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Punk Rock and Hockey: The Hextalls

June 16, 2010

The Hextalls are easily one of my favorite pop-punk bands. Aside from the fantastic hockey-inspired name, the band has a sound that is reminiscent of a different era in the genre. With happy sounding, up-beat music and hysterical lyrics, they’re always a great band to listen to. If you haven’t had the chance to listen to this great band from Vancouver, click here and check them out. Recently I got to ask the band some questions about their hockey fandom and punk rock.

Hoosier Hockey: Let’s start with the name. I assume that the band is named after the NHL’s famed Hextall family, but based off your merch, more specifically Ron Hextall. Can you explain the thought processes behind choosing that name?
Devin:  I named the band after my favorite goalie of all time.  We were almost named The Punkrockers instead, but at the time I was scared that actual punk rocker people in my town would think that I was making fun of them and they would kick my ass.

Hoosier Hockey: What are some of your biggest influences as a band?
Devin:  Chixdiggit was and still is my favorite band of all time.  Other influences would be a lot of the local punk bands that were playing in Kamloops around the same time as we started.  Sometimes the local bands that you have to play with to get shows are just as much of an influence as the bands you adore.

Hoosier Hockey: A lot of your lyrical content, especially on the “Get Smashed” record is very fun and comical. This seems to be in stark contrast to the more serious tone that a lot of pop-punk bands are heading in. Is this intentional or just a reflection of those writing the lyrics?
Devin:  I honestly tried to tone down my language on Get Smashed and make it more PG13 than usual.  I have a very low IQ, which is why the majority of our lyrics border on nonsensical garbage.

Hoosier Hockey: Since you’re called the Hextalls, I’m going to assume you’re all hockey fans?
Devin:  Only me and Jimmy The Con actually watch hockey on purpose.  My two favorite teams are the Flyers and the Bruins.  This year is insane with the Flyers actually being in the finals.  Michael Leighton is going to blow it for us though.  He sucks so bad.
Jimmy: Yeah, hockey’s good times. I get more into it the closer it gets to the playoffs.

Hoosier Hockey: For those of you that are hockey fans, who are your favorite teams?
Devin:  The Flyers, Bruins and Winnipeg Jets
Jimmy: The Canucks, Canadiens, and Lightning

Hoosier Hockey: Ahh…I miss the Jets as well. Since they are history, that segways into the next question. What is your favorite hockey-related memory?
Devin: I have two. Ron Hextall jumping Chris Chelios at the end of game 6 in the 1989 conference finals after Chelios had earlier cheap-shotted Brian Propp in the head. And the other one being Mike Krushelnyski scoring his amazing goal on Mike Vernon in Overtime to help the Kings eliminate the Flames from the 1990 playoffs.
Jimmy: Kirk MacLean’s save in overtime of game 7 of the opening round of the 1994 playoffs. The closest we’ve come to a cup since…well…pretty much ever.

Hoosier Hockey: My favorite song of yours is “I Don’t Wanna Be A New York Ranger.” It is must for any hockey road trip mix CD. Is the song based around true events?
Devin: It is based on multiple times I have been drunk, overwhelmed and lost at hockey games. I also hate the New York Rangers a lot. I threw in the part about a girl because I thought it would sell 5 more copies.

Hoosier Hockey: Towards the end of the song there is a line that says, “Never trust a girl in a Richter jersey.” My friends and I have augmented the line to “Never trust a girl in a Crosby jersey” for any time we go out to bars or hockey games. Would you say that’s a good rule to live by in today’s hockey culture?
Devin: I’d be pretty excited if any girl in a hockey jersey wanted to talk to me, to be honest.  The Crosby thing would be a red flag for sure, though.  Actually, I’m ashamed to admit this, but my mom got me a Crosby jersey for Xmas a few years back.  I didn’t have the heart to tell her off.  It’s in the closet, just like Sidney himself.
Jimmy: I’ve got no problem with Sidney, but only if it’s Sidney in a Team Canada jersey. That guy won a gold medal for us. The other guy hangs out with shady Russians.

Hoosier Hockey: Would you say that there is a connection between punk rock and hockey?
Devin:  Felix Potvin was a punk rocker.  Have you ever seen Narduar the Human Serviette interview with Felix the Cat?

Hoosier Hockey: No, I have not.
Devin: It was pretty cool.  I think I heard something about Al Iafrate being into punk too, but I can’t really remember.

Hoosier Hockey: Yeah, I’m pretty sure a lot of players are into punk, or at least aggressive music. Thanks for doing this interview, anything else you would like to add?
Devin: Thanks for taking the time to ask us some questions, this was a lot of fun.

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