Music Incider interviews the band Powerman 5000 –
Music Incider Magazine
MI Hello, Handsome, it’s Barb from Music Incider. How have you been?
Spider I’m good. How ya doin’?
MI I’m good. Ok, I’ve got some good ones for you this time. How the hell did you land on DRT?
Spider Yeah, that’s a good question. I still ask myself that everyday. Honestly, we were just makin’ the record on our own after the whole DreamWorks fiasco. We just started makin’ our own record and not even looking for a deal and let’s see what happens. At a certain point people started sniffin’ around. Any label can do nothing or everything for you. So, it was just a gut instinct and I liked the people there.
MI I’ve got a good opener for you here, if you’re ever looking for one. They just signed with DRT. It’s Artimus Pyledriver.
Spider Oh yeah, I know those guys. They’re Southern Rock.
MI Yeah, they’re really good. Just to let you know that.
MI How did you come up with the title for the new album, Destroy What You Enjoy?
Spider If I recall, I was flying back from a show and sitting in an airplane. It just popped into my head. It isn’t based on a song, yet. It wasn’t based on anything. It’s just one of those weird things where you’re like, “Wow, that’s really catchy.” Then it became a song and then it became the title of the record. It’s such a great title because it makes you scratch your head and think, “Why would you want to destroy what you enjoy?” It just made perfect sense for a lot of it – the ongoing philosophy of the band. Which is always changing and sort of destroying what we’ve built and rebuild it again. It ties to us with what we do.
MI What’s your favorite track off the new CD?
Spider If I play it live, I really love playing “Return to the City of the Dead,” I love playing “Walking Disaster.” It gives me a chance to play really up tempo, simple little rock song. It’s pretty liberating considering that we spent a lot of our history playing pre-regimented electronic-oriented metal that was very rigid and stiff. This let us open it up, if it’s a mess then it’s a mess and it still sounds good.
MI I heard you replaced your band members.
Spider We have two new guitar players. The revolving door keeps spinning in this band. Adam and Mike left the band. Adam didn’t want to tour anymore and Mike it had just run it’s course. So, we’ve got Terry Corso and Siggy Sjursen on guitar. It’s really cool because it’s turned the band into a straight-ahead rock band. Which is where people start and then end up experimenting. We’re digressing and moving backwards. It’s certainly a lot more fun then it’s been in a long time.
MI How do you feel about playing the A La Rosa?
Spider I haven’t been there since the tragedy. It’s going to be very strange. I’m sure that everyone that goes through there and stands on that stage gets a creepy vibe. I don’t know, we’ll see when it gets there.
MI I already told Amanda to make sure security is tight for you or I’d kill her.
Spider I hope they’ve learned their lesson.
MI I know. What is the status of your Megatronic?
Spider It’s just in limbo like it always is. Once in a while I’ll dust it off and put a record out every five years. A lot of people ask, “Why didn’t we put out our own record?” I’m not in the business to run a label. I’ll leave that to somebody else and focus on the music. The Megatronic label – if something happens with it, then something happens. If not then no big deal.
MI Why did you dye Siggy’s hair black?
Spider I didn’t do anything to him. He does whatever he wants to do. Laughs I’m sure it’ll be different the next time.
MI I want to know how you came up with the “Return to the City of the Dead” off the album.
Spider Originally, one of the Powerman songs, before we were even Powerman, was a song called “City of the Dead.” I dusted off all these old tracks and put out a b-sized record, a polarity record last year. So, that was one of the songs. I was like, “Wow, what a cool song. I forgot we even did this.” So, it’s a nod to the past. Instead of calling it “City of the Dead Part 2,” it just sounded cooler.
MI What was your motivation behind “All my Friends are Ghosts?”
Spider Pretty much what it says. Looking back over the past 15 years, it’s a strange phenomenon how many people come and go. Whether they’re band members or old friends. They’re very incredibly important in your life at one moment and then they’re gone. I seem to be surrounded by that all the time. So, sad but true.
MI It is sad but true. Why do you think people are getting into the new hit single “Wild World?”
Spider I think it’s just an undeniably catchy song. Sometimes it’s all off the hook.
MI It’s a great song.
Spider You know, it’s growing. It’s definitely a challenge for our older fans because it is a different direction. I think a lot of them are still scratching their heads over that one. But, I think that once they take the blinders off and open up they’re really gunna appreciate this record.
MI How did the non-convention go for you.
Spider It was really good. It was really surprising. When we showed up there, we went to the first night. We were almost horrified because we had to play in front of all these industry people with name tags on. It was certainly not like our standard show with a bunch of kids that beat each other up in the pit. But, we got out there and just tore it up and did our show and managed to get the most jaded industry people to get their fists in the air and make some noise. We were the first act or really the only act that really connected with the crowd and got them to have some fun.
MI Tell me you opinion about Katrina and the shit after that.
Spider Haha, getting’ political on me here.
MI Yes, I am.
Spider You live in a Keneye West and George Bush doesn’t care about black people. You know as sort of bold and almost sort of a statement that is; I can’t say that I disagree. It’s a sad story. Absolutely. It was just painfully obvious that the government was neglecting people because of their social status.
MI Do you believe that we belong in Iraq for this long?
Spider No, it’s a disaster. If it would be a bigger disaster if we roll out of there now? I don’t know. It was never a good idea and will only continue to get worse and worse. Now that whole entire region is … I don’t think we’ve seen the worst of it, let’s just put it that way.
MI Do you see yourself writing a song about the Patriot Act without going to jail? Laughs
Spider I’m sure my phone will be tapped. I’ll try to avoid some jail time.
MI Who’s your favorite comic book hero at this time?
Spider I haven’t been reading comics for a while, I’m out of the loop. I’m a standard Spiderman guy from day one. I just saw the new Superman movie.
MI What did you think of it?
Spider I thought that the casting of Superman was brilliant and I thought that the scenes with him were great. But, I thought that the rest of the movie was a little lacking. But, those scenes with Superman made up for it. I’d give it a thumbs up.
MI Do you have any picks for the next President?
Spider I have no idea. No idea who’s running.
MI What CD do you see playing in Hell if you could send a CD to Hell?
Spider I’m assuming that you’re meaning that is a CD that I don’t like.
Spider I hate to say this because it’ll make me seem like somebody jumping on the bashing of a new popular band. Which, I’m not about that because I like to open up and get beyond that “Oh, this new music sucks. Whatever happened to the good ol’ days?” I can’t figure out this new Panic at the Disco record that’s so popular now. I don’t get it. So, maybe that one.
MI If you were President, what would you do first?
Spider Oh, God. You really throw these ones at me, don’t you?
MI Yes, I do.
Spider Uh, redecorate the White House? I don’t know.
MI You’re bad.
Spider That’s a terrible answer.
MI That is a terrible answer. If you could send a message in secret over the airwaves to every American, what would it be?
Spider whispers Buy Destroy What You Enjoy.
MI So, when are you comin’ to Atlanta?
Spider I don’t know, I don’t think Atlanta is on the next run. We’ve got a long tour in September. I’m guessing in October we’ll be heading that way.
MI Are you planning any new videos for the CD?
Spider None, yet. I definitely want to make a another video. We’re not sure what the second single is going to be, yet. “Wild World” is just startin’ to kick in. I know we have our tops: “Return to the City of the Dead” or “Murder”, one of those two.
MI How did Amanda come back into the picture?
Spider We needed her! Chuckles
MI Ya smart boy, I told you to stay with that one. What advice would you give any band that’s just getting signed to a label?
Spider Oh, boy. Work ten times harder than before you had the record deal because bands tend to get lazy once they get signed because they think everything’s gunna start happening. But, it needs time. You just gotta keep doin’ what you’ve always been doin’. Be a good band and play a million shows. Just be cool and meet the fans. Hopefully everything will fall together.
MI How does a Mega Spider stay cool in the heat wave we’re havin’?
Spider Central AC. Don’t go outside.
MI What do you think the five most influential bands of the 90’s are and why?
Spider 90’s? God, you’re killin’ me. Obviously you can’t leave Nirvana of that list. I mean, they sort of encompass all of it. Nine Inch Nails. Certainly wasn’t me. I think Korn was a huge influence. I don’t know if they’ll stand the test of time forever, but they certainly spawned a thousand crappy new metal bands.
MI What would you like your headline to be on the cover of Rolling Stones?
Spider Retired Happily.
MI Other than you; do you think there are true rebels in the music business anymore? If so, who and why?
Spider I’m sure there are somewhere, I don’t see too many of them though. Unfortunately there seems like there’s less rebels in rock music than anywhere else. Everybody’s scared out of their minds to do anything. To experiment, to take chances, to say what they really feel. It’s all very controlled. But, I’m sure that there’s some kid in his garage right now that will prove me wrong in a couple of years and come out and blow all of our minds by being the ultimate rebel.
MI You know Mustane’s on tour, what would be your dream lineup tour be for Powerman if you were to put out a tour like that?
Spider Probably bands that aren’t even around anymore. I would love to, in the spirit of this new record, bring the Clash back to life. Bring the old Pistols back to life. Just do the ultimate dirt bag, punk rock tour. I would be happy to open up for all of them. It’s the spirit of those late 70’s, early 80’s punk rock bands that are the last true rebels.
MI Exactly, what do you think your fans can do to help shape the music industry?
Spider Break the conservative nature of the rock music fan. We go down the road and we play shows and it’s just a sea of kids in black t-shirts and jeans. I’d love to see people expand their horizons and experiment with all kinds of music. I always use that word conservative, but rock and roll is supposed to be the opposite of that. I feel that it’s become one of the most safe avenues of performance. But, it’s fan driven. If the fans start to demand more and become more creative then the music will follow.
MI Do you think we’re gunna be stuck with this war by the time to new President comes in or do you think this thing is going to end before Bush gets out?
Spider Nah, I think it will continue. Whoever is next is going to have to clean up the pieces and hopefully by the end of their term we’ll be out of there. But, I don’t see this thing ending any time soon.
MI How long do you think it’s going to last?
Spider I don’t know. I hope by the end of the next President’s term. It will probably never end. I’m sure there will always be some presence in that country forever at this point. Or at least for a very long time. Whether they declare war is over, who knows when that will be.
MI Do you have a quote for the MusicIncider Hall of Fame?
Spider Do your homework and eat your vegetables. Is that cool? Do you like that? Talk about rebellious, right?
MI How are the wife and kids doin’?
Spider Everything’s cool, yeah, everything’s good. I’m enjoying my time off at home.
MI Good, that’s the most important thing.