Friday, July 1, 2016

SUBSTANCE - Punk that'll make you wanna sniff glue

I really like your raw, unpolished, punk rock approach. Although raw, it definitely works. Upon first seeing you live, my first thought was that of The Germs. Tell us a little bit about your background and how Substance came about.
Derek: We used to be a hip hop group called D-money And The Pawnz
Nathan: We actually came out of a way shittier punk band called Ebola Goats. I was on drums and Derek was on vocals just like Substance. Our original bass player was also in that band but he quit Substance to jerk off full time. The gig he skipped actually is when we got Alex to play bass that night and from then on he was in the band.
Ethan: I just joined the band.
Alex: I played bass in punk and metal bands throughout high school but stopped
playing for the most part when I began college. Early spring semester I decided to go check out Derek and the new punk band he was in and apparently their bassist pulled a dick move and quit before this show I went to see them at. With no other options Derek asked if I wanted to play in Substance and if I wanted to play that night despite not knowing any of the songs as well as my refusal to learn them before hand. However that became a moot point because the shitty bass that Super Happy Funland graciously allowed me to borrow (after none of the bourgeois punks from the other bands would help me out) didn't have an input jack so I just spazzed out and flailed around for our set that I actually didn’t play.
I’ve been seeing your name routinely on gig flyers. How is the live circuit treating you?
Derek: Really good. We always get a pretty good reaction even though it's 98% gimmicks. We've been playing in front of both punks and hardcore kids and get the occasional head nod or foot tap which is tight. One time I took my pants off during our set and this drunk ass dad told me to put them back on and threatened to fight me. That's probably a good representation of our shows.
Nathan: As long as we don't fuck up, pretty good.
Alex: The shows have been great, we have a tight knit punk and hardcore community as all of us know which really makes it fun. We pretty much play a show every two weeks since I’ve joined the band and we recently played in San Antonio. It's no doubt the dirtiest Derek has ever gotten at a show with a nice lil dirt and green slime combo.
So far you’ve released the 2016 Demo. As I mentioned earlier with The Germs, your debut release totally reminds me of something some the late 70s LA scene. The answer is obvious, but is that era where you draw most of your influences from? Derek: Haha not at all for most of us believe it or not. I'm probably the only one in the band who listens to stuff from that era. I dig Germs, The Screamers, Black Flag and stuff like that. I guess we have that sound because we take from band like Gag and Glue and they seem to be influenced by that NYHC sound so maybe that's it.
Nathan: Yeah I listen to mostly rap and modern hardcore bands. The only punk bands I was listening to when we wrote that were Glue and Bad Brains.
Alex: I listened to a lot of hardcore punk when I was a teenager and really got back into it once I've joined Substance but for me my biggest inspiration is bands that lose their minds on stage.
Besides the demo, do you have any new recordings planned?
Derek: We have two coming out in the future. We've got a promo/live tape coming out in a bit on Murder On Ponce which is out of Atlanta. Then we're making a 7 inch that we're probably gonna self-release and go broke doing. It's going to be way better than the demo. It's nastier and totally hateful.
Your lyrics are rebellious in nature. Can you give insight of what’s in your mind?
Derek: It's a lot of what happens around me that influences the lyrics. You see people every day getting stuck in jobs they hate or people trying to point fingers and say someone is wrong for believing something that hasn't been presented to them. A lot of people my age are just taking what’s being handed to them by social media or by their parents and I think it's utter bull shit. It may be cliche for me to write about not wanting to conform but that's how I feel daily. I don't want to be like you.
You are also a photographer and videographer. You did a great job on Supremacy’s Southpaw video. Can you tell us more about your digital media arts?
Derek: Thank you. My work so far consists mainly of documenting shows and it's really fulfilling because I love to look back on the photos and remember the whole experience of it. This year though, I'm going to continue documenting but also try and move into a more artful space. I haven't found out how exactly I want to express myself through my photography and videos but I'm going to experiment and try to capture that attitude of resisting the norm and remaining positive.
We will finish up with anything you would like to add.
We love Halston, John Baldwin, everyone in Wild Thing, Darby Crash, Manda, Josh Borsarge, Bucky, Jacob V, Kevin, Martin, Aria, Kaylin, Miri, Alex's dad's truck, and a bunch of other people. I wanna be a--baller, shot caller. Twenty inch blades--on the impala.