INTERVIEWS‎ > ‎

GWAR-3


GWAR “Antarctica Uber Alles” 


By El Chief

Gwar is about to unleash more Hell and fury on our helpless planet. Their next album "The Blood of Gods" drops October 20th. It's the band's first record since the death of Oderus Urungus (Dave Brockie) in 2014. He had been the front man since 1984. 

However, you wouldn't know Gwar had been dealt a wicked blow after listening to "The Blood of Gods." It's absolutely phenomenal and worth picking up. I caught up to Blothar (Michael Bishop), who took over lead singing duties after Oderus passed. 



Wormwood Chronicles: I want to congratulate you on a very strong album. What was it like leading the gang into the studio for the first time?

Blothar: Well, it was challenging. We knew we had to do something very different than what Gwar had been doing previously, and I think we managed to pull it off.

WC: You did. It's also one with a very heavy political theme. Not a lot of bands are comfortable dipping their toes into that water. But you went straight for President Trump's nuts with the song "El Presidente." Any concerns about being a target of his early morning Twitter tirades?

B: No. I'm not worried about that. It was—we definitely have taken on presidents before. Gwar has always been a political band.  We're not worried about any fallout from it or anything. Although, if there ever was a president to take it personally it would be Trump. I think it’s a mistake for people to listen to "El Presidente"—I know why people hear it and think it's about Trump, but it's kind of a fantasy moment: What would happen if Gwar tried to take over the United States, or even acknowledged that government existed? I remember thinking about it; spinning out ideas in our heads for videos. Gwar, like Trump, would be so bored. Like, we don’t want to work on a healthcare plan. We want to snort coke off titties. Why isn't this happening? I think that's what Trump's really kind of all about.

WC: If the two of you were in a steel cage match what would happen?

B: Trump has been showing up every night on tour. He's apparently immortal. Because he like comes out and his superpower is the really long handshake. That's his superpower. We try to steer clear of that. But if we can escape his grip then we can usually rip out his stomach and take his shirt off and play with his nipples for a while, and eviscerate him. He keeps coming back like every night. He keeps coming back. So apparently he's immortal.


WC: Let's turn our attention back to this fantastic album, "The Blood of Gods." I think the highlight for me was the song "Phantom Limb." It feels like when a swimmer takes a gulp of air before plunging back into the waves. Tell me more about that song.

B: That's a very interesting way to describe it. "Phantom Limb" as a tune, it was lyrically—Balsac (Mike Derks) and I wrote the lyrics to the song. It's very much about a remembrance of Oderus and trying to talk about—we had the music before the lyrics. We actually were sitting around and it was one of the last songs written for the album. We wrote it while the producer was there to record the album. I really wanted to have a kind of like modern, not like a ballad like Chris Isaak, sort of an Alice Cooper-style or Scorpion-style heavy ballad. So we were thinking about it in those terms and I had a little progression. It was really kind of something I copped off an old soul tune. Just make the chords, not the melody or anything, I wrote the beginning part, but then Pustulus (Brent Purgason) had a really cool riff that was the chorus, and he wrote a really good bridge for it. Him and Balsac both. The bridge is really the best part of that song. It comes like three-fourths of the way in before the last guitar solo and final verse/chorus. It's a good tune. We were very happy with how it turned out, for sure.

WC: It's definitely the one that stays with me the longest. It's an ear worm that stays in your head for hours. That's a really good feeling.

B: Good!

WC: Blothar, you're a pretty bad dude, but everyone's got something in their closet. What scares you?

B: I'm scared of all kinds of things. Blothar runs on fear. You know, he's afraid of being milked. He's got a fear of dairy products. Blothar's constantly getting shot. I hate hunting season.

WC: Yeah, because of those antlers!

B: Yeah, because of the antlers. Especially here in the South, and when we're on tour in the Midwest. It's always a danger.

WC: Do you put on the hunter orange or whatever it's called?

B: Yeah, doesn't really work though. Because they see it and it's like; "Oh, there's a deer wearing blaze orange." 

WC: During the Gwar-B-Q you said you were always the band's mastermind, but you were tired of watching everyone else get the credit for it. But now you're out in front. So, I gotta ask: What's it like going from no pussy to all the pussy?

B: Blothar actually has a pussy. I don’t know if you know that. Pretty hard to see that. Blothar's actually omnisexual. He has four hideous little weiners on his dick bag, and he has a sideways vagina that has teeth in it. I'm confused. I think the biggest thing is confusion. Blothar's confused. It's definitely—I don’t know if you want to get the kind of pussy Oderus was getting.

WC: Beggars can't be choosers. 

B: Yeah, but that's some gangrenous stuff there.

WC: You paint quite the picture. So, you're coming to my neck of the woods next month down here in San Diego. It's the second time the band's going to be here this year. Is it for the body count or the California burritos?

B: Ah, well, it's probably for the burritos. I'm going to say I like a good taqueria. I got diarrhea in the taqueria. 

WC: That's going right up on the marquee. Last question and I want to thank you for playing along today. The cover of AC/DC's "If You Want Blood (You Got It)." What made you guys choose that?

B: That tune is a song we've always wanted—Oderus wanted to do that song. It was in the list of things we wanted to do. We have the A.V. Club. We thought it would be cool if they let us pick whatever song we wanted to do. And that's the one we wanted to do. The A.V.-version has this kind of ridiculous Boston intro. We start off sounding like we're going to play Boston, and then it goes into "If You Want Blood," which is much more appropriate song for Gwar. 

WC: I thought so, but I was curious how much of it was a nod to Oderus?

B: It definitely was a nod to Oderus. He took a photograph of himself with Bon Scott's grave. He was a huge fan of Bon Scott, and that's actually something that connected Oderus and myself as Blothar, this fondness and inspiration of Bon Scott. 

WC: I want to congratulate you guys again for coming forward very strongly with "The Blood of Gods." I think there are really good days ahead of this band.

B: Man, I hope so. You have no idea. We need some good days ahead of this band, that's for sure.