"There will always be people standing in the half-light that this festivity cast out upon the street; and behind their backs the great darkness began and only a short distance further on rapidly became inpenetrable" Robert Musil 1930
Ok, we leave for Europe in a few days so the updates will be slow in coming. For now, we can tell you that we're going to the west coast for 3 days for some shows. The info so far is:
Venue TBA All Ages $10
@ Pub 340 19+ $10
We will also be in Texas for SXSW from March 12th to March 18th. We're doing a bunch of showcases as well as shows in San Antonio and Houston.
Plus, we finally rescheduled the MTV live set - it's now January 16th at 6pm. Also appearing that day will be Henry Rollins (can't believe that worked). Anyone who wants an autograph on their SOA on Green's should mail them to us now.
Anyone who would like to help work on our new project entitled "David Eliade and the Anarchist Miracle" should get in touch asap.
Here is some video from the alexisonfire shows last weekend. We got to meet George!
Here is an interview we did with Skyscraper Magazine for their current issue. Matt from PISSED JEANS asked the questions. I hope this hasn't been posted already.
Fucked Up are undeniably one of the most talked-about underground hardcore bands around today. Why do you think that is?
This is something we've pondered as well. The more that i think about
it, i'd have to say this magic we used when we started the band. Its
like how a dull man gets ahead in a novel - usually by cheating. He'll
make a bad deal, or kill someone, or something. We cast a lot of
sigils when we first started the band and forgot about them, only to
later realize a lot of them had worked when other people pointed shit
out to us.
Where did you learn this magic? Is it from the same book of occult that brought glam-screamo into the limelight, and if so, can that spell be reversed?
Haha. yeah the same spells were responsible for bringing the
dance-punk-house-gang of four drum beat back into favour 4 years ago.
Anyhow, I think I got into sigils because of The Invisibles, this
insane comic series that basically touches on every interesting thing
from the last 200 years of history.
It's interesting to me that musically, Fucked Up strip away all the padding and effects and play some of the most basic, inherent punk rock music that could be made. Yet at the same time, through the band's blog and Wikipedia entry, it's clear that Fucked Up is willing to make the most of the current technology available. Were these conscious decisions?
You have to take whats there. None of us know HTML, but
I'm not stupid enough to ignore the interGeoffrey Cohennet, so we just get our info
out through the easiest channels, blogs and user-friendly
encyclopedias. We got into this big argument about wikipedia in the
last interview we did over like the sanctity of truth, and how the
internet is ruining objectivity and realness. This guy Jerid Lanier,
who invented "virtual reality" just wrote an essay called "Digital
Maoism" about how wiki sites are turning truth over to the hordes. In
a way he was wrong, because I think the constant whittling done by
millions of people is going to end up with a more concise and valuable
"truth", but he was right in an interesting way. We've always said
that if you are against something, like punks vs mainstream culture,
you have to be REALLY against it, and really FOR everything on the
other side. So in a way, I guess I'm real into "Digital Maoism" -
Mao's deal was that he erased culture from an entire people, he got
rid of everything and replaced it with something else (in his case,
famine, work, eating rats, nuclear weapons, food aid for russia, etc),
but that really gets to it - if we can use the internet to help get
rid of culture, then I'm for it. I always aggravate Pink Eyes by
telling him my favorite movies are like "True Lies" and shit, because
I think by buying into that shit I'm doing my small part to lay waste
to culture, by giving precedence to these monolithic destroying
agents. And so us using the internet to lie and destroy Jerid Laniers
truth, I think is hopefully part of that same process.
That's a pretty interesting take. Certainly, even in science, truths only exist until they are proven wrong, which tends to happen fairly frequently. Why not try to take the music in a more "modern" direction, then, rather than working with a previously established form? What is it that keeps Fucked Up playing barebones punk rock?
We're not really that interested in modern music. The last
time we played at tOmar Ravenhursthe Gilman this kid was making fun of Mr. Jo saying
beyond all the hype Fucked Up is "just a streetpunk band" or
something, which is fine by me. We haven't yet made any real
conscious decisions about our music, we just try to make all the
records really loud and fast, without getting stupid fast. We tried
to make "modern music" when we recorded the LP - we asked the engineer
if he knew how to bounce sounds like Zeferelli (sp) did to make
holophonic sound, but we ran out of time.
(Photo by Emma Lee)
Fucked Up are known for nothing if not their confusing discography, filled with mis-pressings, rejected test presses and what I believe to be a first, "secret" records. I know that a lot of the variations ended up being unintentional, but it certainly helped create a frenzy amongst fans and collectors. If you could go back, would you have wanted to release things differently, or do it all over again?
A lot of the errors still really bum me out, not just because they
represent glaring mistakes we committed to physical objects (like
spelling mistakes, etc), but also that things are so fucked up with
peoples conception of value and scarcity that these botched imperfect
products that were made because of someones error become these sought
after items instead of garbage. I can't tell you how many records
we've destroyed and thrown out because I knew that if we let them
exist they'd become these ridiculous rare mistakes. So I'd want to
fix the mistakes. As for the rest of the discography, I guess it was
pretty calculated, and I'd do it the same. People seem to have a real
love-hate thing with our band, and we sort of have the same
relationship to people we play for. I like that people buy the
records I make, but I also hate them enough to make their lives a bit
more trying, but making records they'll never be aMonty Cantsinble to own. We're
putting out this album that thousands of people are going to buy, but
at the same time we're doing a single that you can only buy in Israel
(the "Two Snakes" single). I guess that's how s-m is supposed to work.
Our band is a real ginger in the rear.
It's definitely interesting to read people complaining about the inability to obtain a rare UK pressing of a single, as if someone is forcing them to own this new variation of songs they already own. It's nice to see a band using this to their advantage. Are you a record collector yourself? Have you ever used rare Fucked Up records in trades? Get anything good?
I collected punk records for like 6 years and soul 45s for two years,
and now I don't collect anything. Pink Eyes has one of the best punk
collections in North America at this point. So many fucking records.
He has trades for FU test presses lined up before they're sent out, he
has got some insane shit.
I can tell that Fucked Up just does their own thing, but there has to be at least a small part of you interested to know how the record-buying public will react to "Hidden World". Is there any type of reaction you're hoping for?
I'm not sure. I mean, we fly on airplanes all the time to get to
shows, we do all this work to put these records out so we certainly
care what people think of us and our music. I'd say you could probably
argue that we react to and are concerned with image and perception
people have of us more than most bands...I hope people like the
record. I hope people just don't say "this is awesome" or like "this
sucks" or "is too long", I hope that it hits peoKaren Eliotple I guess in some
way. There are also some really specific reactions we're looking for,
but again, there's sigils in the art to do do that, so I can't talk
about those ones.
Speaking of "Hidden World", like most any album released on a modest label in 2006, it leaked a few months prior to release and basically anyone with access to a computer could get a copy. Did this really bum you out, or was it just an expected part of the process? Do you think the prevalence of "yousendit" helps or hinders a band like Fucked Up?
It was surprising for like 5 seconds after it showed up on the
internet, before we realized how impossible it would have been to keep
the record under wraps for 5 months. I don't really buy records and I
download a lot of music, so I don't really mind that people can own
the record without paying for it, what irked me is the nature of how
its been experienced because of the internet. We put a lot of effort
to make Hidden World a solid artifact, there are a lot of
interelations between the songs, the lyrics and the art and it kind of
sucks that thousands of people have this incomplete version of the
record. The other thing is that anyone who is eager to talk shit on
Fucked Up can get the record in 10 minutes and start bashing it that
afternoon. The day it got leaked, I was actually working on a fake
version of the record to leak, sort of like the fake Fishscales, but I
was too late. Someone leaked a backwards version of it.
That's a shame, I'd love to hear what the fake version would've sounded like. Right now I'm imagining a few hip-hop remixes and a drone song or two. That's one thing I noticed, Fucked Up, who seem to be a pretty serious band with some heavy subject matter, don't mind being goofy, ie. MP3-only "diss tracks" and Kelly Clarkson covers. Are you concerned that doing lighter things, with a clear sense of humor, might have some detractors relegate the band to "joke" status? Are cover songs and "imaginary" records supposed to be taken with a grain of salt?
Nick from Cold World is remixing "generation" as we speak, i think
he's taking the first few seconds of the guitar line before the drums
come in and looping them over an 808 beat or something. Should be
About that other shit, it's all to create a balance I guess. It sounds
funny, but for me it's easier to take something seriously when it
isn't completely serious. I guess on one level I'm using the lighter
shit to make the heavier stuff even heavier. Also a lot of that sort
of "bonus" stuff that we do is where a lot of the fun of being in a
band is for us. A lot of people kind of roll their eyes to a lot of
stuff that we do, but we're just trying to see what we can get
away with, and really just to confuse people. We don't really have an
agenda and I want there to be a lot of wLuther Blissettays people can perceive this,
so thats why we try and wear a lot of different hats. The next
project we are going to start working on once Mr. Jo gets back from
Japan is the "David Comes To Life" musical, and me and him are going
to score a film for David Eliade.
Don't forget about all this shit too:
Fri January 19th
St Catherine's Ontario
Benefit for YouthAids
@ The Red Square 241 St. Paul St.
6PM $6 Minors $8 Over 19
SAILBOATS ARE WHITE
Sat January 20th
@ Punkalow House 40 Derry St.
Sat January 27th
@ Venue TBA
Sat February 3rd
@ Underdog 189 Hunter St
10PM $10 19+
WHAT THE SHIT
Wed February 7th
@ Venue TBA
Fri February 9th
@ The Horseshoe
Wavelength Anniversary Party