Firstly, I apologise for the terrible headline. It was the best I could think of at ten past midnight on a Saturday.
When The Merkins played at The Resolution on May 27th, it was the best I've seen them play, and yet somehow it was tinged with sadness, because it was their drummer Pete's last gig. I'm not ashamed to admit that there was a tear in my eye when, during a particularly strenuous paradiddle, he dropped one of his sticks only for it to be returned to him by Kane Waterfield, who was watching keenly from close by. Two drummers helping each other out across the generations. If only the world could be more like that?
So we'll no longer see Pete's ever smiling face at the back of the stage when The Merkins play next. Nor will we see him absorbed in a paperback on his bus outside Boyes during his break period at work. Its the end of an era.
So who's going to step into his shoes and take up the sticks behind Pug, Heath, Dave and Mr De'ath? Well I can tell you. Its Matt.
Here's a little question and answer session by way of an introduction.
Matt, are you Whitby born and bred?
I'm from York actually, but I've lived in Whitby pretty much all my life.
How long have you been a drummer?
Hmmm, a few years now. I'd say about four probably.
What other bands have you been in?
This is my first, apart from jamming with mates.
Do you write stuff as well?
Well I haven't actually written any that I've got as far as playing yet, but I'd certainly like to in the future.
Do you play anything else apart from drums?
Guitar. I have a Fender Lone Star Strat which I love dearly.
Outside The Merkins what do you do for pleasure?
Practice drumming and guitar. I also ride BMX and surf a little.
Which drummer do you most admire?
Probably Mike Portnoy of Dream Theater, or Byron McMackin of Pennywise.
How did you find out they needed a new drummer?
Pug contacted me and said "Hey man, wanna play drums in my band?" and I said "Yeah! Why not?".
Why not indeed?
By the way, we don't have a picture of Matt as yet, so until we do we've put one in of somebody called Michelle Merkin. Honestly! Straight up! Google it.