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Playful Irreverence

The Supersuckers boast loud music in a punk/rock combo.

May 05, 2000|BILL LOCEY | SPECIAL TO THE TIMES

The Supersuckers were a bunch of desert rats out of Arizona who moved to Seattle, where the action was in the early 1990s. There, they recorded a bunch of albums, and now are bringing their tour to the Ventura Theatre on Friday in a thinly veiled attempt to sell a few copies of their new album, "The Evil Powers of Rock 'N' Roll." Also on the bill are Fluf and the Furious IV.

The Supersuckers were originally one of those cowpunk bands doing the greasy blues for the inhabitants of trailer parks yet untouched by tornadoes. Twangy guitars on tunes about dusty towns you're glad you don't live in, plus the sight of frontman Eddie Spaghetti in a cowboy hat, pretty much told the tale, except that the Supersuckers had more in common with the Rev. Horton Heat than Garth Brooks.

Sort of a cross between Motorhead and Mad magazine, the Supersuckers' hard-driving sound has enabled them to play with such diverse artists as Rob Zombie and the Ramones--as well as Steve Earle and Willie Nelson. They even persuaded Linda Blair to appear as the Devil in their video "Born With A Tail."

There's not a lot of seriousness happening here, as evidenced by the following conversation with band frontman Eddie Spaghetti:

Wow. You called right on time. Does this mean your band always starts on time?

You know, I'm a pretty punctual little rock 'n' roller.

Is the new album different from those that came before or is it just more of the same?

Unlike the country albums, this is more of a typical Supersuckers album--we just walked into a room and rocked out.

You left SubPop. How's the new label, Koch International?

They're all right, I guess. They're just label people--I never talk to them, anyway. We're just middle-class guys. We're not making a lot of money, but we pay the rent.

Are your songs really about women, liquor, drugs and killing for the most part?

Yeah, that and blood--blood drinking.

What was The Plan when you started as opposed to now?

We started in 1989, and everything's still the same. We want to write memorable music and good music that lasts a long time.

What do you think your band sounds like?

It's punk and rock music for those who have embraced rock 'n' roll as a personal savior.

How do you survive on that endless road trip?

We try to keep laughing. When you've been friends as long as we have, we try to keep it light because we know there will be more than a few "Spinal Tap" moments on this and every tour.

Tell me about a memorable Supersuckers show.

Well, once we played in Vladivostok in a sister city exchange program--Seattle is their sister city. The gig itself wasn't that strange, but just being in Russia was very strange. We played at this football field and there were all these armed guards to keep everyone off the grass, so they all had to stand on the track.

Besides all those Russians, who goes to see your band?

You know what they say, you can pick your friends but you can't pick your fans. Every scary tattooed fan that shows up--we love every one of them.

What advice would you give to aspiring musicians?

Me? What advice would I give? Never have sex until you get married. Quit pretending and go back to school because the world doesn't need another band.

What's the most misunderstood thing about the band?

That we're sexist, misogynist white power supporters. Sometimes these white power guys or these tattooed thugs show up to our shows and I think "Man, I couldn't be connecting with these people, could I?" We'd like to think our friends are thoughtful and intelligent. OK, so we're evil, but we're playfully evil.

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DETAILS

The Supersuckers, Fluf and Furious IV at the Ventura Theatre, 26 Chestnut St.; 8 tonight; $14.50; 653-0721.

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Singer/songwriter and Colorado transplant David James Holster will have a Saturday night party at Zoey's in Ventura to celebrate the release of his new CD, "Cultural Graffiti." Besides all seven tables at the tiny hole-in-the-wall eatery, there will be additional seating down the long corridor all the way to Main Street, thus increasing attendance by plenty.

Holster was a rock star in Aspen in the early '70s as a member of the local rock gods Starwood, and over the years he has written songs for such diverse artists as John Denver, the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, Three Dog Night, Dave Mason and others.

Usually just a guy and a guitar, Holster will be assisted at this songfest by his significant other, Suzanne Paris, on vocals and guitar, Pete Bardens on keyboards, Jim Christie on drums and Christine Ellis-Perrier on bass.

Recorded in a toolshed in Oxnard, the CD contains nine of Holster's originals, with "World of Hunger" the hoped-for hit and ticket to Easy Street. It's already been recorded by Paris and Jonathan McEuen and performed at the massive Phish New Year's Eve gig in Florida. Besides all that, Zoey's has great food.

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DETAILS

David Holster & Friends at Zoey's, 451 E. Main St., Ventura; 7:30 p.m. Saturday; $10 (or $15 with CD); 652-1137.

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