by Cameron Edney
– Guest Columnist –
After Two Decades of Ghoulish Success Wednesday 13 Presents The Dixie Dead
Ghouls and fiends it’s time to once again scream as shock rocker Wednesday 13 gears up to unleash The Dixie Dead unto the world. Hailing from North Carolina, Wednesday 13 has had quite an extraordinary career now spanning twenty years! Inspired by shock rockers such as Alice Cooper and Kiss and with a love for Horror it was only a matter of time before a young adolescent Joseph Poole would transform into the charismatic ghoul-man we see before us today! By the late nineties things really started happening for Poole who had by this time formed Horror themed punk rockers Frankenstein Drag Queens From Planet 13, and with a name like that you knew you were in for some seriously tongue in cheek tunes!
In 2002 Poole went on to join Murderdolls working along-side Slipknot’s Joey Jordison. The dynamic duo has gone on to release three incredible albums and countless headline tours around the world. Whilst Murderdolls were on hiatus Wednesday 13 was born and in 2005 we saw the release of Transylvania 90210. With legions of adoring fans already due to the brilliant work Poole had done in the past, he was now winning over even more fans around the world with the first Wednesday 13 release. Spawning the singles “Bad Things” and “I walked with a Zombie” cemented a path for continued success under the Wednesday 13 banner.
Fast forward to 2013 and Wednesday 13 is ready to the fifth and most diverse studio album yet. The Dixie Dead which is due to be released on February 22nd is an album that will appeal to fans of all Poole’s past work from Wednesday 13 to Murderdolls and Frankenstein Drag Queens. Just like albums past song-titles and lyrics are horror, the music fast Punk infused Rock, heavy and overall highly enjoyable!
I had the pleasure of catching up with the ghoulish Wednesday 13 last week to talk about the brand new album, some of the bigger differences recording The Dixie Dead compared to previous album and touring Australia. This is what he had to say…
Hardrock Haven: Wednesday it’s great to be speaking with you mate, i am a massive fan of your work! Before we even talk about the great new album… congratulations on twenty years of making ghoulish horror themed music. In this day and age most artists are lucky to last one album and touring cycle so it’s certainly an achievement to have lasted so long. Why do you think you’ve been able to last so long in an industry that spits no many out the revolving door?
Wednesday: I’ve been making music for a long time; I was fifteen when I started playing music in venues. For me… once I had my foot in the door, I had a taste for doing this; and I am working for myself, I’m not going to a job everyday and punching in for the man so to speak. It was my goal as a kid to make it one day doing what I wanted to do and I’ve definitely made it to where I want to be, and I want to keep getting better and better. In ten years when people look back and think of the Horror Music genre I hope my name comes as easily as Alice Cooper and Rob Zombie.
Hardrock Haven: The new album is called ‘The Dixie Dead’ and it’s due to be released on Feb 22, and it’s fantastic! As an artist in those days leading up to releasing something new, I’m sure you go through all the different scenarios in your head… will they love it, hate it, buy it, download it illegally. How do you deal with the anxieties and excitement surrounding the lead up to releasing new material, is it something that takes up a lot of your time?
Wednesday: I’m my biggest critic! When you’re a person like me who constantly thinks like that…I’m always thinking about what people will think of the record! As soon as it comes out I will be online all day reading what people say because I care and I want to hear it. To me having a review in a big magazine that praises you, that’s awesome, but to have a random guy tell you that you suck, you read that and go… “Well who the fuck are you?” It doesn’t really matter. You want to hear from your fans, the fans that have all of your records and regard this as the best one, those are the reviews that count! I can’t wait til it’s out, most times when a band releases a recording it’s been around for a few months, I’ve been listening to this album over and over since August, I can’t wait for people to hear it! The record is nothing like the last I don’t think; I think it’s a good combination of everything I’ve done from Wednesday to Murderdolls and Drag Queens, it’s across the board.
Hardrock Haven: On all past Wednesday 13 albums you have done most if not all the work in the studio yourself. This time around you handled the vocals and keyboards only, giving the guys a little more freedom in the studio, why did you decide the different approach for album five?
Wednesday: It’s a big thing that you really tell with this album, it’s organic you can hear everyone playing, not just one guy playing all the instruments! I didn’t really see any point, I demoed the songs and I write them prior to going to into the studio. I would write a riff and give it to Roman [Surman] or Jack [Tankersley] and they would add there thing to it. For the past two years I’ve just been the front-man; I still love playing guitars, I still love playing music but I don’t have any need to play guitars and Roman’s definitely way more talented a guitarist than I am.
Hardrock Haven: With every studio experience an artist will walk away having learned something new or adapting something to their style musically and or outlook on the process, what did you take away from The Dixie Dead sessions?
Wednesday: For me it was the recording process… I didn’t record in a big recording studio; the album was done in a studio in a back room at my house. I think the one lesson I got out of this was that you don’t have to go to a big studio and you don’t have to spend four years working on a record. I know what i do now and this record was a natural progression for me. I’m so happy about it, it feels right!
Hardrock Haven: Having sat on the album since August and playing it over and over. Looking back on the writing and recording process is there anything you would have changed or would have done differently?
Wednesday: There’s always something with every record that I would have changed. When I think of anything I wish we would have had an extra few months because I would have wrote ten more songs, and maybe one of those songs would have been a B-side. There are just little things like that with every record I do no matter how long I spend on it. Going back and listening to it, I can still listen to it now many times, and be super excited to play the songs; and it’s also the first records that I’ve recorded where immediately after I wanted to keep writing more music. This record has inspired me and inspired the next one.
Hardrock Haven: Wednesday as we know with every new album, there is a new touring cycle. Can we expect to see you back in Australia this year for some shows?
Wednesday: Yes, we’re just trying to figure out the time right now, I am hoping that we will be there for Halloween. We will definitely be there but we’re just trying to determine when.
Hardrock Haven: You were actually here last year for Halloween doing shows and you’re no stranger to our shores. The Aussie fans certainly love you!
Wednesday: Australia’s been so great for me, I’ve been lucky enough to play there four times in the past three years. I’ve been on Soundwave twice, once with Murderdolls, once as Wednesday 13; I’ve done two solo tours and now coming back in 2013. The reaction in Australia has been overwhelming to me. It’s seems that every time I come back, more and more kids are into it, it seems to be growing and that’s not a bad problem to have!
Hardrock Haven: I’ve had the pleasure of seeing you live and you’re a phenomenal performer and vocalist! These days before shows are you doing anything to warm up and prepare or do you hit the stage running on adrenaline?
Wednesday: Adrenaline is definitely a big part of it! Because I do this month after month and it’s my job, there are things I do now before I go onstage. It used to be all party, party, party before you’d go onstage and when you get off, but those days are not really around anymore. Instead of drinking half a bottle of whiskey before a show now [laughs] I’m definitely doing different things to warm up and prepare. I think over the years the one thing that’s different is that we really give a fuck about what we do, not that we didn’t give a fuck before, but there was so much that we were trying to do.
Hardrock Haven: Mate, you’ve shared the stage with many great artists over the years, has any of your peers given you great touring advice, if so who, and what was it?
Wednesday: I’ve toured with so many cool people… As far as advice, the wise godfather Alice Cooper has told me and taught me a million different things. I’ve met so many different people like Randy from Lamb of God and Jamey from Hatebreed, so many cool dudes that inspire me and I look up to. I’ve been fortunate to meet a lot of my Rock n’ Roll heroes and get advice from them. I can’t think of anything right off the top of my head except for Alice inspiring me! He’s 65 years old and still runs circles around me, so if I can do that when I’m 65 years old that’s all I need!
Hardrock Haven: Just before we wrap it up, with two decades in the industry now under your belt, you’re constantly learning, whether it’s in the studio, on the road or the all important business side. To date what do you feel have been the most important lesson you’ve learned?
Wednesday: For me, I think learning to laugh at yourself and not take yourself too seriously. If you put yourself up on a pedestal, think that you’re untouchable, you’re setting yourself up for disappointment. I’ve always got a sense of humor, I keep a level head; keep a realistic outlook on my career and what I do. I like to think as I’ve gotten older I’ve gotten wiser, I’ve maintained this for over a decade now professionally. I’m still learning but if i knew back then what i know now things would be so different!
[Laughs] I’m sure they would be mate! Wednesday unfortunately we’re out of time, but I wish you all the very best with the new album and can’t wait to see you back in Australia! Do you have any last words for our readers?
Thank you so much, I couldn’t do it without my fans, they are the reason I do what I do. I hope to see all of you guys in Wednesday 2013.
Wednesday 13’s New Album The Dixie Dead Will Be Out On Feb 22 Via 3Wise Records.
Make Sure You Grab A Copy Of This Killer Album!
To Keep Up With All The Latest On Wednesday 13 Head To The Following Websites…
[Photos provided by www.wickedpix.com.au]