Steve Sladkowski plays guitar and sings in a Toronto punk-infused pop band called PUP. Originally called Topanga, PUP changed their name ahead of releasing their first, self-titled debut album, which is out now via Royal Mountain Records. PUP plays Guelph’s Hillside Festival on Saturday July 25. Here, Steve and I discuss staining fences in Toronto, living in Guelph and putting on shows and working for the Guelph Jazz Festival, touring the U.S. with the Menzingers, single A baseball in Iowa, America is weird, this is Texas, talking to Americans about baseball, the Oakland A’s and Moneyball glitches, regular seasons are a drag, why the Skydome sucks and seeing baseball in America rules, I don’t think I like Toronto, talking to people outside of Canada about Rob Ford, playing ska-punk, Protest the Hero, the 3tards, and the Reverb, working with Dave Schiffman on the PUP record, pathetic use of potential, Toronto punk is thriving, when Weezer was wonderful, my membership in the Weezer fanclub and contributing “Mykel and Carli” to its first covers compilation, Rivers Cuomo goes back to the shack, impersonating Fucked Up at the Halifax Pop Explosion, feeling honoured to get to do cool stuff, it comes and goes, self-promotion, not needing day jobs but working harder than ever, their Polaris Music Prize nomination, the status of hard music in Canada, Peter Bradley is in Alaska, Constellation Records, forced conversation, Tanya Tagaq should win awards, PUP’s new songs, throwing down, writing songs in extreme emotional places, marrying real-life with fictional narratives, the song “Guilt Trip,” and then it is outta here!
Related links: puptheband.com royalmountainrecords.com hillsidefestival.ca vishkhanna.com
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