The Catalyst was full of eager fans of the rock band Eagles of Death Metal on a cool night in the middle of June. Walking in, you got that feeling that you were about to be rocked by an incredible force that would take your eagerly awaiting ears for a mustache ride! As the opening band Cylinder played, patrons were sifting back and forth between the bar and the open general area. The opening band had a great deal of energy, their music is a hark back to bands of last year like Taking Back Sunday and Papa Roach. Not really this writer's forte into music.
Cylinder is a hard rock quartet from the Santa Cruz/Bay Area that blasts out songs one after another. The band played kind of sloppy, but they really got the crowd that was their waiting into it. The drummer gave it his all and was pounding his heart out. He threw his sticks in the air a couple of times and missed catching them, but got it on the last try and the crowd went nuts.
Half way through their set I was called to the back to meet with Boots Electric the lead singer of Eagles Of Death Metal. This is the interview that followed, this came before their set.
Brandon: So I hear you have a new album coming out, do you have any dates slated for a release?
Boots Electric: Yeah definitely well we are looking for November. It will be produced by Money Mark, and it is my solo record. Then after that were going to do another Eagles album tentatively called Ladies Only. So it will be like a double whammy, you see I want to get my solo oats sown.
B: What direction would the album be going in?
BE: Its honestly like Little Richard raping Gary Numan, inside of the small intestine of some famous doo wop dude. Very electric, hence the name Boots Electric.
B: The Nicknames, You cycle through nicknames like it's nobody's business. Where do they come from?
BE: Normally its from some event, The Devil, is because I was an evil motherf***er and full of vengeance in high school. Boots Electric is because I love to dance. Killswitch is because I f****d over Josh (Homme) really hard by letting him borrow my car and forgetting to tell him there was a killswitch. So he got to where he was going, but he could never get back.
B: Your out of the Palm Desert and that is like the birth place of "Stoner Rock" what do you think of that?
BE: Well Stoner Rock got really famous, but the music that influenced Josh and influenced all of us and made it come alive. Were bands like Frank Zappa, Capt. Beefheart, Fatso Jetson, and Unsound. We were utterly obsessed with the SST music scene. Like Minutemen, Firehose, Black Flag all those bands. We wanted to be them. Stoner rock... its so funny that you call it Stoner Rock, you should just call it methed-out-of-my-f****g-mind rock! That would be more appropriate.
B: Josh Homme, what is he doing with Eagles?
BE: Well, he is my partner. But you know the recorded animal is much more different than the live animal. Hell, he doesn't want to share the stage with me. (laughs) Hell no. He is doing Them Crooked Vultures right now, so he is two busy with those two guys, JBJ and Dave Grohl. They rock, and I really need him to be doing that. Eagles of Death Metal in the recording environment is best friends having s***s and giggles, and having the best time of their life.
B: About the whole friends element, is that where the Desert Sessions comes into play?
BE: Well yeah, thats how we all write our music. We check our ego's at the door and everyone gets together and its like lets make the best song we can possibly make. Ya know that is where Eagles of Death Metal started. We really started before Queens of the Stone Age, we actually started years before Queens of the Stone Age on the desert sessions. So technically Queens is a side project of Eagles of Death Metal. (laughs)
B: Bands like the opening band that you have tonight, Cylinder. How did you come across them?
BE: Well these guys are awesome, we play one off shows like this. This show wasn't very promoted we just, we wanted to play you know. We don't get to come out to Santa Cruz that often and so you have to support the local act. We all support each other really.
B: Who are you really listening to right now?
BE: Well there is this band called Donald and the Double Dick Suckers (laughs), No I'm just kidding. I am a old music f*****g fanatic. But I am really into the Dead Weather, they arn't like up and coming they have come already. (laughs) Their new album is f*****g rad man. We just got off of tour in Australia with Faith No More and they are f*****g killer. Mike Patton is a genius. They literally killed every f*****g night.
B: Where do you see music going and heading today?
BE: Well you know, I don't give two s***s about anyone downloading Eagles. As long as the music gets out there. Thats where people like Lars Ulrich made a critical f*****g mistake, its like Princess Leia said "The harder you squeeze your fist, the more people will slip thorough your fingers." Technology has altered things and we are taking music where it is going. Music is a vacuum and want, need, and desire create a f****g void for us and then people make bands to fill it. Because we are so nostalgic as a generation, and we can't get over our childhoods, we have created this loop for the first time. Music started with Elvis and kept going forward and forward, then in like 1989 it imploded on itself. There is going to be a point where there is nothing new and nothing old. Nothing is new anymore. There is nothing new under the sun. Everything has already been done. Even Stevie Wonder and Herbie Hancock can make electronic sounds on a computer now, so there is really nothing new.
B: For your show tonight, what are we going to hear?
BE: Your going to hear four horny dudes that want to get laid, thats music. You will defiantly be hearing all of our best songs.
B: Do you think we will hear any of your solo stuff?
BE: Maybe... But I like to keep s**t under wraps. When you have good stuff you have to keep it under wraps, because I have stolen from the best of them. This next album will be the greatest rock album ever made. F*****g A.
At around 10:15 Eagles of Death Metal came out and melted faces. Boots danced for the ladies and the show was killer. Not really anything new, but damn if this show wasn't put on with 110%. Songs like Cherry Cola, S**t Goddamn, and I Want You So Hard, were chiming out over the Catalyst and the crowd roared back. According to Boots, this show was not promoted, but the fans came out and they were there in full force. Eagles Of Death Metal put on one hell of a rock show and I will be there for the next one.
Not only did the fans have a good time, but the band really enjoyed playing. At one point Boots took a request from the crowd. I have been to thousands of live shows and I have never seen a band like this take a request. Of course he took the request from a chick with the tightest shirt on, that is beside the point. He covered the Rolling Stones - Brown Sugar for her birthday. The whole rock-n-roll show was complete when some drunk fan puked his guts out during their set. Awesome!
If you ever have the chance to go and see EODM I suggest you move off of your couch and run to the box office to buy your self a shiny new ticket. This is one band that you have to see.
Can You Dig It
Photo(s) by Aaron Johnson & Brandon Siddall