ScenePointBlank: Is the word "amazing" ruining hardcore?
Alex C: No. A lot of things are ruining hardcore. For one, self absorbed blowhards who have convinced themselves that hardcore should only fit some narrow sonic, and idealistic definition really bother me. These are the same people who supposedly promote diversity and tolerance, but are completely blind to their own intolerance. Not every hardcore kid will collect vinyl, not ever hardcore kid will wear crucial shoes, and not every hardcore kid will be the toughest fool on the block. Live and let live, I say. That doesn't mean there aren't boundaries to what hardcore is, however. The recent wave of sing/scream fashion metal is appalling to me. A lot of kids really think that's hardcore, and it's not. We've played shows with some bands like that, and... well, their attitudes fucking suck, to paraphrase some of Ryan's lyrics. Hardcore should never be a mirror image of the 1980's Sunset Strip hair metal scene. Hardcore isn't about rockstar attitudes, fashion over substance, nor is it to be used as a vehicle to obtain countless sex partners or arm-candy boyfriends and girlfriends.
ScenePointBlank: How do you pull off the best hair in the northern California hardcore scene?
Alex C: I definitely don't, I'd pick your hair over my hair any day. And Action Jackson too, his hair glows bright red from all that cunning and wile brewing in his mind.
ScenePointBlank: Joy Division or The Smiths?
Alex C: Joy Division any day. I've been a fan way longer.
ScenePointBlank: Is Morrissey the sexiest man alive, and if not, who is?
Alex C: 13 years ago, when the November Spawned a Monster video was current, I would have said yes. But Morrissey is old now. People savor his good looks on the same level as they would Harrison Ford, or Robert Redford. I love Moz, but he's not eligible for "sexiest man alive" anymore. He's more of a distinguished gentleman type. I don't know who the sexiest man alive is, really. I'd say Rocky Votolato, because I know more than a few girls who melt in his presence. He's got looks, talent and eloquence going for him.
ScenePointBlank: If you could fight any person who's alive, who would it be and why?
Alex C: Not too long ago, my sister was talking to some douchebag who called himself "Nick Legit". Sounds like a first rate asshole too me. Basically I want to fight any boy who talks to my sister. I love her, but she has the worst fucking taste in boys.
ScenePointBlank: Wavingï¿½yes or no? Handshake or pound?
Alex C: Depends on the person. I always wave at Sam Wilson. Always. Even if she's like 2 feet away from me. Handshakes and pounds are distributed on a case by case basis. If someone extends their hand, you better believe I'm gonna give it a good goddamn shake. Same with the pound, if it's there, it's on. I don't have a preference, though.
ScenePointBlank: Favorite line from Napoleon Dynamite?
Alex C: FUCK! I was confronted with this quandry the other day. I think my favorite line might be when Uncle Rico says "How much you wanna make a bet I can throw this football over that mountain? Hooo man."
ScenePointBlank: Favorite after school snack?
Alex C: Man, I remember those days... I think I'll go with the old amusement park standard the "Super Pretzel". One winter, 7th grade I think, my family purchased a 48 pack of these delicacies from Costco, and every day I'd come home from school, and enjoy one of those bad boys and play a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles role playing game with some neighbors. The game was basically the same as Dungeons and Dragons only more pathetic.
ScenePointBlank: Top 5 favorite artists?
Alex C: I'll combine groups who are driven by the same creative forces. In no order - Waxwing/Rocky Votolato, Joy Division/New Order, Madball, AFI and I think I'll say R.E.M., narrowly beating out Morrissey/The Smiths
ScenePointBlank: Top 3 recent hatreds?
Alex C: 1. School (always have hated it, constantly given new reasons to 2. Food (how can something so tempting be so cruel?) 3. Not winning the lottery
ScenePointBlank: What have you been listening to lately?
Alex C: You can always count on me listening to R.E.M., especially Automatic For the People, Out of Time and New Adventures in Hi-Fi. Every Waxwing record is gold, and it's a constant toss up as to which one is their best. Currently I'm leaning towards "One For the Ride". Thanks to you I've been listening to Rocky Votolato on a daily basis for the last year and some months, now. All of his work is mind blowing to me. What else? AFI - "Sing the Sorrow", and all of Joy Division's catalog, especially "Closer". On the harder side, I'm listening to A Perfect Murder, Death Threat, Integrity, Judge, Madball (especially Hold it Down), Tragedy, Donnybrook and some newer local bands like At Risk, Jealous Again and The Starting Point.
ScenePointBlank: Any local bands that people should check out?
Alex C: At Risk, Jealous Again, The Starting Point, The Audrye Sessions, Born To Expire (someday!), Days to Streaks and Lifelong Tragedy. A lot of new bands are getting started right now, and it'll be interesting to see what they're like. Jumpstreet, Sabertooth Zombie and Tiger Uppercut are all bands that I'm interested to check out in the coming weeks.
ScenePointBlank: Any final words, Alex C?
Alex C: Thanks to friends of mine who've always stuck by me. Thank you to everyone who has ever given my bands a chance to show the kids what we've got, that means Mike Hood, Kirby Rich and everyone else at Westcoast Worldwide, Naoma at Gilman, Spencer of At Risk for doing shows at the Vet's Hall and 418 Project. Cody for letting us use the Brown Eye Barn for shows and practice, Fatt Matt at the Phoenix Theater, and any other person who has booked us anywhere. Bookers get a lot of respect in my book. Thanks to Adam P and Zack Ohren for talking gear with me - if it weren't for them, I don't know what I'd do.
Thanks to Jeff for single handedly managing Run For Cover records and getting out 7" out. Jesse, Geoff and Anzaldo of Title Fight, thank you too.
I'd also like to alert everyone to a tragic situation going on with Mike Hoods' Westcoast Worldwide club - a week ago it got shut down, and he's trying desperately to get the permits required to keep the doors open, but the challenge will be paying the bills. The hardcore scene has stepped up, and there are already several benefit shows under way, but everyone who's ever set foot inside the Westcoast Worldwide building ought to be busting their ass to lend a hand. If you want to help him out, email Mike at firstname.lastname@example.org . Stay tuned into www.thesedayshc.com and the www.hardcoremusic.com message board for more info on upcoming benefit shows. Norcal cannot afford to lose its only all hardcore venue!
To order our 7", please visit - http://www.interpunk.com/item.cfm?Item=58465& or www.runforcoverrecords.com. Our CD shipped out today, ordering info will become available soon, and we'll post it on our website - www.thesedayshc.com
ScenePointBlank: Very radical. Thank you, Alex C!
Alex C: And thank you Zed for interviewing us, and always doing more than your part to get our music out there.
These Days - Live
Photographs by Zed.
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Interview/Photos by Zed
Layout/graphics by Matt