Really?

Andrew: No (haha). A cruise ship.

SPB: That’s right! That was a cruise ship.

Andrew: Yeah! What a fucking pile—

SPB: Because I remember, they were on a train in the first one.

Andrew: Yeah. No—no! A bus!

SPB: No, but I mean at the end of the movie they’re on a train, and then Dennis Hopper’s head goes off.

Andrew: Oh yeah! The subway! For some reason I was just thinking the end of Speed was when they’re on the tarmac at the airport. Yeah, but you’re right. Whatever! Somehow the interview goes to Keanu Reeves now (haha).

SPB: Do movies ever inspire you to write music?

Andrew: Yeah! I would say movie soundtracks. I listen to movie soundtracks on my iPod and stuff. A couple good ones—I know I’m a total nerd, so I’m not ashamed of any of this—like The Dark Knight soundtrack is incredible. All the Coen Brothers stuff. This guy, Carter Burwell, does I think all the Coen Brothers movies. Miller’s Crossing is a good one. Last of the Mohicans is a great soundtrack. Red Dead Redemption, the video game is a great soundtrack. I don’t know if you’ve played the game or not.

SPB: I haven’t.

Andrew: There’s a soundtrack. It’s all like spaghetti-western stuff, and a William Elliott Whitmore song on it. It’s really good!

SPB: One thing that has always bothered me is like video game soundtracks and movie soundtracks always kind of go unnoticed.

Andrew: Oh yeah! Yeah, I know exactly what you’re saying. Usually, they kind of make or break a movie. I’ll give you a bad example. I only saw the first 20 minutes of it, but that Tom Cruise movie with Cameron Diaz, Knight and Day. So—

SPB: (haha)

Andrew: Yeah dude, don’t!

SPB: I’m not even gonna bother. I already know—

Andrew: You shouldn’t bother. Trust me! I’m telling you right now, “don’t bother!” It’s all this stupid fighting, and you know Tom Cruise is such a fucking goof, but there’s this huge airplane fight and they’re just playing this Parisian-café music while he’s kicking ass. That is the worst—I know they’re trying to be ironic or funny or something like that, but it’s just fucking … it’s horrible. Knight and Day: Don’t see it!

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Words by Aaron H on Feb. 7, 2011, 9 a.m.

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Against Me!'s Andrew Seward

Posted by Aaron H on Feb. 7, 2011, 9 a.m.

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