New Sweet Breath interview from Pinata Bloodbath fanzine by Kathleen
New Sweet Breath are just the raddest ever. Graig (guitar, vocals), Nick (bass), and Patrick (drums) were kind enough to oblige an interview to myself and Adhesive X publishing tycoon Mike G. after their show at the Elvis Room in October. Their new album is called "Demolition Theater," and it's mere presence in your music collection will end all the sleepless nights and terror-filled days you've been experiencing lately.
PB: How did you meet Jon (Clark, of Ringing Ear)?
Graig: We had just recorded our first album and we were going to put it out ourselves, but before I did that we sent some stuff, just tapes, to people that we thought were pretty cool and at the time I had just bought that Bender record and thought it was really good, so I sent [a tape] out to Jon.
PB: What were some of the other places you sent it to?
Graig: Oh shit, I don't even remember. It was just like stuff I thought was pretty cool at the time. Scootch Pooch was one of them. And I think Go Kart.
PB: A friend of ours was commenting that "Demolition Theater" sounds less distorted than your first album.
Graig: Yeah? It all has to do with Jon because Jon said "I'll tell you what: you go fuckin' record someplace where you can understand what the fuck your saying or I'll break your fuckin' head."
Jon: And then I said “Ok here's $50,000, get yourselves the best studio you can...”
Graig: Well, actually what we did was we spent about $5,000 on that and we spent the rest on crack.
Patrick- I can't answer those old-school questions. I've only been playing with these guys for three months. I haven't recorded with them at all.
PB: Why the new drummer? What happened?
Graig: Our old drummer did too much of the PCP we bought.
Patrick: And I don't touch that shit.
Graig: Which leaves more for us. We've know him for a long time. I think I've known you ever since I moved to Seattle.
Patrick: Yeah, just about.
Graig: We used to do a lot of shows with his old band which were really good. They were a really good band. And he quit playing with them and we were having problems with Jeff as far as ... he loved playing with us and stuff but ... as far as getting places and things like that.
PB: What was your old band?
Patrick: We were called Herder. They're still together. Their new drummer is a guy who recorded a couple tracks on New Sweet Breath's last CD. He's got his own label, Major Appliance.
Graig: He's also the guitar player in Jeremy Enigk's new band.
Patrick: Jeremy Enigk from Sunny Day Real Estate. He's touring with them.
(After a brief discussion on how long it takes to get to Andover, Mass., bass player "Naked Nick" enters the room).
PB: So why do they call you "Naked Nick?"
Nick: Naked Nick? Well...
Patrick: His name's Rock, really.
Nick: Rock, Nick...
Nick: Uh, well, I'll let him explain it. It would be kind of dumb for me to explain it.
Graig: Ok. Well, we're going to go on to the next question.
PB: Is this a touchy subject?
Nick: Yeah, kind of. Patrick: I wouldn't say touchy. It's kind of a touchy word, touchy.
Graig: It's sketchy. That's a word we learned on tour: sketchy.
Patrick: From me. California word. But anyway...
PB: That's a California word? People say that alot around here.
Patrick: Yeah, well I learned it in California. It's international really.
PB: What are those phone messages an your CD?
Graig: There's this one little kid who calls our house all the time. It's like he has the wrong number. It's kind of funny the way he wants to call his friend to come out and play and leaves a message on the answering machine. We've lived there for like a year now and we still get these calls from crazy people. There's this Samson guy who's some sort of plumber or something like this and he gets calls at our house all the time, like "It's an emergency! You need to come over!"
PB: So you guys are from Seattle, right?
Graig: We're from Nebraska
Nick: He's (Patrick) from L.A. but we've all lived in Seattle for three years now. Almost four years for us, I guess.
PB: How does it feel coming out of that whole Seattle scene? I know it's pretty tired now... Graig: A lot of people totally rag on you for being from Seattle, like you're trying to ride on somebody's coattails or something. Plus we moved from Nebraska to go out and play music and moved to a bigger city. It seems like alot of younger people have a pretty negative attitude about people coming into Seattle. So many people move up there and it's such a fucking small city. We're playing music in Nebraska and growing up in Nebraska and stuff and there's nothing that beats playing music in a bigger city where you can play all the time and stuff like that. It doesn't have to be Seattle. San Francisco or something like that... There's definitely downsides to Seattle. It sucks to do all ages shows there. It's really tough to do all ages shows. It's basically non-existent. You have to do it in the suburbs.
Nick: Bars are what's happening. People who live there have a really shitty attitude about going out to see bands. It's tough to fuckin' get people out to our shows.
PB: Really? How do you mean, a "shitty attitude?"
Graig: Just like, "the music scene is dead. If you're a fuckin' local band you aren't shit and who cares and blah blah blah." Of course that happens everywhere but it's fuckin' really bad there. And there's bands like the Presidents and stuff like that who don't even, who fuckin' have never played a local gig In their life.
Patrick: It's not like we don't have our own tight following of the same friends who come to every show...
Graig: Oh we fuckin' kick ass.
Patrick: What he's saying is there aren't that many people who look in the paper and go "What am I going to see tonight?" They don't go do that, it seems like, like they do in other cities.
PB: Are you guys big Cyndi Lauper fans? (in reference to their cover of "Time After Time")
Graig: All that 80's shit we fuckin' love. We're going to do a Police cover, Bob Marley cover.
Nick: Do you guys want to help us with it? Come in as guest musicians?
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