There is always a time where as a writer and journalist, you may not get the big scoop, or be the first on the scene for a band that is breaking news and reaching new heights, but being among the many that have been lucky enough to get a moment to talk with a group of artists that have the potential to make a big splash in a music arena that already seems too small for them.
Recently I had the pleasure of reviewing the album Creatures by ACIDIC, I wrote the following “Creatures is a fantastic romp through the energy of youth, something that can be forgotten and is only experienced by the young in body, spirit and mind. These are four very talented and exuberant young men that have some serious potential to make some big noise on the stage.” Truth is, they have only just started to take over the festival and indie scene. Since that review, they have received even more acclaim and notoriety, as well as a media storm that is sweeping up the band in waves of new fans daily.
A recent interview with Rock at Night Correspondent Chyrisse Tabone in Tampa, an audio podcast and written article available at http://rockatnight.com/podcast/chatting-with-mike-gossard-of-rock-band-acidic is an example of the positive and universal appreciation for a group that is only really just starting and is destine for fabulous heights in the future of music.
I had an opportunity to converse with ACIDIC bad member Michael Gossard, I learned quite a bit about the band, who they are and what is their motivations, loves and triumphs, hope you enjoy the moment!
Who, is ACIDIC, not just the names of the members, but their personalities, so often interview articles not establish the individual, I feel our readers want to know the artist for the real person, not a made up persona or stage presence. Who are you?
ACIDIC is a collection of four guys.
Michael Gossard – I am a lifelong musician; the lead singer of ACIDIC. I love music more than just about anything. I also love cooking and am learning to fly airplanes. Travel is definitely a passion.
Matt Whitaker – He is our drummer. He is outgoing and intelligent. He is a survivor of childhood Leukemia and doesn’t let anything stop him from getting where he wants to go. He is always the one to call for a chill day at the beach or a game of Call of Duty.
Josh Bennett – He is our guitar player and is the master of tasty solos and chicly rhythm. He is also a walking sketch book for his tattoo artist and is always coming up with new ideas for a piece. Josh is very dedicated to his comic books and is always the one to call for a good conversation.
Max Myrick – He is our bass player and is an avid surfer and partier. He can be found doing videography work or down on the beach enjoying the sun. He is definitely the one to call for a good time.
What were your influences that drove you to pursue music, and how would you say they influence your sound?
We have had many influences over the years, and all the classics definitely fit into the category of bands who have influenced us. Although lately I have noticed that we are more influenced by the bands we tour and play shows with than anything. We see the intensity and the drive to succeed that only us underground rock acts seem to possess and it really drives our sound. There is a tense energy in our music that comes from our desire to succeed that I have not heard anywhere else but in the underground rock scene.
In your own words, how would you describe your sound? In reviews, including our review of your latest album “Creatures”, almost every catch phrase could be used to describe your music and your sound, but I believe words fail to really grasp how high energy and powerful your music is, can you, as the artists tell us what we should be hearing?
In our music, there is a lot of tension and release. I believe that the listener should hear a lot of building up to a good chorus. We try to build a multidimensional platform filled with nuance. But at the heart of it, it is really just a simple expression of emotion. We try to not give ourselves too much credit, we just arrange chords the way we like to hear them and most things have been done before.
You have shared the stage with a lot of artists, would you say you have been well received? Have there been any shows where you performed beyond expectation? And who are some of the acts you have performed with that things just seemed to “Gel” with, who really rocked the stage with you that you would perform with again?
We have been very well received all over the United States and parts of Europe. We leave our hearts up there and try not to worry so much about what a few people might be thinking. We try to focus on expressing our music as efficiently as we can and let the audience interpret it as they will. Almost without exception, people have been very gracious. We have really gelled with most of the acts we have played with in the past. Some particularly good matches have been Hinder, and Royal Bliss. We have very much struck a chord with these bands and are very excited about possibly working with them in the future. The Hinder guys pranked us on the last show of one of our tours. The works! Baby powder on the drums that made this huge cloud in the air when Matt started playing, Ben Gay on the microphones, they even wrapped our bass player’s chest and arms with saran wrap while he was onstage playing! It was hilarious! We also played with Alien Ant Farm and they’re great guys, too. They did a lot of that same stuff, pranking us in the last show on the tour. Too funny! We loved it! In both those cases! Felt like we’d successfully pledged the best fraternity on campus! There was also the great Rusty Anderson, Paul McCartney’s guitarist. We played a show with him where he had us join him onstage for several songs. I sang co-lead with him on a couple of them, which was pretty thrilling! He was generous and incredibly easy to work with. We actually can’t think of many people we have not enjoyed playing with.
The album “Creatures” is great, well thought out, produced and made with the intention of presenting you in the best way possible. Was there any material that did not make the cut, and if so, would we hear it at a show or on the next release?
First of all, thank you! Yes there was a lot of material that didn’t make it past the cutting room floor. We try to make decisions on songs based on what’s best for the album, not what’s best for any one particular person’s opinion. There have been occasions when we have added songs after production has been finished and that has always been a good decision. One was even a request by fans – who posted asking if that song they’d heard at live shows was going to be on the album. That one was “Rad (Standing In the Rain)” which is a high-intensity rocker that we launch our live shows with. Most of the songs we have written, we have played live. Although, if a particular piece of music hasn’t made it on a particular album that it was meant for, the probability of us continuing to play said piece is much lower. Having said that, there have been songs we have done on multiple albums and songs which were meant for one album, that have ended up on another. There is always room for good music.
You have been touring this new album and playing for some great venues, but recently you had to cut some shows due to an injury to a band member. Is everything going to be ok and will you start touring again soon?
Injuries occur regardless of the profession. I am not happy that we have had to cut shows, but I would rather have people healing at home near their usual doctor, than on the road in random urgent cares around the country. Our drummer Matt recently received some 2nd degree burns to his left hand. I made the executive decision to end the tour due to the advice of the doctor at the hospital I took him to. I would rather place my bet on the future value of good shows to come, than to permanently injure a band member to play a few shows now. Luckily, he has healed and is very excited to return to the stage and we will be back in action over Labor Day. And I do want to take a moment to thank the promoters who we had to call right away to notify them about Matt’s accident. They were amazingly understanding.
With your popularity growing at such a fantastic rate, where do you see yourself in 5 to 6 years, I ask this because so often, and not that I think or hope this happens, but often bands get to a point where they start to lose interest in the sound they have, experiment with new things or loose that spark that makes them great. What is your goal in music and where do you want to be?
I cannot tell you with competence where ACIDIC will be in 5 years, but what I can tell you is that we are all ardent music enthusiasts and we love playing live. These are the types of things that rarely change. Nothing is as satisfying as jumping in front of 1000 screaming people. I have to stick to thinking about today and leave tomorrow to more qualified forces. I can say also, that as long as we continue to love playing for people and dig the music we write, which we all currently do, very much, ACIDIC will continue indefinitely.
What is the best “From the Tour Bus” story do you have that you could share with our readers and what would be the worst where if one more things went wrong you would try to leave town under cover of darkness?
From the tour bus, there have definitely been some crazy things. Most of which I am sworn to secrecy on. We have seen all sorts of body parts, functions and dis-functions. We have also had the good fortune to have not encountered any major incidence where we have had to leave town under the cover of darkness…yet. I will let you know if that changes.
Only because I want a pat on the back, did you get to read our review, and did you think it captured what you were expressing in the album Creatures, or did I miss the mark? Be honest, I won’t cry or fail to love your work.
First of all, I want to sincerely thank you for taking the time to review our album, we have been astounded by all the love we have been getting, the reactions have been universally positive. I think you guys were spot on. I also think that regardless of what anyone writes, that person, for that moment in time, under those particular circumstances is, unto themselves, spot on. Basically I want to pat you on the back and give you my wink of appreciation.
And now, the most common of questions …. What’s next for ACIDIC, will you be going into the studio when this tour is complete, any great shows planned or surprises for your fans you want to share?
I am asked this question quite a bit and I am happy to write that the answer rarely changes. We are going to continue to play, to write, and to work towards the next level. We are currently en route to a large music festival in Madison, WI. So for the moment, the name of the game is play, play, play. In winter, I imagine we will pull back and begin the process of writing new material. I am very excited to say that the new material is already being written to some extent and it is fantastic.
I want to express my sincere thanks and appreciation for this opportunity to share with you a little bit of lore and laughter about ACIDIC. We are just a bunch of crazy dudes who love to play music and I hope we get to speak again soon.
In this interview, we met the men and the minds behind the music, I would seriously advise you al to be part of the new music revolution, one where standing in lines to see bands with mediocre fluff and generic boy band character is swiftly becoming a thing of a hopefully soon forgotten blip in musical history, and the surge of real music comes back to enchant a new generation, led by ACIDIC, and others with their vision.
Learn more about ACIDIC at http://www.acidicband.com and Follow them on Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/ACIDICband