Outlaw order interview (Eye hate god reborn!!!) 11/7/2008
1 Please tell us how Outlaw Order came to be… Is it from the ashes of Eyehategod?
Eyehategod had just come back from a Japanese tour with soilent green in march of 2002. it was my first tour with the band. we were so on fire and ready to begin moving forward with writing a new EHG record once we got home. long story short, jimmy was about to embark on a series of tours for "down II," and Superjoint's second full-length was coming out and they were touring, so after japan, we didn't see much of jimmy. prior to my being in EHG, mike and i had thrown around the idea of starting a band that had more punk/hardcore/crust overtones than the slower, heavier music our bands were known for; we started putting together this idea of a band in the summer of 2002. we were gonna try to do some strange hybrid of electric frankenstein/poison idea/discharge. we went thru a few line up changes during the formation, but outlaw order somehow ended up being everyone from EHG minus jimmy, and marc schultz on bass( "in the name of suffering," "take as needed for pain"). there is one song called "worst liar i ever met" on our "legalize crime" ep that represents the initial direction of the band. we got bored with that formula and ended up sounding like we do now. with regards to EHG, there are no ashes. i would say that there were times when, as a new member back then, i wondered if we were ever gonna jam again; but i never once thought eyehategod would really cease to exist. we have too much fun together and are no where near out of fire. we all consider EHG a band that must always be.
2. You self released an EP a few years back - is it very different from the current full length.
Its slightly different in that the writing was a little more simplistic than the songs on the full length and the recording rougher; it sounded like outlaw order, but in a developmental stage. after jamming as long as we have with this band, we read each other better, and have a better sense of the direction of the music.
3. Eyehategod was working with Emetic records for your last few releases. Why did Outlaw Order go with Season of Mist for your debut full-length?
we wanted this record to reach all corners of the world. with season of mist, they were offering distribution all over the place, and with this being our debut full length, we wanted to make sure that it was available to everyone readily. you can get Emetic releases internationally, but outside of Canada and the U.S., you have to pay an import price. We still work with Emetic Records for Hawg Jaw, and they also run the official Eyehategod merchandise site. They just released double LP versions of the first three EYEHATEGOD's cd re-issues in gatefold format. For the Outlaw Order release, we figured we'd try a different label given what they were offering. We have no bad blood with Steve over it; he was fully supportive of our decision.
4. To the band minus that Jimmy Bower is not with you what is the major difference between EHG and Outlaw Order?
without jimmy, it doesn't have that southern twang that jimmy brings to EHG; like what you here in "dixie whiskey", or that bludgeoning guitar tone he gets out of his randall amp. its a very unique sound he's got that could never be replaced. we try to avoid slower sabbath/flag like riffs and focus on doing something that isn't an eyehategod carbon copy; more aggressive and in your face tempo-wise and vocally. more focused on a crime/anti-establishment theme than drugs/religion.
5. Why not just keep the EHG name and work without Jimmy until he came return from Down?
we wanted to create a separate entity from eyehategod that we could all stay active with, recording and touring, and pick up with EHG when jimmy has the time. jimmy's style of writing is very influential in the sound of eyehategod, so we figure lets just wait til he's around to do it right. we know what has to be written has to top anything we've done, and we can do that when we are all present; it happens like magic when we get together and efficiently at that. he's really busy with down which is great for them, but we were getting restless and needed a new outlet. brian tours alot with soilent green, but the rest of us had to sit idle as neither hawg jaw or arson anthem tour much. just like the rest of the bands, when the time is right for eyehategod to get out there again, it will happen with blunt force.
6. Will Outlaw Order be touring or just performing locally in the NOLA area only?
we will be touring without a doubt. we are starting with some shows in texas for january, but plan to do full scale tours shortly after. its been awhile since all of us have been able to leave the state, mainly because of legal restraints. now that most of that has cleared up, we plan to take full advantage of being able to tour again.
7. There seem to be a lot of bands that are coming out of the Sludge Crust Doom sound EHG mastered. What are all of your thoughts on bands like Sourvein, Cavity, Kylsea, Deadbird and Samothrace?
i'm not familiar with Samothrace, but all of the other bands you mention i have considered family for years and have utmost repect for the music they make. i guess Hawg Jaw's origin isn't much different. like these bands, we were born out of that era, but over the years we became our own band. i remember being inspired by that sound enough to get up start playing again. it heavily influenced Hawg Jaw in the beginning. then we were like, "lets get away from sounding too predictable or too much like sludge as the world knows it, and throw in some old Agnostic Front influence or Flipper;" some meshing of styles that would become our style. that what i think all these bands were doing too; taking some form of music that we all loved and translating it into their language. For example, Cavity has always made me think of EHG mixed with some Laughing Hyenas or Black Flag "Damaged," but they sound like Cavity. all of these bands had something new and fresh when they came out, and that is the reason why they are still relevant today.
8. Is there a running theme on " Dragging Down The Enforcer"?
i did all of the art for the cd and the theme i had in mind was to create an anti-cop, anti-establishment propaganda handbook of images. its meant to be a commentary on the sad, non-existent state of a justice system in new orleans, the evergrowing presence of big brother everywhere, and the need for there to be some major overhaul of society as we know it. most of us have had issues with the law, and have been bled dry financially by fines/drug courts/lawyers, put in jail for misdemeanor bullshit, and this is our artistic equivalent of a fuck you to their standards and hypocrisy. we owe them at least that. i'm not sure of mike's lyrics, but they portray a similar image just going by the titles.
9 To my ears there seems to be a much more raw and punk element in Outlaw Order - was this done for reason or just happen this way?
definitely intentional. the song i mentioned before, "worst liar i ever met," represents our initial plan. we ended up referencing those elements instead, while still doing our thing. like i said, we got bored with the verse/chorus/verse structure and replaced it with what we consider our sound, using the punk influence as an accent.
10. What your thoughts on the current underground extreme music in North America?
for a while i lost interest because it seemed like everytime you turned around, the "hardcore" bands were sounding more and more like radio bands. for years i didn't listen anything but my old music. there is nothing worse to me than a band that is so full of angst, and then decide for the bridge of a song, that they need a pretty singing part...isn't that what papa roach does? i may be completely ignorant of this genre of music, but it seemed more like a whiny fashion show than "exreme" music. i have much more interest in whats going on now; some of my favorites being torche (do your self a favor and have the skin melted off your face when they hit the "bomb chord"), black cobra, municipal waste, evil army, the new 2 drummer version of the melvins, and witchcraft for sounding like they came straight out of the 70's and doing so with good taste.
11. If you can, as 4/5 of the band were in EHG. what the hell happened with EHG and Century Media as you seem to have a 5-album/10 yr partnership??
i don't know all the details because that was before my time in the band. what i get is that the contract was signed in haste and alot of the fine print was overlooked. now they own publishing for all the songs released on their label, merchandise rights, and some other specifics i'm unaware of. when you're a new band and young, all you want is for someone to put your music out. you never think you'll be a "big" band or anything like you'll make money playing hardcore. sometimes it does end up that way, but labels will take advantage of your excitement and naivety to see if you'll overlook shit that will later make them cash and you nothing in the end. its the unfortunate nature of the business. despite all of the past between EHG and century media, we've made some positive headway with some of the newer folks over there.
12. What are your thoughts on bands like Down and COC that have added a southern blues more mainstream sound on what you created and had much more success?
it took me a second to understand why you would add that influence to what i thought was the pure form. i come from a punk/hardcore background where faster, dirtier, louder, in your face was better than clean, produced, more accessible music. my local favorites as a teen were shell shock, blatant frustration, exhorder, graveyard rodeo; the faster more furious, the better. i remember seeing down for the first show, and remembered being disappointed becuase it was something i'd never heard, and it wasn't all power chords and screaming. i hear a song like "temptations wings" now and i get it now because its been over a decade and in that time i've listened to zeppelin, pink floyd, skynrd,john lee hooker, son house, cream, and a bunch of other shit that has heightened my understanding of music beyond the genres. i was a little younger, and my music background then was much more limited as were my tastes. i see down in a whole different light now. the created a genre of their own by taking hints of all the bands that made up down, and presented it in a way that reached a broader audience and really put new orleans on the map in the metal community. there are so many fans that would have never heard EHG, crowbar, or COC, if it were not for down.
13. Is Outlaw Order a full time band or just a project for those of you in other bands like Arson Anthem, Solient Green, Goatwhore etc.?
we are a full time band; we work in our time between everyone's schedules, but no band has priority over another. in the case of outlaw order, i call ben from soilent to see what they have plans for, and i do the same if something comes up for us. schedules overlap occasionally, but more often than not, we are able to coordinate tours together so we all get the chance to get out on the road.
14. Are Outlaw Order fans of digital media such as selling tracks or albums as mp3s and buy titles on your phone? Do you miss the days of old?
i am all for selling music online or from phones; i would rather have the cd and art in my hands, but if you have to download it because you can't find it, so be it. i do miss all the cool packaging and colored vinyl that preceded the cd. it still exists, just not to the extent that it did before cds. it took me about two years before i broke down and bought a cd. i just came to understand buying music online last year; i'm a little slow with technology.
15. You have a very killer Myspace site . Do you feel this is needed promotion and connects for artist to the fan?
Myspace is one of the best things to happen for bands. it lessens the communication gap between the bands and they're fans. so many people think its cool that we take the time to write fans personally, instead of a site manager or someone hardly associated with the band. we are thankful for the fans we have, and having direct dialog with them is a good way of showing our appreciation. it is amazing for promotion; you can do things on there that you wished you could have done with the old website format: the bulletins, blog sites, sample music, upcoming show calendars, etc. these are all things that we would pay a web master to do for us prior to myspace.
16. Any closing thoughts here - thank you.
thanks to you for diggin us, and shouts out to all the nola bands who've become family on the way: haarp, a hanging, pallbearers, face first, spickle, hostile apostle, flesh parade, tire fire, goatwhore, ritual killer, fat stupid ugly people, die rottz, big baby, king louie, and fuck me for who i forgot...hurricane katrina threatened to leave this cities music scene in shambles; instead its become bigger than its been in years and with more of a reason to be...long live the dirty south.