Dullest Records Artist - Cleanteeth Interview is up

1. For those new to Cleanteeth tell us a short history of the Sludge, Crust, Post Doom creation of this massive musical undertaking..

-James O'Brien (JO): in April 2008 Carmine from Hull asked me if I wanted to play a show that June. At that point in time I had no band at all, Cleanteeth wasn't even a glimmer in my eye. I had, however been talking with Matt Egan and John McKinney independently of each other about musical projects. First I asked them if they wanted to play a show, then I introduced them to each other. In a matter of 6 weeks we hammered out enough songs for a set. At that time it is was mainly instrumental because we hadn't written any vocals. Since that time are on our 4th drummer and 3rd bass player. At one point we were a 3 piece, then a 4 piece, then a 4 piece, then a 5 piece and now we are back down to 4. Basically if you don't like us, blame it all on Carmine, this whole mess is his fault.

John McKinney (JM): Yeah I moved to NYC in 2006 and didn't know anyone and was dying to play music.  In 08 I asked James if he had room in his studio for my gear, he said "yes wanna jam?" and after about 30 minutes of making awful noises, we decided playing a show would be a great idea. Spring Break '08!

2. So I do hear a lot of bands like Isis,  Crowbar, Cavity, Jesu, Early Pitch Shifter , , Swans and even Fear Factory going on... What bands make Cleanteeth tick??

-JO: We like lots of different things when it comes to music. Karp, Harkonen, Godflesh, My Bloody Valentine, Neurosis, etc. etc. etc. I personally am into a lot of Am-Rep (if you don't know that label, google that shit 'cause you are missing out) stuff as well as shoegaze, hip-hop & old new wave. My musical tastes are all over the place.

3. Tell us a bit about Dullest records how did you come to work with them ?

-JO: We met Danny and Luis while touring with Danny's band Hollenlarm and our friends The Osedax. On that tour we actually played in Luis's basement. I felt so bad for his neighbors that night, but that show fucking ruled.

4. Do you feel you fit more with the Post Hardcore DIY crowds or more with the Sludgy Doom/ Nola bands . You seem to cross both lines do the DIY shows of metal shows seem to bring more of the fans in to Cleanteeth?

-JO: Cleanteeth has fans?
-JM: We fit in at shows where people are the most high and drunk.

5. Whats your thoughts on the digital age are you fan of Social media, digital releases, youtube and webzines or do you miss the old school world of print zines, tape trading etc.. Is this just the new underground where anything goes again or way to many bedroom bands??

-JO: Digital releases are kind of awesome. We have zero intention of producing anything other than vinyl and digital releases. CD's are worthless and basically dead media already.
Print zines were great, but if you lived somewhere with out a decent record shop or didn't know about them you missed out.

6. If there was one band you could cover and send them the track or tracks to give feedback on who would it be and why?
JM: We like to do covers somewhat regularly, so it would be great to have some feedback from those bands.  We've done Avalanche Master Song by Godflesh, a song by Slowburn, and most recently we did Through Silver In Blood with like 7 people on stage and I played a baritone.  I'd love to send that shit to Neurosis.  

7. What are the members of Cleanteeth listening to? Are there any surprises to us?

JM: ONLY METAL ALWAYS. Actually, I listen to a lot of post rock and really sad bastard music for some reason.  One of my favorite albums this year was the collab between Mark Kozelek and Jimmy LaVelle from the Album Leaf.  That is pretty much the exact opposite of our music… quiet, well written by good musicians, and intelligent lyrically.  We are none of those.  Also, the new Process of Guilt record is one of my favorites this year, that record is heavy as an elephant's balls (that has elephantitis… so like double elephant balls).  And I'm listening to Run The Jewels right now.

8. Being in Brooklyn there seems to be a hot bed of music and labels there right now . Do you think that helps your indie growth or did you have to get out of Brooklyn to really get the push you needed? 

JM: Brooklyn is amazing for the scene because we have tons of friends to play with and we're constantly challenged by what everyone around us is doing.  It's not everywhere that you can just play a show with local bands, and those locals happen to be insanely interesting, unique heavy bands like Sannhet or Mutilation Rites or Theologian. We always like playing outside of Brooklyn, but there is nowhere else we'd rather be from because of how diverse it is here.  We also have great venues that help nurture that scene, which is critical to helping each other grow.

9. Are there any local bands there that are blowing you away right now?

JM: Sannhet.  Oh sorry I thought you said "blowing you right now".  Yeah they're pretty good at making music too I guess.

10. Do you prefer the studio or out on the road ? It could be a mix of both let my reading know…

JM: Definitely both.  We love hanging out with each other so every time we are in the studio or on the road, its basically a weeks-long dick joke.

11. Pushing Rope is such a caustic record .. Is there a running theme to it or just a collection of Pissed off Sonic Anthems?

JM: Every one of those songs comes from a specific place.  Some of them may have a related story, but all of them have a few layers.  We take very dark subject matter and then make it sound more like a joke and less serious.  We have plenty to say, we just don't like to be that dark brooding whiney weirdo who writes about being grim and frostbitten.  James and I write most of the lyrics, a lot of them are about religion, addiction, death, and tragedy but we prefer to do it in a different way than being "dark and brooding." 

12. You like to mix Industrial, Doom and Experimental sounds where do you see future releases heading?
JM: We sort of came to exist from a very experimental place, so I think we'll always have that element on our records.  Also we don't really know what we're doing, so that's the real answer.  We are like hyper ADD kids that have run out of medicine.  There are times when we're like "oh shit that new Kowloon Walled City record is awesome, we should rip that off" and then get sued and pay lots of settlements.  Being in this band is expensive.

13. Do the members of Cleanteeth work in any other project or have projects of there own you would like to talk about?

JM: James has a little noise/ambient thing he does called Ghost Tuxedo, Kenny plays in a band called White Widows Pact and still does Goes Cube.  I started a record label a couple months ago with Steve from the Atlas Moth and my brother called Gypsyblood Records that will be droppin' fat staxx o' rad waxx in 2014.  Drew has got some buns in the oven that are taking a very early shape.

14. If you could make a proper full lengths DVD what would it look like and are there any songs that you feel would need to be on it?

JM: It would be a pornography film, probably titled Cleanteeth: Gone Prolapsin'  and the soundtrack would all be by Michael McDonald and selections from the Top Gun soundtrack.  We probably wouldn't put our music on it, and you could only buy the DVD from drug dealers.

15. Thanks for the time any closing thoughts here 

JM: At this time I am legally obligated to disclose that I am a registered sex offender. Thank you for your time.