In recent years, Chicago's ultrasweaty industrial dance dorkstorm, THE GOTHSICLES, have played some of the most talked about live shows at some of the most premiere industrial music festivals around the globe. Compounding a ruinous mix of crass humor, video games and geek culture with an unapologetic EBM affinity, The Gothsicles' 2011 release "Industrialites & Magic" (WTII Records) reached the #1 spot on Amazon.com for "Most Downloaded" in the "Goth & Industrial" category.
Grave Concerns: Can you tell readers a bit about The Gothsicles and your humble beginnings?
The Gothsicles:The Gothsicles is (are?) a dancey industrial band with nerdy ass vocals and lyrics. There used to be a wikipedia page up with the whole spiel, but it got taken down for some dumb reason. The inception of the project was basically an attempt to get opening slots on band nights, thereby getting into industrial shows for free.
Grave Concerns: Growing up, what music did you listen to?
The Gothsicles: I was a pretty insane Weird Al fan and discovered industrial by like freshman year of high school with bands like Neotek and KMFDM. I remember Birmingham 6 being really big at my school as well, of all bands.
Grave Concerns: Was being a musician always your dream?
The Gothsicles: Yeah, I think it was more or less an inevitability.
Grave Concerns: If you were forced to enter into an entirely uncreative career, what would you be doing?
The Gothsicles: Web development for a semi-governmental organization, which is what I should be doing right now instead of this interview 'cause I'm at work.
Take a listen to: The Gothsicles - My Guy Died (Level 12 Human Sorcerer)
Grave Concerns:What is most rewarding about being in the music industry?
The Gothsicles: Well, I'm kind of a fanboy at heart for EBM/industrial/goth/whathaveyou, so just being in an environment where I can rub elbows with my heroes is pretty amazing. I mean, they sort of hate me just coming up and slowing rubbing their elbows in a methodical fashion while I stare into their eyes and slightly drool, but I find it very fulfilling.
Grave Concerns: Your unique sound attracts a a colourful audience, what have been some of the best, and of course the worst, fan encounters?
The Gothsicles: If anybody admits to liking my horse shit, I'm a fan of them right back, so interactions have been pretty awesome. I've been asked to sign a bunch of various Nintendo merchandise, body parts, and kitchen appliances, so that's cool.
Grave Concerns: You recently performed at Calgary, Alberta's Terminus Refueled festival. What can you tell us about this experience?
The Gothsicles: Man, that was a great gig. Because the festival was in it's infancy, it's hard to not be respectfully concerned about how well the event is going to be run in terms of things like set times, sound checks, stage management and so on ('cause who doesn't have a horror story?) but the Terminus crew was ninja-level on point. My laptop started fucking up right before our set (of course), but Gavin the Sound Guy sorted that out like a champion.
Grave Concerns: Other than your own wicked performance, who were some of your favourite acts at Terminus?
The Gothsicles: Oof, it's hard to pick out a couple, but everyone is still talking about Comaduster and Legend for a reason 'cause those guys where awesome. Faderhead, XP8, Defence Mechanism, HexRx...arg, they were all great.
Grave Concerns: Currently, what musicians are you listening to?
The Gothsicles: The last couple albums I've picked up are, as best as I can recall, Cygnosic's "Fire and Forget", Skinny Puppy's "Weapon", Leaetherstrip's "Yes, I'm Limited Volume 5", Surgyn's "Restitched" and that free sampler for the upcoming Triton Festival. All top notch stuff.
Grave Concerns: Can you tell readers about your collab with Caustic?
The Gothsicles: Oh hells yes I can! It's called THE CAUSTICLES and it will unclog your bowels. The new album is DONE AND JUST OUT NOW and I'm really pumped. We worked really hard on this one over a number of years. Pick it up at thecausticles.bandcamp.com!
Grave Concerns: What artist would you love to tour with?
The Gothsicles: Devo.
Grave Concerns: Was there a specific artist that made you want to enter into the music industry?
The Gothsicles: And One was really influential, actually. They sort of proved you could make goofy industrial music work.
Grave Concerns: What was the first live concert you ever attended?
The Gothsicles: In 7th grade, I saw Soundgarden with my friend and my dad. I wanted to look cool, so I didn't wear my glasses and my friend and I ended up passing his glasses back and forth between us like an old married couple.
Grave Concerns: What advice can you offer to aspiring musicians?
The Gothsicles: I started using Google Drive to write down lyrics and it's pretty great because you always have access to your ideas. It has fucked me once or twice when it didn't save, though, so I dunno.
Grave Concerns: What can fans look forward to seeing from you for the rest of 2013 entering into 2014?
The Gothsicles: Now that The Causticles album is out the door, I can refocus on completing a new Gothsicles album by the year's end.
Grave Concerns: Any closing thoughts for readers?
The Gothsicles: I just learned there's a superhero themed night tonight at the club where I hang out. I have low budget costumes for Moon Knight and Starman (Jack Knight) ready to go, but I decided just now to pick up an orange shirt and green latex dishwashing gloves and go as Aquaman because I kind of have his haircut.
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