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Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Mirrors within Mirrors

Hi, in a few weeks we're playing this show in Montreal, as part of the Osheaga thing. Its $80 to get in that day, but there will be free corn! Which is usually quite expensive. If you don't like eating it, you can shove it in your car and drive back to Toronto. Corn is also used to make plastic. If you are a farmer, chances you are growing corn. Hey, maybe you are Robert Pickton?

Hey, speaking of Vice Records, we've just learned that VICE UK will be doing a UK pressing of the Year of the Pig 12", in the UK! Check out how happy thats making Andy, he loves us! He's also a millionaire (in lbs.). Ben took the picture - he's famous!
In other exciting news, if you live in New York City, we're coming back to play a special show there in the fall, most likely November 10th. More details on that later.

Here is an interview from a zine in France I think:

What keeps you busy in daily life?

Well, I work in a small room at the bottom of a lightbulb factory. Its my job to make sure the
filaments, which are actually tiny coils, stay coiled up during the heating process. When you are affixing the coiled filaments to the base of the bulb, you're using a lot of heat because you're basically soldering them on there. I've got to take random checks to make sure the filaments are still coiled. I have to basically sit infront of this massive microscope all day watching these tiny coils go by on a converbelt, because we're making so many bulbs each day, our plant alone is putting out more than 8000 a day. It's really boring, and i've got to be in the sub-basement because at that point in the manufacturing process the filaments can't be exposed to any light, so instead of installing fixtures to keep too muchlight out on the ground floor, the filament-checking room is way in this creepy bottom corner, because the plant was built in 1889, just a few years after lightbulbs were invented. So basically i do that during the day and try my best to stay out of any light during the rest of the day. Its like if you watch movies at your job at the video store all day, you don't want to watch movies in your spare time, well its the same with light, honestly I just get bored of it.

How did you get involved in hardcore punk? What was your social background back then?

I come from a really small town in Northern Canada. When i was born it was such a barren and secluded area that you had to use a raft to get into the nearest town, which was small enough as it is, believe me. There was one guy in the town you'd spend your whole childhood trying to avoid, because your parents told you to. He was this wierd scientist from the south, basically someone from one of the bigger cities that had been sent up to study our community for some reason we never found out. Anyhow when he quit his job, he stayed in the town and basically just creeped everyone out full time, because no one really new what his deal was. Eventually the older you got you started to wonder more and since there was nothing to do anyhow other than huff glue and walk through miles of ice and snow and catch otters, we would visit him. He had a government ham radio, and it was the only radio in town, basically the only place to get information from the outside. He would get these random wierd shows and connnections all the time. So anyhow, when I moved to the big city to study urban planning at the university, i met all these cool skateboarders who were into punk and they started taking me to shows and i guess you could say the rest is history.

What's up in the Canadian hardcore scene lately?

Good question.

What was the biggest motivation for starting the band? Which bands were the most influential?

Early on we were really influenced by the typical bands - Kull, Degfeist, Forfrathess, Morinacy and Aserblayad. We sort of made out the band to emulate that style. We've started to listen to a lot of other bands since then obviously, and are now more influeced by them.
Fucked up is probably the hardcore punk band with the most releases.. Can you explain me why Fucked Up chooses to do so many releases?

In Canada bands get government grants according to how many records you release - its like when journalists sometimes get paid by the word. Its the same idea, the more records we release, the more money we get, plus we're trying to get into the world record books.

How do you manage to write such long songs without them getting boring?

We tried very hard to make them boring, but I guess we will try harder on the new record.

What's the average length of a Fucked Up show? Since all the song are about 5 minutes ong, how many tracks can you play in one set?

The last show we played, which was in London England, the UK, was 11 minutes long. We flew 8 hours in each direction to play a festival and the council estate shut the show down because of a noise complaint. The average set length for us after the LP is about 2 hours, with a bit of an intermission to watch sports for a bit in the dressing room and to take a bit of ecstacy. If we tried to play all our songs completely in one set, we would still be there playing.

What's the role of David Eliade in Fucked Up?

David is the coiled filament himself. Our job is to sit infront of giant microscopes to make sure
he doesn't come unraveled. He is the electric DNA at the bottom corner of our music factory.

Is there a connection between David Eliade and the song "David Comes to Life"?

David told us that he was born with 3 strands of DNA instead of just 2. He said the third one
was covered with an osmium coating, and made him the first living cyborg. When he came to life it was like he was born backwards, so we had to write the song in reverse order and upside down by having some people hold mirrors to mirrors in our practice space. Decoding the upsidedown backwards lyrics was a huge pain in the ass. David claims to be able to do all these crazy things like see gas and oxygen molecules. We sometimes think he's kind of retarded, but then also like a wierd genius. No one has ever met his father, if you know what i'm saying. Anyhow, the connection is that "David Comes to Life" is about jesus christ.

Can you tell me something more about the attack on stage in Toronto 2004?

Legally we still can't talk about it! We are waiting for the statute of limitations and then everything will be thrown out of court.

What kind of experience was it to appear on MTV Live in Canada? Isn't it a bit controversial with the whole punk rock / hardcore scene?

I think it might be. They offered us $2000 to do it though, which was able to pay for all our
rents for 6 months, plus we got to meet Django from Black Flag and got an MTV sponsorship for a year

If you look back at the European tour, is there a difference between European hardcore punk kids and those in Canada and the USA?

Well european kids are a lot more organized, a lot more determined. We invented the music, you invented the lifestyle.

What was your global impression of touring Europe?

Globally, I'd say europe is just one continent.

What can we expect from Fucked Up in the near future?

Lots more records! And robotic shoes.
Any last whispers?


Friday, August 24, 2007


We did a thing for Dusted about the intro music we use. Here it is, maybe you were at one of these shows?:

1. A Challenge of Honour - "The Home Coming"
Our gnarliest use of intro music. Sounds like a thousand sketchy bats flying into your ears and eyeballs, and sounds so out of place and jarring, that it makes for a hyper-disorienting tense environment just before we start playing, like as if there is construction upstairs,but instead of carpenters it's nazis. This band also has a record called "Spartan Victories" - enough said.

2. Julee Cruise - "I Float Alone"
For the exact opposite effect. We used this at a show in Washington, just beyond the Black Lodge. Peaks in just the right places, fills up a dark room with just the right amount of anticipation, and sounds like its about to unravel and spill right off the highway. Badalamenti uses all of the right tricks here - a melting horn solo, the most confusing piano mangling, and he steps on the lowest pedal on the organ, and just leaves it running.

3. Barbara Mason - "A Good Man is Gone"
Yeah, the "Yes I'm Ready" Barbara Mason, but this was the mid 70s NY alleyway version. This song is from the "Sheba Baby" soundtrack. The night before Octavio left for the psychic warzone, we played this track before our set and tore everyone’s hearts from their stomachs. Then he reminded us that time doesn't exist and we'd see him when we get there, and filtered into the vibrations, singing "Yes I'm Ready".

4. David Axelrod - "The Mental Traveller"
Nothing gets the attention of merch table monkey's like a hundred violins sustaining for 40 seconds straight. Useful again at the 1.30 minute mark when the guitars kick in, because if you still aren't paying attention you might think it was us playing, except for when those headache-strings come back in.

5. Gustav Holst - "Mars, the Bringer of War"
Our best shows have been odes to the god of war anyhow, so why not stand up and take our hats off for the anthem before it starts? The only song better at getting people prepared to smash each other is…

6. Cro Mags - "We Gotta Know"
Sometimes we get booked to play festivals and play this like a secret code for the lowlifes that sneak in so they can call mayhem when we start. The most classic intro of all time, we actually play this with instruments, not over the PA. When we covered "Down but Not Out" at a loft in Brooklyn three different fights broke out at the same time – talk about mind control.

7. Kinfolk Kia Shine - "So Krispy"
We still can't afford a lot of fancy gear. I had this on my iPod (Shuffle) a few weeks ago when we did a festival in England and was it came on right as I was done setting up. I put the earbuds to my guitar pickups and looped the drum intro with my line 6 delay pedal. We used the beat to start the first song of our set. A few weeks later we did the same thing with the start of "97 Mentality" but I wrote about this song because the lyrics are way more retarded ("Krispy like a two piece, not a pot pie").

8. Monty Cantsin - “Mass Media
We had to use this a few times because David claims that he wrote it.

9. Julie London - "Like to Get to Know You"
We play this right AFTER we're done playing and seperated by everyone at the show by 3 inches of bulletproof glass in the Fucked Up-mobile, just to rub it in as we drive away (it also has a cow catcher on the front)

10. "Kaneda" from the Akira soundtrack
We had to stop playing this song because people kept turning into huge stuffed bears and exploding into birds and pieces of felt and shit all over the club in slow motion.

Saturday, August 11, 2007


Hey, in case you ever wondered what Jonah looks like, here is a picture:

Toronto customers - Rotate This has some Year of the Pig 12"'s.

Wednesday, August 08, 2007


Hey we are back from our latest adventure in the UK, this time we played a drug-fest and got shut down for a noise violation at 2.30am from the Norwich council or something. We still had a blast, and thanks to everyone who helped - Andy, Charles and Vice, Jase, James, the dude who directed the Justice video, Nathaniel's Wieners, Paco, Tullamore Dew for sponsoring the event, the girl in the white dress I saw just off Oxford Street the next day, Clarks footwear, The Little Darlings, Kate Nash, Malouda, etc. You can see all the pictures (well two of them) right here.

Here is a video of our set, we played inside the big purple tent in the sky:

If you were at the show, you can complain about it here, like all these Brits are already doing. If you thought it was great, why not say so here or even better, here.

Speaking of Little Darlings, last year we played a show in Barcelona that ended up being one of the best Fucked Up shows of all time. Like at one point Damian picked up a small woman, and the two of them were then both picked up and hurled off the stage.

More pictures can be found here from that show. Anyhow, in addition to playing with top-notch bands Uber, Otan and Tension, we played with Invasion (pronounced Spanish-style). They have a new 12" coming out on Paco's label, and you should anticipate it feverishly. Here is mp3 from it. Here is another. Guille (the singer) uses this delay pedal on his vocals live and even though he had just bought us the worst pizza to eat in the western hemisphere, it still broke all our brains watching it. Just look at the picture (its the one at the top).

Speaking of which, if you are in a band that is amazing and want to put an mp3 up here, get in touch with our head of online marketing, David Eliade.

Speaking of which, we're on the lookout for a thief. A box of Year of the Pig 12"s was surreptitiously replaced with a fake plastic rock on it's way to revolver mailorder. I'm not kidding! Check out the evidence of some guy at the revolver office holding up the rock:

If you work at UPS and understand whats going on, or are a general sleuth, please get in touch with our in-house detective Octavius B. St. Laurent.

I'm hearing that people are having a hard time getting a copy of YOTP. Revolver has some (the ones that didn't get swiped) and you can order them here. Stores should be getting copies this week and next week and a repress is coming soon, like in the next few weeks. If you own a "computer" you can still get it digitally (if you swing that way) here, and in hard copies here and here. If you still haven't heard the thing it's now streaming on the CBC radio 3 page here.

Hey, here is a thing with Pink Eyes about how he lost his marbles, threw a slurpee at Gulag, broke and elevator and quit the band onstage when we went to Vancouver a few months ago.

Plus, we love community radio. You might remember me linking the WFMU set we did a few posts back. Here are two more:

Fucked Up Live on WMUC Washington DC July 17 2007

Fucked Up Live on WKDU Philadelphia July 18 2007.

Thanks to Chris and Adam for setting these up. Act fast! These links won't last forever. Listen for the special cameo from Ghostface on the 2nd one.

A while back we played "Wakefest" which is an extreme sports oriented festival here in Canada. It was wierd, thats why we didn't say anything about it before. Here are some pictures taken by David Waldman.

Wednesday, August 01, 2007


First of all I'd like to send a link to our friends website over at Some crazy knowledge being dropped there.

If you are the kind of person that wants to buy "Year of the Pig" in digital format, the other option is at Other Music, right here. Don't forget that the actual record comes out next Tuesday.

Meanwhile, back in Euroslavia, here is an update from the road circa 3 years ago, G. Beat style:

Like every other band Fucked Up has spent considerable time undergoing mental and physical fermentation between four doors and eight panes of glass; endless stretches of asphalt passing beneath our feet. There is a strong difference between us and all the rest, though: The commonly held notion that every band treats their van like “another member” of their band; a friend; a companion that will never let you down; this sort of relationship with a car is very foreign to us. We can’t even keep a consistent roadie let alone an inanimate object. In fact, short of a band like Motorhead who probably tours in a different bus every trip, I can’t think of a band that is more promiscuous with its ‘extra member.’ Despite our one night stand policy on vans, we’ve spent our fair share of time in them no matter what country, state, province, or regime we find ourselves in. As soon as we pass through that sliding door, flashes of every other rolling torture chamber we’ve been interned in come flooding back. While it would be unfair for me to speak for everyone in saying all of our time in vans has been unpleasant, I’m sure we can all agree on this story as a good dose of bad luck.

Our van: a late ‘80s Mercedes Benz bus/cargo truck. Seating for a driver, two front passengers, 3 back seat passengers, and one or two people in the loft. Seatbelts for one (driver) and the front seat bench attached by what we would hope be the indomitable spirit of ONE nut and bolt.

Our Driver: 18 year-old Martijn Swanink. A young Dutch man who had just received his drivers license a few months earlier. The furthest distance he’d driven clocked in at about 2 hours.

The Tour: 21 days through Holland, Denmark, Sweden, Belgium, Germany, The Czech Republic, Slovakia, and Serbia.

The drives had all been long, but relatively painless. Passing time is the first thing you learn on the road. This particular day found us wondering the streets of Dresden, Germany, a few hours from entering the Czech Republic to play a Friday night gig in Prague. Getting into the Czech was easy. As we passed over the border we noticed another red van full of punks waiting to be interrogated and searched. We laughed at their misfortune and flaunted our good fortune, jeering and waving as we drove by. Roads in Czech were good to start – four to six lanes on a well lit, well maintained highway. About ten kilometers from the border and well on our way to ‘Praha,’ the road deflated from a comfortable European highway into a bumpy, two lane road, winding down a steep descent through dense traffic and an odd spectacle -- Small cabin-like huts that had a floor-to-ceiling glass window across their front appeared every few hundred metres. At first they were empty displaying nothing more than an arm chair, but as we passed deeper into the Czech countryside, the windows quickly began to fill up. The entire highway was now a drive thru moto-brothel, broken up only occasionally by growers of mushroom wandering the shoulder, senior oriented souvenir shops every few kms or prostitutes walking alongside traffic and into wooded areas. Strange, but enjoyable, the scenery dripped by.

The hillside got steeper as our several thousand pound van struggled to resist gravity. It was all a great sight until a short silence between laughs and jokes produced a cigarette stifled cry to fume from Martijn’s mouth: “Shit. T-t-t-he brakes are GONE.” Like those first few moments on a roller coaster, we started to roll freely downhill towards the back end of a semi truck. The van lurched over bumps as we swerved onto a small laneway on the side of the road; just short of the truck and just in time to pull the emergency brake and stop. Our stomachs in our throats, we tip toed out of the van to take a look: Smoke lingered around our front tires and the smell of burnt/melted plastic accompanied it. We needed help.

A conversation with a Dutch roadside aid telephone service alerted us that by riding the brake for so long, our brake fluid had overheated and boiled rendering it and our brakes completely useless. We were advised to wait for an hour to let the fluid reconstitute itself and start driving again, this time with the caveat “use the brake as little as possible (to conserve the potential teaspoon of fluid we had left).” We got back into the van and with no brakes traversed the rest of the sex highway careening down hill at top speed, hand at attention on the emergency brake, our only defense against spreading FU across highway E55. The hills in the Czech did not let up. With our free fall, new smells came and went, now mostly coming from the transmission on which we had to rely to slow us down. I was in the loft, a vantage which no one really wants on a hairy drive (no seatbelts, seats, or safety whatsoever) with only a small opening to let me know what was happening in front of us…to the left of us…behind us…in front of us…on top of us… otherwise all I could hear was the wind rush by and our van squeaking in pain around every corner. Pinned to the wall, ceiling, and mattress, I’ve never felt further away from home.

We survived the descent effetely, but what should have been our salvation – Prague – turned into more trouble. We immediately got lost after the first step on our directions. After a few blocks we were helplessly turned around and stuck somewhere just outside of downtown Prague when the only other car possibly in worse shape than ours whipped by us, billowing blue/black smoke and swerving all over the road. Barely catching a shade of red, we recognized the van as the punks from the border cross and took it as a sign to follow them and hope they were going somewhere we would want to be. We followed their speeding inferno on a Bullitt style car chase through Prague, leading us to a large apartment complex and a tiny door beneath a flight of steps. Their van practically collpased as they stopped in front of what seemed to be the venue. Eight madmen and women fell out of the van, stumbling drunk and screaming “we’re here!” The promoter ran out, rushing them into the club. “Who’s that??” we asked. “That’s Martyrdod, they’re headlining and they’re late. Just look at their van.” He said. “We’re Fucked Up, we’re late too.” He shot us and our van (which didn’t look bad at all) a look as if to say ‘what the hell took YOU so long?’ and led us inside where a whirlwind 45 minutes of noise between two bands produced one of our most memorable shows of that tour. The next day, the side door fell off...

Don't forget also to check this out!