WEDNESDAY 13 evokes the Murderdolls’ new birth

What a shame this interview was carried out before the events of late january leading to the premature termination of a show in Bordeaux (France), and to a succession of shady explanations as we can see in some american movies, with mean and unethical politicians; and those explanations are evidently supported by some brainless fools : the blind fans of the band (the fans, indeed).
It would have been the opportunity to know more about that. Anyway, it’s a safe bet that Wednesday 13 wouldn’t bring up the upsetting topics. Following in the footsteps of the very kind Will Hunt (Black Label Society / Evanescence, etc.)), he’s pragmatic (you can just count how many times he says « who knows ? »), and peaceful. He’s not interested in conflicts and polemics – not at all, indeed – unlike a large group of people delighted with it, but without assuming it. Thereby, when the moment comes to answer the acerbic feedbacks of one of his old colleagues, Acey Slade; while denying, he doesn’t respond very much.

Though, he’s more talkative about the composition process of his duet with Joey Jordison and explains us why the new album « Women And Children Last » is that much apart for Murderdolls. Even if he hates having nothing to do, he never plans things more than 6 months ahead. Nevertheless, the matter of the band’s future, linked with the possibility of a Slipknot comeback, is real.

And last but not least, we couldn’t avoid to tackle this horridly not-funny video by Mad manager.

Here’s where it’s at!

« I felt that if we’d had done that tour, or tried to, something could’ve happened and that could’ve been a disaster« 

Radio Metal : The Violent Night Deadly Night tour was cancelled due to “unforeseeable emergencies”. What happened?

Wednesday 13 (singer) : You know, it was the combination of a couple of things that were going on within the camp, business-wise and stuff, and I was also having some trouble on my side, with my parents and things like that. With Joey doing double-duty all summer with Rob Zombie plus Murderdolls and, you know, everything was kind of happening so quick, and the tour was set up so fast, it just… everything started crumbling the week it was supposed to happen, and we thought it was best if we just cancelled it and let everything clear itself out, and kind of recharge our batteries. Because I felt that if we’d had done that tour, or tried to, something could’ve happened and that could’ve been a disaster, so it’s just better to be safe than sorry, so to speak.

And will the live shows that were scheduled be rescheduled?

Yeah, we’re talking about trying to reschedule those in April, so up until then we’ll be in Europe and the UK, and Australia and Japan by that time, so April looks like the only time that we’re going to have an opening to try to reschedule those dates, so that’ll happen.

This new album is the result of an 8-year-long writing process. The enthusiasm that usually comes from composing songs must have worn out. Do you think you’re already detached enough to talk about this album?

The way I usually write songs is that I’ll usually try to demo a song, and I’ll record it myself and use my own home equipment, and use a drum machine. I’ll record things and I’ll listen to them for months before I’d ever record them, you know, properly record them with a real band. I can just hold on to things for years and years. It’s kind of what happened with the Murderdolls demos, I constantly wrote songs, and Joey wrote songs as well, and I would send him these songs, and say “well what do you think about this?” and he would always hear an idea in there that maybe I didn’t hear, which enabled us to, once we get together, have all these different song ideas. We would be able to complete the songs because he heard something I didn’t and he would add a part to it, or finish the song, or add this or that. So it was a really cool creative way to do things, as opposed to the first album, which was songs that were with my prior band and Joey did it with his prior band, so it wasn’t really like writing the material, it was more like re-recording it, or something. This was a fresh start with something straight from scratch to do.

Tastes can evolve in 8 years. Did you grow tired of some of the songs on the album in the past years?

There are definitely songs, you know, that… Like if we have to rehearse before a tour we would just go “oh no… can we skip that song? I’m tired of it” but you know, it never feels that way live, because when you play a song for example off our first CD, like 197666, or Dead In Hollywood, something like that, those are songs that I’ve played for so many years ( I can hear them in my dreams sometimes, so at rehearsal you play it and you’re like “okay, whatever…”) but when you can play it live and look at an audience and see, you know, the reaction on people’s faces when they year just the riff of that song, and they sing along the words and it makes it all worthwhile. I don’t see anyone who could ever get tired of looking at an audience and seeing that reaction do to music that you’ve created.

Even though the songs were old, we’d never played them live, so it wasn’t like we listened to them all the time or anything. There are songs that we created that maybe I had wrote a few years ago, or thought of the idea a few years ago, and I never listened to it until right before we went to the studio. So the songs are kind of reborn, so to speak. They don’t feel old. Playing the new record, for me, and just getting a chance to play any of those songs in front of an audience is fun, so we haven’t gotten tired at all of playing anything off the new album, you know. We want to play more. We wish we could just come out and play the entire record.

Do you think a musician has to wait for the album to be out to look at the songs with more perspective? Even if they are really old songs like it was the case for you.

There are songs that, for example Nowhere and Summertime Suicide, were songs that I wasn’t sure about until they were actually completed, and I could listen to them and play them. I had almost given up on those songs, and those are my two favorite songs on the album, and if I had just judged them off the demo, I maybe would’ve never recorded those. And now I can’t imagine just not doing those. Hearing them now and how they were in demo form, it’s just a night and day difference.

You said that Women And Children Last, your latest album, was Muderdolls’ first real album, and that the first records had only been made for fun. Regarding the first shows you gave after your reunion, you say they’re far better than any other Murderdolls concert from a few years back. Do you think that Murderdolls needed a few years to mature?

I think we did. I mean, the first Murderdolls album came out in 2002, those songs at that point were already old to me and Joey, those songs were almost 7 or 8 years old. We’ve been playing them in our bands out of high school. So you jump into these brand new songs from the new record, and you can see a difference of level in the songwriting, the structure. Lyrically, vocally, everything changed, and I hate to use the word mature, and I hate to use the word grow-up, but that’s pretty much what happened, you know. We took in a lot more influences that just Punk and, you know, Mötley Crüe or something like that, this time it was the whole specter: we looked at every band. We took influences from Slayer and just tons of obscure bands and brought them into it as well. That’s what made it mature, so I think, for me personally, I love it that we’ve waited this long to do a new record.

So do you think that you needed that long break, to evolve as musicans? That it was very necessary for the band?

For me, definitely. I definitely feel like I have evolved. Just by recording this new album and being on tour, and being around a different group of people. You know, Joey’s turned me on to so many different things, he’s such a unique person to work with when it comes to music and things like that, and I think we both just kind of inspire each other. So just what I’ll get of the learning process from this album cycle alone will further enable me to be more creative, you know, on the next thing I do, whatever it is.

« I don’t want people to figure out what it is that I’m going to do next.« 

“It’s our first real album” is something we’ve been hearing a lot lately. Is this a time where musicians can more easily free themselves for outside influences and pressures? Are musicians more free nowadays?

I don’t know. I think whenever you’re young and you come out, you just kind of want to make it. Some people just want to keep doing the same thing over and over again, and that’s fine with certain people, but for me, I don’t want to get stuck in a corner, I just want to keep evolving. For me, every time I do a new record I want to do something different, I want to step the bar up a little bit more and I don’t want people to figure out what it is that I’m going to do next.

But in your opinion, why do all those bands say the same thing with their third of fourth album, “it’s our first real album”, why are they saying that?

I don’t know about other bands saying that. For us, it was easy to say because these were brand new songs; we hadn’t ever recorded or played in other bands, whereas our first album was a mixture of both of our bands. So for us to say “this is our first real album”, we can say that because it makes sense, but for a band that’s four albums away to say that… I don’t know, I think bands just get re-inspired, that’s kind of what it is: bands just start to get re-inspired and think “it’s the rebirth of our band, this is like our first album”. Who knows?

[Note : about Acey Slade’s criticising the new album] »I’m still not quite sure of what he said but it did sound like it was out of anger, and I don’t think any of those guys, had they been given the chance, would’ve turned down the opportunity to be a part of this band again.. […]From what I know of Acey, I can’t see him hearing a song like « Nowhere » or « Summertime Suicide » and not like it, and not think that it was remotely anywhere near old Murderdolls or close to that, so I think he would have to be lying or he’s never heard the album« 

Acey Slade recently complained that you kept him out of this new album. Did you recruit new musicians in order to get a more stable band? What was wrong with the old line-up?

What a lot of people don’t understand is that the first Murderdolls album and band, we weren’t friends and we didn’t know each other prior to taking photos or doing the video. So when we went on tour it was pretty much “hey, you’ve got five days to rehearse and get in the tour-bus and learn to be friends” and the touring schedule we did was really hardcore for a year, it was non-stop, all these shows and festivals and touring with tons of bands, so we were a pretty dysfunctional band, always at each others’ throats and fighting and yelling, you know. Over the years, we just kind of went our separate ways, so when Joey started talking about doing the new band, we just said we wanted to start with fresh water underneath us and we’re the creative force that started the band so we just needed a more stable line-up and we wanted a more solid band. We didn’t think that bringing that line-up back was going to bring what we wanted for this album.

Because of this, he’s extremely virulent against the album. Do you think he’s being honest, or is it just anger talking?

I believe it’s all anger out of it. The fact is someone brought it up in an interview to me, I guess in October, of what he said. I’m still not quite sure of what he said but it did sound like it was out of anger, and I don’t think any of those guys, had they been given the chance, would’ve turned down the opportunity to be a part of this band again. But it is what it is, you know, I don’t like to air dirty laundry, and I don’t like to talk bad about people, but it did sound like it became almost frightful. It’s unfortunate the way things turned out but that’s the way it is and I have nothing negative to say about those guys, we’ve just moved on and that’s just how it is.

Do you think that he actually likes this album, but since he’s angry he’s saying that it’s a bad album ?

That’s what it sounds like it could be. From what I know of Acey, I can’t see him hearing a song like « Nowhere » or « Summertime Suicide » and not like it, and not think that it was remotely anywhere near old Murderdolls or close to that, so I think he would have to be lying or he’s never heard the album, or he’s just pretending that he heard it when he only heard the first single, so who knows? It doesn’t matter anyway.

Is the new line-up truly part of Murderdolls, or does the band remain a duet with session musicians?

That’s really too early to say right now. Joey and I, we call the shots with it. We’ve only really just kind of jumped into the touring part of this so far, we just launched the press. To me it’s still like I’ve been on tour for a year, we’ve been doing prep-tours and things like that, but we just actually started touring in September, so we’re just getting started with the new guys. So right now, as far as it goes it’ll be me and Joey, but when there comes a time for a Murderdolls album 3, whenever that’ll be, if it’s this line-up or if it remains Joey and I with studio musicians, that’s something I think will be determined when it’s time to do a new record.

So Murderdolls could become like a real band, and not just two people?

Yeah. And that’s the way we function in live, you know, we function as a gang, it’s not a spotlight where it’s like “oh let’s make it all about Joey and Wednesday”. We’ve got a great drummer, we’ve got a great guitar player, and we’ve got a great bass player.At the time when we recorded this new album, we hadn’t assembled the band yet, so it was just going to be Joey and I. So next time I think it’ll be a little different, but who knows? Only time will tell.

« I just think it’s a really cool thing to look over to my left every night on stage and think “I’ve got the best drummer in the world beside me, playing guitar”.« 

Do you think that Joey is a better drummer or guitarist?

Joey’s absolutely a better drummer, he’ll tell you that as well. Joey just happens to be a really good guitar player as well and he writes great songs, and he’s a great live performer, whether he’s being on drums or being at the front of the stage, you know, with a guitar. He’s multitalented, but there’s no denying that he’s been voted the best drummer, so I’m not going to debate that, and he’ll tell you that he’s better on drums that on the guitar himself. I just think it’s a really cool thing to look over to my left every night on stage and think “I’ve got the best drummer in the world beside me, playing guitar”.

Let’s talk about Murderdolls’ future. What are your projects after the tour, given that you have your own project, Wednesday 13, and that there’s a possibility Slipknot might come back?

Honestly, I don’t really know. It’s really going to be up to Joey, what he wants to do. I know that there will be Slipknot dates for the summer festivals like live dates. I don’t know anything about the band recording or even have plans to do so, or anything like that, they just have live dates. So we’ll finish our touring cycle and it really depends what Joey wants to do. If he’s committed to another project, I don’t know. So if that does happen and he has to do something else, I probably will return to doing my Wednesday 13 solo stuff. I’m sure I won’t wait a long time because I hate being off tour, I don’t know what to do when I’m not on tour.

So actually, it’s Joey’s call?

Pretty much, yeah. When you’re in a huge band like Slipknot, one of the biggest bands in the world, they kind of have seniority and priority over a band like Murderdolls, and I understand that due to things that have happened to them, with the death of their bassist Paul, they feel like they have to do something for him, and I completely understand that. But who knows? We could go straight to doing a new Murderdolls record after this, I really don’t know. We’ll see what happens when the summer comes round.

I guess that you’ll need a quick answer, because I guess you don’t want not to know what you’re going to do next year.

I’m going to figure it out, don’t worry; I’ll make sure everything is planned out. I always know a few months in advance, but it’s still early, and I always have a backup plan, I’m never stuck without a life-boat.

As for Slipknot, Corey Taylor and Joey Jordison seem to disagree on the possibility of recording a new album. Joey has said that the composition process had already begun, which Corey denied. As someone close to Joey, do you know if there’s something new regarding this?

I don’t know anything about that, I read it online I guess the way most people have. Joey was in Iowa, I was in Hollywood, and since we’ve been off tour, we both had a lot of things that we had to do since we’d been on tour. I have a lot of family things, so I’ve just been distanced from everyone, so I really have no clue what they’re doing. I guess I know as much as you do.

Is there trouble brewing within Slipknot?

I don’t think so, but again, I don’t know anything that’s happening, I haven’t heard anything. The only person I’m close to in the Slipknot camp is Joey, he’s the one I talk to. I don’t talk to any of the other guys and I haven’t seen them. They’re acquaintances, I know them from the past, but I haven’t seen those guys in quite some time.

About this video you posted, where you go and wake your manager up with a knife… Why does the man sleep with his cap on?

Because he always has to wake up and he always has to deal with us and… I don’t know, maybe he’s a robot, we don’t know. He just always sleeps with his hat on, I’ve never seen him without his hat on. That is a very good question!

Who sleeps with their hat on their heads?

The manager does.

(laughs)Have you seen the reactions this video caused on the Internet? Not a lot of people found it funny…

I heard the exact opposite, that’s why we kept on doing the videos, because everyone enjoyed it so much. People come to our shows now with Mad Manager t-shirts and banners, and they wait outside and look for him. You know, it’s become like this little cult thing with our shows. I think it’s been a really successful thing with us, because us putting out videos of us doing this kind of stuff showed our audience that we were a little more – I guess – accessible, as opposed to some bands who don’t show themselves having fun, and when they’re doing interviews, they’re being serious and things like that. So with us, this shows a different side, it shows the fun side of what we do, and I think that’s what’s missing in a lot of bands we see. And it makes us laugh!

Forgive me for saying this, but in the video, you guys look like complete nerds !

Well, that’s what we are!

(laughs)Do you still have that knife?

No, I believe that knife is still probably wherever the house was, in which we were at the time. Yeah, I’m sure I left it at the scene of the crime.

That’s too bad, you could’ve sold it on eBay. Do you intend to do some t-shirts with that story of the knife, or something like that?

Who knows? Hopefully we’ll be able to discuss including all these themes, and tell people why we did it and explain what the whole process with the whole manager series was. That’s something I hope we can do sometime next year.

Interview conducted by phone on december 22th, 2010.

Transcription : Stan

MURDERDOLLS Website: www.murdermydoll.com

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