ACIDIC

Not your typical L.A. Band
Interview by Anthony Saia

Some people don’t know the band Acidic. In fact, I did not know who they were either before their promotion company contacted KUOI. After checking out their music, I decided to check out their show and pick the dudes’ minds.

Michael Gossard: Hi, my name is Mike and I play guitar and sing.

Ted Dubrawski: Hi, my name is Ted and I play the bass

Michael Thompson: Hey, my name is Mike Thompson and I also play guitar and sing

Matt Whitaker: My name is Matt and I just play drums.

Anthony Saia: Just play drums?

M: Yep, that’s my life.

A: What was the whole concept behind your video for Strata Red?

MG: It was a mixture of food coloring, flour and water. They poured gallons of that stuff on us. The concept was there was no concept. We rented a warehouse space and was done by students of USC so it was done for dirt cheap. They also used SLR cameras and shot continuous video frame-by-frame and it turned out a very high quality.

A: (To Ted) You are smiling the whole time during the video, were you just having a good time or?

T: I was actually miserable the whole time. The mixture started to cake on our clothes and arms and we shot over two days. We had to put the same dirty clothes on the same day so it was pretty miserable. I guess I was just having fun playing.

MT: It was fun, but after the mixture started drying on our arms – we wanted to peel it off but it hurt.

A: So it was like plaster?

MG: Yeah, exactly like plaster of Paris.

A: So how long have you guys been playing music? Since 2.5 years old?

MG: Pretty much.

M: Since four years old

A: Now, you guys also worked with Wizards of Oz?

T: Yep, they are some awesome Australians.

MG: They are not hiding behind giant green masks. They did turn our music into a rock monster. Some credits of theirs include Aviril Lavigne, Jason Mraz and Liz Phair and they have done a lot of stuff with Disney to the point where they joke about selling your music to Disney. Anyways, they took us on, produced our album and it went from a bunch of hooks to a cohesive unit and it was definitely awesome. They definitely gave our music an edge. At first, we thought that they were going to turn us down. Instead, they called us cowards and made us turn our stuff up. Like, lets turn it up to 11 and go crazy. They wanted to do something completely different and that was important. They came out and accentuated the better parts of our music and provided us with a full product.

A: So being from L.A. you obviously have the opportunity to play the Whisky-A-Go-Go. How does that feel standing on the same stage as bands such as Guns ‘N’ Roses or Motley Crue stood in those exact same spots about 25 years ago.

M: Haha…the first time I peed in the bathroom I thought to myself….holy crap. Robert Plant peed here!

MG: Exactly, and especially in there, you can see where people have carved in the mirror – which we have done. Its weird being from LA we don’t really think about it because we are house band there so we play at least once a month but some important feet have stomped and trudged here.

M: Yeah, living in L.A. you always know that the Whisky is on Sunset so you drive by so you don’t really notice it but if you are into music and love old bands like Led Zeppelin, playing there is phenomenal.

A: As far as influences go and writing does one person write lyrics or is it a collaborative effort?

MG: Most of the time I take on the responsibility of writing the lyrics – not to say that we don’t share its just, that how it has happened. Influences come from everywhere. I can’t even describe how half the stuff came up.

A: How does touring with a band like Hawthorne Heights?

MG: How do you think it feels?

T: It had always been a dream of ours to go on tour so to actually be doing it for our first time has been a trip.

M: Well, I never thought I would be touring with these guys.

T: Yeah, we hang out with these guys every day and we are starting to build friendships.

MG: Touring with HH has certainly been an experience and helps us expand from the LA market.

A: Any road stories?

M: He (pointing to Ted) mooned Utah.

MG: We almost lost half the merch on our way up here when we were in Arizona. We were on the 15 going through those cliffs and we hear stuff fall off the top so we slam on the brakes and our van skids like an action movie.

M: I thought they were behind me, and after checking our mirrors we noticed that they (Mike & Mike) weren’t behind me. A couple of seconds later Ted gets a call from our roadie saying, “We just lost all the merch” so Ted says, “Dude! Pull over!” So I pull over and I almost popped our tire!

T: Ha, barely made it out alive!

MG: We did play a really good show that night. Pretty sure every show we played in Utah deserves a story. Yeah, we were in a Motel 6 and I’m just in my underwear walking through the middle of the parking lot in Utah. There’s a video on our Facebook as well.

A: So, I also read that you guys participated in a benefit concert where all the proceeds of that show went to the OneLoveForChi foundation. Are you guys Deftones fans?

T: We are huge Deftones fans.

M: They are like a cross between hard, hard rock and barely being able to understand the words.

MG: Yeah, our management looked at the OneLoveForChi fund and saw that he was in a really bad car accident and was in a coma. There was an opportunity to play main stage of Bamboozle with them (Deftones) so we used a lot of our merch money and our fan base to help those guys. We got on stage with them which was a big deal because we were able to share a stage with some of our idols. Also at the show were bands like The Used, Suicide Silence, Shwayze, 50 Cent randomly.

M: The craziest part was that he had three of his scarier looking fellows sound check for him.

MG: Yeah, literally, you’d look up and these giant, torrential looking people were walking up on stage.

M: Yeah, I saw that and there was no way I was going over there.

MG: Haha…side story: We played right before Suicide Silence and I have never been so scared of a crowd.

M: They accepted us very well, we didn’t get booed or anything.

MG: Just seeing some guy with like eight piercings, tattoos on his eyes, the Kerry King head thing–

M: The lead singer for that band, who has like an intense scream was doing classical vocal warm-ups.

A: Doesn’t Hetfield from Metallica do that?

MG: Oh, haha, yeah.

M: I saw that on some video.

MG: Yeah, Some Kind of Monster, right?

A: Yep! So, being from SoCal, you guys must surf right?

Ted: Yep, I do.

Matt: I body surf.

A: Any favorite spots?

T: Oh, Staircases, Topanga –

M: whispering The Wedge, The Wedge

T: NOT, the Wedge because the Wedge scares me, uh, Bay Street, Venice Beach

A: What do you guys thing of college radio?

MG: We love college radio, we’re all in college, well, sorta

T: I hate commercial radio, I live for the college stations.

M: We were just talking about how we find all the good music on college stations.

A: Killer. So Mike T, I haven’t heard much from you man.

MG: He’s a quiet guy

MT: I’m loud on stage –

M: He just stands there and nods his head and his hair flows

A: Kind of like that feathered, Farrah Fawcett look?

MT: I’m actually going for the Jesus look.

MG: Jim Cavezial?

MT: I’m going to start wearing a robe on stage once my hair is long enough.

A: Looks like you guys were booked solid through July, how does that feel?

MG: We love it. We’d much rather be on the road than just sitting at home.

T: I live to play live

M: We notice that when we aren’t playing shows we start to get at one another’s throats because we aren’t playing music for people.

MG: Yeah, but playing a show is like band make-up sex.

A: So you guys must listen to a lot of music, what are some of your favorite albums?

MG: Green Day’s Dookie

Matt: Van Halen’s 5150

Ted: John Coltrane’s A Love Supreme

MT: System of a Down’s Toxicity

MG: Oh! We hate Ke$ha.

A: Of course, of course.

M: We actually played with a band that covered her song “Your Love In My Drug”.

T: Yeah, it was about 15% better, but the song itself is pretty crappy.

A: Final question…any surprises for the show tonight?

MG: Oh, I can’t tell. The only question is do you like 60’s rock n’ roll?

A: Yeah, of course.

MG: Sweet, thanks man, it’s been great. We’ll see you inside!

After pleasantries were exchanged, Acidic played a killer show. Gossard has a ton of energy as well as all of the other guys in the group. The impression that I got is that they deserve to be on the stage at The Whisky. They are tight, have a great sound and even know how to bust out some Beatles tunes. Check for these guys to be on tour sometime soon.