Originally Posted on: February 19th, 2013
While trekking through the dense forests of Oregon in search of the legendary Bigfoot, Marquis stumbled upon a decrepit looking bar. In need of refreshment, he decided to take a peek inside. It was dilapidated and falling to pieces. Dust and spider webs covered everything. Several rats could be seen scurrying across the floor. A few rusty, leaking barrels marked 'toxic waste' sat in the corner and the putrid stench of decay that filled the air was... breathtaking. "Looks like a good place crash for the day" he said to himself. He crept inside so as not to disturb the creatures of the house when out from behind the bar popped an ill looking man dressed in tattered old clothing. "What can I get ya?" the man stated. "Uhhh... Well, what have ya got?" Marquis asked. "Death." the man replied, and Marquis was soon overcome by a horde of flesh eating Toxic Zombies... A radioactive, blood covered package arrived at H-P headquarters. Apparently, before he was devoured, he managed to ask them a few questions.
H-P: First off, can you give us a brief history of the band and how you came up with your name? Is there a meaning behind it?
GRIMM: The band started in late 2007 with myself and a few other people. We got Sam on board one week before our first show. At that time we where a 7 piece band! After playing for a few years with an upright player and being only a 6 piece. We finally settled on having an electric bassist instead of upright. For the last year and a half we have been solid with our lineup and are tighter then ever.. The band name came from a movie script I had started working on called Toxic Zombie. Well the script never went anywhere needless to say. However we have played on the fact there is a movie called Toxic Zombies it was a one off movie from the director and well we even have a song called Toxic Zombies
H-P: How would you describe your music?
GRIMM: I think we are a mix of punk, metal, glam, a little country but a lot of Rock and Roll.
Sam sometimes says it best when he says picture Motley Crue, Misfits, Joan Jett, Johnny Cash, some Green Day have a gang bang. We are the offspring.
SAM: well you cant just talk about the music when describing us, its also a question of how its presented, I would say that we are a mix of motley crue and the misfits, with a high energy performance. but id say "zombie-glam" when someone asks that.
CHAD: I would say the Misfits meets Motley Crue
DANY: The thing I love most about our music is that it's something I actually enjoy listening to. We have that rock n roll vibe that I loved in music from the 80's with a punk twist and it just makes you want to rock out!
H-P: You have an unusual sound, blending hard rock with 50's undertones and harmonies, who are some of your influences?
GRIMM: My personal influences are Green Day, The Beach Boys, Motley Crue, The Offspring, Misfits, Smashing Pumpkins, AFI and Skid Row.
SAM: the first band that i got into was green day, but when i saw kiss a whole new world opened up to me, i got to meet gene simmons and got to tell him that his experience with seeing the beatles for the first time was the same thing for me when i first became aware of kiss
CHAD: Guns N roses is the band that has influenced me the most through the years, but bands like the Red Hot Chilli Peppers, Motley Crue, X Japan, The Smashing Pumpkins, Iron Maiden, Dir En Grey, and The Cure are big influences as well.
DANY: Personally I love Green Day and Mötley Crüe and Kiss. I know a lot of us take a big influence from bands like The Misfits as well.
H-P: You recently released your debut E.P., 'InTOXICated'. Can you tell us a little bit about the album.
SAM: well its actually not our first EP, we recorded a 3 track EP shortly after the band started called "something wicked this way comes," plus we also have a full length album called "poison the airwaves." This particular EP was quite an exciting for us because it was recorded by Ivan De Prume from White Zombie. It was a real trip being recorded by someone that i used to listen to when i was a kid.
GRIMM: This album is some of our finest work and is just the beginning of whats to come for this band, keeping some of our old influences and introducing both some heavier tones and different influences yet to be heard in our previous recordings.
CHAD: I would say It's some of our best work.
H-P: What's the story behind the title and is there a deeper meaning?
SAM: a deeper meaning? behind the title intoxicated? I'm not sure if there is but the title was probably conceived when one of us was drunk
CHAD: I'm pretty sure we were drunk when we came up with the title.
H-P: Do you plan to tour to support the album?
SAM: The most cost effective way possible
GRIMM: We do have shows lined up and we continuelly book shows in support of the album and ourselves. We are looking for more dates to fill and to get out on the road to new places!
CHAD: Hopefully a summer tour.
DANY: Most definitely, I would love to be able to get out and share our music with as many people as possible.
H-P: What's the song writing process for Toxic Zombie?
GRIMM: For me I tend to have lyrics in my head that I also have a basic tune in my head for. Majority of the past music/lyrics have been written by me, but we are continuing to write new stuff that others have gotten involved with.. Regardless having Sam, Bryan, Chad, Kelly and Dany there just completes the whole process.
SAM: Well for myself, inspiration comes when it comes, there's no way to tell when a good idea or a good riff is going to come about. If there was a formula for making amazing songs everyone would do it, it just has to come out naturally
DANY: The guys are definitely the masterminds behind our songs Kelly and I do help out a bit with lyrics but our boys are the musical geniuses.
H-P: What are some of your favorite horror movies?
GRIMM: I tend to like dark humor so my favorites tend to be like, Shaun of the Dead, Army of Darkness, Cabin in the Woods type of movies. OH and Trick or Treat that is one of my favorite flicks and highly in my opinion underrated.
SAM: The Exorcist still scares the shit out of me to this day, the hellraiser 1 2 4 and 5, if you count aliens and jaws those are two of my favorites, as far as recent horror movies, most of the saw movies are great, and i thought that Hostel was the most original horror movie filmed in a long time
DANY: The shining, Nightmare on Elm Street, basically any of the classics. I love cheesy B rated horror.
H-P: Speaking of movies, what are your thoughts on Hollywood's rash of remakes?
GRIMM: Depends on the remakes and who is doing them. Rob Zombie did awesome with Halloween, but most others just fall short of what could be done.
SAM: well...... its a fine line, i loved the new Texas chainsaw massacre, nightmare on elm st, and rob zombies Halloween, simply because they had enough of the original to make the true fans of the movies happy. Whats considered scary in the past isn't always what is scary today, hell the poem The Raven was said to gave people nightmares when it was written but it would be as scary as sponge bob today.
DANY: I have always thought they should leave well enough alone. Why remake something that was great the first time? However there are a few that have done justice to the originals such as Rob Zombies Halloween 1
H-P: What do you think of the current state of the music industry?
GRIMM: I listen to ALL types of music. I think rock music needs a resurrection.
SAM: its just as hard as its ever been. the way the game is played has probably changed quite a bit, but it has always been a question of timing, you have to be in the right place at the right time doing the right thing.
DANY: I feel like a lot of the newer popular bands have a lot of the same sound, no one really has that old school rock and roll rhythm that I love.
H-P: Now, you're from Portland, OR, is there much of a horror-punk scene?
GRIMM: I really don't think there is much of a horror-punk scene in Portland personally. We may have a lot of zombie events or even horror events. But, I think the horror-punk scene is fairly small and limited. But, with the way Portland is progressing with the zombie events, having shows like Grimm in town its possible it could get bigger and we are gonna be in front leading the way.
SAM: Id compare it to the Seattle scene in the late 80's. There is a big buzz happening in Portland what with all the TV shows being filmed here, it hasn't hit it big across the nation, but I believe that we are standing on the threshold of the next big thing.
DANY: There is definitely a lot of horror and punk in Portland. We do have the zombie walk for example.
H-P: Are there any current bands that get your blood pumping?
GRIMM: There are a lot of great bands out today, but for me none that really really just get me going.
SAM: The most recent band that has impressed me (and thats very hard to do) is Foxy Shazam, i saw them open for the Darkness, and they blew me away, i was knocked out by their energy, performance and music.
DANY: I heard a song by this band called FUN. the other day and I fell in love. They reminded me so much of queen I couldn't help but like it.
H-P: For the gear heads out there, what equipment do you use?
GRIMM: I use a Mesa Boogie 50watt Rect-o-Verb head with a VHT 4x12 cabinet. guitar wise I use an Ibanez GAX70 guitar with D'Addario Strings (10's) and Dunlop Nylon Picks. Also a Senheiser wireless.
SAM: phew, this is gonna take a while. My amplification consists of a Marshall JCM 2000 with a Randell Jaguar cab, my pedal board has a crybaby 95 q (cause i love the spring loaded wah's) an mxr eq for leads, a whammy pedal with a midi mouse to control it, an mxr delay, an mxr evh phase 90, an mxr evh flange, and a senheiser wireless. And my baby, my 1981 custom les paul, its as old as i am!
H-P: When not tearing up flesh or the stage, what do you do in your free time?
GRIMM: I occasionally help with a friends film company. I write music, play some C.O.D. and some good old fun with Beer Pong.
SAM: try to clear my head for a few hours
DANY: I like to think of myself as an amateur artist. I love reading and I'm a movie nut.
H-P: What are your thoughts about the current state of music as a whole?
SAM: hard to say, there is a lot of crap out there, but when you look at what was popular when led zepplin was together and putting out new music, it was a bunch of shit as well. So its hard to say, you can only talk about the state of music today with any certainty 10 years from now
DANY: I feel like most musicians lately forget that the whole reason they make music is to inspire people and make them happy. To give people an insight that maybe they haven't seen before and break boundaries. Most people are just concerned about fame and where they can make the next buck.
GRIMM: Today's artists have no..... Flare.. No stage presence its what i see lacking in a lot of new artists coming out. Regardless how good the music is if you don't have the stage show to go with it, it isn't nearly as fun.
H-P: What's currently on your playlist (or in your CD player)?
GRIMM: The Offspring, Tech N9ne, Tiger Army, Hopsin, Zebrahead
SAM: i listen to a lot of pink floyd
DANY: Marilyn Manson's Born Villain
H-P: What's next for Toxic Zombie?
GRIMM: More shows and recording working on a new album!
SAM: whats next for every band with a hunger to make it, keep doing what you're doing and hope that you get lucky
DANY: Who can say? The only thing I can say for sure is that we are gonna keep working and making music and having a blast at it.
H-P: Any advice for anyone starting out?
GRIMM: Don't give up and find your own path of where you want to take your music. Always strive to inspire.
SAM: it is more important to be remembered than to be liked. Ive seen bands that ive liked open for AC DC but i couldn't tell you their name because i don't remember it! However iv'e seen bands that Iv'e hated before they were famous and i remembered them because they we're hard to get out of my head, and now they are huge....... i'm sorry to say.
DANY: Don't give up. No matter what people say no matter what life throws at you. If you love something never give up.
H-P: Any final words?
SAM: i'm not planning on dying so my words wont be final...
GRIMM: One of my favorite quotes:
"So long as the human spirit thrives on this planet, music in some living form will accompany and sustain it and give it expressive meaning." - Aaron Copland
DANY: What else? TZMF!
H-P: Thanks for taking the time to chat with us..
Visit Toxic Zombie online: toxiczombie.com