Online interview with former Pain Teens (and currently Evanescent) lead singer Bliss Blood. It was conducted on March 27th, 2011.
1. Currently, you have a multitude of projects, none of which resemble Pain Teens in any way (Moonlighters, Delta Dreambox, The Cantonement Jazz Band, Voodoo Suite). Could you talk about those bands in more details?
Actually, I have a new project called Evanescent which is my main project right now, with an amazingly virtuosic guitarist named Al Street, who formerly played with The Sugarman Three. Delta Dreambox has sort of merged with that (we play some old Bessie Smith & other blues tunes that Delta played), and we are writing originals too. We have just released our first self-titled cd with 10 original songs.
They are a lot like the “sex” songs I used to do it Pain Teens, especially the material on Beast of Dreams like Swimming, Voluptus, Manouche, etc. They are all available on Facebook Reverb Nation to download or buy, if you’d like to help us out.
The Moonlighters is also performing around town currently, but Cindy Ball, my bandmate, just had her first baby last month, so we’re not playing as much as before. The other bands aren’t really working these days, formed them to play at specific venues (Cajun restaurant, Tiki lounge) that are now defunct and there is no place to play this material with so many people in New York right now (and make enough money to pay people). So Evanescent, a duo, is the main working project I have right now.
2. It seems like there’s a slim chance for Pain Teens reunion, but it also sounds like the band’s work is still popular (judging by online communities like Facebook and Last.fm).
Would you say that there’s more interest in the band these days compared to times when PT were touring/recording?
No, I wouldn’t say it’s more, but it’s a new group of fans. We were pretty popular back in the early 90’s when we toured a lot (Destroy Me, Lover, shipped 8,500 copies in the original pressing– most indie bands sold about 1,500 back then). It’s great that people are interested in it, I think it’s high time, and we broke up right before the internet really got into full swing, so there wasn’t much about us online anywhere until recently. Now I guess it’s a “cult” classic.
Also – there are plenty of tapes, which the band released via Anomie Records in the late 80s / early 90s (“Manmade Disasters”, “Cathy”, “King God”, “Obliviated” etc.).
Some of this early material found its way to Charnel Music’s reissue of the band’s self-titled album, but much of it still seems to be out of print.
Is there a chance that any of those tapes will ever get digital treatment?
I put everything on iTunes (except two of the cassettes that I am still working on getting my hands on) so people can buy the stuff if they are interested.
3. Scott Ayers from PT had a band called Walking Timebombs, but it doesn’t seem to be active anymore.
What are former members of the band up to these days?
Scott lives in Houston and Frank Garymartin, our old drummer, lives in Austin. Not sure how much they are playing, I think Scott has some projects he plays with. You should interview him separately, he would appreciate that. Kirk Carr died in 2007 of cancer. Ralf Armin has a band called Future Blondes in Houston.
4. What are some of your favorite/least favorite memories from touring with Pain Teens?
Performing was fun, but frustrating for me because the stage sound was always so loud I had a hard time hearing myself in the monitors and being heard by the audience. The tours with the Boredoms, Brutal Truth, Season to Risk, KK Null, and Fudge Tunnel were a lot of fun.
5. Anomie Records was a label run by PT in the late 80s / early 90s. Could you talk about AR in more details?
We just started it to release our own records, and released a couple by some of our friends. When we got picked up by King Coffee and Trance Records, we really didn’t have the time or inclination to do it any more. A hassle trying to get paid by distributors, etc.