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Punk & Oi In The UK - www.punkoiuk.co.uk: Demonic Upchucks Interview
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Demonic Upchucks Interview

05/10/2006

Introduce the band to people? ie how did you meet, who is in the band and why form it in the first place?

Well, there is Dom on drums, Alex on bass/vox and myself (matt) on guitar/vox.

Me and Dom are brothers so I suppose we met when he dropped outta me Mum in 1982. Me and Alex went to school together and hung around because we had a similar taste in music but more importantly hated pretty much the same things.

Me and Alex formed the band as a response to the piss-poor, self obsessed,
whinging, spineless, shoe-gazing, sad excuse for a rock scene that seemed
fashionable at the time. Back in the summer of '97 we had nothing to do with music really if we were honest, just about upsetting and debasing the awful status quo, reminding people that there was more possibilities to life than BritPop. And I think we achieved that.

How did you manage to get your first gig pulled, and has there been any other similar incidents since? What is the best gig Demonic Upchucks have ever done and who else was on the line-up?

Our first gig was destined to be pulled long before we turned up really. It was a band-bash originally involving 6 bands. Two pulled out, another two wouldn't play because they knew we were and the other band just didn't turn
up. We hadn't practised or even sorted out what we were really going to play, we spent the day drinking and smoking and turned up out of our skulls, made a God-awful racket, upsetting the handful of people who had turned up to see their absent indie-rock oasis wannabees and were threatened with the police once we started hurling pig's trotters at the crowd.

The line up was me, Alex, Dom and Smash Adams (who went to school with me and Alex). He wasn't really in the band. He couldn't play an instrument or
sing or anything but neither could we. We gave him a broken guitar with four strings missing and a michrophone to scream abuse into.

Describe your sound, and what bands have influenced you?

I suppose at the heart of what we do is RocknRoll. It's fast, angry and honest. We all each individually listen to all sorts of stuff so it is difficult to fish out the most obvious influences. I'm sure that Fear, Demented Are Go, New York Dolls, Devo, the Blood, Uk Subs, Motorhead are all in there but also perhaps Eddie Cochran, MC5, Scream, Melvins, Eater, PTTB, Kinks, Thin Lizzy and God only knows what. I suppose that in terms of "describing our sound" it is probably best left to people hearing us play.

You have a new CD out - how has it been received? How did the recoding go?

Fantastically. It's hard work putting out yer own stuff as I'm sure that most bands featured on PunkandOi will tell you. We have done a couple of pretty small runs and sold them as quickly as we can make them which is frustrating but can only really be a good thing. The recording is from 2 sessions. The first was in October 1998, the band had been together little more than a year but by then Jarvis (roger of self abuse) had taken us to one side, sorted us out with smokes/cider/equipment/paid for practise spaces and gave us a lot of support as we started to become a "proper" band that played "proper songs". It was the first wave us stuff we wrote together and to this day I am still proud of it, especially as me and Alex were only 18 and Dom still 15.

The second session was October 2004. By then we had found our feet as a band and were much more comfortable and able musically and lyrically. There is a marked difference in the two sessions and indeed what we do now...nothing too drastic but as a band you have to keep moving forwards,
otherwise it becomes a stale sort of ritual and loses it's relevance and excitement.


What other releases have you had out so far, and what track are you most proud of and why?

We had 4 songs released on "Helen Of Oi's Punks Skins and Herberts Vol.5" in 1998/99. A mate called Alan got us in touch with them and it was one of the
best things that could have happened as it got us positive feedback from all over the world and because the record featured the Bollocks and Dick Spikie from Japan, Age of Chaos, Scurvy (from Scotland I think) and so many other great bands it gave us a huge boost.

"What track am I most proud of??"....that's an awful question to try and answer. I love "Chief Get Beer (got beer)" for it's simplicity, tune and the fact it was such a spur of the moment creation. I love "T.S.O Zombie" for it's psychobilly groove and gutteral growling, quite unlike anything else we do. I love "Private Poice" for it's attack on morons too stupid to join the police force (I dont know how you manage either) and patrole a fucking supermarket with a shiny badge instead or throw their weight around as doormen....I love "Bournemouth Gardens" as it's about something instantly relevant to the Bomo Punks.......sorry to wimp out of the question but I can't answer it !


What are your thoughts to the internet music revolution?

Although initially unsure, I think that there are many great things about it. Firstly it is fucking up the music industry fantastically, they have been drip feeding the masses for far too long and never addressed it despite knowing years in advance of it's imminant arrival. I hate the music industry, it gave us everything we never needed and never asked for. Another bonus is this, take MySpace for example, despite being bought out by Rupert Murdoch (owner of awful right wing tabloids/crooked news channels and most of the media around the globe) there is something ultimately very democratic about it. It doesn't matter if you are signed to Sony and touring the world or whether you operate from a bedrom with a couple of mates....everyone has the same space, the same tools and the same means to get heard. It makes no allowance for hype/industry plugging etc etc....it is an equalizer.

The internet will be the downfall of corperate music by giving the means of
distribution and marketing to anyone who wants it. That can only be a good
thing..

What is punk?
Punk is different things to different people. To some people that might mean little more than feeling good about yourself and going out drinking with mates, to others it might be more political freedom and a stand against the horrors of New Labour/Torys, or to some animal liberation or sexual freedom or whatever....

To me the brilliance of punk was the fact there were no rules, no-one you had to follow and nobody telling you what to think, how to look or what to listen to. Apart from being punk, what do the Buzzcocks have in common with Conflict? Or Minor Threat have in common with the Special Duties? Or X Ray Specs and the Varukers? All bands I love but all so different and I get annoyed when punk becomes a uniform, a sort of one size fits all culture.

Spike your hair or don't spike your hair. Wear leather, don't wear leather. Enjoy hardcore music, don't enjoy hardcore music...it shouldn't matter.

Punk is the celebration of choice and making it plainly clear to people that you won't be a fucking sheep and that whatever you do, it's because you want to do it. Not because it's fashionable. What keeps us united is common respect, honesty and no bullshit. Long live Punk.

What is the scene like in your area and what local bands would you recommend checking out?

The Bournemouth scene is the healthiest it has ever been and a great group of really good people of all different sorts.

Of course "SpitRoast" have to get a plug ! Imagine Discharge meets the
Plasmatics if you can....

" The Extinguishers" are young lads playing a grungey punk ska (not cheesey shit) and have been doing very well for themselves as have the "Diablos", the singer Vinnie produces a free fanzine for the local scene called "State of Mind" and threw a party on a boat last month with loads of the local bands playing. They sound quite '77 like the Clash/Buzzcocks but with a Rudimentary Peni kinda falvour...

" The Diskarded" are one of the newer bands and have already got a handful of successful gigs behind them, (they cover one of our songs too!)

The Taxidermists have been around a while now as well, recently supporting
the Misfits in Bmth. A rare punk-rock-horrorbilly affair that don't really sound like anyone else. The Boneyard Creepers are a 60s style garage-punk band and developing a following of their own too...so are the Death Valley Riders, a sort of instrumental surf punk band.

And of course the 80s Bournemouth legends "Self Abuse", without whom as
individuals as much as a band there might be no scene down here at all.

What bands would you recommend checking out?

If you’re just getting into punk listen to abrasive wheels, their new stuff will get the kids into punk for sure. Erm dropkicks, erm, a band called the D’coner bois from brum, loads of smaller bands on our myspace worth checking out. Just got to keep an eye out for different punk bands, some real good ones, coney island jesus, absolute zeros etc..
Plans, gigs and releases planned for 2006/2007.

We're in the process of sorting some T-shirts and more Cds...some Bmth gigs lined up with the Varukers, Boneyard Creepers, U.K Subs....we're in the
Bristol Biekeller on October 15th supporting the Exploited, and in Southampton next month at some point with Witchhunt from the U.S. I dare
say some more dates with Disorder next year and hopefully with Rich and the
Reknaw crew (cheers guys). We should be getting a split CD sorted with some already recorded and unreleased stuff soon but the real plan is to hopefully play outside the U.K next year. The chaps in "Dog A Dog" have invited us back to Sicily and hopefully Italy after we had them over in August which is great because not only are they one of my favourite bands but really cool guys too (plugplugplug check them out too!)


Any final comments?
Better to be hated for what you are than loved for what you're not.
www.myspace.com/demonicupchucks
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