Thursday, March 29, 2012

Interview with Matías from Lili Champ

Critical Mass: Thanks for taking the time to talk with Critical Mass, Matías. I really appreciate it. For anyone new to Lili Champ, can you give us a little history on the band and how you guys got together?

Matías: Thank you Chris for this interview. We are a punk rock trio from Santiago, Chile.
The band is Gastón on Bass, Pato on Drums and me on guitar, and everyone sings.
Gastón and Me started the band two years ago ´cause we have the same taste in music and enjoy almost the same bands. We just released “Vientos” our first album 4 months ago, so we got a lot of projects for this year.

CM: "Vientos" is really a great album. So full of catchy hooks and pop/punk excitement. Is there other material out there?

Matías: Well, thanks for your words. We got a “demo” on our bandcamp website, but is just 4 songs that me and Gaston did separately. So, I always prefer to say that "Vientos" is our debut album, because the whole band worked on the whole process, even Pato did the art.

CM: I can tell you guys are fans of pop/punk. In your own words who are some of your personal musical influences?

Matías: Yeah, is really difficult to name bands, because they are too many bands that influenced me in my life, but I can say that most of the Lookouts bands influenced me… Screeching Weasel, Green Day, MTX, The Queers… In the last years I´m listening a lot to Dead To Me, Banner Pilot and  Against Me! for example, but I´m always trying to hear new bands and songs, so there are too many.
Speaking of latin bands, from my country there are 2 bands that I really love, one is called “Fiskales Ad-hok” and the other is called “BBS Paranoicos”, I really like “Carbona” from Rio de Janeiro, Brasil and “Loquero”, “Expulsados” and “Cadena perpetua” from Argentina. Feel free to check those bands. You won´t regret it.

CM: When it comes to songwriting is it a group effort is is there one primary songwriter in the group?

Matías: When we started, Gaston and I wrote some songs separately and then we put together some ideas for the final work.
Now we prefer to work together on every song when we are rehearsing. I think that my favorite songs came from a group effort. Anyway, I´m always writing some lyrics that we probably will use, but I really like when we all work on the songs.

CM: Like I said earlier, I think "Vientos" is such a great album, and I can't wait to hear some new material. Are there any plans to release anything else this year? Either another full length, an EP or even a 7" single?

Matías: We just released "Vientos", so a new full length maybe next year. We are working on new songs right now and we will release a 4-way split 7 inch with Hopewrecker (USA), Colin Farrel (Italy) and Valve Drive (Japan) soon. We recorded a new song specially for this release, and a secret cover for the digital version, so you will hear a new song may in May.

CM: Being from Santiago, Chile is there a big punk rock scene in your homeland?

Matías: There´s 2 or 3 bands that usually play for something like 5,000 people, when there´s a big fest or something usually go between 5,000 to 10,000 people and it´s up to if there´s any foreign band playing (I mean big bands like NOFX for example). But small bands usually plays for 50 to 200 people in Santiago, that is the capital city. Outside of Santiago there are some cities that have a lot of bands doing excellent work and I think they play for the same number of people, maybe a little bit less, but I think there isn´t a punk rock band living only from the music business (because there´s no way at all to make a business with music here).
CM: Do you guys play a lot of shows outside of Chile? And are there any plans to tour behind "Vientos"? 

Matías: We never played outside of Chile, it´s very difficult for us even play outside Santiago, our hometown.
We all work and study, so it´s very difficult to program a tour right now. But we are always looking to plan a little tour, maybe in another South American country, but not in the nearly future. I mean maybe at the end of the year. It will be very great if we get some show outside Santiago. We´ve been busy with things like launching "Vientos" and recording songs for compilations. So I think April is a perfect month to plan some shows outside of the capital city.

CM: Would there be any chance of touring in the United States at some point in the near future?

Matías: I don’t know. It will be a dream. I don’t know if any punk rock band from Chile toured in the States, I don't think so. But, who knows? We are just starting, so I really don´t know. Maybe it's not so difficult. The 4-way split is a good start for us, and even some reviews and interviews, so we really don’t know what we will want to do in the near future.

CM: Is there a website you wanna plug where fans can get up to date news, tour dates and merch?

Matías: Yeah, of course. We got "Vientos" for free in many websites (Bandcamp for example) and you can find it at our main website, we got some info there and the lyrics if someone wants to sing and learn some Spanish. Also you can find us on Facebook (we usually update this page), and if someone is interested in buying our album, you can find it at for a very good price.
If you wanna get in touch with us, we got an e-mail address , we love to contribute to any kind of projects and compilations.

CM Thanks again for talking with Critical Mass,
Matías. It's been a pleasure to speak with you. And I hope we get to see you guys in the States soon. Thanks again man. 

Matías: You´re welcome Chris, and thanks to you for helping us. We really appreciate that you give us space on your website.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Interview with Josh Caterer of The Smoking Popes

I recently received an e-mail from an old friend, Steev Custer, asking me if I would be interested in an interview with Smoking Popes frontman Josh Caterer. Steev also asked if he would be allowed to conduct the interview himself, being as he's a huge Popes fan and has even shared the stage with the Popes with his band My Big Beautiful. Being from Chicago and knowing the lasting legacy the Popes have had on our punk scene, and having complete confidence in Steev's ability to handle the task at hand, I immediately agreed. Below is the amazing final results of 2 Chicago music legends talking about everything from songwriting and family to guitars and birthday parties. Enjoy!

Critical Mass:  The Smoking Popes have frequently released different versions of songs on their albums, such as First Time re-recorded for Stay Down, and Can't Find It re-recorded for Destination Failure. Are the re-recorded versions closer to what you wanted them to be originally, or are they merely fresh perspectives on older songs?

Josh Caterer: There are always different ways to do a song. Once you have the heart of the song, the lyric and the melody, you can put whatever skin on it you want to. And if it's a good song, it will work in different skins. Thelonious Monk said "The inside of the tune is the part that makes the outside sound good". When you do a song in a different arrangement you're only changing the outside of the song so you can see the inside from a different angle. I've always found it interesting to explore those variations. Like Dylan doing two different versions of "Forever Young" on Planet Waves. That's awesome, because he's giving you a glimpse into the process. Anytime he writes a song, he has to decide "Is this up-tempo, or is it a ballad?" And with that song, he says "I'll do it both ways, and YOU can decide."

CM: There are three brothers in the Smoking Popes (Josh -vocals and guitar, Eli -guitar and Matt -bass) leaving drummer Neil Hennessey being the only member of the band not of the Caterer bloodline. Do you feel it makes for a more or less stressful dynamic to work so closely with family as opposed to being in a band with non-relatives?

JC: For us, it makes things easier. We grew up loving the same kinds of music and we learned to play by jamming with each other, so it's very easy for us to communicate with each other. We all automatically have a similar vision for what makes music sound good. So, when we're working on new stuff, we don't have to talk a lot about arrangements. We just play through the song, and we know we're all striving in the same direction and we trust each other.

CM: Josh, you've written a majority of the Smoking Popes music, do the other guys in the band veto songs from time to time, or do you personally pick and choose what material you feel is best and present it to the band?

JC: I have a pretty strict filter on my own songwriting. I tend to be my own worst critic and I won't even play a song for the guys unless I've been working on it for a while and I feel pretty confident that it's strong enough to be a Popes tune. It's a very vulnerable thing to play a new song for somebody for the first time. I hate it, actually. Here's this thing I've been privately creating in my own little world and it seems good to me, but it's really hard to be objective about that, and it might actually suck. So I play it, and the whole time I'm kind of glancing up at whoever's listening to see if they're grimacing. 

CM: Over the years, Eli has stuck with his green Fender custom shop Telecaster, while you have played a variety of Fender Stratocasters and recently a Gibson SG. How many guitars do you own, and is there a mainstay in your collection that you keep coming back to?

JC: I have two Fender Double Fat Strats which are really great guitars. They're really solid. They can take a beating and stay in tune and they sound great. Pretty much everything I've recorded for the last ten years has been with those Strats. But I've recently come back to the SG, which was the first guitar I had back in the 90's. I recorded our early EP's and our first full-length album, Get Fired, with an SG. It plays differently. I feel like you have to be a little more delicate with the SG. But it gets a great tone and, frankly, it looks awesome. So I'm playing it more these days. But I'll never give up the Strats.

CM You've recorded albums for Johann's Face, Capitol, Victory Records and Asian Man records, and toured with bands such as The Goo Goo Dolls and Morrissey. What's left on the list of things you'd like to see the band accomplish?

JC: I think the real accomplishment of any band is to continually make inspired music so that you're never treading water creatively. As long as we're continuing to do that, it doesn't matter to me what label we're on, who we're touring with, whether we're playing to festival crowds or small clubs. Ultimately, you want to be able to look back on your body of work and be proud of the music you made. I think if we keep focusing on that, everything else will work itself out.

CM Josh, at a Smoking Popes show in Dekalb recently you were quoted as saying that you would come to my birthday party and play your song I'm Brand New for me. Is that really going to happen, and are you only going to play that one song, or can my friends and I call out requests?
JC: It depends. When's your birthday? And who are these "friends"? Will Jeff Pezzati be there?

Contributing writer Steev Custer is a founding member of the bands My Big BeautifulDeath And Memphis and is a former member of The Bomb. He is also a guitar teacher and the CEO of Gearhead Guitar Repair, Inc.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Interview with Ollocs

Ollocs are a young prog/rock instrumental trio from New York who have really blown me away with their musicianship and versatility. I had the chance to interview the band on their influences, their upcoming release and what the future holds. The band consists of Zach Vanderberg (guitar), Russell Frohberg (bass) and Andrew Bieler (drums). They also round out their live performances with guitarist Josh Travis. Please check these guys out. You'll be pleasantly surprised by what you hear.

Critical Mass: Thanks for taking the time to talk with Critical Mass guys. For those who may be new to Ollocs can you give us a little history on how the band got started? 
Russell: The three of us all went to high school together and were in the school’s jazz band.  It was a really nice background for us because once we started actually getting together outside of school right before our senior year in summer 2009, we had already developed somewhat of a chemistry in playing together. We started just writing some simple progressions and soloing over them and whatnot, it was really just for fun. We eventually started writing structured songs and it took off. We recently added a live rhythm guitarist, and he's been a real big help in improving our live sound.

CM: Your latest EP is really a solid effort ranging in sound from metal to prog. What are some of the bands musical influences?
Zach: I’m heavily influenced by progressive rock and metal and players like Frank Zappa and John Petrucci.
Andrew: Drummers like Tony Royster Jr. and Mike Mangini have really opened up my eyes to new methods and techniques I incorporate in my playing.
Russell: I’m influenced by bands such as Tool, Dredg, Dave Matthews Band and Between the Buried and Me.

M: Has the band always been an instrumental outfit? Or did you have a vocalist at one point?
Russell: We’ve always been instrumental. We’re undecided about getting a vocalist. We’re having a lot of fun with what we’re doing now, but if a suitable vocalist comes along, we won’t turn him or her away. We don’t want to conform and just tack on a shitty vocalist just for the sake of being a “complete” band.

: Your music is really well played and arranged. Have you guys been approached by any labels to release your material? Or will you continue to be more of an independent band as far as releasing your own material?
Zach: We haven’t been approached by any labels as of yet, so we’re going to continue to independently produce our music.

: Have you guys played outside of your hometown?
Andrew: We’ve played outside of our hometown, but not yet outside of Long Island. We have a show booked in New Jersey this July though.

: Any chance of a tour in the near future?
Zach: No. As of right now, we’re focusing on writing for our full-length release while still playing some shows in our area.

CM: Will the new album be released in the coming months?
Russell: YES. We’re working on a full-length release. The writing process is always exciting for us. During every semester we only practice once a week, so it’s coming slowly but surely. What we have written so far sounds great. We’re definitely expanding our influences to more than just bands in our genre, incorporating ideas from figures in music such as Hector Berlioz and Branford Marsalis while still preserving our original sound and style. It’s going to be great and it’s more than likely going to include re-recorded versions of our EP songs.

: Is there a website you guys wanna plug where we can get up to date news on releases, gigs and merch?
Russell: After I finish the graphic design for the full length CD release and for merch I’m going to begin working on our website. It should be up and running at some point over the summer, I have a couple of design ideas and I think it will turn out great. Until then our Facebook profile will be our primary page for those updates.

CM: Thanks again for talking with Critical Mass guys. I love what you're doing and I hope we can get you guys to come to Chicago in the near future. Thanks again. 
No problem. Keep your eyes open for our full-length release and website this summer.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Music Reviews: Revilers - "Revilers"

It's that time of year again folks. The weather is starting to break. The nights are getting a little longer. The weather a little nicer. And the new music is blaring out loud and clear. And leading the pack for the spring/summer 2012 invasion is a great band from Boston called Revilers! This is a band who are bringing back Boston hardcore and are holding no punches along the way. The band just released their newest self titled album (out not on  PATAC Records), packed with 13 fist pumping, boot stomping, hardcore anthems that are just as in your face as anything that you may have heard back in '84! Maybe even better!

The album kicks into high gear with "No Bullshit Reactor". You want riffs? A sing along chorus? Fast and furious beat? Well, look no further. This track has that and more. And it's just a taste of what you'll get with the rest of the album. It's just a solid opener and one of the best lead tracks I've ever heard. "Fifth Column" "Control" and "Sick Of Being Sick And Tired" are just as good with more major riffing and hard charged lyrics that are powerful and honest. You can really feel the anger and frustration in the songs. True music for the blue collar, working-your-ass-off-to-make-ends-meat men and women of the world.

The band, JH (vocals/guitar), S (vocals/guitar), DH (bass) and HD (drums), are here to let you know that hardcore is still active and relevant in Boston. They have a passion for their craft and an honesty that's always been the true backbone of the hardcore movement. Play what you feel. Play from the heart. Tell it like it is, whether people like it or not. And don't hold back. "End Of The Road", "Negativity" and my favorite track "All Ages" are anthems for a new generation of punk fans. If this album doesn't make you believe in the power of staying true to what you believe in, then I don't know what else will.

The Revilers are a band for these times. In a world that's falling apart at the seams, where unemployment is still at an all time high it's good to see that us working class are not the only ones who are pissed off and demand change. If you're feeling hopelessly stuck in a rut, pissed off at your boss, or just feel like kicking back with a 12 pack and some good music, put this album on and let the music make you forget about life for a little while. After all, isn't that what music is supposed to do?

4 ½ / 5 stars

Friday, March 23, 2012

Interview with Christopher "Dizzy" Lee from Tattoo The Devil

 Critical Mass: Thanks for taking the time to talk with Critical Mass. For anyone new to Tattoo The Devil, can you give us a little history on the band and how you guys got together?

Christopher "Dizzy" Lee: A bunch of demon bats with rabbit ears swirled around Chicago and the clouds gathered like the voodoo scenes from "Child's Play" making Dominick Camillo and myself send each other musical mind bullets. haha... basically. 

No, but seriously, the two guitarists Dominick Camillo and myself started writing music together in October 2010. Everything was recorded right from the start in 'demo' mode with shitty fake metal drum samples. We contacted a buddy, Lance Ferrel, who at the time was playing in a couple different bands in Chicago, to do the vocals. He took over writing the lyrics, has a great ear for melody and obviously a fantastic voice. After that the band sort-of slowly built up around what we were writing. The rest is history!

CM: The bands newest release "The Decent EP" is out now. Is this the bands first release?

CDL: Yes it is. First ever.

CM: I love the bands sound and what you guys are doing. Who are some of the bands personal musical influences?

CDL: Musically, the songs are a reflection of our backgrounds as musicians. We pulled elements out of many genres to experiment with; from Arabic music, to jazz, and all they way to black metal. A perfect example would be the track, "Diego's Tango". However, if we had to pick some bands we think are awesome, I would say check out all of these bands, Dredge, Coheed & Cambria, Dream Theater, Metallica, Avenged Sevenfold, Muse, Refused, The Mars Volta, Tesseract, Evergrey & Radiohead.

CM: When it comes to songwriting is it a group effort is is there one primary songwriter in the group?

CDL: Thus far, the music has been written by Dominick and myself. Lance contributes all the lyrics and vocals. In terms of the concept of the first record, it is a mix of the three of our ideas.

CM: Are there any plans to release anything else this year? Either another EP, a 7" single or possibly a full length?

CDL: Yes. The three songs from "The Descent EP" are part of a full length concept album. We haven't solidified the title for it and I'm not going to give away the concept yet, but just know it will be epic when you hear and read how these songs 'fit' together into the full album.

Being from Chicago do you guys play outside of the state at all?

CDL: Yes. Actually, our first two live performances were in Indiana including one of them being on

CM: Are there any plans for a tour of the Midwest or even a full blown country wide tour at some point in the near future?

CDL: Our goal is to get the first full length done as soon as possible. Then start getting it in front of as many audiences as possible!

CM: Is there a website you wanna plug where fans can get up to date news, tour dates and merch?

CDL: Our official website is:

CM: Thanks again for talking with Critical Mass. I can't wait to hear some new tunes and see what's in store for Tattoo The Devil in the coming months. Thanks again.

CDL: Thank you for talking with us and definitely thanks for helping to get our music out there. Stay tuned for more!!

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Interview with Sean from The Wrong Boyfriends

Critical Mass: Thanks for taking the time to talk with Critical Mass, Sean. For anyone new to The Wrong Boyfriends, can you give us a little history on the band and how you guys got together?

Sean: It began with a spot of monster hunting back in 2008. Myself (Sean Murphy) and founding member Peter Knox, a keen amateur cryptozoologist, loaded up the kayaks and made north for Loch Ness.
Through ferocious winds and life threatening swells we battled across to the side of Loch which is popular with serious hunters of the sea serpent, known colloquially as Nessie.
Like thirsty, salty men we made for the nearest bothy (Scottish word for a basic shelter, usually left unlocked and available for anyone to use free of charge).
With a throbbing head and bitter heart I called out into the darkness to enquire about tap water.
A voice answered me in broken English. At first I couldn’t be sure if it was man or beast. Even as the hairy, shuffling form lurched into the light it took me a moment or two to recognise Dominic Troup. His long grey hair and flowing beard were matted with grease and dry haggis.
Slowly we coaxed the truth out of him by offering whisky which he guzzled greedily down his gullet.
It transpired that Helensburgh’s finest drummer had headed for the hills out of deep disappointment with the modern world, which he said was spinning ‘rapidly out of control’. 
All thoughts of the monster seemed ridiculous now. We broke out our special chieftain tobacco, smoked the pipe of brotherhood and swore from that day forth we would be tighter than a totem pole.
We had other members from time to time (shout out to Guillaume and Kieran who also played on WFCD) but none of them could cope with being left alone in a room with Dom, or Demonic Troup as we call him, for any length of time.
Today The Wrong Boyfriends is a perfect synergy of Pete’s suave metropolitan charm, my immaculate punctuality and Dom’s backwoodsman vigour.  
CM: The bands newest album "Wrong Fucking Century Darling" is out now. Is this the bands first release? 

Sean: Yes it’s the debut release. I guess we all felt like we are in the wrong fucking century - except for Dom. 
I wanted to be in the 19th century so I could hang out in France with Gustave Dore the famous artist, engraver, illustrator and sculptor.
Pete wanted to be in back in the 20th century. Specifically, 1963 so he could spend time with his all time idol William Hartnell, who played the first Doctor Who.
Dom felt that he was in the right century but was upset that it’s populated by the wrong people.

CM: I hear so many different influences in your music. Who are some of the bands personal musical influences?

Sean: I listen to black metal pretty much all the time. Whether it be a child’s birthday party, a scoundrel’s wedding or the anniversary of the day I discovered the thrill of bare-
headed-cycling, I’ll be zoning out to Burzum, Darkthrone and Forgotten Woods, usually in that order.
Peter is extremely retro but avant-guard with it. He listens exclusively to the works of the BBC Radiophonic Workshop, who of course crafted the majestic Dr Who theme tune.
Dom only has ears, and eyes, for Björk, Joanna Newsom and the little known outfit Monkey Boy, a trio from London, whose t-shirt is constantly attached to his manly frame.
CM: When it comes to songwriting is it a group effort or is there one primary songwriter in the group?

Sean: Usually I turn up with the best idea in the world and then they insist on making changes to it, ruining what I’m trying to achieve in the process.
I don’t mind telling you it’s extremely frustrating and I have often considered bribing a friend of mine (Hi Ewen from VOM) who has recently qualified as a hypnotist to make them submissive to my every whim and command.
If they were allowed to speak they’d tell you that they come in with great ideas all the time and I ruin them by singing but to be honest they’ll say anything for attention.

CM: Are there any plans to release anything else this year? Either another full length, an EP or even a 7" single?

Sean: Yes, yes, and yes. Well only one yes really. This year we will release anther full length album and it’s going to be even better, or at least as good as the first one. This time we’ve taken onboard a lot of the things people said about the first album and completely ignored them in order to do exactly what we want.
This is a mind trick we’ve employed for some years now and our complete disregard for what an audience might want to hear is paying off some big dividends now.
I don’t like to namedrop but we were recently asked to support U2 and Dom told Bono to go fuck himself.
I was devastated as I wanted to talk about delay pedals with The Edge.

CM: Do you guys play a lot of shows outside of Scotland? And are there any plans to tour Europe behind the new album?

Sean: To date we have not played outside of Scotland. I blame Dom for telling Bono to go fuck himself personally.

CM: Would there be any chance of touring in the United States at some point in the near future?

Sean: Sure, from now on Pete has replaced Dom as the band member who speaks to band members of other bands.
I know he’s recently been chatting up such luminaries as Ted Falconi, Helios Creed and Lady Gaga - so watch this space.

CM:  Is there a website you wanna plug where fans can get up to date news, tour dates and merch?

Sean: Sure thing we would like to shamelessly plug our dear (but not expensive) record label Kovorox Sound where you can buy our actual album for actual money:
For gig news and to get in touch with us, yes please, try here:

CM:  Thanks again for talking with Critical Mass, Sean. It's been a pleasure to speak with you. And I hope we get to see you guys in the States soon. Thanks again man. 
 Sean: That’s me for now Chris. Hope to see you all in the States sooner rather than later - Sayonara!

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Music Reviews: Ollocs - "Ollocs EP"

Instrumental music has been around for many ages. Some of it good, some not so much. For an instrumental band to really keep a listeners attention you must have talent and a skill to captivate. To really hold the audience in your grip and take them to a place that sparks the imagination. It's easier said than done. Being a fan of hard rock and some progressive music, I fell in love with Ollocs, a band from North Babylon, NY who's new EP is a mind bending explosion of sounds and musical exploration.

This trio of talented players really shine on tracks like "Countdown", "Cinque" and "Asteria". Not shying away from obvious influences like Rush, Dream Theater and Queensryche the band make songs that not only hold your attention, but blow your mind with melody and power. Zach Vanderberg (guitar), Russell Frohberg (bass) and Andrew Bieler (drums) have the talent and charisma to be the new leaders of the prog rock revolution of 2012. The playing is tight and the production is pretty good as well. It's just a solid effort from this up and coming band.

The music can really take you away to another place if you let it. It's majestic feel and intensity take hold and never let you go. And when you think it can't get any better, it does! "Til Dawn" is a prime example. It stars out with noodle heavy riffs, before going into a dreamy sequence mid way, then finishes heavy with killer soloing by Vanderberg. Even Frohberg gets in on the action with a scorching bass solo that would make Geddy Lee proud. To say Ollocs is a great band is putting it mildly. I see a bright future ahead for this band who has already shared the stage with bands like Sevendust and Taproot. Ollocs have the talent and the drive to be a driving force in the hard rock world. Now if record execs could only stop swinging from the nuts of no talent, auto tuned infected, music stealing top 40 schnooks, maybe this band can get the recognition they so greatly deserve.

4 ½ / 5 stars

Friday, March 16, 2012

Interview With Jim Shit from The Jachammers

Critical Mass: Thanks for taking the time to talk with Critical Mass Jim. For anyone new to The Jackhammers can you give us a little history on how the band got started?

Jim Shit: We started a few years back. I love punk rock but was sick of the half-arsed bands and dead-end sub genres that pass as punk these days - so decided to take the matter in hand. Initially our guitarist was Albert Scunge; then we added Horace; then Albert joined the breeding program and had to bail, leaving us with just Horace on guitar. Me and Andy have been in it from the start.

CM: The bands latest album "Give 'Em Enough Dope" is just amazing! I had the chance to review the album for CM and I fell in love with the bands style of playing and songwriting. Is this the bands first album or is there more material out there?

"Give 'Em Enough Dope" is our debut LP which we've released on CD on our own S'Not Records. We've previously released a couple of demo CDs, but the best versions of the best songs off them are all on the LP.

CM:  Who are some of the bands musical influences?

Ramones, Damned, the Kids, Wipers, Slaughter & the Dogs, Devo, Black Flag, Consumers, Poison Idea, Didjits, Livefastdie, CPC Gangbangs, and the Spits. But to be honest we are more inspired by the banality of life and the ridiculous things people do to combat it.

CM: I know "Give 'Em Enough Dope" just recently came out, but can we expect any new releases in 2012 whether it be another full length, an EP or a singe?

Well, we've just recorded a buncha new songs - some of which we're planning to release on split 45s w/ cool bands later this year this space!

CM: Has the band ever gone out on tour? And have you been approached by any bands to go out on tour as an opener?

We've done a coupla "long weekend" mini-tours down to England, and we plan to do plenty more of those. No-one's asked us to support them on tour - I guess because no-one wants the humiliation of being blown off the stage nightly!

CM: Who are some of your favorite bands to play live with?

The Maximum Zeros (punk rock'n'roll from Newcastle, England) are always fun.

CM: Any chances of the band coming over to the U.S. for a tour at some point?

We'd love to tour the States and sample all your vices, but we'd need a US label to release our stuff first there - so there'd be a chance of people showing up and us covering our costs.

CM: Is there a website you guys wanna plug where fans can get in touch with the band, get up to date news on tour dates and get merch?

Facebook is best the place to check what we had for breakfast, etc.

CM: Thanks again for talking with Critical Mass guys. It's great to hear good old fashioned punk rock is still alive and kicking. I'm really looking forward to hearing more from The Jackhammers. Thanks again guys.

No problem - keep takin' the medication!