Monday, 9 June 2008

SAY GOODBYE interview from 2004...

Here's another interview I did to go in an unfinished zine with SAY GOODBYE from MA, sometime in 2004. I really liked this band and felt they never really got the attention they deserved. They put out 2 great EP's and an LP, as well as a demo. Solid hardcore with a distinctive sound, obviously taking influence from the X Claim bands but with other stuff going on too.

This interview was done with their bassist Craig and guitarist James. Craig now sings for WASTE MANAGEMENT, and plays bass in MIND ERASER. I'm not sure what the other members are up to now, so if you know leave a comment.

Q. First of all, introduce yourself and tell us who else is in the band and what does everyone play?

Craig: My name is Craig and I play bass. James plays guitar, Chris sings, and Eli plays drums. I believe we started in 2002, with our friend Ian on drums. He played on the first 7" and helped us write the LP.

James: Yeah our first show was in March of 2002.

Q. Is this your first band? Give us a rundown of band/s that you or other SG members have been involved with?

Craig: Yeah, SG was my first band. I'm also in Rampage now and James was in Police Beat. Eli is in R'n'R.

Q. Is your name a POISON IDEA reference or am I wrong? How fuckin good is that band?

Craig: People ask us that all the time, but its not. It's actually a line from the Citizen's Arrest song "Utopia". And yeah, Poison Idea is great of course.

James: Craig and I were in Blockbuster video one night looking for a movie and talking about Citizens Arrest and at one point one of us said "let's call the band Say Goodbye, like in Utopia". It's not the best name, but we were seriously starved for good ideas so we just went with it.

Q. Are you all from the same area? Whats the area like?

Craig: Yeah, we all live in southeastern Massachusetts right now. Its alright I guess. Its about a half-hour drive to either Providence or Boston. Its nice and quiet. I'm not a fan of living in the

James: I grew up near New Bedford which is about an hour south of Boston, real close to Providence. I moved about a half hour north to be closer to school and the band. I like visiting cities, but I prefer living in a laid back, suburban/slightly rural area.

Q. What bands do you all listen to, and what influences the SG sound?

Craig: Well collectively we're all pretty into Black Flag, Infest, SSD, DYS, Cro-Mags, Adolescents, Bad Brains + you know, all the good stuff. Basically we just try to avoid sounding like the watered down bands that often pass for hardcore nowadays.

Q. What are some of your favourite current bands and are you encouraged by the "old school" resurgence recently? Are there many good shows in your area?

Craig: Well I guess its in the eye of the beholder. I'm pretty picky about what I like. I really like the 86 Mentality record and I'm looking forward to the new Annihilation Time and Mind Eraser LP's. And if by old school resurgence you mean listening to more 80's bands or whatever, then yeah I'm obviously down with that. And yeah, there are a decent amount of shows. Touring bands always play Boston or Providence, so that's cool. Regeneration in Boston should start having shows soon, then things will start to get good.

James: Our area does have lots of good bands playing often, both local and non-local...alot of the time turnouts are bleak when smaller bands play and I think alot of kids around here are spoiled but there are still quite a few who come out to lots of shows.

Q. What has been your favourite show so far?

Craig: Anytime we play Toronto or Montreal. The kids up there are super nice and always make us feel welcome. Great bands from Canada too: Fucked Up, Career Suicide, Inepsy, etc.

James: Ya Canada is my favorite place to play also. The kids are appreciative, supportive, and most importantly cool. Any time we've played up there has been memorable. I also love playing the AS220 in Providence because it's a great venue and all of our friends come out.

Q. How was it to play with the reformed INSTED recently? How do you feel about reunions of bands like Youth Of Today etc?

Craig: Well I was never a big Insted fan to begin with, but they were on top of their game. They sounded really good I thought. If a band wants to reunite, who cares? If it's a band I like I'll probably go check it out. The Sheer Terror reunion was great. I had no urge to see the YOT reunion.

James: I had a great time. I've always liked Insted and like Craig said, they were fucking tight. When YOT first reunited I was all about it. I was 16 at the time and I lived for Youth of Today. The older I get the more I find myself noticing/caring about hypocrisy, dishonesty, things like I'm not too interested in seeing them now. They can do what they want though. It's just a personal thing for me to decide not to see them.

Q. Are the angry lyrics of SG aimed at specific perople or are they more general? Also, what do you think of politics in hardcore?

Craig: Chris would be better to answer this, but I'm pretty sure he's written some songs directly about one person. As for politics, I think a lot of these political bands just sing about that sort of thing because it's the "punk" thing to do. If someone actually knows about what they're talking about, then go for it.

James: I think politics definitly have a place in hardcore music, as much now as they did in the early 80's.

Q. What are some of your favourite current hardcore bands? Any particularly you want to play with (but haven't yet)?

Craig: Think I Care, 86 Mentality, DFJ's bands, Breathing Fire, Fucked Up, Refuseniks, Forward. we're playing with Dead Stop soon, I'm pretty psyched to check them out. I like their LP a lot.

James: My favorite bands right now are Think I Care, Righteous Jams, Out Cold, 86 Mentality, Ringworm, Fucked Up, The Lovely Lads, and Rampage. As far as bands we haven't played with yet, I'd love to play with Out Cold, they're the best.

Q. If there's one thing you could change about hardcore what would it be?

Craig: I hate people who get up on stage and preach about how we all have to get along and be happy and "dude X is so sincere" and all this bullshit. Fuck that! Those speeches don't make their crappy band sound any better, so they should just shut up and let it rip.

James: Like Craig said, more emphasis on playing good music, and less of this happy horseshit. Talk is good if you're saying something valuable, but that's not often the case. That I would definitly change. So many bands around now either suck or are just plain boring and have boring lyrics, but as stated earlier I guess that's all in the eye of the beholder. I just don't get how alot of these bands pass as hardcore.

Q. Who did the artwork for the LP? Are you into zombie movies?

Craig: Ben from Rampage drew it. I'm not into zombie movies actually. Maybe I should check them out sometime. But we just thought it'd be a cool idea to show the world ending.

James: I'm into some zombie flicks. My favorite would be the OG zombie classic Night of the Living Dead. I know it's a pretty generic answer but you cannot beat it. Dawn of the Dead is hectic too, the apartment scene in the beginning is the Age of Quarrel of movie scenes...

Q. Token question, What got you into hardcore in the first place? First record, first show?

Craig: I just started hanging with these kids in high school, they were like "hey lets go to the skatepark after class" and that was it. Of course the first stuff I heard was like Strife, EC, etc. Luckily I've found out about good bands since then. The first show I went to was with Ten Yard Fight, Reach the Sky, Time Flies and some locals. I wanted to go to other shows, but I didn't drive at the time and it was tough to find rides. The earliest hardcore stuff I remember having was the Judge LP and the Trust 7", oh and in 10th grade some hippie chick gave me a tape of her brother's "headbanging music". Turns out the tape was the Septic Death discography. Awesome.

James: For me it was basically a combination of things. My older brother is into hardcore and punk so he got me started on it pretty young. Also I was familiarized with the music through skateboarding videos, as well as some older kids in my town who were into hardcore. The first piece of punk I actually owned was the Germs discography, bought for me by my brother after I told him I thought Richie Daggers Crime was an awesome song. My first show was a local gig in the fall of 97. It was the first time my mother let me out of the house to stay out late with strange older kids. Little did she know. The show was Piebald, All Chrome, and Time Flies's first trip up North. Bane was supposed to play to but they cancelled. It was a good time.

Q. Are any of the band straight edge? Explain your view on it.

Craig: Yeah, we're all straight edge. We just don't label the band as a"straight edge band" since I think it would lump us in with theEmbrace Today's and Throwdown's of the world. And that wouldn't be cool.

James: For me straight edge is completely personal. It's second nature to me and it just fits into my lifestyle, it really doesn't come into play when deciding how I feel about a new band, or how I should present my band. It's just dead weight, the music itself is far more important, and there are far more important issues at hand.

Q. The internet: what do you think of things like Myspace/Livejournal, and also Messageboards? Do you use Ebay?

Craig: I think everyone, including myself is on the computer way too much. I was on myspace but I decided to get off. I don't see why you have to tell the whole world what you ate for breakfast or some stupid shit like that. I rarely use ebay, only if a find a deal. By the time you read this I'll probably have re-joined myspace because I'm a fucking loser.

James: My Space is competely stupid but I'm on it for god knows what reason. I'd like to say I use it to meet girls, which would be sad, but I don't even do that. I guess part of me likes to be plugged into some kind of halfass social group, and if I don't have to actually interact with people
personally, well then that's all the better. As far as messageboards, alot of the kids who post on them, even ones who use real names, often come across like complete assholes, spineless dickheads, or both. When I read the Bridge 9 board I wonder what stump in the ground these kids grew out from. Not all of them, but alot of them. And I don't use eBay because I'm afraid it'll drain my bank account and I'll never trust computers anyways so fuck it.

Q. What do you all do outside of the band (jobs etc)?

Craig: I go to college and work for my dads construction company. James and Chris go to college and work there part-time, and Eli is a photographer for school pictures. James: I major in English and writing in college, and aside from that I like to work out, check out music, movies, you know normal every day stuff.

Q. Black Flag - Rollins or pre-Rollins?

Craig: I gotta go with Rollins. It's all great music but I think Rollins was the most intense frontman. I saw Rollins Band doing Black Flag songs last year and it was awesome. The guy is possessed. Keith Morris did the first four years songs. Sick.

James: I'll go with Rollins. No discredit to the early singers because that stuff rules, but Slip It In, Loose Nut, and In My Head are just too killer.

Q. Judge or YOT?

Craig: I'll say Judge. But I really like BDTW.

James: I always liked YOT more, but now I listen to Judge far more often. Mike Judge is such an enigma, it just adds to the appeal of the band for me.

Q. Top 5 hardcore records?

Craig: Infest "Mankind" 7", Black Flag "Damaged", Minor Threat 7"s, Negative Approach 7", SSD "Get It Away", Cro-Mags demo/AOQ, Bad Brains s/t, No Comment "Downsided", Descendents "Milo Goes To College", Discharge "Hear Nothing, See Nothing, Say nothing", and about 20 more, I cant pick 5.

James: No way I could list 5 in order but some of my favorites ever are the Negative Approach 12", Agent Orange "Living In Darkness", Verbal Assault "On", Black Flag "Damaged", SSD "Get It Away", Slapshot "Back On The Map", Agnostic Front "Victim In Pain", Infest, Mags, Sheer Terror, fuck I could keep going.

Q. Band you hate that everyone else loves?

Craig: I don't have enough room to write them all down.

James: Same here.

Q. Favorite hardcore vocalist?

Craig: Daryl Kahan of Citizen's Arrest

James: Springa from SSD.

Q. Whats your favourite Boston-area hardcore band ever?

Craig: The early 80's stuff. The FU's, SSD, DYS, Jerry's Kids etc...totally awesome.

James: The early straight edge stuff. SSD, DYS, Negative FX, Last Rights, early Slapshot.

Q. Whats the favourite record you own and why? What do you think of record-collecting in general?

Craig: I don't know which is my favorite. Record collecting is cool, but I'm really cheap when it comes to that sort of thing. The music comes first, so I'll gladly take a bootleg or dub.

James: Record collecting is cool but I'm not very into it. Again, it would drain my bank account and cause lots of OCD related stress.

Q. What do you think about Bush winning the US election?

Craig: First of all, I hate politicians. Second of all, I'm not the most informed when it comes to politics. But here's my opinion. Bush got re-elected, which is very surprising. Bush obviously fucked up with the Iraq situation. But its not like the war would just be erased if Kerry was elected. Its nice to think that a President will follow through with all of their proposed plans, but you can't be sure until it happens. During the debates, both candidates said "I have a plan to cut the deficit in half." When asked how, neither of them could give a reply. What can you believe? Not much.

James: I agree with Craig. Neither candidate was very good, the one I disliked more won and for stupid reasons. Fuck church and state.

Q. Anything you want to add?

Craig: Thanks for the interview. Listen to Failure Face. Peace.

1 comment:

Craig said...

if anyone needs copies of the LP or "Misanthropy" 7", get in touch! I have a bunch left over.