MURDERDOLLS – Hooray For Homicide

August 17, 2010, 4 years ago

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By Aaron Small In 1980, VAN HALEN released Women And Children First. Now 30 years later, on August 31st 2010, MURDERDOLLS will release Women And Children Last – how times have changed! “Oh yeah,” chuckles vocalist Wednesday 13. “It was such a good title! We knew that when people heard that title they would either be offended or laugh. I think it’s worked both ways so far. Some ladies didn’t like it, but oh well.” Murderdolls is the dynamic duo of W13 and SLIPKNOT drummer turned guitarist Joey Jordison. The pair unleashed their debut album, Beyond The Valley Of The Murderdolls, eight years ago in 2002. Since then, Wednesday has issued three solo albums, an EP and live DVD/CD, as well as two BOURBON CROW discs and one under the moniker GUNFIRE 76. Add to that a re-recorded best of and box set from his first band, FRANKENSTEIN DRAG QUEENS. Joey has been equally busy with Slipknot putting out two studio albums and a double live effort. He also worked as producer on The Roadrunner United All-Star Sessions and 3 INCHES OF BLOOD’s Fire Up The Blades. Additionally, Jordison has performed live with METALLICA, SATYRICON, MINISTRY, KORN and ROB ZOMBIE. Despite all that has come before Women And Children Last, Wednesday proudly states, “It’s my favourite thing I’ve ever done! It turned out great. We had no expectations of what it was going to be like. We got in the studio and it turned out that way.”
Murderdolls 2010. Joey Jordison and Wednesday 13.
Women And Children Last is undoubtedly darker and nastier than its predecessor. W13 admits his approach to writing lyrics differed this time, as compared to the songs that comprise his back catalogue. “There’s a big difference. I really realized it by doing the new Murderdolls. I didn’t want to do the same old – the Gunfire stuff was a little different, so for me that was cool ‘cause I got to step out of this corner I’d been painted into with the Wednesday 13 stuff. But with Murderdolls this time, we changed it up. There’s no actual horror movie songs on there. There’s stories like ‘Chapel Of Blood’ and ‘Summertime Suicide’, I guess they could be a horror movie. But we didn’t want to go back to watching Dawn Of The Dead and write, when there’s no more room in hell, the dead will walk the Earth. That was easy to do. This time it was more of a challenge. I wanted to sing about different themes. There’s still tongue-in-cheek fun stuff on the record and there’s more serious songs like (first single) ‘My Dark Place Alone’ and ‘Nowhere’.” Murderdolls definitely left the campy vibe that was present on the debut behind. Women And Children Last really sees the band going for the throat this time around. “We were pissed off! That’s the only way I can really explain it. We had a really good time in the studio recording, but when Joey and I connected again after five years and started talking, we just realized how pissed off we were about so many different things. We just started talking about everything that had happened since the last time we saw each other; that’s why the record has all that fury. It’s real.”
While listening to Women And Children Last, it quickly becomes apparent that Wednesday loves the word motherfucker! It appears in half the songs (multiple times) and twice in the title of one of the bonus tracks, ‘Motherfucker See Motherfucker Do’. “The great thing about the record is I’m constantly using the word motherfucker. We actually had two warning stickers made for the album on purpose. There’s a Parental Advisory and on top of that there’s one that says, We Are Fucking Serious! Parental Advisory! I don’t know if any other band has done that? We felt it was that dirty and sleazy that it needed two warning labels.” Joey calls Iowa home and W13 lives in North Carolina, yet the pair decided to record in Hollywood, California. “We were actually going to record in Iowa at the same place that Slipknot did their last record,” reveals Wednesday. “But the guy we were going to use at the time couldn’t start the project until five weeks later. So we had to go with what was available then and we chose Zeuss (KINGDOM OF SORROW, THY WILL BE DONE) to produce the record, he was chasing down studios all over the place, trying to find the best one. He found this killer place up in Hollywood and it worked out great It was a house connected to a studio, so we basically got to stay at the house, then we’d go and record during the day or at night, whatever. We basically locked ourselves in this really killer fucking house; we never left. We never went anywhere. We were there for 30 days. We never went out. It almost became like this little compound; it was like The Shining almost. We only saw each other in this little insane asylum, but it worked out for the vibe of the record really, really well. It was great, but it wasn’t like we had to record in Hollywood to get a vibe or anything. We just lucked out with a really cool studio!”
Although Women And Children Last is the second Murderdolls album, it’s the first time W13 and Joey have actually sat down and wrote together. Beyond The Valley Of The Murderdolls consisted of songs from Wednesday’s old band Frankenstein Drag Queens, meshed together with songs from Joey’s old band THE REJECTS. “Right, exactly. These were demos that started in maybe 2002 or 2003, up ‘til three weeks before we recorded the album. So we had all this material, but there weren’t any finished songs. It was more or less like a verse and a chorus. But when Joey and I got together, we basically picked out – we had so many songs to choose from, it was so hard doing it – we went in with 30 ideas, more than that. Then we just started chopping them off, piece by piece. In the studio, we actually wrote ‘Chapel Of Blood’ and ‘My Dark Place Alone’, those weren’t prepared prior to that. Those were riffs that Joey played and he had to track them. I had no vocals or anything, but that’s what was so cool about it. He wrote those songs and then would run out to do Rob Zombie rehearsals, when he’d come back, I’d have all the lyrics done. It was that easy for those two songs. It’s a weird connection that me and Joey have; it’s not weird, it’s awesome! He and I, the way we write is so quick, it comes so naturally, sometimes we even finish each other’s sentences. It was a really cool experience, for the first time to actually sit down and write songs; we realized the chemistry we have. Before it was easy. You really couldn’t tell because those songs were complete. We just smashed them together, redid some words here and there, other than that it was already done. This, we actually had to work and create these songs.” Much to Wednesday’s delight, Mick Mars from MÖTLEY CRÜE made a guest appearance on the album. “He plays guitar on ‘Drug Me To Hell’ and ‘Blood-Stained Valentine’. Mick does all the leads on both of those songs. The way it happened, it wasn’t planned out at all. We weren’t going to have anyone else on the album; we didn’t want to have any special guests. We had just finished tracking the song ‘Blood-Stained Valentine’. We’d finished all the vocals, the rhythm guitar, bass, drums. We were just missing what we call the ear candy – the solo. Joey and I were having dinner, talking and out of the blue I said, ‘this really has a Mick Mars vibe to it’. Our tour manager, who was basically just watching us over at the house and the studio, he knew Mick because he used to work for Mötley Crüe. He said, ‘Mick just lives down the street. Why don’t we call him and see if he wants to play on it?’ He went out, smoked a cigarette, came back and said, ‘yeah, Mick’s into it. He’ll be here Saturday at seven so send him the tracks.’ He was a totally fucking cool guy man! The thing I was most impressed with was, he came in wearing four-inch platform boots, which I thought was great. He tracked all his parts – he was playing a whammy pedal and a wah pedal at the same time, ‘cause he was doing all these tremolo effects. I’d never seen anyone work a double bass pedal at the same time – and he was wearing platforms, which I thought was awesome. He’s the real deal. I remember seeing Mick wear those platforms back in the day and here he is, they weren’t the same ones, a new version, but this guy wears this shit every day. It was great to see. He was such a down to earth guy. He came in and you could tell it wasn’t about money; he wanted to put his stamp on it. We worked for probably six or seven hours, getting the right tone and everything. Plus, we consider him to be the villain of rock ‘n roll. He was Cousin It in Mötley Crüe. He’s the reason Joey and I dyed our hair black. It was a really cool experience to have him be part of our record.”
Photo by P.R. Brown
In addition to Wednesday and Joey, the 2010 Murderdolls touring lineup features: guitarist Roman Surman (Gunfire 76, Bourbon Crow), drummer Racci Shay Hart (Wednesday 13) and bassist Jack Tankersley – a completely different set of guys than that which toured in support of Beyond The Valley Of The Murderdolls. “We never wanted to discount the old band or anything, but it has been eight years since that lineup. The way that band was put together in the very beginning, a lot of people didn’t understand and we never really talked about it, but Joey and I basically recorded the record and then when it came time to put the band together, it was really rushed. We really didn’t have time. We had to be on tour ‘cause the record was coming out. We had a week to rehearse, get on a bus, learn how to be friends and be a band. Not to mention throwing in five or six crew guys on top of that – let the debauchery begin. And that’s what happened. With the exception of Joey, the rest of us were like kids in a candy store. We’d never been out playing, only local gigs. By our 11th show, we were opening for GUNS N’ ROSES in Japan in front of 30,000 people. You can just see the madness and what you could get yourself in trouble for. We just became this complete dysfunctional unit, but that’s what made Murderdolls work. Flash forward now eight years later, I hate to use the word grown up or mature, but we can’t stop ourselves from growing up. We’re just in a different mindset now. This band definitely took on more of a serious… we had more of a mission. Before it was just, let’s put this band together, have fun and go party. This time, once Joey and I started working on these songs, it became a real thing to us. We needed fresh blood and people around us that had the same vision, that’s why we chose the guys we have now. Last time, we just scratched the surface. This time we want to dig our claws in and make sure people remember who the fuck we are!”

Featured Audio

WITHIN TEMPTATION - "Covered By Roses"

WITHIN TEMPTATION - "Covered By Roses"

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