Houba is a really good czech punkband and Martin took his time to answer these questions from me just before christmas in the pandemedic year of 2020.


Please tell me a little bit history of the group?  Have you been starting to play again or why so long between the records?

-We started to play in June 1995 as a group of 4 friends at age between 14-18. We loved it, made rehersals every day 3 hours. That was really important in the early years. Last 25 years we played about 50 – 85 gigs every year. And about our records: We were really active in 1995 to 2007. Than we were quite busy cause finishing our studies on Universities. So we made split album with Punk Floid in 2010, than we recorded an album with the artist Tom77 in 2012, than we made single in 2014. And last 5 years we were plying live a quite lot. Not so much time to make a new record. So we released our new album in 2019, but we started work on it in 2017.


Please tell me a little about every member in the group right now, age, family, work, interests and something bad about everyone? Earlier bands? Other bands on the side?

I´m Martin, i´m bassplayer, i do management of our band, I made our last album mainly (lyrics, music). I´m a teacher on high school (we call it Gymnazium in Czech), I teach geography, geology, cartography. Our guitarist is Jirka, he is a chemistry engineer, he is concrete specialist. And he made a lot of music and lyrics on our older albums. Our singer, Majkl, work for the czech railways a an geodet. He is abstainer now, but he was the reason why we did not play about half a year in 2014/2015. Our drummer is technician in gas detection and he played with me (Martin) in the band No Sympathy (www.bandzone.cz/nosympathy). Our newest member (2006) is Mira, guitarist. He works for a small family company called Delibutus. They make organic cosmetics.


I can hear much different influences but mostly old punk and some hardcore? Favorites from the past?  

-Ok, I dont think you are right. We started to listen to czech punkrock in early ninetees, but mostly of that czech bands were much influenced by old british punkrock. We also listened to some hardcorebands but it wasn´t so much important to us. We wanted to play punkrock and we tried what we can do :) We loved for example Spermbirds, I liked Driller Killer for example. Maybe also some mainstream bands like Green day, I listened to Bad Religion and many many more


Houba  are you satisfied with the name? How did it came up? You weren’t afraid that some other band would be named like this? What does it mean?  Which is the best bandname you know?  

-We are ok with the name. Why not. It means mushroom in the czech language. And its czech name for drink cola+red wine. We are quite well known in such a small country like Czech republic so I hope there won´t be any other band with this name. And we also don´t care. We don´t have any „best“ name bands. It´s not important. I love Against Me!


What´s the best thing with playing live? When was the last time you did it?

-I like the atmosphere. Which is unique. Cause it´s true people are giving you energy. Thats why it impossible to go to sleep less than 2-3 hours after playing a concert. And I like it – afterparties are the best. We played 4.9.2020 the last time. So it ok.


And where is best to play? And the worst place?

-Best place to play are small, dirty clubs and the worst is supercool big festivals with a stage 20x20m and where the people are 20 metres far from you. We play, but we don´t like it.


How is to play this sort of music in Czech republic right now?  Which types of bands do you have concerts together with?  

-Right now it´s complicated cause covid, but normally it´s fine. We have enough clubs or places to play. As I wrote, we are quite known in punkrock comunity so we play about 50 gigs per year (we have about 100 offers per year). We usually play with punkrock bands, only during the summer there are some festivals which are mostly about mainstream rock but they choose some punk bands every year. We love to play with The Fialky. I think now they are our best friends to play with. But our autumn tour was cancelled. That´s sad.


How would you describe your music in three words? 

-Simple punk rock.


What does punk mean to you, is it only a word or is it a lifestyle? 

-I think it´s about your thinking. Of course it can´t be only a word. And for me punkrock means you want to introduce to the people some opinions, some lifestyle, way of life. That makes punkrock unique. Cause for example mainstream bands in Czech don´t want to represent any opinions or a way of life. They just play music for fun. We play for fun but there is also our view – that´s what makes punkrock so different.


Which song/album or group was it who took you into punk/hardcore?

-E!E Poslouchej. Czech punkrock band.


What shall a young guy do today to shock their parents as the way we did when we were young? They have already seen everything ;-)?

I dont think it´s neccessary to shock. And maybe – some people can have a shock because of your opinions. Because of tolerancy, respect.  


How is it to live in Czech republic right now? Politically?   Fascists?  Covid? You were celebrating the disapperance ff covid in june and now it´s really bad or?

-I think it´s ok. Yes, of course, all government sucks. Thats true. We have a corrupted primeminister, but I think it is a problem worldwide. The biggest problem for me in politics is that in politics are same people like before 1989. That´s a problem. Problem is also poverty of Gipsy people here. Nobody care about that and many people are racsists. Covid problem is worldwide. In April, May – it wasn´t any porblem here. We had no covid. Thats why it was ok to live normally. And I´m happy, that our government say „live normally“. In october/november it was not so good, but our health system is  one of the best in the world. So it wasn´t problem to get to hospital when you have problem. Now it´s ok, we also offering places in hospitals for other countries.


Is there any good bands from Czeck republic  right now?  Is the punkscene/metalscene/hardcorescene big? How is it in your hometown?

-In Czech? Yes, a lot. Right now i can say Blank Out, Bez Šance, Burning Steps. Scene is quite big, a lot of bands. I can say many in styles you mentioned, but there are more than 20.000 independent bands/artist in Czech. Our hometown is quite poor. We have several new punkrock bands formed by young punkrockers, but not many – maybe 3-4. We have one squat/independent place, where we usually played our gigs last years.


What do you know about Sweden?  Have you been here sometime? You have already heard of Skruttmagazine…sounds good.

I´m a teacher of geography, I know a lot about Sweden. I have been there many times. Especilly in late ninetees, cause we had connection with band Article Nine, Radioaktivita Räker, Driller Killer. I was also in the north of Sweden with my wife, in Kiruna, also in Kiruna Ore mines, I have walked part of Kungsleden in Abisko national park. We were in Stockholm, I remember one of my favourite painter Nils Dardel exhibition in Stockholm – it was one of the best made exhibition I ever visited. We were also on Öland. And of course, I love swedish punkrock bands. I have listen to Millencollin since 1995.


Have you heard any good bands from Sweden?

-Yes, of course. Your scene is very strong. I love for example Randy, Millencolin and many more.


Your lyrics, who does them and what influences you?  Never in english? Any covers you play?

-It´s quite complicated. In the past, many of our lyrics were quite funny stories. In the last years, especially on our last album is quite politic, critical, social. No, we have never sing in english and we will never start. We have some covers, but no famous bands. On our last album we do a cover song of The King Blues (british band) from their album Punk and Poetry.


Is there any subject that you never will write anything about?

-I don´t think so.


Politic and music, does it goes hand in hand?  Which is your most political song?  Is it important to get out your opinions in music?

-Yes, it´s neccesary. I always say, that punkrock music must never resign himself to political and critical texts. Its the reason, why we are other than mainstream music. Our very politicasl songs are on the last album – Svoboda 2015, Slabá místa (dedicated to anticommunist protests), Špína a prach (cover of King Blues) and Povolební kocovina.


Best political band/artist?

-Don´t have one.


Do you think that music(lyrics and so on) can change anyones life, I mean people who listens to music?

-Yes, of course it can. We have met many people on our concerts whohave  told us, that our lyrics completely changed their lives, helped them from drug addiction etc.


Your favorite recordcover alltime?  Who does your recordcovers?  And do you have any good recordstores in your hometown?

-I love Nirvana – Nevermind. Our record covers are ussually painted by our guitarist Jirka. But we have prepared our next cover. It will be a photo. No, we dont have any punkrock/independent record store in our town.


Is it important to get out physical records of your stuff? Why or why not? Vinyl, CD, cassette, what do you prefer if you could choose whatever?

-Of course it is and we do it. We produce vinyls, cassettes, CDs. Our last release is re-edition of our two album from 2002 and 2007. It was released in november 2020 and we sold more than 80 pieces first day. Now the re-edition is almost sold out on vinyls. I prefer online music right now, but i´m buying also CD´s to my old Toyota.


Please tell me a funny thing which have happened during your career and under some gig?

-It´s so complicated to choose one. We have played 25 years without any break.


How does your audience look like? Which people do you miss on your concerts? Which is the biggest band you ever have played together with? 

-Our audience is the best of course. In the first years, our audience was quite young. Now, in the last years we probably are more „punk“ than we used to be. So it´s changing. I can say the average is 30-35 years old people, still punkrockers who cares about lyrics. We do not miss any people on our gigs. We have young, old, boys, girls. It´s fine. We do not play many gigs as support of famous bands. I dont´ know why, but we dont care. It´s not important for us.


Please rank your five favoriterecords, five favoriteconcerts and five most important things in life?

-Me, im Marticek. I can´t say „bands“ favourites.

Against Me! – New Wave

1.      Against Me! – New Wave

2.      Bambix – Club Matuchek

3.      Ine kafe – Bez udania dovodu

4.      Davova Psychoza – Antropofobia

5.      Bad Religion – Stranger than fiction

If you ask me tomorrow, it will be different.

            Health and family

      Punkrock music and band



Free time


First, last and most expensive record ever bought?



Is it boring with interviews? Is it much interviews?

-I like to make short interviews J We don´t have not so much, maybe 5 a year.


Do you care about reviews? Which is the most peculiar you ever had, with this band or any other band you have been to?

-Yes, of course. We care. But we never change our music according to reviews. One review was really pelicular. It was concert review in 2010, we supported the slovakian band Ine kafe in sold out shows in Prages for 1000 people. And we played quite good supporting gig with 2 bonus songs. So the audience liked it. And there was some 19 years old girl written that review. And wrote that everything with us was bad. I think it was her first and last review for that magazine and maybe ever J


Which bands do people compare you to, is it boring that people compare you to other bands or is it understandable?

-I really dont know. But I would like to know.


If you could choose five bands from the past and the history and nowadays and both dead and living bands to have a concert together with your band. Which five have you been chosen?

-We haven´t such dreams.


Is music a good way to get out frustration and become a nicer person outside the music??

-Yes. I think so. For us it´s love, hobby, entertainment, parties. It´s a life thing. We love to play for full club. We love the energy you have after the show. The feeling that you can´t fall asleep after good show.


Which is the most odd question you ever have got in an interview?

-I really don´t remember.


Which is the question you want to have but you never get. Please ask it and answer it?

-I like your question „which bands do people compare you to“. I don´t know the answer but I would like to know.


Futureplans for the band?

-Yes, 11. 12. 2020 we made livestream. It was quite good, 1339 people watched it online. It´s good. We also did a new musicvideo for one of our songs from last album Niceho nelitujem! We will finish it in March 25th. It will be dedicated to Belarus antigovernments protest which are probably the longest in the history, more than 100 days right now. March 25th is Day of liberty in Belarus. We plan to play 2-3 illegal gigs in covid times for 40-50 people. The entrance tickets will be antigen covid test negative. We will be recording this situation and plan to make small movie about it. I hope we will play gigs in spring 2021. We have 3 new songs and waiting for time to record them to make a single.


For yourself?

-In these hard times it´s complicated to plan anything. I´m working a lot right now on my high school, where I teach geography. I´m looking for new possibilities for students, we are making online discussions with interesting people. Last month we discuss with my friend from Bangladesh, we plan to have discussions with friend sfrom Japan, Uganda and more. I love this job and to work with a clever young generation. With my family, my 3 years old son we plan to travel to US in summer 2021 to visit our friends in California from bands like Foxy, Lonely Streets and more.



-Do not regret anything.


Something to add?

-Thanks for such a nice and long interview and sorry for my delay. I have been really busy last 2 months.