See evil, hear evil, speak evil.

STRING ‘EM UP: SKINDRED

Previously published in TOTAL GUITAR magazine in 2007:

"Hmm.. are these Skintight Jaguar lyrics on here?"

SKINDRED

Skindred are back but are they making a move into the porn industry?!

They’ve certainly had their ups and downs in the music industry, but it seems nothing can discourage Skindred, especially with a fresh record deal and their long awaited second album finally hitting the shelves. When TG greet the resident axe meisters at Warner Bros’ plush Kensington offices not only is it smiles for miles, but there’s also a small dog called Scamps running around the office trying to get down with the ragga tip on offer. A perfectly ridiculous state of affairs in which to bombard Mikey and Dan with as many of your throwaway questions as possible! It’s not a typical scenario, but then Skindred aren’t a typical metal band – as we find out…

Have you guys been working on other things since the first album?
Kelly Morgan, via email

Dan Pugsley: “Nope, it’s all about Skindred. Roots Rock Riot is our first proper album with Mike and Arya [Dirty, drums] on it as well, so it’s like a debut album again really.”

Who are your heroes in music?
John Pastore, Leeds

Dan: “Definitely bands like Helmet, Killing Joke and pretty much a whole world of reggae music. In the beginning when we started the band we had the idea of taking Helmet type riffs and mixing them with dancehall beats.
Mikey: “I’m loving Aaron North from Nine Inch Nails he’s my absolute fucking hero. He used to play in Icarus Line. He’s a dude.”

What’s it like touring with huge bands like Soulfly and Korn?
Dr. LOLZ , Peterborough

Mikey: “Really weird! You always make friends with certain people in those bands, but you’ve gotta realise… they don’t even talk to each other! Separate tour buses totally, but that’s just how they do things.”
Dan: “We met Jonathon Davis a couple of times and he was super cool.”
Mikey: “Yeah he was really easy to chat to and he was really into what we do. Soulfly was a great tour as well; Mark Rizzo is the most insane technical guitarist I’ve seen in person. He’s insanely amazing.”
Dan: “Those tours were a fucking wicked experience, but it seems about 10 million years ago for us!”

Any filthy backstage stories to tell, or are you boring bastards?
Ross ‘Elvis’ Presley, Grimsby

Dan: “Tell them about Switzerland!”
Mikey: “All I can say is – don’t get drunk with the drummer from Voodoo Glow Skulls ‘cos he howls at the moon! All these homeless punks with dogs on strings turned up at the VGS gig we were playing…
Dan: “It got dodgy inside and the police got called. Eventually they fucked off, so we ended up having a victory party on the bus, and it was then that Mikey got really hammered.”
Mikey: “I’d left my stuff in the venue. This was now locked. So with the help of another guy we broke into this uber modern venue, and still couldn’t get into the office to get my stuff. We found our way to the bar, nicked a load of beer, started pissing on the floor, and then I scratched my name into the brushed aluminium bar! I woke up pretty ashamed.”

Nu-rave and Indie music sucks balls. Discuss.
Derrilyck, Montana

Mikey: “Hmm, not sure…I actually think the Klaxons are fucking amazing. In fact, there’s a lot of good indie bands about that are awesome, people should just look through it a bit more instead of just saying ‘that’s not in my genre so I can’t buy it’. Because if we’d have done that in the beginning, we wouldn’t be making the sort of music we do.”
Dan: “Whether people like it or not, they’ll be singing along to the indie songs. So you know, discuss that!”
Mikey: “Yeah, DISCUSS THIS!”

I think you guys should get into the porn business, what do you reckon?
Necroclaw, Romford

Mikey: “I wanna collaborate with Necroclaw! [Until Mikey hears the question] Actually I take that back! What’s he basing that on? I don’t think we’d be very good at that.”
Dan: “I’ve heard rumours Mike – skills to pay the bills and all that.”
Mikey: “Oh yeah, me pimping my ass out on the rough streets of Reading! Yeah, to be honest I think our crew would be better to work in porn.”
Dan: “Necroclaw though…”
Mikey: “Yeah next album, we’ll get Necroclaw to collaborate with us. But it won’t be porn related, so he needs to clean up his act!”

I love Skindred! Can you teach me some guitar techniques?
Ian C, Billericay

Mikey: “There’s not much to it really – a lot of the stuff you hear live is down to fun toys. The biggest wow factor I have is little noises popping up rather than any sort of shredding ability! I recommend buying fun old analogue pedals, taking them to pieces and then rebuilding them. Then like get old shit pick ups from crappy guitars and put them in expensive ones. Just experiment.
Dan: “Our old guitarist ended up gluing a 2p and 1p onto his guitar, and if you put it through delay and through a whammy pedal you get two different notes out of it, so you just play patterns with the two things. That was in Dub War.”

What would you prefer to lose first, your eyes or ears?
The Mark, London

Mikey: “You’d think that being a musician I’d say ears, but actually I’m gonna have to go with eyes. I’ve only got to take of my glasses and I’ve lost my eyes anyway, so I already know how rubbish that is! You’d hope that if I lost my sight maybe I’d turn into some sort of Stevie Wonder prodigy, but I’m pretty sure I’d be even worse on the guitar. I wouldn’t be able to find it anyway.”
Dan: “Can I have one ear and one eye? Or what about just losing part of my ear and some toes or something?”

What’s next in life for your mascot Mr. C? and what does the C stand for?
Moish Namara, York

Mikey: “We can’t tell you what the C stands for we’ll take it to our graves. We basically liberated him from a shop somewhere in Scotland.”
Dan: “Yeah we saved him from the clutches of a racist shop between Glasgow and Aberdeen. We thought he needed saving, and he’s been with us ever since. What’s next for him? I heard a rumour he was making his own film…”
Mikey: “…yeah he’s making an inter-racial Goth porn movie with Necroclaw!”

 

Interview: Gary Sutherland © 2007.