Aug 30, 2012

Really... we're going to be called "Loincloth"?

At some point during the winter of 1999-2000 I went to see The F-ing Champs at King's here in Raleigh, N.C.  I had been listening to a lot more instrumental music but heavy instrumental bands were pretty hard to find.  They still are.  I know there are some 'metalgaze' bands, but it takes a little more than that to get me going... maybe a lot more!  The Champs were pretty damned melodic and every rare once in awhile they would hit a spot that reminded me of my old friend Pen Rollings' bands, Butterglove and Breadwinner.  Both of those bands were really interesting, abstract, heavy bands who were a hell of a lot of fun to see live.  Confessor played with Butterglove about as often as any other band and we used to get into arguments about which band was heavier.  They insisted we were the heavier of the two, but trust me when I tell you they took the crown as far as I was concerned.  They had to be seen to be believed, and Pen had quite a devoted following around here.

I always thought it would be interesting to write music with Pen but he lived in Richmond Virginia and I was busy with Confessor.  We were still hatching our plan for world domination and there were so many minor details that there just wasn't time to play with other people.  So I was at The Champs' show and no less than three different people came up to me to ask about a band they had heard I was in with Pen.  How weird, right?  Three people at one show... something was up.  I hadn't seen Pen or talked to him in a couple of years, but I thought this imaginary band could be quite something were it to actually exist.  I decided to give Mr. Rollings a call. 

Pen and another equally fine chap I had met a few times named Tannon had gotten drunk and started a rumor that we were all in a band together.  They described this thunderous collection of riff slayers as a band that only would only write the kind of heaviness one found in metal introductions.  You know how it goes... there's a huge, dramatic intro with a fantastic build up that inevitably comes crashing down into some limp-wristed thin thrashy riff that doesn't even come close to living up to the promise of such an epic set up.  They wanted Cary and me to bring our rhythm section to their dream riffs, and we would push ourselves as far as we could while always focusing on staying heavy.  We talked about what would really thrill us musically and we were on exactly the same page.  That is, up until the point when Pen told me that the name of the band could be nothing other than "Loincloth".

I let it go at first, thinking that we could revisit the name of the band later.  However, they were adamant... it would be Loincloth.  It seemed so right to them.  The sun rises, night follows, and we would be Loincloth.  Duh!  The thinking was that this would force people to admit that they listened to a band with such a silly name.  We did all agree that metal takes itself way to seriously.  There are some bands that can pull off the dark imagery really well, but there are far more that just look ridiculous.  And are all metallions really the most rough and tumble guys you could ever find?  I have my doubts.  I tend to believe that you have to be able to laugh at yourself in order to stay grounded and believe me, I provide plenty opportunities to be laughed at!  

Almost every person I have ever told the name of our band has burst out in laughter, which helped me get over the name.  Generally speaking I don't like talking about the bands I'm in.  When you know so many people who are in bands it just seems predictable for a guy who looks like me to say "Dude, you should check out my band!" I have always tried to get out of mentioning the name Loincloth with sheepish avoidances like "Oh it's fine, you've never heard of us...", but people usually see through the attempt and press the issue.  "C'mon man!  What are you embarrassed by?"  Then they understand.  Now I think it's funny too, and when metal fans hear us they forget all about the name.  I met the singer for Suffocation a few months ago and he laughed as hard when I told him we were called Loincloth as I have ever seen.  It took him a good two or three minutes to be able to complete a sentence after that!  It was one of those fits of hilarity that almost goes away but comes right back.  It was delicious!  Totally worth it in my book.  

And so it is, I am in a band named after Tarzan's groin covering.  I have never been more satisfied by, or proud of a recording than I am of the Loincloth album.  Love it or hate it, it is an album that stands out from the rest.  No one forgets the name, that is undeniable. 

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