Straight From Badmouth HRH interviews Chris LeMon & Randy Joy
A few months ago I reviewed Badmouth’s debut here on HRH, and I’ve been a big fan ever since. Badmouth finished the year tied at #3 on my album of the year list, which I would say is pretty good for a debut considering the other 3 bands at the top of my list have all been around for 10 years or longer. If you haven’t heard Badmouth you are missing out big time because songs like “Pedal To the Metal”, “Last Train”, “And Take Your Toothbrush With You” are serious ass kickers. Of course when the opportunity came to interview bassist Chris LeMon and lead guitarist Randy Joy I jumped at it. In my opinion Badmouth is one, if not, the best new band of 2008 and I have a feeling they are going to be making a lot of noise not only in 2009 but in the years ahead too.
HRH: For the people that may not be familiar with Badmouth can you give us a little bit of the band’s history?
Badmouth: Well, it all started in the summer of 2007. 5 friends who wanted to make GREAT music, tired of the music scene of today. We wanted to write music close to our hearts…the kinda music we grew up on. We never discussed how Badmouth should sound it all came naturally. All 5 of us have different influences from Punk, Country, Powerpop to Heavy Metal…and all that mixed together became what you hear on our debut album.
HRH: “Rivethead” is my favorite song off the album and one of the best songs I’ve heard this year. Is there a story behind it?
Badmouth: The song is based on a book with the same name….but I guess people can relate to those lyrics in different ways.
HRH: Do you think it will be released as a single?
Badmouth: Yes, hopefully it will be released as a single in March/April.
HRH: I’ve been looking on youtube for videos from the album, but I haven’t been able to find any. Are there any plans to film any videos for the singles?
Badmouth: We haven’t done an official video yet. There is a “Heartbreaker” video in the making, our latest single (the cover of the Pat Benatar hit from 1979)…that will be a video just for the internet and hopefully it gets its release by the end of January…And then we plan do a video of “Rivethead” to be released as the same time of the single, a video that will also be released to the Music Television, so hopefully everything will work out and you got something to look forward too…
HRH: The sound of “Last Train” and “And Take Your Toothbrush With You” really remind me of Backyard Babies would you consider them an influence on Badmouth?
Badmouth: Backyard Babies are a great band, but wouldn’t say that they have influenced us directly. We’re the same age and have a lot of similar influences so guess that’s why you can hear that…also we live in the same town, Stockholm….influenced by the streets..lol
Badmouth: Like I mentioned before we have a lot of different influences. I think the one band we all have in common is Guns’n'Roses…then also Kiss, Led Zeppelin, Alice Cooper,Elvis, Ramones, Tom Petty, Johnny Cash and Cheap Trick have probably influenced us all in different ways…
HRH: Paul Sabu produced the band’s album how did that partnership come about?
Badmouth: Paul heard some of the demos we recorded in the fall of 2007. He loved the sound and contacted us asking if we wanted to work togther…and we said..YES!!! Its been a great experience. Paul is a great, great guy and its been an honor to do this album with him, he really took the best out of our sound and made the album sound exactly like we wanted, and its an impressive career he has behind him and he has worked with a lot of our influences like Alice Cooper and David Bowie…
HRH: With so many Swedish bands getting attention from fans and record companies is it hard for a band to stand out and make a name for themselves?
Badmouth: Guess its the same whatever country you are from…its hard today to get the music out if you aren’t one of the big bands that can put millions into promotion. We’re doing this an independent way and working hard ourselves. I think a lot of bands sit back and relax just cause they have been signed by a label. Badmouth ain’t nothing like that! We’re working hard 24/7 to get the word of Badmouth out there…of course we hope our music will stand out. We don’t think we sound like anything else today, not saying that we sound original but we sound like Badmouth, we feel that on our album we have 10 different songs and sounds and not 1 song with 10 different titles…then of course it’s up to the listener to decide but hopefully they feel that way too..
HRH: A lot of the bands coming out of Sweden seem to be heavily influenced by the 80′s Hollywood Sunset Strip days is the club scene like that also?
Badmouth: No, I wouldn’t say so, but I think a lot of people would like it to be…actually the club scene for rock ‘n’ ‘roll in Sweden is pretty small and there are a lot of bands struggling to get gigs and attention…We’re trying to avoid the current “Sunset Strip Revival” cliche trend.
HRH: Do the bands support each other or do they keep to themselves?
Badmouth: A lot of bands support each other but also a lot of bands keep to themselves…guess its the same over the world…
HRH: What are some of the bands coming out of Sweden and Scandinavia you like or would like to go out on the road with?
Badmouth: There are a lot of great bands, well one band we talked about earlier of course, Backyard Babies..We have a great band in Sweden called Marvel…and a lot of other bands for example Fatal Smile,The Poodles, Bullet, Danger, The Scams, Hammerfall…And hopefully we will be on tour soon…We are READY!!
Badmouth: Yes, this is a contest called “The Nordic Challenge”. It’s being arranged by MySpace and Sweden Rock Festival…For people outside of Sweden, this is the biggest festival in the country with more than 35,000 in attendance, and its 90 bands playing over 4 days..and ofcourse Badmouth wants to play at this festival..So we entered this contest with the aim to win. And we made it thorugh the first round of voting which took place between december 12th til january 6th, a couple of hundred swedish bands were competing from start and now there are only five left, and Badmouth is one of them. The final voting round is between january 9th – 23rd So if you’ve got a MySpace account you can vote one time per day and myspace account, and if you dont have a account, sign up now, and if you got several accounts vote from them all!:) Its 5 bands from 5 regions in the finals (Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland & International) and you can vote on one band from each region, so if you support another band from another region you can also vote on Badmouth and vice versa….
HRH: What are the band’s touring plan as far as the U.S. is concerned?
Badmouth: The plan is to play and tour as much as possible, right now we have nothing 100% confirmed but we wanna play everywhere! Hopefully we’ll be able to get to the States in the fall. We would love to come there and meet our American fans…
HRH: Are there any plans for Badmouth to play any of the festivals here in the states such as Rocklahoma, South Texas Rockfest, or the Rock Gone Wild Festival?
Badmouth: We would love to play them all…so the people doing the bookings for the festivals are more than welcome to contact us…and they will get a killer show from one of the rising bands from Sweden…And of course we are in discussion with a lot of festivals around the world, hopefully we will get something confirmed soon…Can’t think of a better way to spend the summer of 2009..
HRH: Is there anything you would like to pass on to the Badmouth fans?
Badmouth: Yes, THANK YOU!!! YOU FUCKIN’ RULE!!! We have the best fans and we are so happy to be doing this, and believe me…this is only the beginning…so help us spread the word of Badmouth, demand us on the radio and at the venues in your town…Can’t wait to meet you all on the road…2009 is the year of BADMOUTH!
Note: I received an email from Chris informing me that all voting for the Nordic Challenge has been suspended and the final bands winning the slots to play the Sweden Rock Festival would be selected by jury now instead.