Ghost Cult caught up with rock royalty Chip Z’Nuff of Enuf Z’Nuff to discuss their2018 album Diamond Boy (Frontiers SRL). Chip who become the frontman of the band discussed the writing approach to the new album, performing lead vocals live, all the partying he did in the 1980s and 1990s, working with other artists like Kanye West, and much more. You can purchase or stream the Diamond Boy album here: http://radi.al/DiamondBoy, and check out our pod. Continue reading
Episode 49 of the Dumb and Dumbest Podcast is streaming right now, hosted by music executive Matt Bacon (Dropout Media, Ripple Music, Prophecy Productions) and Publicist Curtis Dewar (Dewar PR). Today’s episode is all about the value of writing short songs, and how they help a band get further than writing long epics. Ghost Cult is proud to partner with Dumb and Dumbest Podcast to host and promote these insightful daily shows! Continue reading
Cattle Decapitation will be wrapping up their U.S. headlining tour with Revocation, Full of Hell and Artificial Brain this weekend, and as you’ve seen from the footage we’ve shared, this has been one of the sickest tours of 2017. Before their recent set in New York City, I got to talk with Cattle Decapitation‘s Josh Elmore about the current trek, as well as get an update on their plans for 2018. Continue reading
King Parrot released Ugly Produce to the world last month, and as Hanz Lopez wrote in his 9/10 review, “it’s brutality, technique, and catchiness all in a 27-minute package.” Ever since its release, the band has been bringing that new material along with them on the road in support of Housecore label mates Superjoint (dates). Before their set here in New York City, I got to catch up with vocalist Matt Young to talk about their current tour, Ugly Produce, video ideas, and much more. Continue reading
The almighty Crowbar will be releasing The Serpent Only Lies on October 28th via Entertainment One (eOne). As you’ve heard from the ‘Falling While Rising’ and ‘Plasmic and Pure’ singles, the NOLA legends are as heavy as ever, and Kirk Windstein continues to write riffs that truly shake the world. I recently had the honor of sitting down with the riff lord to discuss the writing of their new album, the return of Tommy Buckley, and much more. Continue reading
In addition to being a long-time member of Alice Cooper’s band, Chuck Garric has his own project that he is the frontman of, Beasto Blanco. Chuck has big plans in the works for Beasto Blanco, including a forthcoming new album, major tours, and events throughout the next few years. We got an inside look at Chuck’s musical vision and what it takes to launch a band under your own banner in this day and age.
Although Beasto Blanco has been around for a few years, we first asked Chuck about his musical process for writing and how that becomes music for himself:
Chuck: As a songwriter and as a performer, we all have things inside of us that say maybe basically what we’re about for another artist. I did writing for so many years, and maybe I’ve written songs that aren’t necessarily Alice Cooper songs, or a song that wasn’t for the artist, and I thought the song was great and I really enjoyed writing them and would love to have them as part of who I am. It just inspired me to put together a band where I could come through this other person inside of me, and go out there and perform my own original music, and that’s what Beasto Blanco is. I’m in a band of real high energy, rock n roll stuff that just kicks you right in the face. You walk into a club and see a band kind of similar to like a Motörhead or Clutch, Ramones, Ted Nugent and any of those type of bands. With my history with Alice Cooper, I felt that it was important that I added some theatricality to it. It was just the way I was naturally progressing as an artist, and as a writer. It’s a good little clique we have with Beasto Blanco is that it’s high energy rock and roll with a big show feel.
We next asked Chuck about the genesis of the name and what it represents to him..
Yeah. The name basically comes from, we wanted to give our music a name. We wanted to have our sound have a name. It was something that we were faced with when we started, Being able to basically get up every morning and give it a go, work hard, and to use fear as a motivation, and use criticism as a motivation, all of those things. What better way than to just say “Hey, the music is animalistic.” It’s a beast, and Beasto Blanco just sort of came out as something that somebody had mentioned to say “Hey, this may work out.” Beasto Blanco just has a name in itself. When you’re a person like myself who works organically and I practice meditation and those types of things, it just came out as … it just felt right. The music has finally got its own personality. Once it had that, everything was just flowing naturally, and we knew exactly which direction to head with the sound, the look, the vibe, the attitude, everything. It just fell into place.
The way I think of Blanco is most anybody who has the desire to do something, or a dream, is that we all face those inner demons and that fear. We have to somehow summon the courage to move forward and conquer those things that we have. That’s exactly what Beasto Blanco is about is getting out there, and doing it right, doing it well, and not being afraid of failure, and at the same time, going out and just changing people’s lives feasibly, not trying to change anybody’s life politically or anything like that. Just giving you a chance to go out, listen to some rock and roll, forget about all the bullshit that is going on in your life if there is any, and just enjoy it just like the rest of us.
We hit upon a common ground, where we agreed that music is free therapy, whether you play it, listen to it, or rock out to it:
It really is. It’s turned out to be a job for me, but I find so much joy and therapy, and I use it daily. That exact thing is that music is my medicine.
Then we asked for a time line of the history of the band, and the new Beasto Blanco album will arrive:
We released our first music in 2012, In 2013 we released the first album, Live Fast, Die Loud. We’re about ready to release the second album which should be in October, early October.
In the run up to this album release, and with the busy tour schedule Alice Cooper keeps, we wondered what touring plans the band has:
We’re working on tour dates as we speak. Right now, we’re looking at as of late January. We’ve got the Monsters of Rock Cruise coming up in January of 2017 as well, so we’re working on dates to follow-up the release, and we’ll be touring both the United States and Europe.
INTERVIEW BY KEITH CHACHKES
LIVE PHOTOS BY EVIL ROBB PHOTOGRAPHY
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Alice Cooper remains one of the most consistent and viable bands in rock and roll history. Not only has he had a great career, but he continues to make strong new albums, and of course put on a legendary show every night. Chuck Garric has played bass and been one of the leaders of Alice’s band for more than a decade. A fine musician and a noted hell-razor, Chuck has become a fixture with his fiery performances, and contributions with past music, and writing a new Alice Cooper album, hopefully out for 2017. He had a lot of insights into the twisted world that is touring with Alice to share with Ghost Cult.
We checked in with Chuck at the start of a new Alice Cooper tour, and talked about what the process is for him.
Chuck: Everything is going great. It’s always a lot to look forward to when you’re touring with Alice Cooper. One of the things I enjoy the most, working with him through the years is when we co-develop a new show and get into rehearsals and start digging into his catalog, and start figuring out what songs we can play and that we haven’t played in a while. Putting together the whole theatrical side of it, it’s always just a lot to look forward to.
Casual fans may not know this fact, but that every time the band tours, it’s a brand new show every time, and it’s a new set list, except for the hits.
Yeah, you have to remember that there is a reason why you hear this certain number of songs that, for the majority of the people, they want to hear. Now, for your deeper cuts, and longer fans that listen to everything, there are some songs that they would like to hear that maybe aren’t as recognizable to some of the fair weather fans, as you will. There are just some people that aren’t deep cut fans. You want to please everybody; but at the same time you’ve got to put in the set what flows. There’s a certain way a set flows, and certain songs work better with others. Some songs are amazing live. Some songs are better left to listen to on the record. We always try to keep that mind when we’re developing the set.
Do you personally get surprised at certain songs that get pulled out, or surprised certain songs don’t get performed often?
No. I’ve been involved now for over thirteen years, so I … The set list gets passed off by table as well. I have toured in suggesting songs, so it’s a fun process to go through. Sometimes, you’ll push for a certain tune, and you’ll hope that it flows. We’ve got a great band, so everybody just does their part, learns it, and you just hope for the best. At times, yeah, you get a little surprised, maybe something was flowing. We were really digging it and the band was jamming, but maybe at the same time, it just didn’t have enough for the show. It didn’t really add to the whole theatrical side or the show die if it, so it may get pulled. That’s just the way it goes. You learn the songs, and you know that they’ve got an idea that is really going to understand what they want to show the beat.
Many times for Alice Cooper shows, it’s often amphitheaters and theaters, and mid to big clubs, in my opinion, venues, right? Are there challenges because you have a stage set up and there’s a lot of stuff coming and going, costume changes, props?
I don’t see it … Alice is so, pretty much fits in any stage. It’s such a visual show, and sonically, it’s real pleasing as well. I think with the interaction between the band members, and the way the set is designed, they can throw it up there on any size stage. Yeah, there are times where you can’t build a set for bigger size stages and arenas, where we will be playing mostly smaller venues, or theaters. We just, we try to keep in mind what the tour is going to be like, what size stages there are, and just try to compensate for those particular venues where it happens. Just like the Mötley Crüe tour, we did where it was all big arenas. I thought that our show and our set, and the whole thing just fit perfectly into the size of those big arenas. Like I said before, just a high energy band and a song, it works great.
As much as any band ever in rock history, Alice’s music is meant for the night. In a festival atmosphere, some stuff works theatrically in the daylight, and some doesn’t. Do you ever find that challenging to play a festival, to a festival crowd outdoors?
It doesn’t really change what we do. I think if anything, it just gives the lighting guy a little time off. It doesn’t change. At night, obviously, it can get a little bit moodier, and you get the full effect of the show, but there is an element too, I don’t want to sound cliché or so optimistic, but an element of playing in the day time. You can really see who it is you’re playing in front of, especially if it’s a bigger site for us or something. I personally don’t really mind, but I think everybody would say you’ve got a show put together like an Alice Cooper show, you’ll always say it’s going to be better at night.
As the most veteran guy of the Alice band, for thirteen plus years now, I know musically, Alice has a couple of projects in the works. I know you had some credits on Welcome To My Nightmare 2 in 2012. Do you have any update on the new Alice music?
I think everybody is going to be contributing. We are all writing. We are all preparing for the time when songs are being pushed across the table, and everybody’s given the chance and an ear for what’s going on. We’re all going to collaborate, and just do our part, deal with that basically.
Is there some time-table for that album’s’ release?
I really don’t know. There’s not been a timetable discussed with me as of yet. I know that it’s just up for grabs to continue to write and submit songs when I have them, and that’s what I’ve been doing.
INTERVIEW BY KEITH CHACHKES
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