Five Questions With the Methodaires

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It is no secret that we love the Methodaires. We love the crew's take on ska and roots reggae. And we certainly love that its self-titled debut EP is finally out and getting a proper release for Miami fans this Friday at Churchill's Pub.

The Gold Coast Derby Grrls will be hosting the shenanigans and it is bound to get sticky, so make sure you check that out as well as To Be Hated, Hardware Youth, and the DJ stylings of George Van Orsdel.

We recently had a chance to speak with Methodaires guitarist Matthias Roles and bassman Jessie Steele.

New Times: Okay, who are you guys, how long have you been playing your instruments and where do you go from here?

Matthias Roles: I've played guitar in addition to singing lead and back-up vocals for just over 20 years. I'm a Scorpio and enjoy blockbuster nights.

Jessie Steele: I've played bass since I was fifteen and where do we go from here? Two words: BEER RUN!

You've both had a long and varied career in the hardcore/punk genre: Where Fear and Weapons Meet , Middle Finger Mob, etc. How did you get involved with a roots reggae and ska outfit like the Methodaires?

Steele: Well, I was in a South Florida ska band in the mid to late '90s called the Double Agents. So I grew up playing and listening to roots/ska music just as much as I listened to hardcore and punk. In the summer of 2007, myself and Methodaires' drummer Joe "Mr. Bluebeat" Basi (ex-Bingo Mut, Jive Step Bunch, King 7 & the Soulsonics) decided we should start playing together, have fun, make some music, and bring back what nobody else is doing down here.

Roles: And that's where I came in. They had gotten together two or three times when I came in. Like Jessie, I grew up and played in many bands in the hardcore/punk/ska scene starting around 1990. By '92 or '93, I started listening to a lot of traditional ska and rocksteady. I don't have to tell you what the crossover is for the two types of genres, they go hand in hand. People on the outside don't get it sometimes. So yeah, Jessie and Joe got together and then I came in a couple weeks later and it's been great.

Steele: Our lead guitar player Sky Rheam is the same. He's been playing guitar in punk bands all over South Florida for 20 years too. I think he came in about three or four months after myself, Matthias, and Joe started playing together.

Why has it taken so long to get this recording going? Not that I'm nitpicking ... But for a second there, I honestly didn't think a recording would happen.

Roles: Hey man! Get off our backs! Just kidding! It took awhile to get it done for a few reasons. We wanted to have it sound as best as possible. We started recording it at Critical Recordings in Miami, then brought it up here to Broward to mix and master. We had some lineup changes through the process as well. For me, it was well worth the wait.

Steele: Right after recording the drums, bass and guitar in July 2009, we lost our singer at the time. We searched and found on Craigslist of all places, Nia Devine. We knew she was the one from the first note out of her mouth.

Roles: And you can't rush perfection.

Where do you want to see this outfit go? There's some impressive musicianship here across the board.

Roles: We are very lucky to have had some great players in this band. Sam Savage on trombone is the man. He's from Richmond, Virginia, jazz trained, and very good at his craft. Great guy as well. Well-mannered and well-groomed. (Ladies, he's single!) Nia Devine is great and so nice I'm sure that being around six guys, at times she must cringe. But she loves us and we love her.

Steele: We see this outfit going anywhere we want it to. We aren't cocky. We are just confident in ourselves as a group. We want to get on these big reggae fest shows, get on the radio stations (legal and illegal), hit the road, put out more records, and drink more beers.

What does the foreseeable future hold for the Methodaires? Any plans for 2011 that we should know about?

Roles: Besides spreading our sound around town, we do have a few things planned for this year. Our Miami CD release takes place at Churchill's Pub on January 21 (Rock vs. Roller Derby II) and then on March 4 through 6, we'll be at the Miami Mod Fest in South Beach. You can get all the info on our Facebook or MySpace pages. I got a few other things in the works but that's for another time very soon.

Steele: Hopefully, we'll get more and more of all you people to come to our shows. It's looking like it will be that way this year so what else is there to say!

The Methodaires with Hardware Youth, Dammad, To Be Hated and DJ George Van Orsdel. Friday, January 21. Churchill's Pub, 5501 NE 2nd Ave., Miami. Doors open at 8 p.m. and admission costs $6. Ages 18 and up. Call 305-757-1807 or visit churchillspub.com.

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