Whether he's embodying the presence of artist and musician Dave Brockie or that of Oderus Urungus -- the foul-mouthed curmudgeon alien scumdog that fronts the universe's baddest band of profane rockers, GWAR -- this man can talk just about anyone under the table.
When we interviewed Brockie last year, he had his crosshairs set on the costumed rockers who have emerged in the wake of his ultraviolent, superkitschy legacy. He had especially nasty things to say about Rob Zombie.
We again had the pleasure of speaking with Mr. Urungus, and our conversation has further developed our understanding of the complexities intrinsic to embodying the role of GWAR's lead marauder, while maintaining a frontman and bandleader's clarity and sense of purpose.
New Times: The internet can be kind of an empty tin room in which an inane echo reverberates infinitely. More specifically: The last time we spoke, you said some things that got people really riled up on the metal blogs and messageboards. How does GWAR feel about the internet? What are some of your favorite websites?
Oderus Urungus: I like Reddit. I like Tumblr a lot. Websites are, like, over in a lot of ways. It's the social media stuff I do now. I think Tumblr is really cool, 'cause it's a train wreck of Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube mashed together. I like YouTube a lot. The Free TV Project is awesome. I've been watching the last episode of Breaking Bad over and over again.
So you handle GWAR's various digital avatars?
Oh yeah, I do all that stuff. I burnish all the content. If I wasn't so obsessed with myself, I wouldn't be able to do it. But luckily, I am.
Is the online campaign to get GWAR to perform at the Super Bowl halftime show part of a viral marketing strategy?
That thing is so stupid. I appreciate the guy trying to do that stuff. But everyone in the world and their pet could sign that petition and GWAR wouldn't play the Super Bowl halftime show. But you know what? If GWAR wanted to play, we would. And we would not be satisfied with just performing. We would want to play the game and smash both teams in a bloody mush all over the playing field. Then we would have the damn halftime show, and we'd still have Bruno Mars, and we'd still have Justin Bieber, and we'd still have Jay Z and Beyoncé. But instead of dancing and lip-synching, they would be begging for their fucking lives as they're fed to our giant fucking meat grinder feet first.
You mentioned Jay Z and Beyoncé, two stars rumored to have associations with none other than the president of the United States of America, Barack Obama. If you could hang out with either Jay Z or Obama, who would you pick?
Shit. [Pause]. I don't like either very much. I'll take Obama. He's a bloodthirsty motherfucker. He's way worse than George Bush was. He is in the command bunker every night personally ordering drone strikes around the world. Don't let him fool you for a minute. He's a murderous, bloodsucking vampire.
I'm not sure if GWAR participates in the ballot-based elections of Earth's United States of America, but if GWAR had voted for Obama in either '08 or '12, would you presently be disappointed with how his presidency has turned out?
I dunno. It's a tough job. I think Republicans and Democrats are opposites of the same coin. They all need to die. In outer space, the only reason we have politicians is to crucify them on the planet of crucified politicians. And also, we peel the skin from their asses and use it as toilet paper. We want to start at the top. Kill all the elite. All the Republicans. All the Democrats. And we'll slowly work our way backward. If we can kill the top layer first, though...
Yeah, the 1 percent first so the 99 percent can have a hell of a party.
So, if GWAR were offered the opportunity to perform at the Super Bowl but you had to tone down your show, would you do it?
Absolutely not. We're not gonna step onto the biggest musical stage in the world to tone down our show. We have always been kings of the underworld. And that's 'cause I've always been walking around with my dick hanging out and my ass bare.
GWAR's message is heavily scatalogical. Would you say the band takes influence from shock rockers of yore like the Dwarves or G.G. Allin?
I have a lot of respect for those guys. Poo-flinging, ahem, is something that GWAR has delved in many times. I don't know about influence on us. It's hard to have an influence on us when you're an ant in the afterbirth and we're godlike supreme beings. But maybe there's a little bit of love there.
Your new record is titled Battle Maximus. Is that a tribute to [now deceased] former GWAR member Battle Maximus?
The Battle Maximus is the great conflict that had to be waged between the different members of the Maximus tribe in order to qualify [to be a new member of GWAR]. They all came to Earth and fought outside of the GWAR temple for the right to fill the void that had been left by the mighty Flattus. And at the end of the day, when the fireball had burned off, we heard a great booming sound at the door and Pustulus Maximus damn near knocked the thing off its hinges.
His songwriting is amazing, and he is very violent. There are times, onstage, when I'll be doing my thing and I see Pustulus just tearing into a monster from behind. Usually the guitar players are too busy playing guitar to get involved. But I really like how Pustulus found a way to work in some violence.
As time goes on, society's threshold for the crude and the profane seems to increase. Could you ever see GWAR on TV or maybe even in a Broadway musical?
It will happen eventually. In the wake of GWAR, we have had everything from Slipknot to South Park. And everything in between. Beavis and Butt-Head. Whatever. It was time for people to lighten up a little bit. GWAR is still leading that charge. And maybe society isn't quite ready yet for a full-frontal nudity variety show featuring undead alien overlords having sex with dead animals. But they will be at some point. And considering the fact we are immortal, it's just a question of how long until it happens.
GWAR has historically always played rock 'n' roll. Have you ever considered another sound or direction? Could we ever hear a GWAR electronic album?
[laughs] I wouldn't put it past us. We've been working really hard to reestablish ourselves as overlords of the metal scene. We've played a lot of derivative music, a lot of parody music, comedy music. Whatever. Right now the last two albums we have really settled into the metal pantheon. But I never want to put boundaries or boxes on this idea. 'Cause it could go anywhere.
GWAR, with White Chapel, Iron Reagan, and Band of Orcs. 6:30 p.m. Monday, November 4, at Revolution Live, 100 SW Third Ave., Fort Lauderdale. Tickets cost $23. Visit jointherevolution.net.
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