Interview by Ian Pickens
Gravy: Introduce yourselves.
Ironhead: Were Ironhead, a punk rock n roll band from the
Gravy: Give us a brief history of the band.
Ironhead: Johnny and I started Ironhead in 2003. We were in another band together for about 5 years prior called The Runarounds. We moved from NC to VA Beach to be closer to our friends in The Candy Snatchers (Johnny plays bass for them also) and the music scene was better in VA. Our drummer and rhythm guitar player at the time didn’t want to move so we moved anyway, found a new drummer, decided to remain a power trio and Ironhead was born.
Gravy: Is it difficult being married to someone in the same band?
Ironhead: Not at all! It actually makes it really great! We are madly in love and are also best friends. We share so much in common its makes it great to be able to play live shows and share the stage together. We are so close that we can read each others mind on stage without even speaking. The band means everything to both of us so we can work hard together to make it all work. We like it this way!
Gravy: If you had to sum up Ironhead in three words; what would they be?
Ironhead: Rock N' Fucking Roll!!! (I don't think the N' counts as a word!)
Gravy: Your sound is a blend of catchy hard rock like AC/DC, early Motley Crue and raw punk like the Dead Boys, were these bands your main influences?
Ironhead: We have a lot of influences but I would have to admit that those are by far some of our favourite bands!
Gravy: What influences you apart from music?
Ironhead: Apart from music we all like old B-rated horror movies. That's what influenced our cover art for our new CD. We wanted to make it look really old and really gory! A few of our favourite artists are Johnny Ace and Dirty Donny. They do a lot of the Electric Frankenstein covers, which I always loved. Now we use Johnny Ace for most everything! Also, I have always been intrigued by pin-up girls and old nudie mags. I love to see great photos of glamorous women with all the make-up and flashy little outfits.
Gravy: If you could record a split EP with any band/artist from any era, who would it, be and why?
Ironhead: Wow...that’s a hard one! Probably, The Dead Boys! That was real rock n roll and Stiv Bators was so cool! People always say that Johnny sounds a lot like Stiv so it would be funny to hear them sing side by side! You can’t get much better than The Dead Boys!
Gravy: Does image play a major part in Ironhead?
Ironhead: Our music always comes first but image is important also. We want to be as exciting and interesting as possible. Too many bands these days all look the same and that bores me! I like The New York Dolls, T-Rex, Alice Cooper,
Gravy: Your guitarist/singer, Johnny has been working with Electric Frankenstein recently; how did that come about?
Ironhead: Johnny is playing bass for Electric Frankenstein now for some of their shows. He fills in when Bill or Danny can't do it. Sal from EF produced our upcoming album and is a good friend of ours. We tour with EF a lot so it works out great!
Gravy: Is it difficult sharing him between two bands?
Ironhead: Not really cause we are on the road with EF all the time so it works out good. It gives him a chance to just have some fun and not have to worry about singing or anything else.
Gravy: Does he ever get confused when he's playing live and mix up guitar/bass lines?
Ironhead: No, not really. His brain works in a weird way. He can’t remember much of anything BUT he can for some reason learn songs extremely fast and remember all of them. It’s very weird how his brain works. He learned all the Candy Snatcher set in about 2 days and the 20 song EF set in a week. He actually learned to play 2 encore songs at the last EF show 20 minutes before hittin the stage! I wish I could remember things that fast!
Gravy: You’re gonna be touring
Ironhead: Yeah. We’ll be in
Gravy: How will that work out? Will Johnny play sets with both bands?
Gravy: Is it the first time you have toured
Ironhead: No. We toured in
Gravy: How does
Ironhead: The Scandinavian rock scene was great! The venues treat the bands really well and the kids are really into rock n roll! They seem to have a greater appreciation for live music and also seem to have a better taste in music than a lot of the kids in the
Gravy: Your new EP is being released by German label No Balls Records; can you tell us a bit about it?
Ironhead: It's a split 7inch with EF. It was actually our very first release as Ironhead. Our track "Lost And Found" is about a very annoying girl that used to live with me and Johnny. Really funny lyrics if you listen closely!
Gravy: And there’s a full length album to follow right?
Ironhead: Our full length album is coming out on HeatSlick Records in the summer. It's called "Livin' Like We Wanna Die". It has 13 rockin songs and some great artwork....O-kay and sleazy!!
Ironhead: It was until they dropped us due to the artwork. That label obviously doesn’t know anything about rock n roll!
Gravy: What went wrong?
Ironhead: The day our records were being pressed they emailed me and said that they decided to drop us due to the offensive nature of the cover art. That was after they had already approved it two weeks prior. The real shitty part was the records were already being pressed and we got stuck with the bill. That totally maxed out our credit cards and now we are broke but the good thing is that I have 500 CD's on the way to my house that I can sell on tour and that the label cant get any money from! Not a good way to run a label! They obviously didn’t know what they were gettin into when they signed us cause we don’t change for anybody! They should have signed Brittany Spears if they wanted a commercial artist! We’re not mainstream and never will be!!!
Ironhead: Not actually. SpeedKing Records is just the name we use to sell the 500 CD's that we got stuck with. The official CD will be released on HeatSlick Records in the summer. And HeatSlick is a great label that has released some really good bands such as MotoChrist, The Silencers and Junkyard. They’re a real rock n roll label and they don’t want us to change anything.
Gravy: You have shall we say a rather sleazy image; Does it bother you that some people may not take you seriously as a musician because of this?
Ironhead: They dropped us due to our sleazy and offensive cover art on our new CD. It's ridiculous to me! Elvis Presley was considered offensive in his day. What more can I say! It doesn’t bother me at all! I know that when people hear our music and see us live they take us very seriously! If they don’t, then fuck ‘em! Our music speaks for itself! The rest (make-up, clothes, etc..) is just "GRAVY" just a little extra bonus!
Ironhead: I don't think so. I think women proved themselves in rock n' roll a long time ago. If you rock you rock and if you don't....well go get a day job! Gender doesn’t matter!
Gravy: OK, I want you to make me a compilation of music you think is essential. What would be on it?
Ironhead: Of course The Dead Boys " Aint Nothin To Do", AC/DC " Bad Boy Boogie" (can’t get any better than Angus Young’s guitar on that song), Johnny Thunders and The Heart Breakers "Born To Lose", Motley Crue "Live Wire" (now that was raw!), T-Rex "20th Century Boy", Guns N Roses "Its So Easy"...this list could go on forever but these are essential rock n roll songs!!!
Ironhead: To play rock n roll!!! I wanna be like Keith Richards. When I’m old just prop my ass up on stage and stick my bass in one hand and a cigarette in the other! I wanna do this till I die!!!
Ironhead: They can contact us at our website www.iron-head.net or at www.myspace.com/ironhead
Ironhead: "It's a long way to the top if you wanna rock n roll"...but only a days flight to the