Side Stage Magazine Sits Down With Superjoint’s Jimmy Bower

Written By: Anya Svirskaya

Side Stage Magazine: Hi how are you doing? Thanks for taking the time out to speak.

Jimmy Bower: I’m doing good  how about you?

 

Same so let’s get started. Fans have been waiting a really long time for a new album. And Caught Up In the Gears of Application does not disappoint. It’s one angry sounding record! And I think that with everything that is going on in the world right now this is very appropriate.

Yea, people have been waiting almost thirteen years for this,  we knew if we were going to do it, that it had to be done right. I think we accomplished our goal man. It’s pissed, but that’s Superjoint. We are really happy to get this out there to the fans and the reaction so far.  And that’s what it’s there for you know? A lot of stupid shit going on. We’re really happy with the record the way it came out. We set out to do a pissed off record and I don’t know, to me it’s a good, fresh sound for right now. People are so pissed, so hey, we got a record for you…  But the overall theme is about how technology has gotten out of hand in this world. It’s everywhere, and it’s not a good thing

 

If you can, go back thirteen years when the band went their separate ways. Did you ever think we would hear another Superjoint record?

No. We never said, “It definitely won’t happen” but I don’t think we consciously thought that we were going to do it again. To be able to do it again is really cool. Definitely a fresh breath of air because we all ply in so many different bands. It’s cool to do something different and Superjoint is a great band. When the opportunity came up to play Housecore Horror Fest in 2014 , we talked about it, it seemed like the perfect opportunity to bring it back, we had a blast at that gig.

 

Looking through the live footage, it looks like you’re all having so much fun onstage and it seems like there is this brand-new, unified energy going on.

We have two new members. Blue, we call him Blue, Joey Gonzalez, and Steve Taylor and they’re great dudes. They played with Phil and The Illegals, and it just made sense to get them. It’s worked out great. They’re both really talented at what they do and have definitely added a certain edge to the band. 

 

What was the writing process like for you? Did you feel that certain things you had to relearn? Did you have room to experiment and try new things?

Yeah. We all, I think collectively … Me and Kevin got together a lot. The whole different thing for me was playing fast again. EYEHATEGOD has a couple fast songs but not for an hour like Superjoint, so it was cool to get back into playing that style again and stuff. We all just … I did, I went back and listened to old Black Flag, Agnostic Front, Righteous Pig, just old bands that we were listening to, when we were writing the older stuff. We wanted it to be like “Use Once and Destroy”

 

You guys have 12 confirmed dates for January, will there be any more?

I think we’re leaving in January and its almost a month. It’s the first leg.

 

Now that it is almost  January,  you have some time to start getting read to go on tour.  What are your thoughts before heading out on tour?

Might need to wash a couple of clothes. I’m being stupid. ( laughs)  No, it’s a real fun process for us because we haven’t really toured together. We did the Danzig “Blackest of the Black” tour, whatever, and we did one other run on our own and a couple sparse shows. It’s going to be fun to get back out. We have a blast together. The chemistry in the band really blends together well. We try and practice a couple of weeks before we leave. Get it good and tight.

 

How often do you guys practice?

Two of the guys live out-of-town, so that makes it a little weird. We just practice on our own and then whenever they can come in, scheduling permitting. Everybody’s in other bands, too, so scheduling permitting, get them to come in and jam. We can be ready in five or six days. Be ready quicker than that. It’s just fun. Everybody’s constantly jamming. Better than working at McDonald’s, man. (laughs).

 

In terms of the set list, how many songs can we expect? Obviously you guys are promoting a new record, but will there be a good mix of the new and the old?

Yeah, we did the record release show on November 12th and we did five new songs and then the rest were older songs. It was a really good set list, it was nice and long. Probably stick to that one. Something close to that. Playing the new songs that are awesome becauseespecially, the record’s been out since November 11th so it gave kids some time to learn the lyrics and learn the parts, so it’ll be fun to see all that transpires.

 

What  songs  are you looking forward to playing  the most?

“Ruin You” is a good one. “Sociopath” is a good one. I don’t really have any favorites because it’s a new record. Everything … The old songs are always awesome. The more we play them, the more they mold back into … because it’s a different band, there’s two different dudes. It definitely molds back into being a tight Superjoint again.

 

Looking back at the  last 13 years and everything that the band has been through, what do you feel you have learned during that time? Would you change anything?

Guess if I knew it was going to be this fun, we would’ve done it sooner. No, just enjoying the new Superjoint and having fun, like I said, the band molding back into a … we get tighter and tighter the more stuff we do. It’s been a blast because the music’s super-energetic. It’s hard to not feel that energy and get into it even though we’re all fucking old fucks. ( laughs) Our drummer’s young as shit, but everybody else is fucking five years away from dying. I’m being sarcastic. (laughs).

 

Lemmy once  said, “If you think you’re to old to rock and roll, then you are.” 

Lemmy was killer and everything but fuck all that, I got a kid. I’m trying to live.

 

One day at a time… Did having a child change you in terms of your life as a musician.

Not really with the music end of it, but just being a person in general. I haven’t done drugs in a while, but you don’t get all drunk or anything. You change as a person. I have a daughter, so I’m like a puppy in her hands.

 

Awe that’s sweet.

It’s her house, right now. It’s cool, it’s getting the best of both worlds. Stay at home and have a really good time at home and then go out on tour and play music.

 

I find it admirable when a person doesn’t give up their passion for music , just because they are now parent.  And as an outsider looking in,  for the crowd to take all their aggression and channel it in the shows and then come back home with a new sense of promise is a really great feeling.

That’s what it’s all about, watching the kids have fun. What’s cool about Superjoint is, it’s not all kids. There are people our age out there checking it out, too, and they’re doing exactly what we would do, stand in the back and enjoy. 

 

Going back into the recording process of the record, was there anything that has been done differently this time around?

In terms of the way we recorded it, it was the same way. You go in and you do basic tracks and stuff and then come back and track over it. Those guys, they came in from out-of-town and basically stayed until the basic tracks were done. Then you’re able to move on forward. What was killer this time, we recorded at Phil’s  home studio  the Nosferatus’ Lair so that was awesome. We’ve all been recording there since, shit, when he started getting a studio in there. Just feel comfortable there. It’s got a real good vibe and it’s like home. Being a little more comfortable was definitely a changed thing.

 

What is your favorite city to play?

I like them all. New York’s killer, L.A.’s killer. All the big cities are killer, but the small cities have something that the big cities don’t sometimes, and that’s a little more … Everybody knows everybody kind of thing, so it’s more like a big group party as opposed to when you go to New York and play there. Sometimes you feel like you under a magnifying glass or something.

 

I’m from New York and even I, when I go to shows, I get overwhelmed sometimes.

To me, New York, it depends on where you play. Saint Vitus is a killer place.  Superjoint would … If we could do two nights, I think it would be really cool. I’ve done that a couple of times with Eyehategod. For some reason that place is … everybody just … It’s just a great place. I think people feel comfortable there.

 

I love Saint Vitus  I think it’s the doom-y atmosphere. I love the fact that when I go there, it’s small and intimate.. Regardless of the chaos ensues when the bands play. I love the fact that there’s a doom vibe. And it attracts a different kind off crowd you don’t normally see at shows. I love stoner and doom metal and Saint Vitus is known for hosting many shows from that genre. And their dark atmosphere fits perfectly with the music. 

Totally. You nailed it. It’s a great … Run by musicians. It’s just a killer place. You could go and play somewhere completely different and get a completely different show in New York. That’s the cool things about the big cities. You can do more than one show.

 

Is it like that in New Orleans? Or rather  Louisiana?

They’re not really lumped together. You got NOLA and there’s a bunch of different places to play. You got this place, Siberia, which to me is like Saint Vitus. It’s small. Holds 250 people, so it’s more intimate and everything. You got bigger bands like Anthrax or Hypothetical or whatever come through and do House of Blues and shit. It’s a little bit the same but New Orleans is a lot smaller so a lot of the same people go to the same shows.

 

What stood out to me when I visited New Orleans was that people there to me seem more open-minded to music. People will just go out to her new music. To me, the scene here feels that people just go out of their way to see their friends bands or whoever is in town that night. But hesitate to check out a good local band that’s not your usual cup of tea. Like the hard rock and stoner bands that are from this area. They don’t get as much exposure than ones that are more heavier.  And some people here go out just to be scene and are not really there for the music.

New York’s real fast, man. To me it is. It’s always on ten. It’s cool that it’s different. I agree with you, it’s a completely different thing and experience.

 

Is there anything that’s in the Superjoint camp going on besides getting ready for the tour that you’re currently and promoting a new record?

Just designing merch and stuff right now and we did a video. That was a lot of fun. We tried to do it like an old silent movie theme. That was a lot of fun. For right now, just basically, this is the little down period before we are able to start the tour. We’ll get ready and get in that mode.

 

The calm before the storm.

It’s not that bad of a storm. You go to Wal-Mart and shit and get guitar strings and all that. It’s fun to me. Fun doing stuff like that. Right now just enjoying time at home and cooking dinner every night and stuff like that.

 

Normalcy.

Real life…. . The tour is definitely … It’s a unique lifestyle, I’ll say that.

 

Out of curiosity, if you weren’t a musician,  what would you be doing?

I have no idea. Probably a recording engineer or something like that? I have a studio here at my house. I play guitar, bass, and drums, and sing, so I’ve been working on my solo record. Been working really hard in the off time on that. Probably a recording engineer or some kind of producer or something. The dude that sells nails at Home Depot. ( laughs)

 

You mentioned the solo record, what kind of sound is it?

It’s like a mix between old Cajun music meets outlaw country meets a little bit of Southern rock. It’s not heavy, it’s not metal. It’s definitely blues country. You’ve got a fiddle player that plays with this. I haven’t played live. I’m going to play at the … February 4th is the first time I’m going to do a live, for a benefit. For Mike Williams. A benefit at Siberia. I’m excited about doing it because it’s definitely different music than … Everybody in New Orleans knows what it’s going to sound like, I think. Everywhere else, I don’t really know. It’ll be interesting. Wish me luck because I’m nervous about it.

 

All the best to you!  I think it’s so interesting that you can do something so opposite from what you normally do. That you can showcase your other skills says that you’re diverse musical and plays from the heart. Cajun music makes sense being that you are from Louisiana. But outlaw country? That is not common these days.

To me it’s not. That was always my punk rock. I’ll take Hank Williams over the Sex Pistols any day. That’s not even a fucking match. If you want to talk about underground dudes and were crazy and all that, the Sex Pistols are fucking Pet Shop Boys compared to some of these old outlaw dudes. Old country dudes. I’ve always loved that music and that’s always fit … to me, it’s aggressive. To me it makes sense, but it’s definitely not all distorted and all that. Me singing’s definitely weird as fuck. I’m still not even used to hearing it.

 

What is the lyrical content like?

I  got a song about my daughter, I got a song about moving on from being loaded for so many years.

 

A personal record?

Not really. Some of it can be, but some of it’s definitely … Today I was working on something and I’m looking at these lyrics, but they really fit … it’s almost like Roky Erickson, it makes no fucking sense. It’s just the fact that vocals are there, not really … I don’t really have a message. It’s just melodic vocals. I’m getting better and better at it. Almost done with it so we’ll see.

 

All the best to you. I’m sure it’s going to sound awesome.

Thank you.

 

Before we end is there anything you’d like to say to your fans?

Thanks for your support over all these years. Fuck, everybody’s like a big family out there. I know people all over the place and love them like brothers or sisters. Thank you. Thank you for your support.

 

Again, thank you for taking the time out to speak. I wish you the best on your solo record and for the upcoming tour.

Thanks. Thank you so much for the opportunity with the interview. We really appreciate it.

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