Ranch interview with QRD live 11-10-95
Athan – well, I think the songs are sometimes disjointed, because I do take things from all walks of life & kind of put them under one song. sometimes they don't need to make sense necessarily to anybody but me in a way. but I definitely write with some intent of some sort.
QRD – so they are connected in each individual song....
Athan – there's somewhat of a theme on this album; as close to a theme as I can get, which isn't very close, but there is a theme.
QRD – what action figure would you like to represent yourself?
Athan – Obi-Wan Kinobi.
Matt – GI Joe with kung fu grip.
Kent – I agree with that, GI Joe with the kung fu grip, sailor model.
Matt – either that or one of the rock-em-sock-em robots.
Kent – no, Big Jim. no, Fonzie.
Matt – there's enough of those in LA
QRD – what do you think about aliens & ufo's?
Matt – they exist.
Kent – I think they do too. I think there's a cover up by our government.
Matt – a complete cover up.
Kent – because they're trying to avoid mass hysteria, basically.
Matt – & because basically it'll just let everyone know that religion's a pile of shit.
Kent – it will. it will totally break down basically all religious structure.
Matt – especially the catholic religion, which would crumble.
QRD – do you have any cool tour stories?
Athan – any cool tour stories... well, quite honestly, we have spent so much time in the van I think we have an idea of what an isolation tank is like.
Kent – I feel like I've been going around in a space capsule, like for fifteen days.
Matt – yeah, a space capsule without much leg room.
Athan – we have had some "rock" stories, but I'd probably not want to mention them here.
QRD – do you have a varied listenership from industrial to trance to gothic to rave?
Athan – I'd definitely say so. without a doubt. for sure.
Kent – I've spoken to a variety of kids after shows & all of them loved it. really totally hardcore goth kids; &, mostly in big cities like LA, we spoke to some rave kids.
Matt – I don't think we really settle into any exact category, or at least I hope we don't. so I guess from that we get the variation. as long as we don't get some grunge loser that's fine with me.
QRD – have you had any cool dreams lately?
Matt – I have fucked up dreams every time I eat before I go to bed. I don't know if I should go into this. some of the dreams I've had have been a little too prophetic.
Kent – it's been really strange because we've been on a really hectic schedule. so I have to admit my sleep patterns have been a little warped lately & there's been some weird images, no particular dreams, but some scary stuff going on.
Athan – I've actually been having these strange dreams about my family & I don't know what it means. these like surreal... I can't even explain it.
QRD – do you have any favorite films?
Athan – do you have two hours?
Matt – yeah, exactly. you're talking to film buffs.
Kent – all of us really love movies.
Matt – why don't we each pick one? Aguirre, the Wrath of God.
Kent – yeah.
Athan – I think M is my favorite film.
QRD – are you as famous as you want to be?
Matt – no.
QRD – do you want to be more or less?
Matt – I want to be more successful. I don't know if I want to be more famous. I don't know if I want people to run into me on the street. I like being anonymous. I'd like to be anonymous, but I'd like to be famous for the music. I'd rather the name Spahn Ranch become famous than the name Matt Green become famous, let's put it that way.
Kent – & I think for me there's a lot of work I'd like to do. there's a lot of music I'd like to make & as I make more music we'll become more familiar to more people. I don't think there's anything wrong with that, I think it's a good thing.
Athan – I think it kind of just comes along. you really don't have much of a choice, it just happens. if you like you like it, if you don't you don't. it's a question you have to ask when you get there & we're not there.
QRD – do you have any particular musical influences?
Matt – do you have two hours? for me, old influences, I'd say Wire taught me more about music than anyone else. about structure & texture.
QRD – old school Wire like Pink Flag?
Matt – all of it. I like even the new stuff. I buy every-thing those guys make. all their solo stuff, everything.
QRD – even Manscape?
Matt – you know, Manscape grows on you. when I first bought it, I thought it sucked, but it grows on you. & I'd say of current stuff, I really like Left Field, I like Genoreactor, I like a lot of dub, that's what I listen to now.
QRD – I don't even know what that means.
Matt – dub stuff? it's reggae with the vocals dubbed out & broken down, a lot of effects, & mostly bass oriented.
Athan – me, influences huh? well, I guess for the kind of stuff we're doing, I guess Bowie was always a big influence on me. probably let's say 68-80 in that time period just about everything. but, once again, between Matt & I, we probably own about 5000 releases of all kinds of music. I like a lot of black 1950's & 40's music. but, when it comes to our music, the Sisters of Mercy are one of my favorite bands of all time, the list is endless. as for modern stuff, I like our genre a lot. there's definitely some stuff that stands out. we're real big on that Birmingham 6 album, but then again that's not necessarily an influence, but just current stuff we may like.
Kent – more like our peers.
Matt – yeah, I like a lot of our peers actually.
Kent – for me, I come from the Stooges & David Bowie & the second generation of that Bauhaus & the Sisters of Mercy. when I heard "Temple of Love" for the first time when it came out in 1983 I was just like, "this is where I want to be at."
QRD – are you appearing on the Bauhaus tribute then?
Kent – actually I am, but not with Spahn Ranch. I'm appearing with a side project I did called Ghost Train. we did "Man with the X-Ray Eyes."
Athan – I did a cut on that too. I did "The Tree Shadows."
QRD – which part?
Athan – part two, with Eva O singing back up vocals, so it should be pretty cool. very mellow.
QRD – do you have any favorite fast food meal?
Athan – actually, I have to admit I have a hedging for kentucky fried chicken.
QRD – any particular meal?
Athan – I like chicken breast myself.
Kent – a two piece breast meal with a biscuit & corn on the cob.
Athan – cracker barrel.
Kent – cracker barrel's good, but that's not fast food. if you eat fast food for a week you are just ready to die. it's so horrible. mcdonald's, we just won't even go to mcdonald's any more.
QRD – wendy's?
Kent – wendy's I like, but you can only eat it once in a while.
QRD – do you like playing live or do you feel it's necessary?
Athan – when I'm not playing live, I'm thinking about playing live.
Kent – I love playing live.
Matt – I love playing live. actually, we never played a live show until we made our second record, the first full length. we never even played a show & kind of didn't want to; but once we started doing it ? I love it now. it's my favorite thing.
QRD – which of the Star Trek series is your favorite?
Matt – the original is the only series. all the others can go suck down an ounce.
Athan – I live for the original Star Trek. in fact, we did our video... I forget the name of the episode....
Matt – at Guess Rocks.
Athan – that's where it was.
Matt – he's fighting that monster....
Kent – Kirk & the reptilian captain of another ship are fighting & he ends up making a cannon & shooting diamonds at the guy. we shot our video on those rocks where they shot that episode. so there is a connection to that question, that's very good. but the original... I think Patrick Stewart is a really good actor & considering....
Matt – the original Star Trek is the only Star Trek.
Athan – the difference really is, Star Trek versus Star Trek: the Next Generation is like Buzzcocks versus Green Day.
Kent – exactly. the new one's entertaining, but the original... think about 1966 when that came out, it was an amazing show.
QRD – do you have anything that you suggest people read?
Athan – anything by John Steinbeck.
Matt – Robert Anton Wilson, Noam Chomsky, Adam Parafet's really good, who else have I been big on lately? & of course Hunter S. Thompson.
Kent – I like P.G. O'Rourke. he's a little conservative, but he really tears down republicans so that's okay. he's very hysterical.
Athan – Harry Cruise, that's another contemporary writer I really like. All We Need of Help, it's a great book.
Kent – basically just read.
Matt – & my favorite classic of all time is The Good Earth by Pearl Buck.
QRD – how do you feel about people starting to watch films to replace reading?
Matt – they should do both.
Kent – both media are totally valid means of expression, but they're different.
Matt – watching film is important, watching sitcoms isn't.
Athan – most of them at least. all of them post 1960.
Matt – I think All in the Family was the last good one.
QRD – is there anything else in particular that you think people should know that's going on?
Matt – that people should know? they should just be aware. they should question everything around them. just try & obtain as much information in life as possible. oh, & don't forget about Buck Minster Fuller. he's one of my favorite writers; his ideology is really intelligent.
Kent – quit watching too much television. do things. don't live vicariously through your television set, actually go out & do things. I think that's more important than anything. people just get off work & they crash on the couch in front of the tv for hour & that's not good.
Athan – I don't know. I don't have a comment.
QRD – & is there anything going on with Spahn Ranch any time soon? any compilation appearances?
Matt – a lot. there will be Industrial
Revolution 3, there's a Cleopatra comp called Wired, there's a couple of
other comps I can't remember the names of. & there's an ep next
year of remixes & stuff. that'll be out in february I think.
& Zoth Ommog are putting out our album with three bonus tracks in january.