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WOW ! - THE LUSTKILLERS' - ADAM BECVARE LIL' INTERVIEW BY RACHEL

"lustkillers (lust-killers) n. , pl. 1. a band of rogue rock n roll mercenaries preaching the blankGeneration/PostPunk gospel"

Introducing  (for those who still don't know him) Adam Becvare, singer/guitarist, leading man of his very own San Francisco rock n roll band The Lustkillers, who also plays guitar and sings for the rock n' roll band The Black Halos, and has also been the awesome frontman of The Lords Of The New Church since they reformed back in 2003. Mr. Becvare has been in many other bands since he was 18, The Heartdrops and American Heartbreak amongst others. 

The Lustkillers play and sing Punk Rock N' Roll in very much the same way some of my fave bands from 1977 did. Talking about The Damned, Dead Boys.. talking about serious attitude-laden stuff here yeah you know what I mean.

The Lustkillers have just finished their Black Sugar Euro Tour 2009, which took them to Belgium, France, Germany and Spain too. I was supposed to meet with Adam for the interview last May 5th when they played near Barcelona, but I was simply ill with a very much hated flu. So I waited till the last moment, but I was forced against my will to stay home and miss this show I was so much looking forward to. Not to mention hooking up with Adam, who I have been secretly plotting and planning to marry one day since I first saw him perform with the reunited Lords, and finding out about his deep appreciation for Wendy O, so go figure!!

Well, anyway, Adam very gracefully agreed via e-mail to answer a few of the planned questions and here they are. Thank you Adam, and thank you Mike Adamany very very much, too. 

Rachel - Hey Adam, what's up today?

Adam - "Sluts is what's up" The inside joke this last tour was "What is Up, Sluts?" offered from our Frenchy Driver Laurant's mouth every morning to get us up and on the road.

LustKillers are home and recovering nicely now. Home being James in Boston, Bryan in NY, Me in Chicago and Roger...... Damn, forgot. Roger was to meet his band Sorry and the Sinatras in UK for tour and 2 were denied entrance forcing them to cancel the UK leg. So Roger is stuck in Brit Purgatory 2 wks until Sinatra's can continue. The news really bummed LustKillers out cuz we feel like we've left a brother behind at War. Currently, I've been right back at it 6am prepping all LK matters for the ensuing June West Coast Tour.
 

Rachel - How has it been this Lustkillers tour for now, and how was it like yesterday in Barcelona, did you enjoy it?

Adam - The EuroTour was great. First time I wasn't touring to break someone elses band. LustKillers is all me and I've been extremely grateful for my players and the people who've made it possible for me to love my songs every night. We've been most surprised with the crowd's response. I run my mouth and adlib a lot during the set and we were afraid the language/humour wouldn't transfer well but it seems everyone can relate a band thoroughly enjoying themselves. The Barcelona show was actually, Badelona which was too difficult for many to attend without transportation but the club was great to us and we managed to get vid and audio tracks from it to share later.

Rachel - What was your first band, and who were your punk/rock heroes as a kid who led you to this?

Adam - My first band, I believe was called Prisoner. First two songs we ever learned to play were Sonic Reducer and Clash City Rocker. I was really into Ted Nugent and Ace Frehley before I learned to played guitar. The only bands getting shows once I started playing were metal. The guys who taught me how to play metal guitar were punks. I never had any punk heroes but I related to singers like Stiv Bators, Jim Carroll, Wendy O Williams because they made me realize I didn't need a traditional singing voice to do rock n roll. I guess Ted and Ace supplied that too.

Rachel - Adam why do you like Wendy O Williams so much, tell me all about it (I love Wendy O Williams too)

Adam - Wendy O lived by her own rules. No single woman has or will ever do as much as Wendy did to empower women in rock n roll. She was fun, dangerous, moody as well as cheeky. Combining those elements is a sign of true confidence. I cant believe she got away with as much as she did in those days.

Woman today can't even pull that off let alone think of it. I still carry my Plasmatics Membership Card. Had it since I was 12 and Sparrow guitars in Canada built me a guitar in memoriam to Wendy just last year.

Rachel - Don't you think she is definitely not being as remembered or recognised as a powerful influence in punk rock, as she should be, having been such an amazing and incredibly brave, original performer and person, and having proven she had more balls than most so-called rockers supposedly have, as well as being a very sensitive, intelligent person? 

Adam - As mentioned above. Actually, you couldn't even find a Plasmatics shirt anywhere until 2000. Now their merch is finally popping up but I don't think people can fully appreciate it unless you were there to witness that conservative Reagan era.

Rachel - Well I, as an unrecovering goth myself, MUST ask you about your stated fondness for both Carl McCoy and Andrew Eldritch, what do you like about them the most, have you ever met them (and if you have, especially Eldritch and want to share, please do), and what are your fave records and or songs of both the Fields Of The Nephilim and the Sisters Of Mercy?

Adam - Great questions, thank you. I love that Andy E. can be as serious as a heart attack and cheeky as a monkey. Both he and Carl are incredibly educated men. I envy that and it nourishes me intellectually as well as spiritually. I ADORE the early Sisters of Mercy singles. Recorded so crude and edgy. I prefer the up tempo nervous tunes of those. Body Electric, Temple of Love, Adrenachrome, Anaconda etc. Those get my blood pumping. As for Fields.... They are simply and entity unto their own. They carve out their own space in time both recorded and live. Their ambition astounds me and music transforms me to a different place. They are most likely the only band I accept to take themselves so seriously because they deliver. They come out on that stage dressed to nines on a level of 10 visually. You can't really go anywhere from there but they keep their audience completely mesmerized at that level the entire show. Incredible to me.

Rachel - I think you'd be a great guitarist for the Sisters Of Mercy, would you play with them if asked, to tour with them as they are doing now? Have you seen them lately live and if so, what do you make of their current shows? Do you understand what's going on inside andrew Eldritch's head??

Adam - A friend of mine Ben Christo plays guitar for the most recent Sisters Incarnation. He invited me out to the NYC show maybe 3 yrs ago. All the nuances and texture have been stripped from the old material now. They perform everything in meat handed powerchord fashion. Its uninteresting to me. I'm repelled by Macho. At the NYC show there was no applause between songs or at the sets end and so there was no encore. No "this Corrosion" which is ironically one of their original powerchord songs that led them to their current approach.

Rachel - After the Lustkillers, are you going back to the Black Halos? What's next for you after this tour Adam? Do you feel that the Lustkillers are more the band you always really wanted to have?

Adam - In between every project I've been involved with there has always been LustKillers. It was my oasis and is my sanctuary. I kept it sacred from business dealings, the industry and only comprised it of friends. Putting LustKillers in the front seat last June 08 after Halos was unavoidable. There was interest in releasing the Black Sugar Sessions and I felt compelled to answer the call and make a go of it. I've spent the last decade fixing others projects and losing myself in the work. Black Halos had me running the website, myspace, networking, art/graphics, writing arranging music, and sofa surfing in Vancouver. Not fulfilling to sacrifice so much work, for someone else's project that everyone else gets to vote on. It seems everything in the Halos stopped when I stopped doing it. Which is what happened when Rich Jones left as well. No coincidences in rock n roll. I followed Robbie Halo to the end. Robbie is the reason Black Halos existed so long. Bill owes him everything.

Rachel - Obviously everyone thinks nobody could replace Stiv, but you had the balls to do it and you did, and very well, by the way, congratulations for that!! How did you feel replacing one of your favourite punk rockers of all time? How did you deal with the pressure of all those eyes in the audience staring at you and fans of Stiv judging you? Did alcohol and/or any drugs help overcome that feeling?

Adam - I fell into Stiv's shoes. The LustKillers were to open for The Lords Reformation Tour.When Brian James got the LK demos they changed their mind and instead asked me to sing. I wasn't convinced the band should reform until Dave Tregunna called. We spoke a long while and I understood they missed playing their music and Stiv is gone. I told Brian I'd only do it with a guitar around my neck so no one would expect me to be Stiv and climb the rafters. Every Night there were fans who scoffed me when we arrived. Of course they also happened to have paid to see it though too. By the shows end they were my best friends buying me rounds, grateful that I delivered the material respectfully and so well. I'm gonna admit it never felt weird or unnatural from the first time I sang the material at rehearsal. Intentions were pure I guess. I also have to admit tho, that I often found myself amazed to be on stage with Dave or Bri. Often I'd catch myself just watching them in amazement like a fan. hahaha As for numbing down.... Lords live in a haze of guinness, hashish and bordeaux. We get on splendidly ;)

Rachel - How was it like being with Billy Rowe (Jetboy) during your time with them in American Heartbreak? 

Adam - Billy and I were tightest in the band and still check in almost weekly I guess. Billy was in LustKillers when I started to doing it on American Heartbreak's time. I got video. It was pretty damn cool. AH didn't care for that tho and so I was forced to choose bands and not keep Billy in LK. Actually reminds me, I need to call him. Hoping to crash with him during LK's next SF shows....

Rachel - During your long career in music, who would you say now has made the biggest impact on you both as a musician and as a person and why? These can be several people, you may or may have not met them or worked with them. 

Adam - There's the obvious rebels I could list here as inspirations but 15 yrs ago I realized.....they're all dead.Wendy, Stiv, Thunders even Randy Rhoads. My perspective changed and I've learned to value the survivors and the fighters since. Jim Carroll is an endless inspiration to me because he wrings so much from every day. Touring with Dave Tregunna blew me away cuz he's always kept busy in many different projects without reward. Dave loves life and is a 100% rock n roll automaton. In short though people are human. While many may have influenced or encouraged me, there's something unknown that propels me more. Working with Jack Endino for Black Halos was awesome. Ron Heathman of SuperSuckers always inspires me cuz he's an incredibly talented player and survivor. Steve Baise (Devil Dogs) I've surrounded myself with very good incredible friends that I'm every grateful for as well. I even still love Michael Schenker (UFO). His guitar playing moves me and hes been up against everything his whole life and still here playing. The Figgs are also personal heroes musically and personally.

Rachel - Did you really enjoy doing music reviews and interviews for Hit List? Which records would you like to review now (good or bad), and who would you like to interview and why? 

Adam - HITLIST was really cool for me. At that time a lot of music was coming out that people weren't yet aware of. Turbo Negro, Hives, Hangmens Reformation, The Chronics, TSAR, 3 Colours Red.  My reviews gave me a chance to look smart and be clever. I love writing but can rarely find the time or excuse to indulge. HITLIST allowed me that. I also got to Interview these people. I'd like to take me out for and interview and expense the lunch. I'm starving.

Rachel - If you feel like doing a small review of any record you like or hate right now, please do, a couple of lines will be enough but if you wanna elaborate don't hesitate.

Adam - There's too many bands, I find completely uninteresting right now to just pick one. Right now it seems everyone is trying the "hard sell" There are only 2 reasons to do anything. Passion or Money. Doing something to be cool or loved is a huge waste of my time. I demand texture and dynamics from rock bands. I have to like the singers voice. Then what they're singing about or at least intent.

Rachel - Your five favourite records right now!!

Adam - I’m afraid I don't even know anything current. When you work in a donut shop all day, last thing you want to eat when you get home is a donut. I did however on tour turn the LK guys onto stuff they hadn't heard before, that 3 Colours Red - Pure album is nearly flawless. Its also as heavy as I can go without feeling dumb n macho. Exploding Hearts - Guitar Romantics was genius shame. I love nearly anything Tim Armstrong and Lars usually do. They have this quality of honesty in their voices and Tim's cadence floors me. I even love the Transplants stuff. Lars - Viking album really great.

Polyphonic Spree blow me away cuz its so overwhelmingly up like Manson Family Brady Bunch, Manic Street Preachers - This is our Truth.....  Incredible mostly tho , I haven't been real interested in rock albums or bands since I joined Lords in 03.

More excited bout the songs I can create. Around the house I listen to electronica like Hybrid, Pump Djs, 2 Bit Pie, Fluke. I really still love the dark stuff or My Life with the Thrill Kill Kult. 

Rachel - Your fave songs, right now, the first ones that come to mind!! Ive had Andy McCoy's "Im gonna roll you" stuck in my head

Adam - But honestly all the LustKillers stuff is stuck in my head right now as we approach recording.

Rachel - What record or song or movie are you listening to the most currently, or watching?

Adam - NHL Playoffs. I usually always miss the hockey playoffs cuz I'm on tour every year at this time. Chicago Blackhawks are in for the first time since 1995. They play 8 blocks from my place. It's been really cool to see them build the team since I moved back here in 2003. I'm fascinated with the way the owners turned the franchise around. Sorry to disappoint you. Not very deep, I know but the grace and speed of Hockey is incredible to me.

Rachel - What are you doing right now as you answer to this? And what's your plan for the rest of the day?

Adam - Working out West Coast Tour for June. When I’m not on tour, I’m usually at home doing all I can to get back out on tour. I did just finally eat a sandwich tho.

Rachel - How do you like girls the most, tell me the qualities of the girl of your dreams. I mean, why not, be kinda realistic even if it's the girl of your dreams. Yes, we all want to know.

Adam - I like girls who are strong in spirit and slight in stature. Tough Runts like Wendy O, Lisa Left Eye. "scrappers" who say what they mean. feisty.  

Rachel About girls, if you could choose some you would like to "be" with, alive or death (assuming you don't like corpse sex, Adam, I mean, think about them as if they were alive you know) (but if indeed you do, maybe this is the right place to say it, go ahead), tell me names names... 

Adam - Easily.... Sharon Tate, Cheryl Ladd, Diane Lane, Michelle Pfeiffer, Lisa Left Eye, Vanessa Williams, Audrey Tautou. People give me trouble cuz I like the older girls.  

Rachel - You’ve lived almost every "scene" when they were alive at their time, back in SF, Chicago, LA, NY City, etc... tell me one you liked the most and why, and throw in a funny/decadent/tragic/random story you can think of right now, if you want.

Adam - NYC was the best. early 94-late 96  I love that city, the vibe, the pace, the food. There were many great bands playing then as well. I made my best new friends in NYC and I loved playing in The Heartdrops. Fav story is when I returned for the 98-99 New Years Eve. Airlines lost my luggage and it was freezing cold. Stores were closed so couldn't buy anything warm. I flew in to see Devil Dogs play Reunion at Continental. I walked in and my good friend Yvann's band Stab City/Spitball were playing. He's a genius songwriter. When Devil Dogs were finished I went next door Coney Island High to see good friend Kitty and Kowalskis and Dictators were playing. Mighty Joe (devil dogs 2nd drummer was there) then we all went to Arlenes Grocery for a 4am show with my good friends RADIO ZERO.  That's the kind of magical night that only can happen in NYC.

Rachel - Did you ever had longish black backcombed hair, wore eyeliner and danced like goths do to "The Temple Of Love"? haha. If you did, tell me about it, and the drugs you were into too, please! (I was just drunk myself so it didn't take much for me to do it)

Adam - I had very long, one length black hair. When Grunge got big I decide to chop, crop and pomp it say as to not be confused with those hippies. I still love dancing at goth clubs. Sorry.

The scene was very decadent in chicago then and I was quite the hedonist. Lots of blood orgies and lsd. The LSD got me off the cocaine though. Lots of pills and booze I recall too, but mainly it was fun to take a trip, put acid in your veins. We were doing that weekly but the whiplash of depression caught up with me, faster and faster and I became a real monster.

Rachel Adam seriously, will you marry me, if none of us ever gets to meet our total soulmate in, say,  10 years?? 

Adam - hmmmm ummmm I travelled over the ocean just to play for you and you didn't even show up!!!! so much for from death do us part. ;)

Rachel - Aaarrgghh... Dammit!  ... Hahaha..

THANK YOU ADAM!!!  YOU'RE A DOLL!!!

Looking forward to seeing those vid tracks from the Badalona gig.

Catch the LustKillers live in the U.S. during their forthcoming West Coast June tour at a venue near you, check the dates here: 

http://blogs.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=blog.view&friendId=2002762&blogId=476280329

Get their 2008 cd "Black Sugar Sessions" on Nicotine Records' website (will not probably find it anywhere else so go get it here: http://www.nicotinerecords.eu/music.htm  and play it!

Find out about all their latest music, news n stuff at : 

www.myspace.com/lustkillers,

www.LustKillers.com 

"The LustKillers.
Not afraid to get serious. 
Not afraid of fun. 
And not afraid of serious fun."

Also, if you wanna find out about one of Adam's biggest inspirations,  Jim Carroll (of "The Basketball Diaries" fame), check out his very interesting website here: http://www.catholicboy.com, you may find it interesting too!

Interview by Rachel 08/05/09