5 Questions with Rags #7 Colin from Pigeon Hole (Bonus Interview included!)

The first time I saw Van. Island-bred ruffians Pigeon Hole was at Rifflandia some years ago (I wrote their write-up in the festival guide for their second appearance). The ferocity they attacked the near-empty crowd with was frankly astonishing and they’ve only gotten better. I’ve seen them blow up Shambhala, another Rifflandia and various other shows around here in Victoria and really, these guys have become assassins. I’ve been trying to find another reason to get ahold of Colin and get back on the Pigeon Hole train, and he’s a cool dude he was game for answering the 5 Questions.

 And this week, as a bonus, we have some extra discussion – the result of life taking a chunk out of both of us over the last couple of weeks and taking too long to get this done. See, this was going to be a piece for the Martlet in anticipation of their big headline show at Distrikt Nightclub this Thursday, but as the postponing went on for so long that we couldn’t make it online there in time, so rather than let the words get lost in the ether, I figured I’d at least get them out here.

 Get tickets for Pigeon Hole this Thursday at Distrikt Nightclub Victoria here. You can get them at Ditch Records and Lyle's Place too if you're in town.

Photo by Jesse Milns

Photo by Jesse Milns

 1. If for some insane reason you were about to lose your vision and your hearing and you could only keep one, which would you keep and why?

 Oooo…I’d keep vision. I’d be bummed not being able to hear music but i could still work on art and feel the bass at a rave.

 2. What’s the first album you remember going out to buy with your own money and how old were you? What track from it, if any, lives on for you?

 House of Pain’s Fine Malt Lyrics on cassette. I’m guessing I was like 12 or something? I’ve got it in a shoe box in my moms basement with all my other tapes. “Jump Around” is still the jam!!

 3. If the world was ending and you could take any single piece of art/culture from anywhere in the world for safe-keeping, what would you take?

The grilled-cheese sandwich.  

 4. Do you have any thoughts on immortality? Do you think you’d like or hate it?

 I hate vampires. Why so sexy?

 5. Can you think of a movie that had an impact on shaping your life philosophy? What about it clicked for you?

 Pretty Woman. Everyone deserves a second chance

 6. This question is from Tayo Branston of FIVE ALARM FUNK… “If you could be anything and do anything in the world, what would you be and do?” (Interpret that any way you want…it’s a pretty open-ended thing)

 I would be exactly who and what I am with a Scrooge McDuck tower of gold fucking coins. CA-CHING!!!


Firstly, because I haven’t talked to you in awhile…what the hell happened at Shambhala?! Three Pigeon Hole songs and two Sweatshop tracks! Man, what a let down!

 Haha, well damn…. That’s what the slots were. We were a part of the hip hop showcase so everyone on that bill only got 10 minutes to play. We just came out and tried to crush it as hard as we could in that time frame. 

 You guys have been doing more on the production side of things lately, less rapping, any reason for the shift? What do you enjoy about the production process?

 Yeah, we have. I mean we’re still writing vocal songs too. We actually just finished recording two new ones for this show on Thursday. I guess it’s all just about inspiration really. The music we’re listening to, the places we’re playing. I’m not really into forcing myself to write. I prefer making everything with a natural approach if that makes any sense.

What are your top 3 Pigeon Hole songs for those who might not be initiated? Could you say a bit about why you picked each one?

That’s tough. I’d probably go with “Champion”, “Ice Dicks” and “Looptape”.  “Champion” is playful and really fun to perform.

“Ice Dicks” is probably our heaviest tune but still really playful. Not too serious. We don’t really like to be dark or too serious. Our music is mostly about having fun.

“Looptape” is my favourite straight up hip hop track we’ve ever made. It totally reminds me of a time and place when we first started getting into the music. its like a time capsule.

Pigeon Hole is clearly an entirely different beast than Sweatshop. Is there a conscious effort to differentiate the sound or is it an organic thing?

I guess the two of us started getting deeper and deeper into electronic music and were starting to make stuff that didn’t really fit on a sweatshop record. We’ve always done things a little different. That’s what Pigeon Hole is all about…doing whatever the fuck we want. It’s great.

What’s the longest non-stop time you’ve spent working a track?

We’ve spent days on end working on a track before constantly hitting walls but the longest straight stretch is probably just your typical all-nighter. After a while you just become a fucking zombie and anything you do sounds like shit.

 What if, anything do you think growing up on the Island has carried into your music?

 You’re kind of forced to be the underdog. Uou wind up having to prove yourself a little more and work a little harder. That and all the amazing experiences you get out here. People are just so fun and down to earth on the island. It makes the whole thing so much more fun. 

 I’ve been using your music to help some of my hip-hop friends find a way into electronic stuff…How do you feel about something like that, being a bridge between genres?

 That’s great. I mean that’s exactly what we are. Until I had experienced the music [EDM] by playing out at large festies like Shambhala I was pretty much a straight up hip-hop dude. That was our background. Then we started hearing all this new shit and tried folding it into what we do and its just snowballed from there. I think the greatest thing about hip hop is that its always finding the best part of something in music. Like the sample you know? Maybe the whole song is shit but this one piece is gold. So that’s our whole approach to this. We try and find the best bits of electronic music and incorporate them into our sound.

 What can people expect from a Pigeon Hole show?

 Probably the most high energy hip hop show you’ve ever seen. We don’t fuck around. We make hype music and when we play it out live we’re the two going the hardest in the whole fucking place. We play all of our hypest songs then DJ the rest of the night. Shit gets crank. At least if  everyone doesn’t leave sweaty.

Follow Pigeon Hole on twitter @PIGEON_HOLE

Keep up with the ruckus on their Facebook page.