all photos: Victoria Milkovich
The State Department’s KP, Jason Mogavero and Michael Medlock + Imperial China’s Brian Porter + special guest Kevin Baylay of The Dance Party gathered around a table littered with shot glasses, bottles of booze, and communal cigarettes attempting to follow up the 10 Shot/10 Questions Challenge of 2008- an interview that left me with a concussion and a black eye (for real).
The occasion? A playground free for all of a show tonight at Rock & Roll Hotel featuring Imperial China, The State Department, Grimace Federation, and Peanut Butter and Dave.
This interview will either make you want to buy these guys shots or punch them in the face. Both options are pretty rock and roll though.
(shot one taken)
1. If you could assemble your dream band- who would be in it?
Michael Medlock (The State Department): Mike on vocals, Mike on bass, Mike on drums, Mike on guitar. Just kidding. Noel Gallagher playing anything, Damon Albarn playing anything, Greg Dulli playing anything and me on vocals.
KP (The State Department): Tony Allen on drums, Johnny Marr on guitar, me on bass and the late great James Brown on back up vocals, because Prince would be on lead.
Jason Mogavero (The State Department): Iggy Pop on vocals, Bootsy Collins on bass, I’d play rhythm guitar, Jimmy would play lead and Animal from the Muppets on the drums.
Brian Porter (Imperial China): My dream would be to replace Steve Perry and play with Journey in a Kansas City strip club.
Kevin Baylay (The Dance Party): Eddie Van Halen and Prince on dueling lead guitars playing in guitarmony the entire time, steal the rhythm section from Led Zep and bring on MJ, James Brown and Prince together on vocals and dancing.
(shot two taken)
2. What’s your favorite local venue?
Kevin Baylay: The Late great Phantasmagoria in Silver Spring. It was the raddest place to go when you were 16 and they sold records.
Brian Porter: The best venue was Kansas House.
Jason Mogavero: Any house party because I hate rules.
KP: Velvet Lounge because it’s super scuzzy and shady.
Michael Medlock: I’m going to say house parties too- that’s where I have the most fun but if I had to pick a proper venue I’d pick Rock & Roll Hotel, they treat you well and they’ve got that great room backstage.
(shot three taken)
3. What is your favorite local band historically and then currently.
Michael Medlock: historically, Avail- though they’re not really local- and currently Imperial China.
KP: historically, Q and Not U tied with Fugazi but currently Noon:30.
Jason Mogavero: I’m going to agree with P on Q and Not U but my favorite current band is Animal Genital- those guys are insane and I love them dearly.
Brian Porter: Dismemberment Plan historically and then Hume and Caverns tied for current favorites.
Kevin Baylay: Washington Social Club and currently Casper Bangs.
(shot four taken)
4. If your band had a mascot what would it be?
Michael: The State Department has two mascots, my dog Bear and Jason’s cat Astro.
KP: Astro tried to take our drummer’s eye out.
Brain Porter: I’d say it’s a tie between a panther, Griza and Dot.com
(shot five taken)
5. What is your preshow routine?
Michael Medlock: Well the State Department doesn’t see each other for 48 hours, we load in- get as drunk as possible, insult each other and then take the stage.
KP: It’s really not the preshow, it’s the post show that matters. I mean we play each show teetering on the drink of total disaster. That anxiety makes me a total wreck, I just wish we had someone there before shows to massage our egos- some lady who would tell you that you’re the best guitarist ever and that your outfit looks dope.
Jason Mogavero: I put on my silkiest pair of panties and say a roasry before each show.
Ben Porter: I don’t know about the other members of Imperial China but I try to generally avoid everyone before hand- avoid sound check while trying to bum as many cigarettes as possible.
Kevin Baylay: The Dance Party standard is about 6 Coors Light and a rock and roll handshake.
(shot six taken)
Michael Medlock: Oh fuck- it just tastes worse and worse
Jason Mogavero: or better and better.
6. Do you guys have any reoccurring dreams or nightmares?
Michael Medlock: I’m a snake wearing a vest pushing a doughnut down hill. Get it?
I get it- that was sexual.
KP: You know what? I have never once had a wet dream.
Let’s just change this question to who starred in your first wet dream?
Michael Medlock: I had my first wet dream about myself.
Jason Mogavero: I had a wet dream where I got a blow job in the back of a modernist church.
Brian Porter: It was to Brooke Shields in a dream version of Return to the Blue Lagoon. It’s borderline child pornography but it’s ok because I was a child too.
Kevin Baylay: my first wet dream was to Darkwing Duck.
(shot seven taken)
7. Let’s see how emotionally drunk you guys are now: What’s the best part about being in your band?
Jason Mogavero: It’s so much fun, I’ve never had more fun than I’ve had with this band.
Michael Medlock: you’re playing with your friends, for your friends and making friends.
Jason Mogavero: If there is an ideal situation in which you’re playing in a band- this is it. We shoot the shit, get wasted, play damn good shows—
Michael Medlock: this is the first band I’ve been in that I’m actually really good friends with every single person. We all actually hang out.
and give each other hand jobs?
KP: we drink drank dranks and post up late night and get bob bob bob all the time.
I don’t want to know what that means.
Brian Porter: My favorite part about being in Imperial China is that now I have two boyfriends AND a girlfriend so it’s like constant sex all the time.
(shot eight taken)
8. How are you bands going to break up?
Jason Mogavero: It would be in the aftermath of an orgy.
KP: because Jason has a small cock and would get mad cock envy.
Brian Porter: I’m going to have to pass on this question after hearing that.
(shot nine taken)
9. Who would you rather have sex with George Michael or Lady Gaga?
KP: George Mutherfucking Michael. George Michael knows how to keep a secret! he went from being flamboyantly in the closet while in Wham! then boom- five o’clock shadow and leather jacket for 10 years- when he came out it was like- oh of course but before then you had no idea. Dude still parties too! he’s getting arrested for partying, for cruising on that late night tip. This is a 40 year old man, who still looks good, still parties and has a good time. Straight up he must be amazing at fucking.
Michael Medlock: I think the best man ever to have sex with would be Michael J fox, because he vibrates even when he doesn’t mean to, he’s famous and he’s good looking. He’s constantly gyrating and I’m so into that.
Brain Porter: To get back to George Michael- that ass shake in the “Faith” video… (sigh) you just can’t mess with that.
KP: I will be his father figure til the end of time dude.
(shot 10 taken)
10. Fuck, Marry, Kill: Oasis, Pearl Jam and Nirvana. Go.
Brian Porter: I would hate fuck the shit out Oasis, I hate them so much. I would marry Eddie Vedder because he’d be a stable mate and he’s set up for life. And I’d kill Nirvana because Kurt’s already dead.
Kevin Baylay: Fuck Nirvana, flash in the pan- two records and then dead in the gutter, that ain’t long term. Marry Pearl Jam, those bamas keep putting out hits. Kill Oasis. If Noel and Liam had pulled a Kurt back in ’98 they’d live in infamy now they’re just sad guys fighting in track suits.
Jason Mogavero: I’d marry Pearl Jam because Eddie Vedder would provide, kill Oasis because the Gallagher brothers are a couple of cunts, and then fuck Nirvana- flashes in the pan are always the best fucks and Krist Novoselic is like 6’8″ so you know he has a huge penis.
You know he ran for office in Portland or something
Jason Mogavero: yeah, well I would have ruined it by fucking him and telling everyone.
KP: Marry Nirvana, because that band was the coming together of three great personalities: Krist was the cool brainy dude, Dave was the rockstar hedonist and Kurt was the volatile awful musician- and we all know that we love a little crazy in our long term relationships. Kill Pearl Jam- that was the bro band of all bro bands. Fuck Oasis because pre-cocaine and money their first two albums was so good.
Michael Medlock: I’d marry Nirvana so I could get all that sweet Nirvana royalty money- the widow money Courtney Love “lost”. I’d fuck Oasis because it would just be an all night drug orgy for the ages which would be awesome. Then I’d kill Pearl Jam because they’ve just been around way too long at this point it’s euthanasia.