Well Scumdogs, sometimes here at the flag we sale into stranger waters and meet some really interesting people, on this occasion we sat down and had a chat about life with lead vocalist of the Heavy Metal Monsters GWAR.
See how our fearless captain fared when he met up with the infamous Oderus Urungus
TBF: Hi, thanks for taking the time to talk to us, GWAR have been going strong for more than two decades what do you think first appealed to people?
OU: Quit reminding me how fucking old I am. 28 years we been performing on this planet and I was alive for millions of years before that. People think I’m getting old but actually Scumdogs go backwards in time. I may be 6 million years old but that’s human years, in Scumdog years I’m actually thirteen so I’m just entering puberty.
TBF: How have things changed since Scumdogs of the universe?
OU: Well, we’ve actually got more enemies. The biggest change is dealing with the loss of Flattus Maximus,he’s turned into the stars, it’s something that happens to scumdogs every now and again, he’s gone way out beyond Uranus another world beyond the stars. He’s there and is no longer our guitar player and now we have Pustulus Maximus so yeah, fuck it, he’s our new guitar player.
TBF: Were you surprised at how well the album was received?
OU: I was surprised at how poorly all the other albums were received cos they were all great.Don’t start sucking up to me now by saying nice things about my record when we’ve been making great records for more than 20 years. Don’t try and suck up to my ass you fucking piece of shit!! I was trying to speak figuratively about some other people then. But yeah I just made that, I’m titillated, I’m happy, we’ve got a album out, so yeah.
TBF: Was there a lot of negativity from certain groups back then or even now?
OU: Not really, the government ignores us generally they’re a little freaked out by us cos’ they think we’re gonna kill them. But generally the attitude seems to be just ignore GWAR and hope they’ll go away, but that’s not gonna happen, we’re playing shows in greater fucking numbers, GWAR will never die, even if we all die.
TBF: How do you react to people who don’t understand what you do?
OU: Beat em’ up, put em’ in a meat grinder, force them to see GWAR on stage for the entire show, right at the front slammed up against the metal barrier whilst urinating on them for the whole time. Anything I can do to make them feel uncomfortable.
TBF: You’ve got a huge fan-base, what’s the secret to your success?
OU: Sex appeal obviously, we are sex guys with sexy asses that hangs out, offering services to our fans out the back behind the trash cans, sometimes up to 8 or 9 … er… people, I was gonna say girls but they’re not usually always girls, it’s hard to tell sometimes.I guess it’s the fact we offer things to our fans, and not just the hot ones, the ugly ones, fat ones morbid ones and the ones with no arms and legs, they’re the best ones actually that’s what I’m into.
TBF: How do you feel when you see people dressed up like you in the crowd?
OU: First of all proud that we’ve inspired our fans so much that they would want to be like us, and secondly shame that someone would be that much of a loser they would actually bother to dress like us.
TBF: You’re characters are unique, where did the inspiration come from?
OU: I dunno I guess I looked around saw everything else that was out there and decided to be creative and be the most outrageous and ridiculous band ever, we’ve been doing it for a lot of years and no one has even come close to being the outrageous underground profits that GWAR have become. We’re national and cultural icons of bad taste, there wasn’t really anything like us and now you look around at things like South Park and it’s everywhere, I like it.
TBF: Was there a time you were worried it wouldn’t work?
OU: I knew it would work, when the first show pulled 150 people I could feel it and yeah I knew it would work.
TBF: There seems to be new bands popping up with costumes, do you see yourself as an inspiration or is it straight copying?
OU: No, it’s not copying we are the inspiration. People say they’ve never heard of GWAR and the reason they’ve never heard of GWAR is because they don’t have fucking cable. It’s the stupidest fucking thing I’ve ever heard of course you’ve heard of GWAR your costume is exactly the same is GWAR just a watered down fucking version of it.
TBF: When writing new material what is the process?
OU: The events of my life, other planets, the stars, someone trying to chop off my balls. A lot of bands say they struggle to write lyrics but I pretty much just write about what happened that day.
TBF: Have you ever read lyrics back and thought that’s too far?
OU: Anything goes, come on it’s GWAR, I mean everything is on the fucking table. All bets are off man it’s GWAR, everything’s on the table and we will continue to find the most sensitive bits of society and stick the fucking dagger in there.
TBF: Are there any subjects that are taboo even for GWAR?
OU: No it’s all fare game, I think it’s about fear, you’re afraid of death, you’re afraid of dying, you’re afraid somebodies gonna kick the living shit outta you and that’s what GWAR is trying to do.
TBF: You’re shows are as much about the theatre as the music, is it hard to find a balance or do you just go for it?
OU: No, it’s actually a tradition, everyone knows their role really well, we are masters of our craft now it’s a mixture of heavy metal with horror comedy shows, as far as I know nobody else out there is doing it and we will continue to do it until our soft cocks fall off.
TBF: How much preparation goes into a gig?
OU: Coming up with the sets and the costumes and of course the album that goes along with it, we spend a long time getting ready, I suppose for this show we’re doing now it took about six months.
TBF: Is there a gig that sticks in your mind as being the most memorable?
OU: Oh yeah GWAR played one of the first metal festivals in East Berlin after the wall came down. After the show was over the East Germans started rebuilding the wall! Yeah they were like Hey GWAR go back to the US and let us rebuild our wall!!
TBF: Is it as crazy backstage as it is onstage?
OU: Even worse, we have armies of groupies getting wasted and sticking bottles and things up their asses. It mad.
TBF: You spoke about Flattus Maximus, was it a hard decision to retire him?
OU: It was tough but we have to carry on. It was a difficult year but it was also a chance to show fans how fucking tough we are and we carried on. We just want to make Flattus proud of us up there in Metal land or wherever the fuck he is. Yeah it was tough but we came through and we’re stronger for it.
TBF: What does the future hold for GWAR and where can we see you?
OU: We’re touring the new album now and hopefully when that’s done we can get over to Europe and see you guys then.
TBF: Excellent. Thanks for your time.
OU: Thank you and thanks for the support.
The cultural icon that is Oderus Urungus telling it how it is. If you want to catch the amazing GWAR on stage then head over to their website for all the news relating to the band and hopefully get into a gig near you. Get your hands on “Battle Maximus”, the great new studio album from GWAR as soon as you can.
*Top Image by Lana Nimmons