what have you guys been up to lately?
Rob: We've basically
just been home working and practicing. We're almost done writing
a new record. We've been playing only a minimal amount of shows,
so as to not sacrifice time that we could be practicing.
see that you just re-released your last CD on 10" form. How
is it working with Grey Flight records?
Rob: Grey Flight
is really cool. We've known Grant and Julie for a while, and they've
done all kinds of things to help us over the years. They're great
people. Their philosophy on running a label, is that they only
put out bands that they like, and that they make the records look
as cool as possible. That's it. They're not worried about profits.
I think that's really commendable.
heard you guys are toying with the idea of releasing your next
yourselves is that true?
Rob: We're definitely
talking about it. It's something that we've always wanted to do.
We all pretty much share the "record label=unnecessary middleman"
theory. Of course there are a handful of small labels, such as
Grey Flight, that aren't looking for a piece of the profit. We
just want to try doing it ourselves, so that we can be held responsible
for everything. We've had our share of "mishaps" with
our previous releases. If we do everything, we have no one to
blame for mistakes but ourselves. Also, if it does well, we know
that people are buying it because they actually like the music,
not because it's on a certain label.
is the main drive of the band these days?
Rob: Our main
drive? I guess to put it simply (and kind of generically), we
try to have fun playing our music and make ends meet at the same
Mike: Do you
guy prefer to play inside Chicago or out?
Rob: That's kind
of tough. It totally depends on the individual show.
are some places the Honor System likes to play in Chicago?
Rob: The obvious
answer is the Fireside. That's kind of like a home for us. Also
Dan's basement. Those shows are always a lot of fun. We've had
mixed feelings about all of the other Chicago venues that we've
are some places the Honor System likes to play outside Chicago?
Rob: St. Louis
is always great. Austin, New York City, Montreal, Boston, San
Francisco. There's a lot. St. Charles...
the Honor System prefer to play all ages shows or 21 and over
Rob: We almost
always prefer to play all ages shows, but we still do the occasional
21 and over show, usually just in Chicago. We play here enough
that an age restriction won't ruin anyone's chances of seeing
do you think of the Chicago scene nowadays compared to other cities?
Rob: The Chicago
scene, like the scene in other big cities, is comprised of a lot
of different smaller groups of bands/people. There is no single
"Chicago scene," whereas in a smaller city, you'll find
more of a close-knit independent community where everyone knows
guys were being booked by a booking agent and now you are doing
it yourselves. What do you think of the idea of booking agents
for punk bands?
we do have a booking agent helping us again. For us, booking shows
is a lot of work, especially considering that we all work during
the day. As long as the band stays involved with the process,
I think it's fine. On the other hand, it sucks when a band uses
a booking agent to do all of their dirty work, so they don't have
to look like the assholes.
do you think is important for punk or independent bands to still
do themselves nowadays?
Rob: Same as
the old days? I don't know. It's hard to set any kind of guidelines.
I personally feel that it's more gratifying for a band to do things
on their own. However, I think it's up to each individual band
as to where to draw the line.
Mike: Do you
think a lot of bands are forgetting why the started and just searching
for fame lately?
Rob: It's probably
always been that way. You just start to see it from a different
perspective after you've been involved with it for a while. It
definitely seems that bands aren't too worried about "selling
out" anymore. But, when I was 16 and I thought that everyone
was doing it for the right reasons, there were probably plenty
of 25 year olds saying "nobody cares anymore." I like
to think that there are lots of bands that are still doing it
because they love playing music. We just don't know about them.
bands do you respect that you think still keep it real?
Rob: Any band
that manages to exist for a long time without writing straight-up
pop is probably keeping it real. Those are the bands I tend to
have a lot of respect for. Some names that come to mind are No
Means No and the 4-Squares. Or Knuckleduster. Those guys have
been around forever.
there any bands that you just dont see a point for?
Jackson, the PiRitz, Bumblefuck, and their contemporaries.
you guys ever lost friendships because of band politics?
Rob: Not to my
knowledge. I don't think that we would ever let that kind of disagreement
escalate to a point where we stopped being friends with someone.
was the best experience you guys ever had with the band?
Rob: It's hard
to narrow it down to one single experience. We've met lots of
nice people and been to lots of interesting places.
Rob: Nice work
with Redline. You guys have a cool thing going. The System wishes
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