By Ashley Zimmerman
By Dana Krangel
By John Hood
By Ashley Zimmerman
By David Von Bader
By Sayre Berman
By Steve Brennan
By Ashley Zimmerman
Our interview was supposed to be scheduled with David Brockie, the mastermind behind long-running theatrical rock outfit GWAR. But when we called the number given to us by the band's manager, the phone rang one and a half measures before we heard the booming voice of a used-car salesman moonlighting as a carny.
"Hi! This is Oderus Urungus, from the National Breast Cancer Society!"
Oderus Urungus, GWAR's lead vocalist and frontman, is a murderous extraterrestrial obsessed with the finer things in life: completely annihilating Earth and its overgrown population of human scum, performing righteous heavy-metal punk 'n' roll, and scoring pussy. He is also an avatar of the aforementioned Mr. Brockie.
Oderus Urungus: Hi, this is Oderus Urungus from the National Breast Cancer Society. In outer space, they don't call it breast cancer. They call it rotten titty disease. Not trying to offend any women out there. Outer space is an ugly, evil place. I love tits. Any disease that gets inside of them is my enemy. Instead of fighting Gorgor or some kind of gigantic monster or robot, I'm going to fight cancer. And I'm going to do it by sucking it out.
New Times: Does GWAR work with a lot of breasts?
I work with breasts constantly. My breastwork is up there in the top ten. I'm right up there with Andre Agassi, Samuel L. Jackson, the Abominable Snowman, and Machete.
Any notable sightings during the filming of Empire Records?
Oh yeah! We were hanging out with Liv Tyler! She's a fucking whore! I saw her breasts before I saw her face.
How did you end up in that movie?
GWAR just happened to be playing in the same state that Empire Records was being filmed in. It was so low budget. They couldn't have flown us in. We just happened to be playing a show in the neighborhood, and they wrote us into the script.
These days, GWAR isn't regarded as as "shocking" as you used to be. You were featured on Jerry Springer as a "shock rock" band. But it doesn't seem like you would fit into that category anymore.
[Springer] had it all wrong. Did you see that kid they brought out that they said was a "GWAR fan" with the black lipstick? That kid would have gotten his ass kicked at a GWAR show.
A lot of bands have tried to do what GWAR does. But no band has ever taken it as far as GWAR has. No one has ever outsicked us. You think these Walmart behemoths of the music industry like Marilyn Manson or Rob Zombie are really scary people?
That they have any kind of revolutionary agenda? All they care about is making money and hanging out with their director buddies as they throw gala award ceremonies to circle-jerk each other into a frenzy. GWAR is where GWAR should be: in the drawer marked "Filth."
There would not be Slipknot without GWAR. I have a direct quote from Rob Zombie about GWAR when he was figuring out what he wanted to do with his career. They asked him, "Hey, what do you think of them?" and he said, "The first time I saw GWAR, I thought, 'I want to be that, but I want to make money.' " That to me says a lot about Rob Zombie as an artist. It says that he isn't one.
I give Manson a little more credit. He has a strand of pure obnoxiousness in him. I heard a story: Some girl tried to get his signature, and he hocked a huge bloody loogie. "There's my signature."
Rob Zombie is a tired, G-rated, mishmash of other people's styles. When I see Slipknot, I see lots of pentagrams and cow skulls. Really familiar imagery. What I do like about Slipknot is their music. Their drummer is fucking amazing. But when I get to Marilyn Manson, he's a little harder to peg. A little Alice Cooper, a little Bowie, a little Johnny Rotten.
GWAR has done similar things. We've borrowed liberally from other shit. But no one has gone further than GWAR has gone.
Does GWAR have a revolutionary agenda?
We believe our entire fucking system is one of decrepit foulness and the only way to really do anything about it is by wiping out the entire mistake and starting all over again.
To what extent does that wipeout reach?
First, all of the humans that I hate. Then, all of the humans that helped me kill them. Then the planet itself. And then if we're lucky, all of existence.
So that would include GWAR?
You guys spray a lot of bodily fluids out into the crowd. When I saw your show at Revolution in 2002, there was a lot of blood. And a friend of mine had his glasses knocked off by your pressure-hose-like semen. Isn't all that stuff a biohazard?
It's good for the skin! A lot of these girls on TV, if you look closely at the ingredients in their fucking dumbass beauty products, you will see Oderus semen right on the top of that list.