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Between his interests in bush survival, mindful eating and skateboarding, Matt Boggis also plays drums in The Chats, who wrote that song “Smoko” and are quickly becoming one of Australia’s most well-known ‘shed rock’ bands. We caught up with the Sunshine Coast shredder for a chat about going full time with the band, drinking with Josh Homme and touring the world.

As told to Nat Kassel. Photography by Wade McLaughlin.

Recording the first Chats album.
We recorded our first album in a school studio with our friend Fin Wegener. It was our first time recording, so we didn’t think about it much. We just played and didn’t really care how it sounded; I think the bass was recorded through a Roland keyboard amp, and I just used the snare and cymbals that happened to be there at the time. 

Finding out that “Smoko” had gone viral.
It was Patty Gemzik’s birthday and we were all at Straddie [Stradbroke Island] for the weekend having a sick time. When we got back after the trip, he showed me the views on the vid. I thought it was hilarious. We made that video expecting just our mates would see it, but it had gotten so big [laughs]. A TV news crew rocked up to the shed we jammed in and filmed a little story about us; it was pretty funny. We were just some punk band that played house parties for a slab, and now the news wanted to hear about us. It was so strange.

Full time with the band.
I’m 20 now. I started a chef apprenticeship during school but didn’t end up finishing it. I worked in a few kitchens after school and at my last job, I just saved enough money for lentils and bailed to Melbourne for a few months to skate. That was around the time The Chats got bigger, so after that we went full time with the band.

Tour stories?
[Laughs] Eamon [The Chats’ singer] shat on the floor of a caravan one time after a show. I’ve got photo evidence. He had no memory of doing it, but we didn’t let that settle; he copped it for a while after that. We had some pretty funny moments with the Pist Idiots when we toured with them for about a month too. We got real close. Surely there are better stories than Eamon shitting in a caravan, but I honestly can’t remember [laughs].

The Girl team used “Smoko” in The Melbourne Identity video.
It was a trip! I’ve always looked up to that crew, ever since I started skating. When they mentioned being into us and listening to a bunch of our music on that Melbourne trip, it was so funny. We were stoked. We happened to be playing a show in Melbourne when they were in town, so a bunch of the dudes came and hung out. They’re legends. 

Drinking with Josh Homme.
We supported Queens of the Stone Age on their Australian tour and Josh [Homme] mentioned being keen to meet up when we came to LA. So we hit him up a bit before the LA show and he asked for a couple of extra tickets for guests. They turned out to be Dave [Grohl] and a couple of the Arctic Monkeys dudes. They were legends. It was crazy meeting Dave. He’s real easy to get along with. We both fall over on stage heaps, so we got along. Josh is right into his Casamigos [tequila], and he isn’t afraid to share. He would pour us a shot, and I’d be like, “Man that’s not a shot, that’s half a glass, but cheers.” [Laughs]. I would be drinking coffee a lot of the time, and he would add whatever booze he had into it and be like, that’s a Russian coffee or an Irish coffee or a Spanish coffee or whatever [laughs]. Cheers, Josh.

The Chats LA950
Alex Turner, Josh Homme, Matt Helders and Dave Grohl kickin’ it with the Chats.

Hiking, camping, eating well.
I’m definitely still into hiking and camping and eating well. I’ll always love that stuff. I don’t get as much time nowadays to go on big camping trips, but whenever I get time off tour, I’ll go for a bush bash and get the hammock out. Sometimes the food on tour can be shitty, but it’s all right. I’m heaps allergic to dairy and nuts, so as long as I can find food I trust, I’m stoked. Even if it’s avo on bread. Hell yeah.

The Diggers part.
The Vans video, Diggers was heaps of fun to film. All the dudes involved are so rad. We started filming for it about a year ago. It was all pretty chill apart from nearly getting hit by a car on the back biggie onto the road. I had already got it, and I was re-doing it for a photo when a car came hooking out of nowhere as I jumped out. The dude driving just missed me and got out and started abusing Jon [Fitzgerald] who was filming. Then a couple of tradies across the road joined in. That wasn’t a good time.
Balancing music with skateboarding.
Between touring, it can be difficult to film clips. I have so much planned, and I’m still always skating. I always end up finding sick spots and parks to sesh while on tour, as well as meeting some legends while skating, it’s real sick. I think you need something else to do while on tour, otherwise, you can go kinda crazy. In the past, our tour managers have been worried about me getting injured, but fuck it, it’s not gonna stop me from skating. I’ve been filming a bit of VX with Patty G. I’m not 100 per cent sure what it’s going towards yet, but when I get some time off, I’m itching to get more clips and do a trip.

Boggis BumpToBsFlip Sydney WadeMPhoto950
Launching a music career to stardom and a big backside flip.

For a flashback, watch Matt’s Slam x Parliament part HERE