All Murder Photography by ePARILLA PHOTOGRAPHY
Additional death committed by Killa Kassie
Accomplices: Bessie and Julian Cordova
Dead For Denver was initially just your own, private project. You shall begin by talking about that.
Frisky J: I used to be in a this band called Typecast, with a bunch of guys that ended up in Assisted Suicide Assembly. I thought we had our band thing, you know? So we came to play a show one night and I realized that the band opening the show, was like everyone from my band - except me (laughs). I was like, ok, this is awkward. So I just kinda went and started a new band and started doing all my own things. I started doing it as Watership with Alex (Wiggans - former Dead For Denver drummer). We got picked up by Spike, the energy drink company. They changed our name to Razed Hero. They paid for a bunch of silly crap, like recordings and shit. And it totally sucked. So, I stopped doing that and just started calling the band Dead For Denver and doing it all on my own.
Why did you go with Dead For Denver as a name? It's rather goofy.
Frisky J: Yeah...everyone's trying to be so tough or whatever. I've just lived here forever, you know? That's what it feels like. I'm going to die in this fuckin' city (laughs). I'm dead for this city.
Something a lot of mortals might not know is you are very capable of performing different styles of music, different genres.
Frisky J: I do a lot of electronic music. Folk music. In the end, I really like metal, because it's so similar to symphonies. I played in a symphony when I was a kid. I played violin, piano and stuff like that, for years and years. Metal is just a good fit because it just has that same feeling - it's just more ferocious.
How did Dead For Denver develop into a fully functioning band?
Frisky J: Well, I started finding people and we played a couple of shows. We didn't do much until we got Tristan, because he has a lot more focus for those kinds of things. No one else really had it. I write a lot of music, but I don't have as much of a..."want"...to do things with it. I just want to hear it back. He knows how to make other people hear it.
Power Bush: I force it down people's throats. I've never had anything to lose, so I've never been afraid to be blunt to people that matter. I'll tell someone they're an idiot if they don't take a listen. As we are trying to expand to an international level, those people would be the execs, mgmt, blog sites...etc. I'm just decent with words. I can make people feel as if they're missing out on something. I just work really hard for what I want. I've probably sent multiple thousands of emails, regarding this band.
Speaking of hard....you also have a beautiful penis.
Power Bush: Thank you.
How big is it, when it is erect?
Power Bush: I haven't measured it in a long time, but I would say eight inches.
Zesty! Where is the most unusual place you've touched yourself?
Power Bush: I don't know. Probably on the back of a bus, while you and I texted each other.
Frisky J: I don't do that in crazy places. But I did it once at a customer's house (laughs)
(Gasp!) DO TELL!
Frisky J: I clean fish tanks in people's homes. They had this fuckin' maid that was really hot (more laughter). I was married and couldn't do anything with her. She was hitting on me really heavily, but I didn't want to cheat, so I just went and did that.
I've seen your penis up close. It's gorgeous! You have a really strong, emotive voice as well. While I love your screaming ability, you have a really intriguing clean voice. How did you develop that?
Frisky J: Well, I sang in choir when I was a kid. I did that before I did symphony. I sang things at the malls (laughs). They'd drag us around and make us sing stuff. I could sing back then, but when I began to sing for a band, I realized it's not like being in a choir. It's just you. Trying to change your own voice and figure out what you need to do is weird. People don't realize it usually ends up that your regular speaking voice is what you sing with. That sounds the best. You end up sounding the best when you just talk in notes. Once I realized if I just sang with my own voice, it was fine. I didn't have to develop it, I just kind of trusted.
So when you joined, Power Bush, you were originally the guitarist and went to keys?
Power Bush: No, I was a guitar player, but I started in the band as keyboards, which is interesting, because I never played keyboards before (laughs).
You shall now tell me how that came to pass.
Power Bush: Well we were friends. We used to skateboard a lot. I used to own a tiny little skate company called Kreampie Skateboards. I rented a warehouse, so me and my friends could skate whenever we wanted, regardless of the weather. So that's how I started hanging out with Jason. Their old guitar player, Taylor, talked about how they wanted to do live keyboards, rather than just sequencing everything. So I said I could do it. I figured I could learn how to do it.
Frisky J: We hired him over the Adam Fisher, from Fear Before.
How much of a financial investment was it?
Frisky J: I spent like $3000 in a 30 day period, for my initial rig. And then I spent more (laughs). It's just in my nature that I wasn't going to go out and buy the cheapest stuff I could. With computers, if you run backtrack, you have to own a ridiculously expensive computer, or there's always a risk of it crashing. So I decided the best bet would be to run our backtrack through iPads. So I went out and bought a couple of iPads, docking stations, a mixer and a keyboard. I didn't go out and buy cheap shit, just to get by. I went out and bought what I needed. And I still play on a lot of the same shit I bought when I joined three years ago.
Who did the keys on your debut album?
Frisky J: Well technically, it's nobody. It's just all sequenced. I just draw dots to make all those keyboards. Actually...not all of them. There were keyboards on there that we played too. I guess I ended up playing most of them.
Speaking of playing....where's the most unusual place you've both received fellatio?
Power Bush: Where's the craziest place I haven't gotten head ( laughs ) It's my forte, so.. I don't know. I got head a couple of months ago in our van, when we were driving to get our bus. People were sitting in the front.
Frisky J: I fucked a girl on her car in a day care center (laughs). There were no kids there. This was after hours.
Power Bush: I lost my virginity on a church playground.
When you ejaculate, are you more of a gusher, or do you shoot all over like a porn star?
Power Bush: I jerk off way too much, so it's more like a dry heave (much laughter)
How did the battle of bands come about?
Frisky J: Tyler, from It's Always Sunny in Tijuana, was recording at a studio me and a friend had. He was in that contest. And he said "I don't know why your fuckin band isn't in this. I bet you'd win it."
How did you feel once you got up on that stage? Was it exciting? Or was it just another gig?
Frisky J: It was exciting as fuck. Two execs from Sumerian and a singer from a really great band were there. They were all there on the side of the stage. Dick Dickens from Sumerian is there. And as soon as we start playing, all those guys are filming us and like getting down (laughs) It was amazing. We had a big crowd that were going crazy, singing our songs
Power Bush: It was the best date we've played up to that date, by far. It really was incredible.
So what happened after the show?
Power Bush: After everyone played, you go into this little room and talk to these three people. They introduced themselves and said that they thought Dead For Denver was a breath of fresh air. They said that night after night, they had been seeing bands that were all doing the exact, same thing. And we were different. They didn't have any negative criticism.
Frisky J: Well there was one. Two of them wanted to change our name. Dave thought it was fine. He said "We need to run with it. Remember, there's bands like Limp Bizkit and Korn. There are these huge, fuckin' bands with horrible names (laughs). People will remember Dead For Denver. Leave it the fuck alone" I was really happy about that. I didn't want to change our name and get a cool band name that gets lost in the sea of cool band names.
So what did you win?
Frisky J: We got to go out to St. Louis and play round two. We won that. Then we went out to California for round three. And that's where we got told the same thing. Ash (Avildsen, Sumerian Records founder) said we were a breath of fresh air. But then he didn't choose us. We totally lost. But Dave Dickens was like, "this isn't the end of it." He put us on the tour. He wanted to basically start something like The All Stars Tour, where bigger bands are going to tour the nation and smaller bands are going to get to open for them, instead of it just being big bands. So give little bands the chance to be seen. It's a really cool, fuckin idea. Supposedly, this is going to be a really big thing and we got to be the first run of it. I'm very proud to be a part of it. Just the fact that Dave believed in us enough that he kept pushing with us and still does. He got Legator Guitars to sponsor us. I come home from tour and there's these, $2000 guitars at my house.
Didn't he also get you on Knotfest?
Frisky J: Yeah. I made a joke to him. I was like, get us on Knotfest, buddy. Then he got us headlining a fucking stage there. He's fuckin' great. He got people to listen to us. I couldn't thank that guy enough - ever.
You guys have been lumped into the Djent sound. What the fuck is a Djent?
Frisky J: Djent started out as just a guitar sound. Meshuggah and those people started making a joke, because the guitar is like (mimics guitar sound) djent, djent, djent. So people started making a joke about it. Then Periphery's guitar player got a lot of fame, so when he started talking about it in magazines, people turned it into a genre of music.
Power Bush: The thing that makes it a style of music, is the people following the music. This isn't a normal crowd that's just following because they like your catchy music. These people will tear your band apart. They will pick every little thing apart. They're not like, "your band is awesome," they're like, what tuning are you in? How are you getting your tone? Are you using triggers? These people know their shit about music, so they will pick you apart. We're like, in the most critical field of music. It blows me away the kinds of criticisms these kids give. It's kind of scary actually (laughs).
Frisky J: They know about their music and what it takes to go in and create it. It's very digital, you know? It's all about direct lining. A lot of people are trying to get away from amplifiers and real drum sets. It's very much like the symphony. It's very articulated and very serious - every fucking part of it. That's why I'm so into symphonies, you know? There's so many similarities that people don't realize.
So how did the kids perceive you, when you first came out?
Power Bush: Our shows in Denver took awhile to develop, because people didn't know what we were doing. We played so many shows where we played this, really big crowd. And everyone would be standing in front of us, just staring at us. They didn't know what to think...and neither did we! We didn't know if people hated us, or people were just that in awe. We learned over time that people were just really interested in what we were doing. Those people came back. And before long, those people knew our songs. I remember a show where I heard people singing lyrics over the stage volume.
While I enjoyed your debut album, Naked Singularity seems to have more hooks and thought out melodies. Is that what you were trying for?
Frisky J: That's exactly what I want. I can now sing at least an octave higher than I could on any of the old stuff. With the stuff I'm singing now, there's way more fire. I get a lot of influence from fuckin' Justin Timberlake. I love hooks. I love stuff you can't help sing along to. I was like, why can't you have something heavy that you can sing along to? I want music that breaks barriers like Meshuggah, where it makes people just feel like punching themselves because they're so energized. There's so much energy, you don't know what to do with it. But at the same time, you find yourself singing along. That's what I really want. I want that energy. I've never been a fan of Limp Bizkit and Korn...
But I hear Korn, when I listen to your music.
Frisky J: That's what's funny, because you wanna know what? I'm trying to bring the element from those two bands, that I DID like. They made crowds jump. Not...swing their fists and hit each other, it's more like watching an ocean in front of their stage. Just these people going up and down. Everybody is together, jumping and having a good time. That's what I want from our crowds.
Well then, in the final analysis, what is success to you?
Power Bush: The reason I joined the band, was because I truly liked the music. As soon as it was played for me, I heard something in it. I would go out as a fan and buy this music. It's only evolved from there. When Jason calls me and says "Hey, I wrote a new song," I hear that song differently than someone that's in the band, writing the music. I hear it as a fan. I don't write the music, so when something is sent to me as a fully-formed song, I'm hearing it for the first time. That's how I know if a songs going to be a hit. I get goose-bumps and maybe pee a little in my pants (laughs). My attitude is basically, if I like it, then why in the fuck wouldn't someone else like it? Success in the music business is a perspective. I feel like we are already successful. We've toured the country, we've played amazing venues, I've seen someone singing our songs two thousand miles away,...
Frisky J: A kid in a parking lot recognized us in New Mexico. He didn't even know we were in town. He just knew who we were when we were getting off our bus. He saw our stupid logo and he was like, "dude I love your band!" We told him we were playing there and he didn't even know. To me, that's fuckin' cool. I just want people to really understand that the reason we do what we do and play what we play, is because we love it. I mean, I've quit playing music a million times, because I thought I should grow up, you know? But I realized what it is that makes me grown up, is the fact that I can fuckin' do this. I knew when I was four what I wanted to do. Not many people get to know that. I've known I wanted to be a musician and I love doing it. It doesn't' matter if anybody looks down on me for being older and still doing this. It's what I love, man. I'm going to do it regardless if anyone gives me anything for it. That's what I wish I could tell kids in general - do what you fuckin' love. No one sits on their fuckin' death bed and thinks "I wish I would have made more fuckin' money." You're going to think about things you did and didn't do and choices you did and didn't make. I want to be the person that says I went for the fuckin' things I wanted...even if they didn't work out. I don't want to regret not trying. That's what I want to tell everybody. Dude, do what you fuckin' want because this is way too fuckin' short.