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TAIME DOWNE INTERVIEW - BY RACHEL

Lock up your liquor and hide your daughters FASTER PUSSYCAT is on the prowl!!

Faster Pussycat front man Taime Downe, guitarists Xristian Simon, and Michael Thomas, bassist Danny Nordahl, and drummer Chad Stewart are tearing up the globe with their sleazy, streetwise, rock ‘n’ roll with an industrial twist! And tonight they are gonna play in Barcelona.  Yeeeeeeeeeeeee!!!!

Their latest album "The Power And The Gloryhole" from Full Effect Records 2006 is a Sexy, Dark, Hard-Hitting exploration into Hollywood’s seedy underbelly, thanks to Taime's sex laden lyrics, and the bands powerful song writing that perpetuates what the Sunset Strip is all about:.....DEBAUCHERY!!

Faster Pussycat are once again on the forefront of Hollywood cool and unlike many other popular Rock N Roll bands that have chosen to make and play radio friendly bullshit, Faster Pussycat continue to remain true to themselves and it is a successful strategy, made apparent to their huge worldwide cult fan base.

 

Thursday afternoon in Barcelona, I arrive in the small venue where Faster Pussycat are gonna play tonight. I immediately get into the backstage area to find all of the band members practicing a bit with their guitars, and chilling out, waiting for their soundcheck to begin. In the meantime I sit down with them and after all the introductions I start a relaxed conversation with Taime and the guys too.

 

Rachel - Taime, how is the tour going so far, any highlights you like to tell us all about?

 

Taime - Oh ok, rad, I just got a little cold, got caught in the snow in Zurich and in Italy, but, it’s all right, you know, well I’m getting better.

 

Rachel – No highlights then..?

 

Danny - Nah, nah, “tu hablar” haha.

 

Rachel - Do you have any more US show dates lined up after you finish up your current European jaunt?

 

Taime - Well nothing really, there’s a couple, but we’re trying to get finished our live record that we recorded over the summer. We just got over the editing, we’re going to go over to mix it, the master, do the hard work and shit, all the recording’s pretty much already done.

 

Rachel – When do you think it’ll be out?

 

Taime - Soon, very soon, I wanna get it done as soon as we get back, so probably in about next month we’ll get it done and it’ll probably come out in spring. So, just a few more months.. It doesn’t take as long to put the stuff out there now, once it’s done, and we wanna add a couple of bonus tracks too that we recorded, some new shit that we recorded some time ago. And after that put out a new studio record too.

 

Rachel - Have you guys had any time to record at all while on the road, and what about plans to record any new material?

 

Taime - No, no, not really, it’s just too much shit to do, too much shit going on. We got some stuff, ok cool, plug it in and after 20 minutes of that you say fuck this shit, you’re all drunk, and then everything is like smashed and broken so, we really do the recording when we get home.

Danny - Taime’s got a recording studio in his house, we all do have one, we all record at home.

Chad - Yeah plus we each live pretty much a block away from each other so..

Taime - Yeah we all live real close so, sometimes we do record some shit at some place else and then we come back and fix it at home and stuff.

 

Rachel – So do you have any material recorded already for the new album?

 

Taime - Oh yeah we’ve got some stuff, there’s even a cover of “It’s Only Rock ‘N’ Roll” by the Stones, it’s all done, it just needs to be mixed and mastered. So we might even put that out as a bonus of the live record and some of the new recorded stuff as well.

 

Rachel - The Power and The Glory Hole is a fucking killer album, that definitely gets lots of play time in my cd player, do you think that the "new" Faster Pussycat songs are just a natural progression? To me it sounds as if you guys just moved toward a more industrial sound that you guys were doing with “Whipped”, The Newly Deads, as well as taking a nod from the Faster Pussycat album "Between The Valley of the Ultra Pussy"..

 

Taime - Thank you!  Yeah, yeah, well first I think with Faster Pussycat, you know, I think it would have come out that way anyway, because that’s how I roll. Me and Danny worked out most of all of “The Power” songwriting.

Rachel - By the way, Taime from the information I have gathered, you did the first Newly Deads album, completely by yourself, kudos by the way, is that true?

 

Taime - Well, pretty much, but I’ve had a few friends helping me out there like Todd Miller,  and Todd and Kyle Kyle played on a couple of tracks and did some writing and everything but, yeah every night we did that and at the same time we did “The Power And The Glory Hole” too.

Rachel - You also produced "The Power And The Glory Hole" as well, great job! Without having that over-produced sound if you know what I mean!

 

Taime - Thank you! Ah, haha ok, well the over-produced sound, well, we don’t have it so haha.

 

Rachel – Taime is that you on the cover of “The Power And The Glory Hole” cd holding the Gibson?

 

Taime - Yeah, yeah

Danny - Yeah, can’t you tell it by the tattoos?

(Rachel – Er.. um well now I can see them right here yeah..)

Danny - Taime show off  yourself and get  your dick out too!! haha..

 

Rachel – Can you tell us about the album’s title, the meaning of it..?..

 

Taime - No no no no we can never talk about that!

Danny - No we can’t talk about that!

Taime - Well it’s just the coolest title since “The dark side of the spoon”, haha.

Rachel - I'd like to ask you about the Nazi-esque uniforms you guys were wearing for a while, and hopefully still are, ... have you guys EVER gotten any shit about those uniforms, (which I LOVE, by the way), I mean even though they are swastika free has anyone, ever not gotten it and been offended?

 

Danny - They were nihilist!

Taime - They were Pusstapo uniforms. Yeah of course we did get a lot of shit about these uniforms, on a nightly basis!! What do you think we did them for, everyone freaked out, its show business, its schtick!

Danny - We got stopped by the Taliban when we played Texas, you’ll see that on the live record.

Rachel - Taime, I know you love industrial music, can you tell me about some of your current favorites?

 

Taime - Oh well there hasn’t been anything new, right now Turbonegro, I think they’re awesome, but they’re not industrial, I haven’t been really into anything lately, I saw Nine Inch Nails this time when they were on tour they were fucking great.

Danny - He likes Pink!

(Rachel – You say you like Pink? ¿?¿?..)

Taime - Yeah I like Pink!!  But Turbonegro are my favourite band right now, their shit is fuckin’ rockin’!!

Danny - Well who knows tomorrow it might be something different.

Taime - Who knows, I might not like music anymore at all, yeah, it all depends on how my night goes haha.


Rachel - I thought it was really funny, that you used to have that one pic of you in your MySpace pics with you wearing that Toilet Boys shirt.

Taime - Oh yeah they’re friends of mine; I’m a big fan of them of course. They used to play at my club when I had my last club in LA and stuff, too. Miss Guy gave me that shirt.

Danny - By the way what are they doing now?

(Rachel – I think they’re gonna do a European tour at some point.)

Taime - Well yeah that would be great, I get an email every once in a while from Miss Guy going, “hey I miss you how’s it going”. I haven’t talked to him in probably about a year, he keeps saying that they’re gonna get ready to do something, and when they do something, you know, do some shows.. I always tell him hey just let me know!! But I haven’t heard from him yet so.

Rachel - Out of the 80s Hollywood scene, there were in my opinion, only four bands that mattered, that came out of that entire era. Motley Crue, who were a bit ahead of the rest, Guns N' Roses, LA Guns, and of course Faster Pussycat, how has the Hollywood scene changed? I mean if anyone knows it would be a veteran like yourself!

Taime – Yeah, that was cool thank you. It’s become a sum of cycles since then, you know what I mean, it’s like, there hasn’t been anything really big, big to come out, there’s been zero. A little fucking bands and shit, but there hasn’t been any one big burst out of that way since then.

Danny - No, no scene’s been happening.

Taime - We had a little rock scene in the Pretty Ugly days and shit, and Terri (Texas Terri) was playing the club, Motochrist, and The Newly Deads, but you know there wasn’t a big record boom or anything and you know the record industry, whatever so.

Danny - Well you know when Taime starts his next club, which he will do inevitably, and then the scene will come back.

Taime - Yeah we’ll take some bands, we have a handful of bands now that you know we’re fucking digging. Who knows what’s gonna happen when the next club comes up, Thunderpussy!!

Rachel - What do you think of the Chinese Democracy album?

Danny - Oh right, yeah I just played it for Taime on the way over from Brixton, you loved it!

Taime - Oh yeah that was killer, I heard that track, I dug it, I think it’s great, but I haven’t heard the whole record yet.

Chad - All right, I think the Chinese Democracy record’s great, the only thing that I have a problem with is I wish it would have come out when that stuff would have been a little more current, I think he was going for a certain vibe, and I think that vibe’s sort of past, it was a moment in time, but I think there are some really good songs on it.

Michael - It’s all over the place, there’s like an industrial song, and a ballad, and a rock song. I mean it’s good songwriting, and it grows on you after a while, the more you listen to it the more you like it, but I find it very disconnected you know, it’s not, there’s no progression, it’s very like, here-there-here-there,  you know. 

Chad - And I definitely like where it was headed, I like the ideas but I don’t think the execution was necessarily the best, it’s confusing, but aside from that I thought it was pretty good.

Taime - I heard a couple of tracks that are really fucking badass but now I can’t remember which ones.

Chad - It’s good to hear his voice again though.

Taime - Yeah it sounds great.

Rachel - Speaking of the aforementioned 4 Hollywood greats, is there in your opinion still that competition /camaraderie aspect of the Hollywood scene that that seemed to be present when FP was conquering the strip? I mean it just seemed to me like FP, GNR and LA Guns were all a big group of like minded hell raisers that supported each others music.

Taime - We were all like a big family, we still are. I mean we speak to Traci (Guns) all the time, we are still doing gigs too, during the summer, Izzy Stradlin’s come out and played with us recently. Axl, well he’s the one who took us on tour with them the first time we got out there. I mean it’s like a big crazy family.

Rachel – Do you still keep in touch with Axl?

Taime - I haven’t seen him but I hear people go all the time “hey Taime, Axl said hi”. I see Slash every once in a while, I’ll love those guys forever. We were together since the club days, we always got along really good and Axl, he kind of took us under their wings, brought us with him out here, you know to the UK, the first time they ever came over. So, those guys, we will always stay friends.

Rachel - So how does the song writing dynamic work between the five of you guys?

Danny - Everyone.

Taime - Pretty much it just comes up and shit, we start laying down shit, and we see where it takes us. You know, we don’t have a plan, we just kinda like, start playing and shit and if it comes out cool, it’s gonna be in the next record. We put it all together and make it cool, that’s what we do.

Rachel – There’s no one then with the main ideas?

Chad - Taime is the one with the main ideas.

Danny - Taime is the one definitely driving the boat.

Taime - Yeah, driving the boat, who knows fucking where? Ha-ha.

Rachel – I’m guessing that you design you stage gear, but who makes your stage clothes?

Taime - Terri King, she made out all our uniforms when we did the tour, you know all the Pusstapo shit, different stuff. Stevie made our work shirts that we used right after that. Yeah different shit, but Terri makes a lot of our custom shit.

Rachel - Who is your main tattoo artist?, nice tats by the way

Taime - Mark Mahoney, Madison (Stone).

Michael - Yeah at the moment it’s all Madison.

Chad - Yeah and there’s Adam (Forman) too, from High Voltage Tattoo; he’s going to do my right arm when we get back.

Danny - and Kat Von D too, but we can’t afford her she’s too expensive, but she’s good though.

Rachel - So Taime, I hear that you like martinis, what type of gin do you prefer?

Taime – Hahaha, Free, Dirty Martinis! With vodka, free vodka martinis are the best kind!

Rachel - So with the legendary success of the now defunct World Famous Cathouse, and The Pretty Ugly Club, any new plans for another bar/ club in Hollywood?

Taime - As soon as we can find a cool spot it’s gonna be done. Like, we found one about one year ago, I was gonna do it, was right after the New Year’s holiday. I went to Seattle for Christmas, and when I came back it was closed, it was in a perfect place, right in Hollywood and Vine, the perfect location and the owner shut it down so.

Danny - Well and you recently did a Cathouse reunion.

Taime - Yeah well, but that was a couple of years ago. But every time I’ve done a club it’s been like, they’re there at the right time and at the right place. So if we can make that happen, I wanna do a club; I mean it’s about time.

Danny - Yeah you could do one in Barcelona.

Taime - You never know!! I wouldn’t mind!

Rachel - Your first band in high school was The Bondage Boys, which I found was amusing in regards to your lyrics in the song "Where There’s a Whip There’s a Way", were you say “I ain’t no boy of bondage" etc off "Wake Me When Its Over". Can you tell us anything about that band, were you gothic, industrial, and how long were you in that band?

Taime - It was a rock ‘n’ roll, industrial, gothic band all mixed together, before no one even used the word, that was what “alternative” was. It was all originals and covers, we did Sex Pistols, Ramones covers, “Black Leatherby Steve Jones, we did covers for fun all the time.

Rachel - From what I hear the new set list is most of "The Power And The Glory Hole" as well as some highlights of the older material. Are there any covers thrown in for good measure as well? Also have you guys varied the set list up a bit to keep it fresh for you guys?

Taime – No, we are not playing any cover songs, just Betty Blowtorch’s “Shut Up And Fuck”, we play it at every show, always.

Rachel - What are yours and the bands favorite songs to play live right now?

Taime - The ones we’re playing. “Pornstar” is the bomb!

Rachel - Are there any songs that the fans request that you don’t enjoy, or refuse to play?

Taime - No, we just stick to our set list and well, maybe the next time they come we’ll play them. You know, we don’t take requests, no, because chances are we’re not gonna remember them anyway so.

Rachel - Any chance of putting some of your merch up for sale on either you official band website (www.fasterpussycat.com), or on your MySpace site (www.myspace.com/fasterpussycat), so that the fans of the band that can’t make it to your shows, can get a shirt?

Taime - Yeah yeah that’s all part of the process now, we’re dealing with some people to put all our merchandise up and everything.

Rachel - Any desire to play arenas at all? I actually prefer club shows myself, do you love the intimacy as well?

Taime - It doesn’t matter as long as it is gonna pay the bills. We play a gig, and then we do a festival, it’s all mixed stuff, all kinds of places. It’s fun, as long as we can have a good time.

Rachel - I went to Cruefest last year and aside from Motley Crue, I was a bit disappointed. Hell in my opinion they should have gotten you guys to play Cruefest, LA Guns as well, now that would have been worth it, instead of some other bands which, I'll not name here and now. Any interest in anything like that at all?

Taime - I don’t know, whatever, I don’t really know what this Cruefest is really all about anyway so.

Rachel - Being that you guys have had virtually no radio airplay at all, nationwide in the US, does it piss you off that the radio brainwashes people into liking this and that, and basically promote all the shit bands in existence? While a great band like Faster Pussycat are virtually unknown to the average household.

Taime - Yeah fuck yeah fucking pricks!! Whatever, go to hell you fucking radio, eat my shit!! I don’t care,I prefer not to listen to myself anyway so. After so much playing live and recording I get fucking sick of it anyway.

Rachel - In this era of American Idol bullshit that the media feeds the young kids of today, I would like to say thank you for doing your part in keeping rock alive. Any opinions on this?

Taime - You’re welcome! My pleasure! Thanks for listening to our music; again, that’s how we roll.

Rachel - Taime on the song “Bathroom Wall” you added your personal phone number as part of the lyrics, I'll bet you got lots of fucked up messages on your machine, any strange memories of that stick out at all?

Taime - No, I don’t really remember any of them, but it was like a lil’ Taime hotline, we used many of the messages as samplers for the song “Cat Bash” (from the “Whipped” album).

Rachel - What prompted your involvement with Pigface, back in the day?

Taime - I just needed a change and I was friends with Ogre from Skinny Puppy, he introduced me to Martin (Atkins). I was gonna go to Chicago for a little bit and Martin was up there and well Ogre got me into that.

Rachel - Obviously you got the name FP from the Russ Meyers flick "Faster Pussycat....Kill Kill". Are you a big Russ Meyers fan as well and which of his other films are your faves?

Taime - Oh fuck yeah “Between The Valley Of The Ultra-pussy” is great. Oh no that’s our record haha No, “Beyond The Valley Of The Dolls”, is killer. “Motor Psycho” all of his shit is killer in a certain way. He actually did our first video, “Don’t Change That Song”.

Rachel – Taime, has anyone ever told you that you and actor Judd Nelson (actor, “The Breakfast Club”, etc) look quite a bit alike, hahaha?

Taime - Oh yeah, since day one, ha-ha... it was funny because it was like you’d come to my club and there were a bunch of actors back in the day like, Robert Downey Jr, Johnny Depp, we’re all like in the same circle of people and they used to fuck around and bring Judd to the Cathouse. I was even once at the Hard Rock Cafe with Rikki Rocket and some girl came up to me thinking I was him, asking for an autograph and Rikki said, “Hey just sign it” so I signed it anyway.

Rachel - Speaking of actors, besides yours and the bands appearance (1st incarnation) in the documentary "The Decline of Western Civilization Part Two: The Metal Years" have you ever considered acting at all? (Besides porn, Taime, haha.)

Taime - Yeah, maybe one day. Why not, I have many friends who are actors and shit so maybe one day. Mickey Rourke? Fuck yeah I like Mickey Rourke, and Johnny Depp, he’s my friend, and Robert Downey Jr. is awesome.

Rachel - I recently read Nikki Sixx's book "The Heroin Diaries" have you ever considered documenting your exploits, and putting out a book of your own?

Taime - Yeah we’ve already started it, but it is not a big priority right now. We are doing a little bit at a time so, like I said we are into putting out the live album first and work on the new songs as well.

Rachel - What was the last movie that you really enjoyed and are you a horror film fan at all?

Taime - Oh yeah I love horror films. I watch movies so much; I’ve seen so many movies, let me remember now. I just watched Stephen King’s “The Mist” while I was coming over here on the bus, it was good, creepy. I like all the classic horror movie stuff, I’ve seen hundreds of them, I just use to watch them when I want to take a break from bars, recording, music and touring, you know, to recuperate and shit.

Rachel - Taime, being that most of your lyrics are sexy tongue in cheek streetwise prose narratives, tell us how old were you the first time you got laid?

Taime - I was 12.

Rachel - Where was it and how did you like it?

Taime - That was in Seattle, my hometown. Oh fuck, it was great, ‘cause I finally got laid!!

Rachel - Is there anything else you wanna tell me about that paramount moment in your life?

Taime - Haha  nononononononono!

Rachel - Taime do
you frequent the Hollywood scene, when you are not on tour?

Taime - Yeah, well we’ve been so busy lately that I haven’t, but we went out a couple of times. We live like in the middle of everything so yeah we’re out most of the time.

Rachel - What is your pre show routine, do you have one?

Taime - Oh before a show, just chill. Well right now I’m sick so it’s a bit like, fucked up, I don’t know I’m just hoping my voice will be ready, if it’s not then nothing. Usually before a show we make some drinks I get laid a little bit at a time, put my stockings on, put my make up on, drink, starting about an hour or two before the show, depending on where we’re at and how much time we’ve got, check my time, try to get, not hammered but a little bit buzzed but, now with this (his voice), I am still not sure what tonight’s ritual will be.

Rachel - Finally Taime, is there anything about yourself that you'd like to tell all your fans that would surprise them? Anything, tell me!

Taime - Hmmm, I don’t know something that would surprise them. I just can’t think of anything interesting now. I’m not interesting!! Actually I’m not still quite awake; I think I need some more coffee.

Rachel - Ok, thank you Taime, you’ve been very sweet and I love you man!

Taime - Oh you’re welcome sweetheart!

Go buy “The Power And The Glory Hole” now if you still haven’t, don’t miss out!!!! And be ready for the forthcoming live album very soon!!!!!!

Everyone go check out FasterPussycat’s myspace page: www.myspace.com/fasterpussycat, and their super interesting official webpage: www.fasterpussycat.com

Also check out The Newlydeads here: www.myspace.com/newlydeads

Interview by Rachel 29.1.09

All Photo's by: NoClassPhoto

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