Friday, August 26, 2011

Interview With The Love Shots

Critical Mass: Thanks for taking the time to talk with Critical Mass guy's. You new album "Crooner" just hit the streets a couple moths back. And, I gotta tell ya, it's an amazing record! Is this the bands first release?

John Perrin: Thanks for havin' us! First official fancy shmancy label release, yes. There's also a self-funded EP we did in 2008 that we've been peddling around for a while now that helped us land our smoking hot record deal.

Rob Nelson: Aye. What he said.

Danny Graig: Yes, our first full-length.

CM: For new fans, like myself, can you give us a little history on the band? How did you guy's get together and how many years have you been playing out?

JP: I had met Danny through my girlfriend-at-the-time. He was doing a duo thing with her sister, Jenny. They called themselves 'The Dravens'. Rob had heard from a mutual friend of theirs that he was a dick (a biased opinion, of course). We got together, Jenny soon left, and we did about 2 shows as a Guitar/Drums duo. Think Local H, but crappier. Take it from there, Raaaab.

RN: Johnny left for a little bit (drafted into the KISS army) and Danny wanted to record a couple songs and I had an 8 track recorder, so we did a couple songs. I don't think we have em anymore. We did the EP at Gallery of Carpet not long after with our buddy Steve "The Jam Band Man" Jones on drums. Johnny came back shortly after. Turns out he wasn't made for lovin' them (or perhaps too much?).

DC: Me and Johnny started about 3 years ago as a two-piece, then Rob came on in and it's been us three ever since.

CM: I love how you guy's describe your sound as "death wop". But it actually FITS! Your mix of 50's doo wop with dark lyrical content is original and refreshing in a world where everyone wants to be the next Green Day and Blink 182. Are you guy's true fans of 50's rock n roll? And who are some of your musical influences?

JP: Interestingly enough, that was a joke I started putting on flyers and it kinda stuck. All three of us collect vinyl (Thanks to Chris for selling me a copy of Joey Ramone's solo album) and listen to tons of stuff. Danny's a gigantic Julie London fan, I'm a huge Amy Winehouse dork, and Rob's really into banjo music.
EDITORS NOTE: You're very welcome, John. I hope you're taking care of it....I miss it so.

RN: I loves the rock and roll. I actually got a Dion & The Belmonts 2xLP set that I've been obsessed with lately. That and Elvis' Golden Records.

DC: My top three artists are The Ramones, Julie London and anything pre-1960. I like anything that's good 'n catchy.

CM: I know the band opened for the Misfits a couple years ago. What was it like playing with a legendary band like the Misfits? And did the audience respond in a positive light when you played?

JP: That's the funny thing. We're pretty big Misfits fans (with Danny being the biggest), but it was kind of a disappointment. It's more of the Jerry Only show nowadays. The audience did not respond well.

RN: Heh. Well, knuckle bumping Jerry Only was pretty sweet.

DC:  Eh.

CM: Is there a primary songwriter for the band or do you all have a hand at songwriting?

JP: I always liked how the Ramones did it on their early records, so - All songs written by The Love Shots (Danny)

RN: I like how the Hives did it. Randy Fitzsimmons writes all of our songs, too.

DC: I write all the songs, but we work them out together as a band.

CM: Since you've been playing out for some time now, are there any plans for a mini tour around the Midwest?

JP: Actually, yes. Late October we'll be hitting the road - more info to come!

RN: Van or no van, we're gettin' out there. We have wheels on our amps.

DC: Last 8/9 days of October we'll be touring

CM: Besides the Misfits the bands also played with the Smoking Popes, The Tossers and Local H. Who are some of your favorite bands to play with?

JP: For me personally, the Smoking Popes. My brother was in a band called Colossal with Neil, so I had met him years ago. Rob and I have been listening to the Popes music for a really long time now, and have been super inspired by it. Having them be the nice guys that they are is just the icing on the cake. Out of all the bigger bands we've opened for, I think it'd be safe to say we fit the best with them.

RN: I'm with Johnny. Popes have always been one of my favorite bands and being able to play with them not once, but twice is amazing to me. I'm hoping we'll be able to do so more in the near future. The Dyes, a local rockabilly band, are also really fun to do shows with.

DC: I love the Popes. They were fun to watch and really nice guys.

CM: In the time you guy's have been playing out is there any memorable shows that stand out in your mind for either a good reason or bad?

JP: Our record release this past June was one of the tops for me. We played with the Smoking Popes a few months ago in Palatine, IL which was an insane amount of fun. Any shows we play with those guys have really good vibes. Clearwater Theater's a second home to us, and The House Cafe in DeKalb has amazing Grilled Cheese. Elbo Room sucks.

RN: Again, with Johnny on this. The release show was amazing. Tons of people and just a great atmosphere. Like I said before it's always awesome to play with the Popes. As for terrible shows, Danny and I did a show without Johnny once and forgot a tuner. We asked around and miraculously, no one had one... until halfway through the set. I think we spent more time tuning to each other during the set than actually playing.

DC: Our CD release was a great time, and anything at the late great Mad Maggies in DT Elgin was also a lot of fun.

CM: Is there a website where people can get in touch with you guy's and get up to date news on upcoming gigs, releases and merch?




CM: Thanks again for talking with Critical Mass guy's. I really fucking dig the album. It doesn't leave the CD player for very long before getting tossed back in. I hope to check out a show sooner than later. I wanna wish you 3 the very best in the future. Tanks again guy's.

JP: Thanks so much, Chris!

RN: Thanks man, don't you go a changin'.

DC: Tits.

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