All Them Witches are set to take hold of Mississippi Studios this coming May having just got back from breaking international ground with a successful UK tour. With that in mind, we caught up with the guys.
How do you think being a Nashville, Tennessee band has effected your career and reputation?
It’s possible that being in Nashville earlier on could have helped us by making someone excited to hear something new from there and getting the word around a bit. It definitely holds some bad ass players and it was exceptionally easy to gather the roster. There is that fact. There’s a lot going on there. We were blessed with friendship though and that makes the difference. People might have the idea that you just go and drop in and make some crazy shit happen. That’s exactly what I did. The way we came up was real straight forward, we hung out, we made songs, we practiced all the time, played as many shows as possible and made the time for it. There was never a scene that we tried to get in with. We just wanted shows. I don’t know the scene. I know my friends and my family and they are very numbered. That’s the same with the other guys, maybe not for Allan… I have never seen someone befriend so many people in my life.
The mixture of genres is evident on many of your records, how do you feel you have grown since your first album?
The growth is good. It’s just this energy ball that we all breathe into and from. We are healthy, the chi is very strong. Extremely strong.
Robby, I love the new music video ‘3-5-7‘. It reminds of the hypnotic Uncle Acid’ music videos. It’s has that 1960’s psychedelic feel mixed with picturesque ideas of doom filtered in. What was in your mind when directing the video this way?
I purposefully didn’t watch any music videos for the past three years in preparation for this, so I will have to check out Uncle Acid’s videos. I had a really specific idea approaching this video. We had been playing this song live for some time before we recorded it. I had some real vibes sitting on the words and the feeling of playing it. It’s a song about awakening, dying, being stuck, being shit on automatically just by existing and ultimately grabbing that bag of shit and ditching it with an explosion that sends you into the next level of learning. I took those ideas and spent probably 20 hours filming my friends and re-taping strange things I had found, and maybe another 80 hours editing it. By the time I was done I passed out two times and puked once. It came through, the key is to watch it at least 20 times in a row.
Everyone always wants to know what a band’s inspiration and influences are. But what inspires you through other mediums of art than music? Painting, poetry, writing, etc.
All of us have different ways of sucking the all nurturing teat for mental and spiritual health. I fill my time with making images, on film, paper, with anything – I also seek physical activity and take the necessary dose of things that can make me feel uncomfortable. It keeps the juices flowing nicely.
On ‘Sleeping Through The War’ you worked with Grammy Award winning producer Dave Cobb. What was that like?
Working with Dave was really nice. We didn’t have to worry about anything except playing. He and Eddie, the engineer, are like this rock falling down a mountain, just doing it, capturing everything we threw at them. Dave was calling out what he could see up ahead and suggested angles, like someone in the crow’s nest. But the crow’s nest guy’s secret power is that he is a sonic genius with insane gear and odd amounts of natural talent.
Lyrically, when you write, what are you thinking about? For example the lyrics for Dirty Preacher are incredibly poetic for hard rock music. You just don’t see this in many bands anymore or they are harder to spot. Why do you think that is?
I feel like my brain is a product of cartoons, religious guilt, and years of hearing people’s sorrows and trying to figure how they relate to my own hardships. You absorb that information, and depending on your interpretation of the culture you were, a: born into or raised with, or b: sought for your own mental clarity. It depends what quality of sponge you are too. Are you a bullshit Scotch-Bright spittin’ out dirty, semi-palatable dishwater kind of sponge? Or are you a free range, organic, sacrificed itself for the cleanliness of your body, turning radioactive, fluoridated, toxic sludge into something meaningful and healthy for your being, kind of sponge? You either end up with a clean slate to work with, or you get stuck with a greasy waste of time. Lyrics make sense because you either get it or you don’t.
Pre-order ‘Sleeping Through The War’ just here.
Check out ‘Alabaster’ right here: