Lars: The name. Please explain.
Rich: I thought of it at a BBQ in Sydney in 2004. Some Sydney guys ran with the idea and came up with this concept band that would have seven drummers and a bunch of chicks in loincloths dancing along to it. Typical bullshit BBQ conversation, y'know? When we started this band we were nameless for about six months till I remembered it. The guys in Sydney had naturally got no closer to realizing their concept than they ever would, but still cracked a sad when I stole my own band name back. Sydney people are like that.
Lars: What do you like and or dislike about living in Australia?
Rich: Dislike = it's too far away from everywhere else, it's built on a solid base of English conservatism. Like = almost everything else really.
Stack: Like = wombats and isolation. Dislike (fear) = white pointers.
Lars: How would you spend an ideal day off?
Rich: Have a steak for breakfast, swim at the beach, band practice for a few hours, roast chicken dinner, go to bed in a hotel at a reasonable hour.
Stack: Make my girlfriend breakfast in bed and take her on a drive to the country with a fresh picnic hamper that I had packed that morning. Find some isolated field, spread blanket, eat picnic, make love. Meet friends for dinner later in the afternoon. Watch sunset. Drink gallons of alcohol before bedtime.
Lars: What is your take on cigarettes?
Rich: They do their bit for population control. You get what you deserve.
Stack: Love 'em.
Lars: How was Gonerfest?
Rich: Great fun.
Stack: It was a blast. Great choice of bands for 2008.
Lars: What was the best show of that tour? The worst?
Rich: Best shows were the basement show in Milwaukee, Philly with Pissed Jeans, Gonerfest. The worst would definitely have been that show in New Orleans with the Intelligence.
Stack: Best = Dipping Station, Milwaukee. Worst = No such thing.
Lars: What was the best place you got to sleep? The worst?
Rich: The best were Gene's house in Columbus and Lisa's back veranda in Austin. We stayed with these two hipster chicks in New York who lived in total squalor. Somehow it didn't seem like genuine filth though. I think it was some kind of statement, it always is with those chicks. They got home delivered breakfast though.
Lars: What bands did you like on tour?
Rich: Tyvek, Pissed Jeans, Limes, Dan Melchior, Box Elders, Intelligence, Static Static, Thomas Function, Eat Skull.
Stack: Also Tyvek! Rich and I were lucky to also see Roy Loney at Basement Rock in SF. He's so sweet.
Lars: Who was the worst?
Rich: It would be unsporting to talk shit about people who set up gigs for us, fed us and let us sleep on their floor, and we are nothing if not a sporting people.
Stack: I'd love to nominate one or two American bands as a joke, but not sure how you'd all take it. OK then, Eric and Zac's band.
Lars: Please talk about X 'Aspirations' LP...
Rich: One of my most lucid impressions of that album came from Stacky's 30th birthday. He rented a bus and took a bus load of his friends on a tour of country Victoria's pubs and wineries. We'd go and have a beer in a pub, taste some wine then get back in the bus and drink on the way to the next stop. The drunker we got the more schizophrenic was the split between bus time and pub time; there was some semblance of decorum outside in the sunny wineries, but inside the bus was a nightmare. At one point I came to on the floor of the bus and "Waiting" was playing full bore on the stereo. I couldn't work out what it was and it forced me to listen to that song and the dynamics of the band in a way I'd never heard them before. It was frightening, pure psychic horror, and has stuck with me ever since.
Stack: That record seems to inspire mayhem wherever it goes. X taught me a new way to love music.
Lars: What's the worst thing someone in the band likes to listen to in the van?
Rich: The rest of them listen constantly to Hall & Oates and INXS. I can hack it, but I don't enjoy it. I don't get how all of a sudden everybody loves Hall & Oates, when no-one seemed to give a shit five years ago. They're not being ironic about it either, they genuinely love it. I can't hear what's to love.
Stack: All the other guys listen to obvious rubbish. Makes me want to wriggle out of a tour van window and hit the asphalt at 100 mph.
Lars: How clean is everybody?
Rich: I bathe two to three times a week. I always have out of laziness, but I recently heard an interview with a British scientist on the BBC World News Service who said that bathing every day, while good for your spirits, was "scientifically indefensible", so now I have a solid excuse not to bother. Stacky and Mikey are your regular daily bathers, and Per is a fastidious hygiene freak.
Stack: I suspect that Per is the cleanest in a hygienic sense. Our souls have a few flecks of dust on 'em.
Lars: Please list each individual's strengths and weaknesses.
Rich: I am possibly too aware of each, which could be seen as either.
Stack: Strengths = organisational skills. Weaknesses = I annoy the other guys so much they won't let me organise anything.
Lars: What's the favorite unanimous band of Ooga Boogas?
Rich: Probably the Monks or Devo. We all went and saw the Monks documentary early on as a band and bonded over it pretty hard. That sort of thing tends to have an effect.
Stack: I'd guess it was Hall & Oates.
Lars: Who drives after the show?
Rich: Anyone besides Per, who's getting his license soon, promise.
Stack: Never me.
Lars: Analog vs. digital?
Stack: If we're talking distortion, then definitely digital.
Lars: What old music do you like?
Rich: Lots, although I haven't been listening to much recently, so listing anyone would seem fake.
Stack: I've been listening to this early music CD called 'Francisco Javier, La Ruta De Oriente' by various folks. I don't know much about it, but it's nice on long drives. It lasted about ten minutes in the tour van.
Lars: Talk to me about Kim Salmon.
Rich: Kim is a talented and visionary musician, and a genuinely kind fellow. He's been fucked over before which makes him hard nosed and free of bullshit when organising gigs. I think perhaps he cares a little too much about making it, which leads him to try on new musical outfits as the breeze changes. Some fit (late period Scientists), some don't (Kim Salmon & The Business). I saw a bunch of his solo gigs in the early Nineties and he was always great.
Stack: Can't really comment about Kim as a person. I love a lot of his stuff particularly the Surrealists "Essence" album. He's a very funny lyricist. Songs like "Self Absorption" and "Soul Bank" make me laugh. Kim was a guest guitar player during The Sailors ill-fated Wah-Mania guitar competition. While he was battling away on his wah pedal I started pulling faces at him so he pushed me over onto my amp. Anyway, he came second, beaten by some local has-been. Haha, suck shit Kim.