INTERVIEW: Korean punk band Whatever That Means begins US tour

whatever that means

This weekend sees Seoul, Korea’s …Whatever That Means embarking on their second American tour. The melodic punk band previously toured in the US in 2011 and have also gigged internationally in Malaysia and Singapore in the past. Their upcoming itinerary includes nine shows along the US West Coast, and their July 28 concert will be the band’s 200th concert!

Here are …Whatever That Mean’s American tour dates:
July 23 Las Vegas, NV @ The Double Down Saloon
July 24 Sonora, CA @ Gypsy Shack
July 26 Corvallis, OR @ The Interzone Cafe
July 27 Seattle, WA @ The Kraken
July 28 Tacoma, WA @ Real Art
July 29 Portland, OR @ Foggy Notion
July 30 Reno, NV @ PB&J’s
July 31 Berkeley, CA @ 924 Gilman Street
August 1 Los Angeles, CA @ The Redwood Bar

While stateside, …Whatever That Means will put out a new split 7” with American punk band Burn Burn Burn. Titled “Blowing Minds & Melting Faces,” the record is the first release from …Whatever That Means since guitarist Bialy Mlody and drummer Daewon Kim joined the group last year.

Whatever That Means

We caught up with …Whatever That Means guitarist and vocalist Jeff Moses to ask him about “Blowing Minds & Melting Faces,” the act’s American dates, and the Seoul indie record label and promotion company he and the band’s bassist/his wife Trash Yang Moses run – World Domination, Inc.

When were the songs on your new split 7” written? When were they recorded?
The songs were actually all written quite a while ago, but we went through several member changes and had to get everyone up to speed on our usual set before we could start working on the new stuff. We first started working on “This Betrayal” about two years and two drummers ago. We recorded the tracks last fall, and finished all the mixing and mastering early this year, so we’ve been waiting a long time to get this all out.

How did you and Burn Burn Burn decide to pair up for the “Blowing Minds & Melting Faces” 7”?
We met Drew from Burn Burn Burn when we played an awesome house show at his place in Tacoma, Washington on our 2011 US tour. After they released their “Have Fun” 7” last year, I knew they were sitting on some extra tracks, and we were ready to head into the studio and planning another US tour, so it just seemed like the right time to do something together. I brought up the idea, and they jumped right on board.

Why are you excited for your US tour?
Oh, man … is it possible to not be excited for a big tour? We’re really looking forward to getting back to some of the places we played last time around and seeing people we met then. We had a great time at the Double Down Saloon in Las Vegas in 2011. Our show in Tacoma on that tour was one of the coolest we’ve ever played. And the official album release show is going to be with Burn Burn Burn at The Kraken, another great venue we played in 2011, and that’s also going to be …Whatever That Means’ 200th show. So there are many reasons to be stoked for the tour.

What can music fans expect from the gigs?
I think people are going to be able to tell right away how excited we are to be back on stage in the US. And I think anyone who saw us last time around is going to be impressed by how much Daewon and Bialy have helped us step up our game since the last time we were there. That’s not a slight towards our old members, but this new lineup has just really clicked in a way that we never have before.

Along with playing together in …Whatever That Means, you and your wife Trash also operate an indie label called World Domination, Inc. Any plans for World Domination, Inc. over the coming months?
At the beginning of the month, we had to new releases on World Domination, Inc. First off, we released a new Korean punk compilation called “Them and Us 2: Korea’s Punks at Thunderhorse Studios.” It features originals and covers from lots of great Korean punk bands. Anyone outside of Korea that wants to check the compilation out can email us at [email protected] and we will email you a free download code for it. After that, we released a 7” by Seoul punk trip Full Garage called “Vinyl Suit.” We’ll actually be doing a joint release show with Full Garage on August 13th when we get back to Korea. We’ve also got plans to record and release some more bands through World Domination, Inc. this year.

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