Happy motherfucking Friday, readers. In this week's PUMP Sessions Interview Series, I sat down for an entertaining Q&A with LA industrial rockers, 9 Electric. These guys do not fuck around, as you'll see and hear below. Their video for "Feel This" is out of control and the explosion from their latest single, "Time Bomb" is absolutely bonkers. Get on it, kids. This is the real deal.
Welcome to the PUMP Sessions Interview Series, 9 Electric. Where are you boys from?
Thunderwood- Phoenix, AZ
M.Lopez- Los Angeles
CaseyDC- New York City
Micah Electric- New York City
In what part of Los Angeles do you live?
We all live in Hollywood.
How did the band form?
CaseyDC: We had some help from super-attorney Eric German, who put Thunderwood in touch with Micah and M.Lopez. CaseyDC knew Thunderwood from some previous touring they had done together.
Were you in any other bands before this one?
*M.Lopez*: Yes, Opiate For The Masses, Dry Kill Logic and My Evolution to name the most notable ones the 4 of us have been in.
Please tell us how you came up with your band name…
*M.Lopez*: We started throwing around some ideas of names and one of the key words that kept sounding cool was, Electric. Especially regarding our sound. At first we were thinking about using Red in front of the Electric but it was already taken. I then proposed that we use the # 9 seeing that it’s my favorite number and 9Electric rolled nicely off the tongue!
You’ve been getting some buzz throughout the industry lately. What has your experience been so far in dealing with record labels, A&Rs, journalists, bloggers, promoters, agents, managers, etc?
Thunderwood: Everyone has been really cool to us. We are very thankful to all the people in the industry who have helped us get so much attention in only a few months of doing shows.
Your manager is Logan Mader of Machine Head. How did you all meet and what is it like to work with such a legendary rocker?
CaseyDC: We were introduced to Logan by Mikey Doling (Snot/Channel Zero), who produced our first demo. Logan is an animal in the studio and in the business world. He has gotten a few other bands signed recently and has a few gold records on his wall. He's helped us all step our game up and he's done a lot to put us on the map.
9 Electric - "Feel This"
“Feel This” is a very powerful song with an intense storyline and video. What inspired you to write this one and what kind of reactions are you getting from it?
Micah: The chorus was about creating a club vibe from the start....Can you feel this beat, this song, etc. almost from a DJ perspective. As I was deciding where to go with the verse and story, I was inspired by a few key women I’ve known who have led less than ideal lives, made some really bad choices and live in regret daily. Some of the ideas were also based on some some trying times in my own life where getting up in the morning seemed like a chore.
The reaction to the video for ‘Feel This’ has been great! Even when the first reaction is negative (this has happened a few times, with women who’ve been raped or abused) after they watch it a few times and realize it’s not celebrating the violence but rather, exposing it, they feel better about it. There’s also a sense of justice when the guy in the video “gets his.” They def like that!
9 Electric - "Time Bomb"
Thunderwood: I actually started writing that one on his laptop while on a train from San Diego to LA. It’s definitely the first 9E song to be born on a train.
I could go off on how I interpret the lyrics to “Time Bomb,” but I think the readers are more interested in your thoughts. What does the song mean to you?
Thunderwood: I originally just started shouting “I’m like a hydrogen bomb!” in the chorus- it was the first thing to pop in my head after jamming to the rhythm secation. It’s really just a song about taking action and seizing what you’re entitled to. Somethimes you gotta get rid of those in opposition to that.
Most - if not all - bands, acts, and musicians have found their way to Twitter. What do you enjoy most about the interactive capabilities of the site and how do you make the most of your Tweets?
*M.Lopez*: Twitter is cool. It’s just another cool way to stay in touch and let people know quickly what you have going in. Since there is a cap on how many characters you can use it challenges you to be interesting and informative without overdoing it.
Facebook is now offering so many different music apps, it can often be a bit intimidating to choose one player. What are you using to play your music on Facebook and why?
*M.Lopez*: Our FB player is custom made by fbfandamonium.com. The entire page hosting our music, pics etc. is custom made. This enabled us to be unique and set ourselves apart from most other bands and apps out there and allow us to control the look and feel of the content on our own without being limited to only what most apps/templates offer.
Do you follow any music or industry blogs regularly? If yes, which ones?
CaseyDC: Yes, we follow CrazedHits.com, Blabbermouth, and ThePRP.com.
How do you promote your gigs offline? Old school style…
CaseyDC: We mostly just let our fans know we are playing via our email newsletter and the various social media sites. We also have street-teamers handing out promo materials at shows & events around Hollywood.
What is your favorite method of recording music? What instruments do you play, other than your main one?
Thunderwood: We like to write all our songs in our rehearsal space while recording them in pro-tools at the same time. Then when that demo is done, we take it to a producer (either Mikey Doling or Logan Mader) to do the “big version.”
All the members of the band play 3-4 instruments.
With the decline of recorded music sales, what are some of the ways you have compensated for that missing income stream?
CaseyDC: We get paid pretty good when we play live shows, so we don't worry too much about the rest.
Here at PUMP Merch, we have seen an explosion of creativity in merchandising, both at live shows and online. What items do you offer your fans and why? And what items would you like to offer, but haven’t been able to?
CaseyDC: We're pretty focused on just writing songs and shaping our sound right now. We haven't put any focus on merchandising. We'll leave that to the guys in KISS for now. We do have a 5 song CD that we sell at our live show.
Who likes to hang out after the show and work the merch table? In my experience, there’s always one person that heads straight over and makes themselves available, then everyone else kind of drifts that way after a couple drinks from the bar.
*M.Lopez*: We have a merch person (usually a female) and Thunderwood usually heads over and hangs with fans & friends. The rest of us end up over there at some point.
Which bands and artists have influenced your music?
Micah: NIN, Zombie, Static-X, Rammstein, The Prodigy, Pendulum, Infected Mushroom.
If you could get a drink with any musician, dead or alive, who would it be, where would it be, and why?
Thunderwood: I would have to say Iggy Pop would be pretty rad to shoot the shit with. I have no idea where it’ll be, but I’m lookin’ forward to it. The dude is just the real deal.
Who have you toured or gigged with recently?
*M.Lopez* We haven't toured yet but we have dates on the table for late fall. By the time this comes out we'll have played our 9th and 10th shows! We're just getting started!
Do you boys have any crazy, hot, fun, and/or embarrassing after party stories?
CaseyDC: Yes, we have huge raging after parties. We've had the cops there every time. We get hilarious angry emails from CaseyDC's neighbor. We've posted the angry emails on our Facebook...check em out!
Do you drink on stage? And if yes, what is your preferred beverage?
CaseyDC: Water and vodka!
If you could tour with any current band/act, who would it be?
*M.Lopez*: Prodigy, Pendulum, Rage, A7X, Zombie, Manson, Wayne Static come to mind quickly!
Who produced your record?
Thunderwood: Mr. Mikey Doling produced our 5 song EP.
Which producer(s) do you dream of working with some day?
Micah: The short answer is, anyone that understands our vision and can help us take it to the next level. Right now, Logan is able to do that and it’s been rad working with him. When we signed on to have him manage us, we didn’t really know for sure that we’d vibe in the studio or how well that part would work but it’s been awesome. We’ll see who the future holds for us to work with....I love endless possibilities!!!
If you could record with any band/artist, who would it be?
Micah: Skrillex, Z-Trip, Rob Swire & Pendulum as a whole, Liam Howlett & The Prodigy as a whole come to mind. Again, anyone who gets what we are doing and can take it to the outermost limits.....especially electronically. I can’t wait to hear some killer remixes of 9E songs in a slamming club - ear-bleeding volume & bass-booming thru the subs and see everyone dancing & rockin out to it!!
Where does the band rehearse? And is there a regular schedule? Who is always first to practice, and of course, who is last..?
CaseyDC: We rehearse in the Hollywood area. Micah is usually first. Everyone else takes turns being last.
Desert Island Albums – Top 5. GO:
Thunderwood: AC/DC, Johnny Cash- American Recorings, Refused- The Shape Of Punk To Come, Rammstein- Sehnsucht, Infected Mushroom- Legend Of The Black Shawarma
*M. Lopez*: Beatles White Album, Prodigy - Invaders Must Die, Slipknot, RATM - All of them
Micah: Pendulum - Live At Brixton, The Prodigy - Invaders Must Die, Infected Mushroom - Legend Of The Black Shawarma, Pantera - Vulgar Display Of Power, Sarah McClachlan – Mirrorball
Favorite books of all time, Fiction or Non-Fiction…
Thunderwood: Charles Bukowski- Betting On The Muse
Hunter S. Thompson- Fear And Loathing In Las Vegas (I have Thompson’s ‘Gonzo’ emblem tattooed on his left forearm, personalized to say ‘Ronzo’ because my first name is Ron).
Any Chuck Palahniuk
Micah: Atlas Shrugged, Anthem, The Patient Who Cured His Therapist, The Giving Tree
Thunderwood: Palahniuk wins again- Fight Club! Any Chris Cunningham music videos. Brothers Quay- Street Of Crocodiles
*M.Lopez*: ALL Quentin Tarrantino's movies!
What are your favorite foods? And do you have a favorite restaurant?
CaseyDC: Tom's in North Hollywood
How do you relax and unwind?
Thunderwood: We don't ever relax. We ROCK 24/7.
When you’re not performing, what is your idea of the rowdy night out on the town?
CaseyDC: The members of 9E have had a history of excessive indulgence, in many vices and many activities. We're trying to take it down a notch right now because our music comes first. Booze, pussy, drugs, and fast cars all come 2nd now.
What are your favorite fashion labels? And what is preferred stage attire?
Thunderwood: We have a lot of our own hand made stuff from Black Victory, Cody at Forgotten Saints, Anna Morph, and Jünker.
When was your first concert? Who did you see? Where was the show?
*M.Lopez* - my parents took me to see U2 with The Pretenders opening but the first show I went to my own was Lollapalooza when Rage opened up the show!!!
What are your hobbies outside of creating music?
Thunderwood: Film, animation, working out, chasing girls, fast cars, Burning Man, visual arts, dance clubs.
Well, we know what your night job is, so tell us about your day job…
CaseyDC: We don't have real jobs. Haven't had jobs in a long time.
Where can you be found hanging out by day? By night? Where are your favorite spots in LA?
*M.Lopez*: When we aren’t working on our band - which isn’t often - we frequent concerts and clubs. We do hang at a few bars but usually only ones that we know the bartender well at. Waiting for drinks, and paying for them, is not awesome.
Any upcoming performances, events, releases, news you’d like to promote here?
Micah: We are playing two shows at the beginning of next month. October 1, we rock The Clubhouse in Tempe, AZ and October 3, we play The Roxy in Hollywood, CA. These shows will mark the first time we play our new song “Time Bomb” live! Don’t miss it people!!
Please let everyone know where they can find your music and stay updated.
You guys fucking ROCK. Thanks so much for sharing a bit with the PUMP Sessions readers. Be well and stay up.
Thank You PUMP Sessions! You guys, and your fans of course, kick ass...thanks for having us!