With their debut album, Colour Trip, looking like it could be one of the early classics of 2011, Adrian Mules caught up with guitarist and singer Elliott Frazier ahead of their UK tour to find out more about the Texan wall of noise that are Ringo Deathstarr.
So how did you come up with your name? Were you hoping that by combining the biggest band ever with the biggest movie franchise that success was inevitable?
I don’t know, it seemed like kind of an obvious name and it was totally unique; making it easy to find us on the internet and all that. Also it is a little nod to The Dandy Warhols and The Brian Jonestown Massacre, and weeds out those without a sense of humour.
How did you all meet? And how long have you been a band?
I had kinda been plonkin’ about in a band called Ringo Deathstarr since March of 2005, but the band’s line up was always changing. I guess I didn’t care to quit because I knew one day someone would take it seriously.
So I recorded a proper debut EP in Spring of 2007 and then started trying to get a real band together. In 2007 I met Alex in a clothing shop called Factory People. I used to hang out in there and drink free Red Bull and Mexican Beer while looking at the most amazing T-shirts. One day I mentioned to Alex that my bass player quit and she told me she played the bass, and she was absolutely right about that. I met Daniel in high school and he moved to Austin in 2008 at the right time when our drummer at the time was leaving the band.
When and where was your first gig as Ringo Deathstarr?
‘Twas at a party at a house called Fuck Mountain. This was during South By Southwest of 2005.
Your debut album is due for release in early 2011, but there have been several smaller releases prior to that. Is the album all new material or does it contain tracks from those previous releases?
The album is all new material with the exception of two songs… both have seen very limited release but I won’t say which ones because you should just wait and hear the album versions.
Which would you rather watch? A Star Wars remake featuring The Beatles (just park the fact that they aren’t all alive – think Yellow Submarine in space) or a band of Star Wars characters playing Beatles songs (think ‘Lightsaber In The Sky With Diamonds’)?
I’d like to see Bill Murray singing a Beatles song in one of those seedy dive bars from Star Wars and its gotta have Jar Jar Binks as Yoko Ono
We’ll call George Lucas now! So, you’re on tour in the UK supporting the Wedding Present. How did that come about?
They are our Bro’s. We met their guitar player, Graeme, last year when we were in Scotland. We stayed at his place one night. It was so warm and cozy. One thing led to another and we did a few dates in the States with them last April. Now we are gonna destroy the UK together.
How do your spend your days whilst on tour?
Hangin’ tough at Marks & Spencer’s.
They do an excellent chocolate-chip shortbread square thing, defiantly check that out when you are there. Who in the band has the most exciting non-musical talent and what is it?
Alex can do some weird dance she made up herself. It has something to do with Patty Smith
What was the first record you chose and bought for yourselves?
I can’t remember, probably some Nirvana album or something. They were this cool band from Seattle in the early 90′s, and they played music called ‘Grunge.’ I think they broke up but maybe its just a hiatus.
I think Alex’s first album she bought was Nsync. She is still asleep as we speak, so I cant’ confirm. Daniel only downloads albums for free.
We’d like you to make us a mix-tape. Can you pick five tracks to kick it off?
‘All I Need’ by My Bloody Valentine
‘Jet Generation’ by Guitar Wolf
‘Sailin’ On’ by Bad Brains
‘Steal My Sunshine’ by Len
‘Accelerator’ by Primal Scream
Thanks for your time today and good luck with the album & tour. What’s next on your to-do list today?
Re-wire my Feder Jaguar, begin to pack, and have a Margarita.
The band are playing the following dates in the UK:
18th Sheffield Leadmill*
19th Bournemouth Opera House*
20th Portsmouth Wedgewood Rooms*
21st Bristol Academy*
22nd Leicester Academy*
23rd Cardiff The Globe
24th Liverpool Academy*
25th Manchester Night & Day
27th Leeds Cardigan Arms
28th Wakefield The Hop
29th Glasgow 13th Note
30th Edinburgh Liquid Rooms*
1st Aberdeen The Tunnel*
2nd Bristol Start the Bus
3rd London Electrowerkz
6th London Brixton Windmill
7th London Buffalo Bar
* Supporting The Wedding Present.