Interview with Gwar: Endless War

GWARThe only mainstay act on both of the Sounds Of The Underground tours, Gwar are experiencing a renaissance. Of course, it’s a Gwar renaissance, so it involves giant foam rubber costumes and squirting fake bodily fluids all over their rabid audiences. And rocking. Lots of rocking. After a string of confused, lackluster records, Gwar began to set a more distinct course with 2001’s Violence Has Arrived . Since then, with their DRT Entertainment debut, War Party, and the follow-up, Beyond Hell (a concept record that gives the band’s unique take on Dante’s Inferno ), released Aug. 29, they’ve been steadily broadening their fanbase to include kids who were still in diapers when Beavis was freaking out to their videos. And through it all, of course, Gwar remain violent, offensive and proud, the characters Oderus Urungus, Beefcake The Mighty, Balsac The Jaws Of Death, Flattus Maximus and Jizmak Da Gusha providing a good example of what Disneyland might look like if Satan took over. Beefcake The Mighty took some recent time out from slaughtering the innocent in Tallahassee, FL, to grant the following interview.

You guys have been touring really heavily this year.

Gwar, on tour, always! That how you sell records, my friend. You pump your name out there. Why are we in Jersey so much? Because it’s on the way. It’s on the way to here, it’s on the way to there. Actually, there’s a lot of metalheads in Jersey. Lots of metalheads in Jersey. The record came out in July or August and we started the actual touring cycle with Sounds Of The Underground in August, and we were lucky enough to do a couple Jersey dates—always at the Starland. That place is great for us. And we came back through there early on this tour, and we’re going to go back to Jersey again when we play Atlantic City. Pretty excited about the House Of Blues in Atlantic City—the locals call it ‘A.C.’ We’re gonna go to ‘A.C.’ Yeah man, we’ll be in Jersey again next summer. You didn’t hear it from me, but there might be an Ozzfest slot for ol’ Gwar next year. Maybe. Talking about it. The guy that books it came out to see us, he was really happy, really stoked. I think somebody slipped him a fuckin’ mickey and he got stoned and was like, ‘Yeah, I love you guys,’ but he was really into it. And this tour is actually the highest grossing tour in our level right now, we’re smashing everybody. Well over half the shows have been sold out and all the other ones are very close. Barricades are breaking. It’s a really wild tour.

You’ve been the staple for these first two Sounds Of The Undergrounds. You’re going to jump ship and go to Ozzfest?

Well, I don’t see it as jumping ship. If it was the Sounds Of Gwar Underground and then we left and did something else, that would be jumping ship. I’m not saying we’re a solid slot on Ozzfest, we’re still talking about Sounds Of The Underground too as a thing. It’s going to turn into a money battle. ‘We’ll give you this much money,’ ‘We’ll give you this time slot!’ ‘We’ll give you this kind of rider!’ ‘We’ll give you this much drugs!’ ‘We’ll give you that kind of booze!’ ‘We’ll have Asian hookers for you guys!’ And it’ll come right down to both promoters fighting each other in a no- holds-barred Texas Deathmatch, and then whoever wins that, we’re going to go with their festival. Of course, that’s a lie, because whoever wins that, we’ll do what we want anyway. But I’m leaning towards the Asian hookers.

They always are the ultimate bargaining chip.

Now you know the secret. (laughs) Just throw in some Asian hookers. Pa-pow!