METAL PULP AND PAPER: Hello guys. So glad to be catching up with you. Thank you for taking the time to speak with us here at Metal Pulp And Paper. We appreciate it. Now give us a little run down about your band and what we need to know, and especially tell us if you have any new music coming out or any tour announcements you can share here?
JAKE: Stricken is a metal band from northern New Jersey. Our sound is a surprising blend of classic metal sounds with elements of emo, nu, and prog Metal. Our debut EP Black Sunrise reached number one on the Amazon music unlimited charts for new metal and hard rock albums earlier this year.
MPAP: So, for anyone new to this, we changed things up and are doing something different. We've pulled some recent headlines from the Metal Injection website and get reactions and comments on them from bands all over the world. We did this last month, with different headlines, of course, and it was fun to read each group's different answers. So, please place your seat backs and tray tables in the upright position, and hang on, here we go again.
1. Granny Caught Rocking Out To Slipknot
MPAP: At a recent Knotfest show an elderly woman, even with her cane in hand, is caught on video rocking out to Slipknot. The story doesn’t mention her age, but I would say she’s in the prime of at least her 70s. What do you think of granny rocking out to Slipknot? Have you ever seen any older folks rocking out at any of your shows before? And bonus points, if we were keeping score, have you had any of your grandparents at any of your shows before?
JAKE: I think it's awesome and as time goes on, we're sure to see more and more of that at all metal shows. Don't stop doing what you love, it's the only thing that keeps people going, I think. I still haven't convinced my grandparents to come to a show, but I'm hoping to wear them down till they do, haha.
SAM: Music is and continues to be a force that can break down barriers. It puts the emphasis back on being yourself. It also reiterates some universal truths: that we all want love, we all want peace, we all want respect. So I say, if granny is caught rocking to Slipknot, who cares?
Xe-Xe The Destroyer: Most of the new music that is coming out, and old music by today’s conventional standards, came out of an era of rebelling against what the previous generation thought was the status quo. With bands continuing to try and top each other as the reincarnation of the modern rebellion, it’s easy for one to assume that an older generation simply cannot be into the current generation’s musical taste. But assuming that an entire generation of people adhere to one specific mindset is too simpleminded, pun intended. Most music isn’t some fad fashion meant to piss off elders, but rather an expression of true, raw emotions from the songwriters, and any age can get behind emotions and artistic expression.
JOHN: I have never had my grandparents come to a show personally, however I have seen some older members of society around and rocking out at the venue’s we’ve played. One of them even came up and shook my hand after a set.
2. Metal Guitarist Too Young To Play Bar Plays Outside With Wireless System Instead
MPAP: The band Ancient Burials had a bit of a dilemma when they played a show at the Hawthorne Theatre in Portland, Oregon. Their guitarist was underage and not allowed into the bar to play. Some places will mark your hand with an 'X' identifying you’re a minor and let you play. Not the Hawthorne Theatre with Oregon’s liquor laws. So, instead of them canceling the show, fellow bandmates Paradigm Shift hooked him up with a wireless pack, and he went outside and played. The bar had an open window so you could see the band playing inside and he was outside shredding it out on the street. It’s a great video to watch.
Xe-Xe The Destroyer: Liquor laws in general are bordering on absurd and in serious need of repeal to keep up with today’s ever-evolving social scene regarding alcohol. This isn’t 1920. Why can’t you buy alcohol after 10PM in Connecticut? Nearly everyone, myself not included, who drinks alcohol continues to drink, or need a drink, after 10PM. These laws are senseless and hurting underaged musicians from starting their careers at the age where their energy and ambition are at their prime.
SAM: And a shoutout to technology too, and perseverance.
JOHN: I think this is awesome, and a big fuck you to the liquor laws in Oregon. I’ve heard of most venues offering exceptions to the 21 rule if the person under 21 was playing in a band. This has such a harsh impact on many bands because the number of venues, and paying venues, that let in under 21 year olds is growing smaller and smaller by the year.
3. Comedian Gilbert Gottfried Reveals Himself As Slipknot’s Tortilla Man
MPAP: Obviously, someone brilliant out there got him to announce that, probably on one of those Celebrity Cameos or something. In all seriousness, does it even matter who Tortilla Man is? And why do you think Slipknot is so strict on revealing who new band members are? They had this previous issue when Paul Gray passed away and was replaced by Alessandro Venturella, and also when Jay Weinberg replaced Joey Jordison.
JAKE: Aside from creating great publicity when you're in a band that big, you probably get to the point where you're too famous and you want to keep some privacy, so perhaps the guys prefer it that way.
Xe-Xe The Destroyer: They’re allowed to their privacy in any way that celebrities will assume disguises in public to keep them from getting mobbed by a sociopathic fanbase. But on the other end, some bands take their art a little too seriously, and the industry as a whole could use a little lightening up and an effort to stop taking themselves so seriously, @JackWhite and your dumb cellphone contraband.
JOHN: It definitely does not matter who Tortilla Man is but I think they do it because it creates extra mystery and talking about the band and the members themselves. 4. These Post Malone Fans Are Just Hearing About Ozzy For The First Time Thanks To New Collaboration
MPAP: Recently Post Malone recorded a song called "Take What You Want," and it featured Ozzy Osbourne. Honestly, it’s not a lousy collaboration between the two. Wasn’t expecting it to be a good song. Anyways, what gets me is some people, mainly his fans were saying thanks to Post Malone he just gave this Ozzy guy a career. They obviously have no idea! Even back in 2015, it was almost the same thing, Kayne West did a song with Paul McCartney, and Kayne’s fans were saying Kayne just gave Paul a career in the music business. Really c’mon? So, my question is, should the history of music be taught in school or something? Shouldn’t the younger generation know who Ozzy Osbourne and Paul McCartney are?
JAKE: I think whoever put together that meme must have scoured the internet for hours to find the people who didn't know Ozzy. Every example I saw was people joking and in many cases it was people who didn't know Post discovering him through the collaboration. If you forced kids to learn about it in school, they're likely to not give it a real chance and just hate it. I would say let people discover good music on their own, that's half the fun.
Xe-Xe The Destroyer: Wait, who is Ozzy Osbourne?
SAM: Yes, yes, yes to music education. And include popular music in the curriculum.
JOHN: I think music history should be taught even if briefly. Music tends to show and sum up what happened in a decade or generation very succinctly.
5. Sabaton Involved In 'Serious Traffic Accident' In Tunisia, Cancel Tonight’s Show
MPAP: Luckily everyone is ok now, but do you have any scary tour bus accident stories that you can share with us? Or, if no accidents, any close calls where you thought you might die?
JAKE: John drives like a maniac sometimes, but so far, we've been ok.
Xe-Xe The Destroyer: I’ve got AAA. As long as I don’t get Cliff’d, we should be okay. I did do sound for a Travis Tritt show over the summer and learned two weeks later that the bus I helped load with gear got involved in a fatal accident, none of the crew, but the other driver unfortunately. It’s scary to think about, but you can’t let that fear hold you back.
SAM: I used to tour in a van that didn’t pass New York State inspection. We bought our inspection sticker for $100 in the Bronx. Luckily, we never had any problems. But honestly, we didn’t think too much of it at the time.
JOHN: I do drive crazy sometimes, but like Jake has said, it’s all good.
6. Slipknot’s Jay Weinberg: The Effects of Climate Change Are Undeniable
MPAP: Some say there is no such thing as climate change, or some say it is getting better. Both sides of the party point fingers at each other. Even back in February of this year, Ocasio-Cortez, the 29-year-old democratic socialist, wanted us to get to the point of where air travel would stop becoming necessary, and believes farting cows are responsible for the climate change and we need to get rid of them. What are your thoughts on climate change?
JAKE: I think it's real, and regardless, cleaner air and more trees, healthier food and more convenient ways to get around sounds good to me. I don't think that we'll stop using fossil fuels because we regulate, run out of, or ban them, the stone age didn't end because they ran out of stone, we moved on and I think we will again.
SAM: Climate change is real as far as I’m concerned. We should be serious about stewarding the earth, or it will start to fail us in ways for which we cannot adjust. Additionally, it is not cow farts, but the decomposition of their dung, that contributes to greenhouse gasses.
Xe-Xe The Destroyer: It’s absolutely real. And it’s getting better, but in the way like a toothbrush cleaning a factory floor. We need to accelerate the restoration process, or simply prepare for what a climate changed world will become. I’m in the market for a used electric car, investing in plant-grown meat, and am starting my own home garden to reduce my carbon footprint as much as possible, but my efforts alone are not enough. We need the plant and tree cities. We need more solar panels. We need messy, complicated change if we want any chance at saving what we have.
JOHN: Climate change is real however throughout history the earth goes through hot and cold periods. I believe the biggest problem concerning the matter is creating an actually legitimate plan to tackle it and not the bullshit of just let fix it. That’s trillions of dollars and without people throwing out the nonsense reply of 'corporations' will pay for it there is no one to front the cost globally.
7.Nicole Kidman Attended An Iron Maiden Show with Her Husband, Keith Urban
MPAP: Never would have expected that couple to be into Iron Maiden, but still cool either way. It’s good to know that music can reach anyone. So, have you ever had anyone famous that you know of attend one of your shows? If not, who would you like to leave a ticket for at will call to come to your next show?
JAKE: As far as I know no one famous has ever been to our shows, but I'd love to get some live singing tips from Serj Tankain.
Xe-Xe The Destroyer: That would be awesome. I’d love to meet him too.
SAM: I remember a show I played where Adam Duritz sat on the ground in the front row.
8.Yellowstone Police Are Using AC/DC To Clear Bison Off The Road
MPAP: In our previous headlines feature Metallica was blasted to scare away a cougar, and now bison are being blasted by AC/DC. It makes you think, what animal is next, and then how long until the animal kingdom doesn’t put up with this anymore and revolts against humans?
JAKE: If we're not careful they'll start forming bands themselves. Makes you wonder what bison metal might sound like.
Xe-Xe The Destroyer: I’d go to a bison metal show. Although I’m down for sloth metal. That’s gotta be some good sludgy shtuff, dude.
JOHN: This is just great, rock on Bison, rock on.
9. Vinyl On Pace To Outsell CDs in 2019
MPAP: Buying albums seems to be the trendy hip thing it looks like again. Since streaming services are the popular norm, it’s good that records are making a comeback, but sad in a way, because CDs will become extinct.
JAKE: I think there's something about being able to see the music in the groves on the disc that makes vinyl more appealing, but in a few years tape or cd will be the new nostalgic must have for the hip I'm sure.
SAM: Yeah, it is wild for me to see the era of the CD coming to an end. I lived through it. Nice.
Xe-Xe The Destroyer: CDs were always kind of a broken format, but I will be sad to see them go. I’m all for high-fidelity music though. My only complaint about streaming services like Spotify is even with paid streaming service, your music still caps at 360 Kbps, which is fine, I guess. I want those WAV and multiple megabyte music files, though. Streaming services are nicer, however, because they expose you way more music than you would traditionally buying CDs. Just this week I’ve discovered 3 bands that I now love that I would never have thought to buy their CD or go to a show before. I’ll still buy their CDs at shows though, because we should all be supporting artists however we can.
JOHN: I personally haven’t used a cd in years, I love the streaming services. They make things so much simpler.
10. Dude Who Tried To Swim Back Into Slayer Show After Being Ejected Immortalized on Beer Can
MPAP: The guy that tried to swim back into a Slayer show is from 2018, but him being immortalized on a beer can is new. This is a two-part question. Which beer can would you like your face on, and while out on tour, what is the craziest thing a fan has done that you have seen?
JAKE: I would rather have my face on something less disposable, like a beach towel, that would be a weird sight to behold.
SAM: Underpants on stage is crazy enough.
Xe-Xe The Destroyer: One of my favorite bands, Ninja Sex Party, has done a number of collaborations with TWRP (Tupper Ware Remix Party), and for one of their songs, the "No Pants Dance", during a show I saw a dude take off his pants, spin them over his head like a helicopter blade and accidentally whap a girl in the eye with part of the leg, so I guess that? Also, maybe not a beer can, but I wouldn’t mind being featured on some obscure vodka or whatever.
JOHN: Put me on the Guinness can and we’ll call it day. I’ve seen some pretty fun drunk moments from fans but nothing like swimming back in to hail the all mighty Slayer.
11. Former Five Finger Death Punch Drummer’s New Gig: A Horror Porn Anthology Series
MPAP: Yep, you read it right, former Five Finger DeathPunch drummer’s new gig is in the porn business. Not only is Jeremy Spencer a part-time cop in Indiana now, but now he writes, directs, and even stars in his pornos. Crazy. So, my question is, what is your dream job if you weren’t performing in a band? If you had to hang things up in the music business, what would you rather be doing?
JAKE: I think I would run a travel blog or do photography; I like traveling to new places and meeting people, but definitely something creative, maybe a director as well. Something like that.
Xe-Xe The Destroyer: In addition to music, I do plan on being some form of comedic actor and write and star in some absurd comedies, or at the very least, a YouTube channel.
JOHN: I’d do what I do now, which is software development.
12. Flaw Accused of Plagiarizing You Tuber’s Song, Vocalist Said He Had No Idea
MPAP: This isn’t really a question about that headline, but it made me think and want to ask, is there one song out there that some band has recorded, and it’s so good that you wish you could claim it as your own song?
JAKE: There's a bunch of music out there that I love and think is incredibly good, but part of what makes a song good is the story of the person who made it, so I've never really wished a song was mine that wasn't, because that would ruin it.
SAM: "Puff The Magic Dragon."
Xe-Xe The Destroyer: There’s songs that I love beyond all doubt, absolutely. But to rob them of their rightful creative owner just seems wrong. It’s like wishing someone was your own child. On another note, I have accidentally written "Piano Man" before, but thankfully discovered during the writing process before I brought it to the band.
JOHN: "Afterlife," Avenged Sevenfold. To this day I still believe it belongs in a museum.
13.Metallica Named 'World’s Biggest Touring Act' According to New Study
MPAP: Even though they’ve released a few records that some fans can’t stand, that still hasn’t stopped them by selling over 22 million tickets and grossed $1.4 billion in touring since 1982. That’s very impressive. So, I guess the question would be, lets rain on their parade for a moment, what’s your least favorite Metallica song that you must turn off or turn down when it’s on the radio? And by no means, this is no disrespect to Metallica at all. I think they are man enough to handle hearing which songs or albums are not fan favorites. It's just for fun and games, until we shot our eye out.
JAKE: Thankfully most of the Metallica songs I hate are not played on the radio, but most of St. Anger is pretty much unlistenable for me.
SAM: I’m a pretty big Metallica fan. Also, a big Miles Davis fan. When I saw Metallica recorded a song called "So What," I thought, cool, it’s like a metal Miles Davis cover. I was thoroughly unprepared for what I heard.
Xe-Xe The Destroyer:St. Anger is fantastic. Fukk da h8rs. I thoroughly love that album. It’s not what Metallica is known for sounding like, and that’s one of the reasons I love it. It’s the definition of artistic integrity: they wrote what they wanted and didn’t give a flying shitcake what people thought. It also served as a group therapy session for all members over the loss of past members and the drug addiction of James Hetfield. It’s not perfect, and I don’t agree with Lars Ulrich’s snare, but the album is symbolic, nonetheless. It’s metal modern art. But to answer the question, some of the covers on Garage Inc. feel a little uninspired.
JOHN: I agree with Xela, Garage Inc. to me is pretty uninspired.
MPAP: On behalf of Metal Pulp And Paper, I’d like to thank you all for taking the time to answer these questions. We look forward to what Stricken does to finish out 2019 and beyond. Any last words for all your fans out there?
JAKE: Be on the lookout for our music video for "As the Hours Tick" coming out this October, and be sure to like us @strickenbandnj on Facebook for updates on everything we've been doing as a band. Oh, and check out our chart topping EP Black Sunrise, out now.
Xe-Xe The Destroyer: Wait, what music video?
SAM: Thank you for all your support. And thank you Metal Pulp And Paper.