We fucking love music, I think if you are a regular reader of SYFFAL you get that shit.
It should be obvious.
You won't find a negative review on the fucking site because we only talk about the music we love. We are essentially a free PR company/handjob factory for the artists that are able to make “it” move, and I think you know what I mean by it.
So it only makes sense that we are going to spend some time focusing on the labels that drop album after album of wang engorging goodness. Well Slovenly Records is one of those labels. Based out of some shit hole town in Pennsylvania Slovenly Records has managed to sign more Italian Punk bands that claim to not be Italian than any other label in the land. AND THAT IS SCIENCE BRO!
If you add in the roster of American drifters who may or may not give out handies to sleep on couches between gigs and stellar albums, well then you are looking at a super power of indie punk music.
I recently sat down the Slovenly Records Bazooka Joe to talk about the label, the industry and why chubby white guys like to wear crew neck sweatshirts and camo shorts.
OUR INTERVIEW WITH BAZOOKA JOE OF SLOVENLY RECORDS STARTS NOW!
SYFFAL: Our readers were punk rock way before you were punk rock, which as you know means that they are on methadone and squatting in the basement of a LES luxury condo lamenting the days when NYC was filled with junkies, thieves and derelicts. Despite our continued mocking of them for being old and still dressing like one of the Young Ones they keep coming back to learn about new and exciting music. So can you help us help them by answering the following: Who the hell are you?
Bazooka Joe (BJ): We are a small, dedicated crew of hard partying freaks (deejays and "musicians"), spread across the globe, and organized by Stickerguy Pete.
SYFFAL: Stickerguy Pete was my rap name in High School. What is Slovenly Records all about?
BJ: Debauchery. Noise. Sex. Tacos. The boogaloo.
SYFFAL: So Catholic stuff then? Why do you still pull your socks up that high when you are wearing shorts?
BJ: I'm one-half Mexican. That's what cholos do, ese.
SYFFAL: LIAR! They don't have Mexicans or even Half Mexicans in Pennsylvania, only good white ‘Mericans. I have thoroughly enjoyed most of the product that you have released, the common theme that I find with the bands that I enjoy most on your label is that they are foreign and best described as swarthy. Is there something to this? Why do you think swarthy foreigners make this brand of rock better than milky Americans?
BJ: The Black Dhalia murderer was also swarthy and American, and he was definitely a sick fucker. I don't think geography determines talent. You just gotta have soul. America might be the most soul sucking spot on earth these days, but we once had, and do still have some serious motherfucking raw talent and weirdness to this day. There's more foreign greaseballs that want to be Bo Diddley and The Spits than there are Americans who want to be ABBA... I hope. Plus The Spits, Paint Fumes, Okmoniks and a few of our other bands are American, so suck it! Are Puerto Rican Albanians considered American?
SYFFAL: I wouldn't consider them American, more Delawarian. Why start a fucking label? Isn't the industry dead?
BJ: Don't start a label unless you have a vision. My label (Slovenly sister label BLACK GLADIATOR) is three years old, and I only have four releases out, but the 5th release, the debut LP by Brooklyn's THE PSYCHED will be out in time for summer. Just because someone has a cool band with a decent demo doesn't mean they're going to compliment my vision. Releases will be few and far between, but that pretty much guarantees consistent quality. I don't know shit about the industry, but there are loads of cool people all over the place doing their thing. Most of us consider each other to be family. You're part of it too, and I know exactly which family member you represent. I love you, Grandma.
SYFFAL: I have no idea what the Fuck you are talking about. What do you think the 3 worst things about owning a label in 2012 are
BJ: Having to learn how to do shit on a computer besides looking at porn.
Getting demos and writing back to every band to tell them their music isn't for us, when I'd rather tell them how shitty they are.
THE PAY SUCKS!
SYFFAL: What are the 3 best things
BJ: People finally think I'm as cool as I've been telling them all along.
Not having to wear a name tag and talk to the general public.
SYFFAL: Free records? That is what the internet is for. What are the biggest challenges going forward for indie music as a whole?
BJ: Originality is the biggest challenge. It's the hardest thing to achieve for any artist, but just because something is derivative doesn't mean it can't still be Fuckin' bad ass and funky. The other biggest challenge is the explosion of BAD TASTE that the media has been pushing on everyone since the 80s. Once upon a time quality was normal. Now everything normal STINKS. Yes, all of it. Damn, you used to be able to turn on the TV and see Lee Hazelwood or James Brown! Even Lawrence Welk was at least smart and classy.
SYFFAL: See and I would have thought that the biggest problem would be people liking Bon Iver. I am always so wrong on these things. I often say we are in a golden age for music. Agree or disagree and why?
BJ: There is always going to be great music out there, whether it's rock'n'roll, pop, avant-garde, punk, hip-hop, whatever... but the time in space that created these things is coming to an end, and I think we can only keep expanding on things that already exist, and hopefully without fagging it up too much.
SYFFAL: Is fagging the technical term? What exactly do you look for when considering signing a band?
BJ: Intelligence, power, humor, style and soul. And RULING LIVE helps of course, even better if you want to tour 8 months a year.
SYFFAL: The correct answer is a love of poverty. So outside of SYFFAL how much does the music media suck?
BJ: I didn't even know there was any one else.
SYFFAL: Good answer. Please promote anything else you would like to promote.
BJ: When visitng Dallastown, PA, stop in for hot, fresh-steamed crabs at Paddy's Seafood, and a burrito at Roburrito's Famous Burritos! Also get your stickers from Stickerguy, and BUY VINYL from Slovenly. We just started a distro (my wife and DJ partner in THE THING WITH TWO HEADS runs it) and we only sell fucked up party records - everything from new underground rock'n'roll to punk reissues, a select amount of vintage Jamaican head swirlers, and a very hip and advanced stash of prime vintage slime for getting sexy on the dancefloor.