Tuesday, August 18, 2015

DEAD TO THE WORLD - Anthem Punk Rock like a Power Punch to the Face

Beginning in 2007, Dead to the World has had a long history with its share of line-up changes. Here in 2015 the band is not showing any signs of slowing down. After all this time, what has kept the fire burning?
DTTW has been around since 2007 with the core foundation of the brother Brandon and Blake. They were writing catchy songs and building a solid fan base in their circles.  Where the band really gets going is in the last 2 years or so when they added a second vocalist/guitarist(Steve), then Brandon putting down the bass and bringing in me(Floyd) and filling out the sound with lead guitar(Mikey).  These changes to the sound and live performances really made people take notice and couple that with some friends in the industry, we've been able to really build something.  Trust me, DTTW is just getting started.

Your live performance is definitely energetic with every member giving their all. Can you please give the readers some behind the scenes info of how you approach the live setting (mentally and physically)?
Being a band that does everything themselves, we don't have anyone pushing our music to the masses and so we have to make an impression with our live shows. If we don't leave it all on the stage, then what are we doing? That's why we make every practice like a show, whether we have one coming up or not. We setup the same and we play the set, and during these 100 degree days, that's just endurance training for us.

While on the live topic, DTTW has played many great shows with national acts. What was your absolute favorite and why?
As a band the biggest show was Bad Religion, we sold more merch there than all my shows combined. We had a line just to hang out at the table all the way through BR's set. My personal favorite, I'd say 30FootFall X-Mas 2014. It meant a lot personally to me as someone who came up going to their shows and becoming friends with them.

To me your music is the perfect mixture of melodic punk, Oi and hardcore. What really caught my attention are those catchy sing-a-long choruses. What are your influences and also is song writing a collaborative effort?
Thanks, that's exactly what we are going for in our sound.  As far as influences, everyone has their own, but the crossover for us all are definitely bands that have those sounds.
We want everyone to be a part of the music, so please sing along, and join us on stage.
The songwriting process is always evolving, Brandon likes a collaboration where he has a general idea for a song and we build it in the studio. Sometimes Steve will bring a song put together and we finish it off. I'll come in with a couple of parts and we build a song out of that.

The recently released War EP is an aggressive 3 song attack. It seems each song stands on its own in quality. Had they been in your set list for a while before recording them? Currently it’s a digital release, do you plan on doing a physical release?
The songs had been in the set for a little while. As we are growing, we are trying to move towards writing and recording before we play the songs live, or at least less time in the set before putting them out.
The digital release is an experiment based on the state of music sales.  It didn't make sense to spend a ton of money on records when we could only sell them for a couple of bucks, we'd be losing money.  We are planning on writing songs and getting back in the studio ASAP which I'd like to see on vinyl.

Besides the War EP, what else does DTTW have in store for the future?

The next step for DTTW is venturing outside of Houston.  I'll put our live show against anyone's, and I expect to have Texas in our fold very soon.  We are also talkin
g to a director for a video for "War" and hope to have that out soon as well.


Friday, August 14, 2015

THE BLOODY VON ERICHS: An Iron Claw - Punk Rock Style

I love your band name. Please tell me it is a tribute to the legendary Texas wrestling family.
Yes the Band name is a Tribute to the entire Von Erich Family. Loved wrestling as kids and I believe it would be our former guitarist Bird (Brent) that should get credit for the name. Although when the original crew broke up I demanded that we keep the name. The guys put it on me to establish it and that's exactly what I did.
The web site, the domain, the Name and any Logo. (Note: I've ripped off a few Logos obviously and do not own rights- it's just for test purposes only for set up.) I've worked hard for that name and to keep it.

Your style is definitely an early 80s West Coast punk rock sound. How would you describe your style?
Holy cow man, umm we are definitely West Coast oriented -at least I am. I grew up with NOFX, LagWagon and a bunch of other bands that played shows with Bad Religion and Suicidal Tends in little tiny venues like the Lompoc Theater and recreation halls in Santa Barbara, Ventura and SanLuisObispo Ca. Jake Hard leans more towards east coast hard core. Lando is deep down the hole in whatever may influence him and I actually have no idea what he listens to and will not add nor take away the recipe that he cooks with. He has an amazing way of coming up with riffs, arrangements and usually a good melody or chant as you'd have in our genre.

Please tell us a little bit about your lyrics. What topics do you cover?
Another “crap are you really asking ME that” kinda question.
Totally all heart felt songs. Ha! Most of em are and a few are just for fun. We don't care if no one likes some of those songs as long as we have fun playing em. We all write! We all contribute! It is the best way and only way for us. Multifaceted we are; I play a few different instruments and Jake is a better guitar player than a drummer by far!
Don't print that! Jk
We like to keep him banging away. As for the other guys, they are talented more than most at cranking out songs. As it is though for every 8-12 songs written only one will get a green light from us to continue with to completion. The others sit on simmer.
Topics are non conformist to non conformist.. Just being stupid... Umm we write about the same shit everybody writes about. It's all in just how you say it..
Relationships, Government, Sitting at a Bar, Sex... Whatever.

Is the 2013 EP No Holds Barred your only release? I must say it is a very smooth sounding work. The clear vocals and music complement each other well. I really like it.
We have done a Demo. (Oh the stories to tell about during those days)- Then there's the No Holds Barred which isn't even in production so we decided to do the best thing- burn the shit out of it ourselves and hand em out. And I'll probably do the free download card idea as well. We will go Self Sustained for as long as possible.
The songs are fast and end quickly on most of them you ask me but it makes no difference just ask DRI. We love the sound that we come up with and the tempos and the changes- all just for our kicks and it's amazing that other people really dig us because we just play or do whatever we want to. Like take a blues song and tear it up or recently I did a cover of an acoustic song that is sort of rockabilly but was written by a singer songwriter named D. Kensrue called “Blood and Wine.” He's a worship leader at a big church somewhere.
About the vocals, thanks I do not deem myself a vocalist. Also I would like to thank the extra voices out there donated from PRP as back ups.

What do you have planned next? I know you have to be ready for a new release.
We are working on long anticipated new material- nuff said. Just gotta wait.

I’ve been hearing quite a bit lately about your band on the live scene. Do you plan on doing any touring outside Texas?
Most likely be only Texas for another year then my West Coast buddies would like us to head that way... Let's just get past the end of 2015 and we'll change our minds like we always do.

You recently played the Houston Underground Punk Fest. What fond memories do you have from it?
So there I was b/s'n with my good friend Greg Dodson and talking about doing a big show, and it needs to be all of us playing together and bring all of our people to do it and do it all ourselves. He says to me "well why don't we just do it?" So I stood there blank and said I guess we just need a venue. So next thing I know is people contacted me and I made some calls and nailed down the venue. I was specific that it had to be a smoking allowed place because although people come out to shows; they are usually outside socializing while a band is spilling the blood on stage and nobody's watching. It made me sick. So all of a sudden we had the venue and my homie Greg got peppered with bands willing and he made some calls and then we brought in Jojo S. to help arrange things and bring it all together... So in what may have been my idea / I take no credit for what Greg and Jojo contributed. So my fond memory is a living thing because that ball is rolling and it's gonna stay that way because Houston Punk is Alive and Well! CHAOS PUNKS RULE! 

So now we welcome new guitarist Lando Valley who's live debut was a little bit rough as we did the third song into an already rough opening set & he comes in late- oops / derail! We immediately start it again no biggie... Oops derail.. I won't explain what happened next but there was broken cords a broken mic I believe and broken glass-disarray, but managed to hack our way through the rest of the set as tempers arose and embarrassment set in and a calm eye of the storm that was yet to happen in the green room. I had heard that the venue didn't want us back ever. (We trashed the green room- blood and broken glass everywhere!) Now to my surprise the owners said it was ok and did not charge us for any damages... We were so hot that night because it was a meltdown and a gross display of unprofessionalism. The next morning we hashed it out as well and by the following night we were acting like brothers once again. What people may not know is that we are working class and struggle like all of you out there. My boys donated (blood) plasma for money to get gas and make it to practice and pay the rent for studio space. Jake also had a bad back ache that night and we had not played in over a year. That all said there was mass anticipation from all around us and we crashed and burned...
Days later we are praised for one of the best punk shows and memories attached and the page likes went up and we are booking shows left and right / so much as I can no longer keep up with what the guys are doing anymore. I can only chime in and guess at what I should put on my calendar.

Final words please.
I believe I said enough- I said good day!


Tuesday, August 11, 2015

BARON VON BOMBLAST - A Breath of Fresh Heaviness from some Old Souls

First off, I must applaud you for a cool, catchy band name. Is it a play on the Chitty Chitty Bang Bang character Baron Bomburst or maybe a reference to the old wrestler Baron Von Raschke? Please give more details.
ALLISON: Well back in the early 90's there used to be a men's strip club called LaBare. I frequented the joint and eventually came across a young up and comer named Gregory von Bare-it-all. Well I quickly realized that Greg was never ever gonna make it as a stripper but I saw potential in him somehow and we decided to team up. I was going to become his manager but neither one of us had any talent to either manage or maintain, so we decided to form a heavy metal band. We played the Cirque du Soleil tours for a few years until we decided 2 was kinda small for a metal act and we needed a bigger sound. There were a few more discarded strippers that worked the alley behind LaBare that were so bad the club wouldn't give them any real stage time. They were basically there to take care of the horned up old ladies walking to their cars after the real men had finished their performances for the evening. Well, we figured HELL, these guys would be perfect to finish out our group! It's been 20 years now and none of us has learned to play a damn thing ....and I definitely can't sing so we have decided for sure that we are gonna go places in the world of heavy metal. I mean, we all own old ripped up denim jeans and faded concert shirts...and we've all collected a bunch of really awful black ink tattoos.....so I’m pretty sure we DO have what it takes to be successful.
GREG: What is this zine bullshit??? I should be getting interviewed by the fuckin Rolling Stone! I'm way too cool for this garage band kiddy shit. (Gets up and walks out slamming the door…can be heard cussing and mumbling down the hall)

Although your band is somewhat new, your line-up consists of music veterans from other classic groups. Can you tell the readers how this super group came about?
JOEL: Josh told me he was starting a Menudo cover band! I’m sure you could imagine my excitement! Then I get here & it was this bullshit....but I said "Whatever man, I'm here now so let get on with it." He totally conned into doing this, but I guess it turned out pretty cool......I guess....

With the many varied influences in the band, I am sure the possibilities were limitless. When starting, did you have a specific sound you were trying to create or did the music just fall into place doing early rehearsals?
JOSH: With this gaggle of dorks, the possibilities were vast. Greg had strict "No Palm muting" policy. Bullshit. But jokes aside, we've all been in projects in the past where writing fell into a habit of over complicating songs. The first time we jammed together we wrote 2 songs in one night. We are writing songs that are aurally pleasing. When you hear it, the music sounds familiar. Something that I'm sure inspired all of us in the beginning. Playing something that you hear and some kid say "I can do that." Sure, these dudes can play syncopated weird time shit. But who's ever gonna be impressed by that? Other musicians? Fuck that. We write and play because it's fun. We have jobs. Playing music shouldn't be a job. Whether I'm watching or playing. It makes no difference. I just have the chance to play with some of my best friends. And we like to share. We are very far from believing we are something unique. This is drunk rock for the people, by the people.

I caught the band’s surprise first show at the White Swan. Although a short set, the songs were very strong. Can we expect more live outings? What do you have planned?
JOSH: Expect it for sure. We have no lack of opportunities for live shows coming up. Some are even on the hush, so to speak. Expect a few Deadhorse opening gigs, naturally. Choke. The horse family is broad and us southern boys keep it in the family. I also know of this brutal noodle band named Khobretti that we will be doing a few shows with. CARDIO CORE! Hogs of War are good friends as well, and we share the same rehearsal space. Playing music with friends is where it's at. It’s a much more gratifying and fun night when you all love music and the people you choose to make and play it with. So yeah, we love to play live, so expect it.
BRIAN: Yes, more live shows with hostile takeovers by sword and submission.

This may be a premature question, but what is on the horizon for releases? I saw a video on your Facebook page of some studio tracking. Do you plan on digital only releases or doing something tangible?
BRIAN: The recording process is underway and per our agreement with the United States Government, we cannot discuss the specifics but we will advise on a need to know basis....all we can say is, it's coming.

I really like Joel’s band Skeletal Baron artwork. It definitely gives the group a face and certain style. Artistically, what else does he have planned for the band?
JOEL: The Baron Skull came about with Greg's idea of a bullet hole. I thought the idea was pretty cheesy, but I just threw together some crap around his idea and tried to come up with something fairly cool, and what you see is what happened. I promise the next piece of art will be a lot cooler, as long as I stop listening to his nonsense.

Last words. Let them rip.
JOEL: In all seriousness, I do feel honored to be playing with such a great line up (although, we have yet to do one single Menudo cover, as Josh promised)!


Sunday, August 9, 2015


We just released a full color book featuring interviews from this blog. Here is the promo video:

Here are ordering details: