In the process of recording their 20-song, animal-themed album, Casey and Brian (aka. Catbees) are about to take off for a Myspace-booked tour of mostly house shows. These guys are the only band that comes to my mind that mixes punk with Grime- and Dancehall-inspired beats. Brian (who used to be in Dalmatians) still fucks with his solo electronic stuff, Balsa, and thinks about getting a gold cap for his roommate/cat, Turtle (who is missing one of the tiny front teeth that cats have). Casey cheers up his depressed and eating disorder-prone cat, Roberta, with a game of “Chase the Laser-Pointer.”
ONLY: Do people get confused about who’s Casey and who’s Brian?
Brian: I Get called Casey sometimes.
Casey: Yeah I got called Brian the other day.
ONLY: It’s hard because you can’t say “he’s the drummer,” or “he’s the keyboard player,” because you switch. You both do both.
B: But there’s the sweaty drummer and there’s the awkward drummer.
ONLY: Why did you stop being called Catbees? Or did you?
Brian: We’re still Catbees. It’s just sort of interchangeable.
ONLY: What is a Catbee?
B: I had a bee infestation at my old apartment and bees would come into my house to die. They’d hang out in my clothes and stuff–whenever I put my jacket on I’d get stung. I had all these bees lying around and I also had a cat that had fleas. I was talking to Casey about it and he thought that I said the cat had bees… It’s also like our names… Casey and Brian… Cat Bees…Cock and balls… I think that the reason we started having an alias is that we’ve been kicked out of a couple of clubs. So if we have a bad rep as Catbees then we can still sneak in and play there as Casey and Brian.
ONLY: What did you do to get banned?
B: Sometimes when we play we’ll set up in the green room and play back there… Just stupid drunk stuff. We’re still being haunted by a broken window at this house show.
ONLY: Get over it, that’s what happens when you have a show at your house.
B: Yeah I know. Seattle’s tough like that. People hold grudges and make a big deal out of stuff.
ONLY: Are all your songs about animals?
C: Yeah, but only because we’re working on a concept set for this album. But when we’re done with this album we’re done with that. We’re switching the theme a bunch. The next batch of songs won’t be about animals.
B: Most of the songs we have right now correlate to animals because Casey and I both really like animals. But the stuff we write is about our relationships with people in the city.
ONLY: The animals are a metaphor?
B: Yeah, we just categorize people as animals.
C: We spent the majority of our free time last year watching animal documentaries and we go to the zoo a lot for personal reasons. That accounts for a lot of the animal content in our songs.
ONLY: What kind of animals would you be?
C: It’s definitely decided that we’d probably be pigeons. We’re like the brokest ghetto animals.
B: Pigeons are really urban and trashy. We hang out outside on stoops a lot, kickin’ it in alleys and on porches and stuff, and there are pigeons there every time.
ONLY: Do you remember that episode of Wings when Casey and Brian slept together in the linen closet?
B: I don’t remember that but thanks a lot. That made my ass cheeks clench.
Catbees play February 10 at Pauls House w/ Big Digits, Shearing Pinx.