4) What's one time something went terribly wrong or miraculously right (or both) for you on the road?
One time in 2008, we were on tour with Horse the Band and we had to drive through a really sketchy Colorado mountain pass. It had been the worst snow storm they had seen in years, and of course it was right when we had to drive through it. So we have a show that night in Colorado Springs and had to hit the road ASAP. As we come to the foot of the mountain, a cop stops us and says we need snow chains for our tires. Fine. Setting us back a little on time, but fine. We go pick up one set (two tires), get back to the foot of the mountain, proceed to apply the chains on. We roll forward two feet, we pop a tire. Turns out nobody knew the correct way to put them on.
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Now we are down a tire, so we try changing it out for the dumpy spare in the back. What happens? We cant take the flat off the axle, so we call AAA tow service. Setting us back even longer now. They come change it out for us and put the chains on correctly this time. We begin our journey up the mountain. As we get closer to the top, traffic builds up. But what is not working to our advantage is that we have a 15-passenger van and a 15-foot trailer with loads of gear in it, so you can imagine that hauling this thing up a slippery mountain is not working for us. It gets worse and worse the higher we go, sliding to the left and right and eventually drifting backwards into traffic. It gets so bad as we approach the summit that we begin to slide off to the side of the mountain. Everyone in the van gets out, I am driving and they start pushing. We even notice others coming to our aide to put us back on track. Everyone working together, counting down from three to give a huge PUSH back into the lane before we fall off.
Eventually, we get enough traction that we start moving, but have to be so incredibly careful to not drift off again. It was a horrible experience and took about six hours to go through the pass that should have been an hour. We arrive at the venue RIGHT at our set time, unload our gear right onto stage and play -- but not without bringing the flat tire on stage and using it as a trophy.
5) You've described your new album as "a galactic freak show advertisement to aliens." In your mind, what would an alien tourist be most horrified by -- or amused by -- on this planet?
It’s a good question, because we live in it everyday, so I feel like I’ve even lost touch with what’s 'horrifying' or 'amusing' anymore. As much as I want to focus on the positive, its hard to deny ALL the wrong happening. Horrifying WOULD be the organization of over 5,000 religions all claiming their god is the right one, and holy wars being the result. People losing their lives or taking other people’s lives in the name of their own fictitious god. We are numb to it -- it seems normal now that events like this happen around the world and nothing changes. And if it's not life-threatening, these religious figures claim to be the direct voice from God, spreading his love, yet they sexually abuse children at the same time.
I’ve also become numb to the fact that global warming is heating up the planet at all time high records, or that we have colonies with no clean water and governments who do nothing about it, or we can live amongst others who truly believe they are superior to everyone around them. We live in situations like this everyday that it’s becoming the new normal...what I would hope is that everyone here can take themselves off this planet and see what we are doing to it. See what we are doing in it. It’s not all about us.
The Number Twelve Looks Like You's Wild Gods comes out Friday, September 20th, on Overlord Music, and is available for preorder.
Catch the band on tour with God Mother and Pound at one of the following dates:
01 Brooklyn, NY @ Kingsland
02 Amityville, NY @ Amityville Music Hall
03 Somerville, MA @ ONCE
04 Buffalo, NY @ Rec Room
05 Montreal, QC @ Bar Le Ritz PDB
06 Toronto, ON @ Sneaky Dee’s
08 London, ON @ TBA
09 Lansing, MI @ Mac’s Bar
10 Berwyn, IL @ Wire
11 Indianapolis, IN @ Citadel
12 Columbus, OH @ Big Room Bar
13 Pittsburgh, PA @ Smiling Moose
15 Baltimore, MD @ Ottobar
16 Richmond, VA @ Canal Club
17 Philedelphia, PA @ Voltage Lounge
18 Teaneck, NJ @ Debonair Music Hall