We all Like Burn here at Droid Rage HQ so I thought it would be cool to check in with Gavin and see whats up.
As you know Burn have a new record out so we had a chat about this and that.
Until about a month ago I had not even heard Spirits.
Then I ended up doing a trade with a friend overseas and got talking about Hardcore.
He was telling me how very little new Hardcore is his thing but this band Spirits were the shit so of course I gave them a try and I really like them.
Got straight in contact with the band and had a bit of chat about one thing and another.
I have been wanting to post this for a while now.
It’s another interview from the first print issue of Droid Rage and one of the first I did when starting it up.
Public Domain are based out of Austria but fronted by Englishman Nick Worthington,
who, as it happens, was the singer in the mind blowingly awesome UK band, Dead Swans.
DR. Hey nick how’s it going?
Tell us a bit about public domain,who’s in the band where it all started what you sound like?
Hey, I’m all good just on my lunch break. PD started in the winter of 2012, I mean we were talking about doing a band for some time before then but it all started around that time, I was first hanging out with our guitarist paulo in vienna and we went along to a party where i met mickey for the first time ‘bassist’, We just talked about skateboarding and the music we were into etc, it just seemed like a good idea to get something going, Ive started a lot of bands at 3 in the morning at house parties but this one seemed to work out, paulo has another band called Lorraine in which Willem played drums in, so we got things together quite quickly, coincidently Robbie from dead swans also moved over here too to be with his girlfriend, so it was a no brainer to have him in the band. As far as sound goes, The bands fast with hard breaks, there has been quite a lot of progression since the demo, structurally its still the same we just take more time with the new material. i don’t know what to say as far as comparing to other bands, I will attach a download to link to this interview and people can make there own judgments.
DR. Where does PD Draw influence from then?
We all come from different backgrounds of the hardcore punk scene but i’d say the main influence on this band is skateboarding, it’s something we all grew up with and still do everyday, well i can definitely say thats why we’re a band. musically for me i always like stuff like Striking distance, Tear it up, LIfe’s halt, No justice. but that’s just me.
DR. I’ve seen a couple of mini vids on the web of live PD shows it looks like kids are feeling you guys how have the first live shows been?
Well so far we have only played two shows, a lot of our friends come out and support us which is rad, but yeah its too soon to say, we’re just having fun with it. At our first show with the Flex we played the five songs on the demo and we covered right brigade by bad brains, the set was probably less than ten minutes long. we have more songs now so its a little longer, but yeah people seem to dig it.
DR. I know you work in a skate shop but is there any plans for future tours?
Yeah i do, to be honest i don’t really think we will tour with this band, we will do weekenders and small strings of shows for now and see how things go, but that’s good enough for me. we’re all working and don’t have that much free time between us right now, but who knows, things could change.
DR. How is working in a Skate shop while being a very active Skateboarder and singing in a active Band while keeping it real at home etc?
I just dont have time for so much stuff I want to with work and stuff.
It sounds like a lot more than it is, I’m only in the skate store/warehouse between 3 and 4 days a week i skate whenever i get the chance if I’m not hurt, although this time of year its too cold and there are only 2 or 3 places you can go and which are only open at limited times, so if it does not fit in my schedule then i just don’t skate…it sucks. and with the band we try to practice at least once a week, it does not take up a lot of time at all. I probably spend at least half of my time at home with my girlfriend cooking, chilling out and forcing her to watch movies she hates.
DR. How is the skate scene in Austria along with the punk/hardcore scene?
I used to live/work in Austria and I know tons more bands play shows there now there wasn’t much going on when I lived there apart from snowboarding and a big party scene
I personally think it’s really great, compared to what i was used to back in England. I’m not putting it down i’d be skateboarding regardless of whatever state the ‘skateboard scene’ was in or where ever i was living. I just get super pumped leaving the flat each time to smooth streets throughout all of vienna, tons of spots and parks. I have been here for around 2 years and i still haven’t seen all the spots, there is always stuff to find, that’s what i love about it. Some locals will always say how things suck and compare what we have to what they see in videos, you will always have a couple of those types in your city, I just think the’re not looking close enough at what they have.
The punk and hardcore scene here is ok, quite a few people putting on shows at the moment, vienna has some cool bands too check out Demonwomb and Black books if you get the chance. The party scene is still the same i guess, ridiculous drinking hours, and shitty music, I don’t really go out much anymore, its just not worth it
DR. I know it’s old news but let’s talk about the last Dead Swans last Shows in LDN I never got to go to either one but a few friends did and I also saw loads of pics how was the vibe for you? Was it kind of sad to say goodbye to dead swans as they were a popular and killer band? Also was it sheep who set those shows up?
He’s like the busiest man on earth
It was a good way to end it all. We put on both of the last shows ourselves, well Pid sorted most of it out actually. Sheep was there though, we got his old band ‘honor among thieves’ to do a reunion and play both the shows, The first night was in the old blue last in london. That one felt like old shows in London, I’m glad we did it. Then we played the garage the next night, it was sold out. All of our friends and families came out for us, it was really overwhelming. I had spent a lot of time before dwelling on the past and everything we went through over the seven years being a band together, so on the night i was in a bit of an odd mindset, but as soon as we were on stage and i heard the feedback i snapped out of it and it just felt like how it always did. Despite having busted ribs from a skate slam a week before it felt fucking good playing, although there was a slight sadness in the room. I guess we were having too much of a good time to take any of it in. After we played i was looking for my girlfriend and my family at this point i could barely stand straight because of my ribs and a busted eye ‘thanks sheep’. By this point the night had really settled in on me, i remember people coming up and talking to me after when i was completely speechless and just trying to catch my breath. I was just so happy to see all my old friends nothing else really mattered, i know a ton of people travelled for that night and i don’t ever remember saying thank you, so anyone maybe picking this up, thank you, it meant the world to us.
DR. How was it being on Bridge 9 For Dead Swans was it just business as usual? It’s just some bands now on certain labels can just do there bands with selling merch and playing shows and not even have to have jobs.
It was cool being a part of bridge 9, they helped us a lot over the time we were on it. they take good care of the bands they work with.
When we were touring full time with DS none of us really worked we just did what we could when we were home, scrape together what money we could for the next tour. Some bands make far too much merch, i guess if you can pull it off, then why not, huh? its just not my bag.
DR. What’s Regularly played on your IPod Pre/mid skate . What kind of stuff do you play while at the shop?
I usually leave it on shuffle all the time, when I’m skating i listen to a lot of chilled stuff like Cat power, Mazzy star, if I’m listening to hard stuff i always hurt myself. Depends on the session, but recently i have had the new Russian circles record on a lot, it’s great. When I’m at work its usually stuff like Seaweed, Pegboy, Face to face…
DR. Is there any bands your really feeling at the moment and want to see play a show in your area ? I know for me there’s tons but no one really plays shows near here a little in the summer but I don’t think any in winter.
I’d like to see over here: Beware, The rival mob, Nothing, My mind has literally gone blank…hmmm With reunions popping up all over the place i’d like to hope the Nerve agents get convinced into playing some shows…someone sort that out.
DR. What other general stuff are you up to at the moment? Hobbies etc?
Other than skateboarding, the band and work… I guess i spend quite a lot of time in the gym. I was originally going there for my ankle after i destroyed it a couple of years ago and now i just like going, it helps me sleep and when i can’t skate as much in winter it’s cool to be doing something physical. Other than that, just living life.
DR. So you guess just released a demo right?
Yeah pick it up here http://publicdomainskatepunks.bandcamp.com/album/demo It should be free, just click buy and type in 0.
we’re writing at the moment for our next recording. We have about half of it done, we are aiming to get it out by early 2014 so keep your eyes open.
DR. Any last words?
Don’t compare yourself with others, you have no idea what their journey is about. Stop thinking too much it’s alright not to know…Go skateboarding
Interview with Champion from issue #3 of Start Today by Jeff Lasich.
first met the guys in Champion during their summer 2002 tour. Aram and I bonded instantly, almost like long lost brothers. We would always have the best talks about life, hardcore, and everything in between. Over the years, I would get excited when I knew they were going on tour and the east coast was in their plans. Their first shows in Philly were at a frat house and the Funrama basement, and as they got more popular and played larger venues, they stayed the same guys. Unfortunately the last few times they were supposed to play, they didn’t get a chance because of outside reasons. I got a phone call in early January saying that Champion was breaking up and asking if I wanted to do the final interview. I know they were in Start Today #3, but I screwed up the master tape and less than half the interview survived. This is my chance to fix it. The questions were answered by all 5 members of the final line-up of Champion. I like getting five different perspectives on the same topic. Champion is over, but their legacy will live on for years to come.
In this third and final part, Tim talks about his two other bands; Face The Enemy and Triple Threat. We also touched on skateboarding, Straight Edge and other topics.
DR: When I think of long term edge men, I think of you instantly. What’s it all about for you, and how do you think the Straight Edge is these days?
TM:- Honestly, for me, Straight Edge is about common sense and self-preserveration. I have zero interest in deliberately destroying my health and taking years off of my life, it simply doesn’t appeal to me. Smoking, doing drugs, drinking alcohol, all those things ultimately do is bring forth deterioration and ultimately destruction of life. Some people need a crutch to enjoy themselves, a cigarette to ease the nerves, a beer to take the edge off and help with their social skills, a puff of weed to relax, but I’ve just never needed or wanted any of that. Maybe because I found things like skateboarding and hardcore at such a young age, I used them as my release and I’ve never looked back.
But again, all of that I just look at as common sense. Straight Edge is really more than just not drinking, doing drugs and smoking to me. For me personally, Straight Edge is about being a part of the hardcore scene, going to shows, supporting bands, it’s just another aspect of my lifestyle that makes up the whole picture. I still enjoy buying records, pulling out the lyric sheets, studying the photos, taking in the lyrics. All of that takes me back to when I first got into Straight Edge, started looking deeper into the music, digging out the message and looking at it as more than just entertainment.
For me it all just stuck, It was never a trend or phase, I found something, it was timeless, it was real and it greatly impacted my life and like I said before, I never looked back.
Generally speaking, Straight Edge is today as it was 34 years ago when Minor Threat coined the term / wrote the song. Some people may have twisted and distorted the meaning and tried to model it into their own diluted impression, but at the end of the day, to me, it’s still the same simple concept. I pretty much just ignore what others are doing, because it has no effect on me.
Quite honestly, I think way too people spend too much time worrying about what others are doing and how others are representing Straight Edge and they let it affect their own feelings. There are always so many excuses, people have told me that they had to get out of Straight Edge because they thought it got too violent or had too many rules or didn’t like the bands anymore or thought the kids were jerks. Who cares what others are doing? I did’t get into Straight Edge for anyone but myself, so why should I let someone else influence me to not be Straight Edge? My thought has always been, if you don’t like how other people are representing something that you care about, you should then want to make damn sure you’re representing it the RIGHT way. At the end of the day, drugs, drinking and smoking are just as bad as they were when you swore them off and that’s the only thing that should matter.
I’d probably have more respect for people that got out of Straight Edge if they were honest and admitted, it was a trend for them and they just didn’t care anymore. I’d rather hear somebody tell me that they’re not Straight Edge anymore because they realized that they like the taste of beer too much than to hear them say, “Oh, it just got too violent for me and I can’t relate to these kids anymore”.
DR: You’re still an active skateboarder… when did you start skateboarding and who were your biggest influences back then?
TM: – I discovered skateboarding sometime in late 1984 / early 1985 and it was really a combination of three things that got me into it. First off, I was heavily into BMX and freestyling bikes for a few years. I would buy BMX Plus Magazine, but it wasn’t until I picked up a copy of Freestylin’ Magazine that I started seeing photos of skateboarders. Around this same time, my older cousin from Phoenix, Arizona had come out on a family trip and was all decked out in Vans and Jams shorts and talking to me about how he had a skateboard and how cool it was. Also shortly after the conversations with my cousin, I started seeing this older kid in my neighborhood that had a Nash Executioner and would ride it up and down the hill in front of my house, he would also talk to me about how cool and fun it was. So all of these things combined, had me asking my parents for a skateboard for Christmas that year. Of course I asked for a Nash Executioner because at the time, it was coolest, readily available skateboard out there.
So I indeed got the Nash Executioner that I had asked for and from there on out, things moved quickly. I skated constantly, learning how to do tick tacks, bomb drops / acid drops, bonelesses, all the starter tricks of the time. I loved skating, nothing was more fun to me than running out my front door and getting those wheels on cement. Growing up I was always sort of a quite, shy kid, so the idea of team sports and interaction with strangers didn’t appeal to me all that much. With a skateboard, I could hit the street, have a blast, challenge myself and get some sort of exercise, without joining a team and hanging out with a bunch of kids that I had nothing else in common with. In a sense, discovering skateboarding certainly didn’t help me open up, but I suppose there’s always a trade off.
Within a few months of having that Nash Executioner, I started buying Thrasher and Transworld Skateboard Magazine and started really learning about the scene of skateboarding. I started learning about all the different skateboard companies and professional skateboarders and I soon realized that my Toys R Us bought Nash Executioner wasn’t as cool as I thought it was. By my birthday, which came in May, I was asking my parents for a Vision Mark Gonzales and that’s about when I was exposed to a entirely new world. My skateboard shifted from being a “toy” to my identity. The whole process probably took about 6 months, but in retrospect, it felt like it was an overnight change.
Around this time I was going from 6th grade and into 7th, which was Junior High. Junior High was also a whole new world for me, it was nothing at all like elementary school. You had all these different factions of kids that didn’t really exist in elementary school. There were metal heads, burn outs, jocks, preppies, punks, kids into rap, rich kids, poor kids, skateboarders, it goes on and on. Because I was just getting into skateboarding, I instantly identified with the skateboarding clique. I kept digging deeper, got a subscription to Thrasher, read it from cover to cover, started renting skateboard videos, it all completely consumed me.
I’d say my biggest early skateboarding influences were the Vision guys, Mark Gonzales and Gator and then of course the Powell Peralta guys, Tommy Guerrero and Steve Caballero. Between the Skatevisions video and the Powell Peratla “Future Primitive” video, I completely absorbed everything I saw and all of that shaped who I would become.
DR: I had a huge break from skateboarding with travelling and working abroad, but this past year I’ve taken it back up- although I did have a nasty accident (non skate related) meaning I have lost the use of a finger now, as well as having a bum knee, so I kind of had the fear for a while… but I’ve pushed through it (excuse the pun). Do you ever sketch out at the thought of stuff as you’re also an older dude?
TM: – I’ve never been a particularly ballsy skateboarder, but at one point in my early days of skateboarding, I was riding down a super steep hill in my neighborhood, turned on to a street at the bottom of the hill, hit a patch of stones and gravel and went flying. I cracked my head open, went unconscious and got dragged to the sidewalk by a neighbor guy. I ended up getting a bunch of stitches in my head. Ever since that day, I’ve been a bit more cautious about my speed. Problem is, with skateboarding, speed is required when it comes to pulling off a majority of tricks, so that’s held me back to an extent. I’ve worked around it though and have mainly stuck to the tricks I’ve always been comfortable doing. I’m into grinds, rail slides, boneslesses, ollies to an extent, the simple stuff. Most of the time, I’m content just carving up my ramp or a ditch. Still, I do fall and it obviously hurts much worse than it did when I was 14, but like I said, I try to stick to what I’m comfortable with and for the most part, that’s worked for me.
DR: Who do you like in skateboarding these days?
TM: Skate parks in every town, that’s easily the best thing about skateboarding today. When I was skating in the 80’s and through out the 90’s, I had never stepped foot on a skate park, they simply didn’t exist anywhere around here back then. You had to seek out and create spots to skate back then. Today I can jump in my car and decide which of the 3 or 4 local skateparks I want to hit up. I also built a 3ft high, 24 ft wide mini ramp in my backyard, so I can hit that up anytime I want to as well.
DR: You follow sports right? Who are your teams and how are they doing this season?
TM: I do follow sports. Got into basketball a bit in the late 80’s, but heavily in the mid 90’s. My interest elevated when Michael Jordan came out of retirement in 1995 and I’ve been tuned in ever since. My girlfriend Traci (now wife) and I got season tickets for the Philadelphia 76ers in 1996, which was Allen Iverson’s rookie year. We kept those season ticket for 10 years and within those years, I took interest in the rest of the Philadelphia sports teams. Once to you pick a city and team you want to root for, I think it’s natural that you just continue rooting for all the other sports teams in that city. So yeah, I’m a diehard Philadelphia sports fan, the Eagles, Sixers, Phillies and Flyers are the teams I follow.
Right now the Sixers are doing terrible, I think they’re at 24 straight losses, but quite honestly, I fine with it. They’ve been stuck in NBA mediocracy for years and really the only way they are going to get better and be a possible contender is if they score a big name player in the draft. With this losing streak they’ve been on this year, there’s a good possibility of them getting the first or second pick in the 2014 NBA draft and that could change everything. We’ll see though, nothing is set in stone.
The Eagles had a surprisingly good 2013 season and I’m expecting them to build on that next season. The Eagles are easily the Philadelphia team wight he most upside and the one I’m most excited about. Not sure what to expect from the Phillies this upcoming season, my sights aren’t set too high though. As for the Flyers, they’re playing right now and they’ve been a team of ups and downs. They just came off a nice win streak and if they continue winning, they could get themselves into the play offs and once there, anything can happen.
DR: Back to music… How did Face The Enemy come about?
TM: In 2001 I wasn’t active with any bands, Mouthpiece had broken up and although we did a string of reunions in 2000, there weren’t any plans to do anything further at that time. Hands Tied was also broken up at that point and strictly in the rear view mirror. I had moved out of an apartment and back into my parent’s house briefly and really had nothing going.
One day I got a call from my friend Daniel from Sweden, Daniel had been a roadie for a ton of bands and had stints of playing in bands like Shelter and Better Than A Thousand. Daniel spent a lot of time in the United States and at one point he was in Washington D.C. working on a new band with Porcell and recording at Ken Olden from Battery / Better Than A Thousand’s studio. Better Than A Thousand had broken up, Ray Cappo had left the band, but before the band had broken up, they recorded a full album’s worth of songs for a third LP. The recording sat around for awhile, Ray had only recorded vocals for one of the tracks and it came up amongst Daniel and Ken that somehow or another, that unreleased Better Than A Thousand album should get a proper release. My name had come up as a vocalist, so Daniel and Ken gave me a call to see what I thought. I had known Ken since the late 80’s, so we had been friends for a long time. Our bands had been playing together for years, so we were both well aware of each other’s musical history. Ken pitched the idea of me singing on these songs that they had recorded, but it not being released as a Better Than A Thousand album, but a new band. I asked Ken to send me a cd of the songs and that I’d check it out. Within a few days I had the cd in my hands and was sitting in front of my stereo giving it a listen. Right off the bat, I liked what I heard. The guy Alex that was playing drums on the recording is an excellent drummer and his drums stood out instantly. By the time the cd was done playing, I knew I had to get involved.
I contacted Ken, told him I was into the project and we discussed how we would move forward. I agreed to write lyrics to a few of the tracks and then take a trip down to D.C. to do some recording. Once I recorded and we could sit down and see how everything was coming together, we’d then decide how we wanted to proceed. I think after that first batch of songs that I recorded the vocals for, we were all really excited about the prospects of the band. Things started to pick up, recording sessions were being scheduled fairly regularly and before I knew it, I was making multiple trips down to D.C., recording, hanging out and making plans. Eventually I had recorded vocals for every song on the album and then shortly after that, more songs were recorded for an EP. Ken was playing guitar, Graham Land was playing guitar, Alex Garcia-Rivera was playing drums and I got Ed McKirdy from Hands Tied to play bass. We had a complete band, we had recordings, we called the band Face The Enemy and we started planning live shows.
Our first show was the 2002 Positive Numbers Festival in Wilkes Barre, PA. We played another show the following weekend in PA as well, but didn’t play again until later that year when we did a tour with Stand And Fight (then called Impact), which was Wrench from Ten Yard Fight’s new band at the time. The tour we did with Stand And Fight went well and we had a great time, but we had a hard time keeping the momentum going with Face The Enemy because the members were so spread out. Our guitarist Graham was originally from the D.C. area, but living in Sweden, so any shows or band activity that Face The Enemy was going to get involved with, required Graham to fly back for.
I wasn’t use to doing a band with members so spread out, you had me in New Jersey, Ed in New York, Ken in Washington D.C., Alex in Boston and Graham in Sweden. Logistcally, doing the band with guys so spread out, made no sense, but originally with careful planning, we thought we might be able to make it work. In the end though, we lost our momentum and couldn’t keep it together. I tried and pushed for things to happen for about a year or more, but nothing panned out. We did those handful of shows and the one short tour, released one LP, “These Two Words” and one EP, “Through It All” and that was all that Face The Enemy every really amounted to.
DR: Can you also give me a little Triple Threat history?
TM – Triple Threat really came together out of the frustration of Face The Enemy’s failures. I saw so much potential in Face The Enemy, yet it was ultimately out of reach. I figured that if I couldn’t get things together with Face The Enemy, I’d just start all over again and create something new.
Ed and I went back an forth about doing a new band, it was very similar to the beginning stages of Hands Tied. We talked about what we wanted to do, how we wanted it to sound, but there was still that problem of filling out the line up. Ed decided he wanted to take a swing at playing guitar, so we at least had that. Where would we get a drummer though? What about a bass player? Sure, there are plenty of people out there that play bass and drums, but we needed the “right” people. People that saw eye to eye with Ed and I and essentially shared the same vision.
Months went by and nothing was happening, putting together this new band was proving to be as difficult as always. Then out of no where I get this call from Rich, the bassist from Insted. Rich told me that Insted had a discography coming out on Indecision Records and that they were going to get back together to do a bunch of shows to help promote the discography. Insted was going to play in Rhode Island, New Jersey and New York City and Rich asked me if my band would be down to play with them in New Jersey. I told Rich that I’d love to, but at the time, didn’t really have a “current” band. We talked back and forth, I told him that I would try to figure something out. I wasn’t sure if I was going to try and put something together with Mouthpiece, Hands Tied, Face The Enemy or just make a solid attempt at the new band. Rich was cool with whatever I was able to do, ultimately Insted just wanted to share the stage with one of my bands, because Mouthpiece had played with Insted a couple of times on their last US tour and Rich knew that I was still involved in the hardcore scene, still straight edge, etc.
Ed and I talked and decided this was the push we needed to get this new band started. Instead of attempting to temporarily bring back one of the previous bands, we saw this as a great opportunity to get things started right. We had a deadline to get this new band off the ground, because a date was set for Insted’s show in New Jersey. Coincidently, this guy Tim Kriependorf from Germany that I had met while on tour in Europe with Hands Tied, had just moved to Philadelphia and Tim played bass. I had been in touch with Tim prior to him moving out here, so I hit him up about playing in this new band with Ed and I. I also contacted former Mouthpiece drummer, Jason Jammer and asked if he’d be interested in playing again. Jason hadn’t done anything band wise since Mouthpiece had broken up in 1996, with the exception of the reunions and I didn’t know if he’d be into it, but it turned out he was.
At the time, in 2004 when we started Triple Threat, I was listening to a lot of early 80’s southern California punk and hardcore. Lots of Black Flag, Circle Jerks, Germs, Adolescents, etc., I was also listening to a lot of BL’AST!, as I always have. I pitched the idea that we go for a BL’AST! type sound, something heavy, generally slower, rocking, a Black Flag type vibe, but still Straight Edge hardcore. The other 3 guys were on board with my idea and we also pulled in a second guitarist, Aaron from The First Step.
We practiced heavily for about two months, wrote five songs and indeed kept on schedule to premier Triple Threat at the Insted show in New Jersey. I believe the following week we recorded our first EP, “A New Chapter” for Livewire Records.
Triple Threat stayed active for four solid years, playing as much as we could, recorded an LP titled, “Into The Darkness” for Bridge 9 Records, did a west coast trip with BOLD, released a live EP from the last show we played at CBGB’s on Livewire.
Eventually the band split up in 2008 when our bassist Tim moved to North Carolina. We had planned to try and keep things going, but the distance between us proved to be too much of a burden.
DR: Did you start a band with Brian Jordan or did i imagine that?
TM: As I had mentioned earlier in the interview, there was the 2011 version of Hands Tied that Brian “Gordo” Jordan got involved with. Gordo played drums in the beginning and then at the end switched to second guitar. Gordo has been in my tight circle of friends for about 14 years or so at this point, so we’ve talked endlessly about starting new bands, but the 2011 version of Hands Tied is the only one that’s actually accomplished anything.
Backtrack are without a doubt one of my favorite bands right now.
They are also constantly touring at the moment but I sent a few questions over to Ricky (guitar) and he hooked me up.
DR: Hey how’s it going,
First off How long have BT been around for now and where did it all start?
RS: Backtrack has been a band for 6 Years now. We started in early 2008 with 2 groups of friends coming together to form a Hardcore band. Backtrack is from Long Island, NY.
DR: Do you still have the OG Line up?
RS: Over the years we’ve had some line-up changes but the core of the band (John, James, and myself) are still intact.
DR: You have a New Record Out (Lost in Life), Which is a banger by the way, do you think you did anything Different here style wise or anything compared to your past releases?
RS: Thanks for the compliment. I think all in all Lost In Life is very much so a NYHC LP which is what we will always be. I think we did open our minds a bit since Darker Half and it can be shown in the Songwriting and Production of the record. Since our last LP, we’ve all learned about songwriting and what we like/don’t like in our songs. Also we knew what we were in for a bit more coming into writing a Sophmore LP.
DR: How is it being on Bridge Nine They are a pretty big label now?
RS: Bridge Nine is cool. They have a great staff who is helpful when it’s needed and have been pushing out record well. I’ve been seeing the record in places I haven’t seen our stuff before which is great.
DR: what have you guys been up to tour wise and with who?
RS: We just got off a US Tour with Comeback Kid, Xibalba, Downpresser, and To The Wind a week ago. The shows were awesome and i’m stoked we could be a part of that line-up. In about a week we leave for a European Tour where we’re supporting Stick To Your Guns on a few shows and then doing a couple Headlining shows with Redemption Denied, an awesome band from Europe.
DR: what Hardcore bands and or other types of music/Bands influence BT?
RS: Madball, Agnostic Front, Sick Of It All, Outburst, Breakdown, Kill Your Idols…the list goes on, we like a lot of stuff. We all listen to different types of music from Rap to Pop to whatever…
DR: you guys were in AUS recently right? how does playing shows differ from the states?
RS: We were in Australia a few months ago and it was great. The turnouts were better then expected and the weather was beautiful. Playing Australia is kind of similar to playing the states to be honest. Just a similar vibe at the shows pretty much from what i’ve noticed.
DR: Do you think you will be coming to Europe in 2014?
RS: Yeah we’ll be there in a week and then again in the summer of 2014.
DR.: What bands are you really enjoying at present?
RS: There’s a new band out of California called MIZERY that is really good…very talented musicians playing a style of hardcore that I like a lot. Also Cross Me from Milwaukee is sick and i’m putting out there new 7″ in a few months. Check them out!!!!
DR: You’re down on paper as one of the most important Bands in modern Hardcore. What do you think about that?
RS: That’s a pretty bold statement that I don’t know if I agree with but thank you for the kind words. If a person were to think that i’d be very flattered and stoked that we were able to write music that they would feel that way about.
DR: How do you think the Hardcore scene is changing since you got into it?
RS: Since i’ve got into the Hardcore scene I think there’s a lot of extra unnecessary drama at shows sometimes that doesn’t need to be there. People coming into shows with something to prove or a chip on their shoulder. Just have a good time and leave your ego at the door or get out ya dork.
DR: As Far as NYC Goes whats the best Era to go to shows there?
I was actually lucky enough to see 2 of my favourite Hardcore bands at
CBGB before it closed its doors.
RS: I think this question is easily answered by just saying any era that you go to shows should be your favorite. Some of my favorite bands broke up years ago but i’m not going to go worship the past and spend all my money trying to re-live it off ebay. I would’ve loved to see The Bad Brains play The Ritz in 1986 but the truth is I was still in my fathers testicles for another 2 years.
DR: Are Any of you Fight Fans? Boxing MMA or something else,
And who do you like at the moment?
RS: I used to like watching boxing a lot when I was younger but I haven’t watched anything in a while. I’ll turn on ESPN Classic and watch an old fight from time to time which is cool. Old Mike Tyson and De La Hoya fights are awesome…those were my two favorites growing up.
DR: who do you like better: Chain Or Judge?
RS: Judge, absolutely.
Hey Gibby how’s LA?
LA is great. I’ve been here nearly 9 years. It took some getting used to coming from the east coast but I love it now. I think I’ll be staying.
You’re from Boston originally right? What made you move to LA apart from obvious reason, weather ETC.
I was born in NYC. Was there until I was a little boy then moved to St LouisMO through middle school. Left for Boston and spent the high school and college years there, then off to NYC again. I moved to LA for work… the internet.
Panic did some reunion shows in the summer didn’t they? how was that and where did you play?
Two shows, a small gig in NYC with friends, and then a larger show in Philly at This is Hardcore. Both shows were amazing, and a reminder that we just dont fucking get out enough anymore, but we all live so far away, etc. Masek and I are out here, the rest of the dudes are between Boston and NYC. Still – a great opportunity and a great show.
How does playing shows compare now to the Bridge Nine days? Do you still get as syked or not so much these days?
Boston in 2001 was just a different time. I think it’s easy to look at things nostalgically and wax poetic – so I wont. I’ll say that if you’re hearts still in it, keep playing when you can. I think we’d do it more often if logistics were different. I definitely get psyched. It’s flattering that people remember us and still want to see us, and make an effort to organize shows over a decade on.
What do you have going on over there at the minute work wise and stuff?
I stay busy. Record label, Makeoutclub, music, etc.
I know you’re a big dog fan, how many have you got now? And what types have you got?
I’ve got two rescued chihuahuas. They are everywhere in SoCal. On the streets, in the shelters, etc. They really need help because there are just so many – I actually rescued both of mine from the same rescue agency, who (believe it or not) flies chihuahuas to other parts of the country where they are considered rarer. (northeast, etc).
How was your recent vacation to Europe in the summer.
Europe is always a blast. I hadn’t been since 07 or so… (Berlin), and the huge Panic tour (15 countries or something) in 06 – so it was nice to relax in the UK and Paris with my lady and unplug from the grind. We got to hang with buddies in London, which is always a treat, and were at the finish line of the Tour De France and watched them cross over, which was insane… Probably never see that again.
How’s the food scene in LA just out of interest? I assume it’s pretty diverse? I’ve been over to the states 3 times but probably didn’t eat the best stuff while I was there, definitely not when I was alone, haha.
The food here is pretty next level, especially if you’re a foody. Lots of amazing sushi, lots of michelin star shit happening – but honestly, it’s all about the diners and mexican food spots. Fred 62 is the MUST visit for late night diners, Mexican food – hit up Teri’s on Melrose or “best fish taco” on Hillhurst. Sushi – En on Hillhurst or Shibucho on Beverly.
Do you have much interest in the Hardcore Scene these days?
I follow what I can, when I can. I’ll always be deeply, deeply ingrained. It’s in my blood.
Back when Panic were touring a lot where did you like to play shows the most? What country and venue
Hands down Philly. That was our home away from home. Best reception, most insane shows… Killtime on Halloween night in like 01 or some shit was wild. Car crash outside with police chase, Ink and Dagger cover band, we all dressed up in bloody tuxes with roses and zombie faces, fights left and right at the show, after the show, fucked up after party… oh man. Different time, wild days.
Are you still gaming a lot these days? I’ve always been a geek for collecting toys and lots of other stuff, also watching a lot of movies etc but I never really started on online games. I was going to give WOW a try once but ended up basically not bothering as I’d never have time to play it.
I’m not so much anymore, working on a new record with Louderbach and so busy with the label. My “hey day” was 04-07 in World of Warcraft, but thankfully I survived that addiction. Hahahha… Too much of a time sink. If I play, its single player games like Dark Souls. Hardcore RPGs…
Are you a social guy, what do you usually get up to when you go out?
Sadly I’m not too social… I usually go to the movies or to dinner. At one time I think I was a bit of a maniac but again, different era!
What movies and music are good in your eyes at the moment?
Really loving the stuff coming out on Items&Things, Sacred Bones, and of course all the wonderful stuff Im lucky enough to release on Dais. There’s a new CA band called “T.A.U.T” that we are working with in 2014… stay tuned. Movies – nothing but disappointment for the most part lately though I did like The Way Way Back. That new hobbit movie was not good.
What’s your all time top five bands or musicians in any genre?
You’re heavily tattooed and have been since I can remember seeing pics of you in bands and stuff… do you still get tattooed these days? When was the last time?
I do, though infrequently. Maybe once or twice a year, if that. Bryan Burk at Spotlight in LA did my stomach and chest, and I’ve still got some shading and color to wrap that up. Maybe next year….
Do you have any future plans to be involved in music or in a band or whatever? Or are you already working on stuff?
My label, daisrecords.com – releases something every month. And my project with Troy Pierce “Louderbach” will have a third LP in 2014.
What clothing style would you say you go for?
I known you are a big Game Of Thrones fan, as am I. What did you think to last season? Heavy right?! What are you stoked for in the next season? Also what other shows get you high at the moment?
GoT is sick. Insane production. HBO brings it in every way – always. I know what happens next due to the books but I wont say!
Other shows: House of Cards, Boardwalk Empire, Downton Abbey!
Anything you would personally like to say?
Thank you very much for this, Ed. Appreciate it.