Former Jolts member Nickel pulls no punches along with his new band Chain Whip
Former Jolts member Nickel pulls no punches along with his new band Chain Whip
by Allan MacInnis on August 30th, 2019 at 11:44 AM[“ratio”:”wide”,”cutline”:”Chain Whip.”,”credit”:null,”img_standard”:”//d2ciprw05cjhos.cloudfront.net/files/v3/styles/gs_standard/public/images/19/08/chain_whip.jpg?itok=xqJfnGrp”,”img_large”:”//d2ciprw05cjhos.cloudfront.net/files/v3/styles/gs_large/public/images/19/08/chain_whip.jpg?itok=eW1kdo24″,”usage”:”main”,”type”:”photo”]
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When Flipper with David Yow performed the Astoria just a few months in the past, each opening act made an impression. The Authorities introduced a decent, playful California punk vibe with songs like “Radiation Masturbation” and Bishops Inexperienced drummer Orville Lancaster on the package. Vancouver’s personal lié introduced a extra subtle no-wave noisiness to the proceedings. However the standout act among the many openers was, in some ways, Chain Whip, essentially the most full-on “hardcore with no apologies” face-punch that I’ve seen in years.
Frontman Josh Nickel—most likely nonetheless greatest recognized for his tenure within the Jolts—handled his face and head as a percussion instrument, smashing himself periodically along with his microphone, in time with Patrick’s arduous and quick beat (band members in addition to Nickel are credited on a first-name foundation solely). All of the whereas, he gave a maniacally hostile vocal efficiency, delivering songs like “Let’s Bomb East Van” with a fanatic’s conviction.
Seems that’s not only for present, as Nickel tells the Straight. “I at all times discovered once I was doing vocals within the studio, I might pull on the again of my hair or twist my ear actually arduous. I am unsure why. Helps put me within the second or one thing. It is not a lot self-loathing. I am simply making an attempt to get off—making an attempt to evoke the right emotion that I’m going for. Not in an attractive approach or something. The audiences for punk and hardcore exhibits are sometimes fairly bland and I need one thing to feed off of from the viewers. You don’t at all times get that, so this type of violence helps me to ship it the way in which I need to ship it. Whether or not it’s good or dangerous, I like violence. If I am unable to get it freely from the viewers I’ve to create it for myself.”
Afraid but? Don’t fear, there’s no GG Allin-style assaults on the viewers, not less than not on the two Chain Whip exhibits I’ve seen. “I’m not in it to harm individuals,” Nickel says. “That’s for assholes. After I see a killer punk band or I play on-stage, I need to style some sweat and see some blood. I need to really feel just like the band cares to be there. Hardcore is uncooked power. I need it to envelop me once I’m at these exhibits or on that stage. I’m additionally painfully conscious that I am a 35-year-old dude enjoying music that was based and perfected by 17-year-olds. Generally you might want to punch that truth into your individual face.”
Is sensible—however why bomb East Van, once more?
“East Van is essentially the most repulsive id I can consider,” Nickel replies. “Part of Vancouver being quickly gentrified, purchased and offered, destroyed and whitewashed. With that monitor I simply wished to bum all these ‘East Van’ tattoo-sporting dorks. Like that side has some semblance of id. Do higher! ‘East Van’ is yuppie yoga tradition. ‘East Van’ doesn’t exist anymore. Bomb it into oblivion.”
Chain Whip by Chain Whip
The tune clocks in at a minute and 15 seconds, making its level as effectively and fiercely as any Articles of Religion tune. That sort of hardcore has turn into simple to abuse of late—because the speed-addicted orthodoxy that leveled numerous the creativity and number of first-generation punk rock—however Nickel and firm remind audiences that in actual fact, hardcore is fairly superior, when delivered with conviction and power; a lot so that you just may find yourself pondering it odd how uncommon it’s to see this type of factor on our phases, these days.
“In Vancouver there aren’t numerous bands doing what we do,” Nickel acknowledges—particularly, “throwback ’80s golden-age stuff. There’s numerous heavier stuff round that will get slightly nearer to steel for my preferences. Each Patrick and I have been enjoying in power-pop bands”—Nickel was in Evening Folks and Fashionism after the Jolts folded—“and felt we wished to do one thing a bit sooner. Wilder. We began as a band that simply wished to play ’80s California hardcore covers for a Halloween set after which figured we had some unfinished enterprise in the way in which of writing our personal songs in that fashion. I listened to that Repair compilation and began writing stuff. I may lament the truth that I want there have been extra kinda straight-up hardcore bands right here, however I additionally suppose that perhaps we play it slightly bit too near the sound of yesterday and don’t do something to convey it into this century. No matter, we simply play the stuff we like most. If it’s outdated that’s superb. So am I.”
The title Chain Whip is neither a reference to one thing kinky nor to martial arts, it seems. The band’s guitarist, Joel, got here up with it, “but it surely’s truly a motorbike instrument,” Nickel says. “The ninja weapon is simply the pose we strike. At the least half of Chain Whip the band would quite settle scores in a bicycle race.”
Nickel is concerned in different sides of the Vancouver scene. He’s “accomplished some co-presenting with Modified Ghost however we’re solely separate,” he says. He additionally runs a music web site referred to as Neon Waste—the place, up to now, he does all the things, from reviewing D.O.A.’s current compilation of unreleased tracks to interviewing different native bands like his equally fierce friends, Bootlicker.
Nickel describes the positioning as “a response to Vancouver having zero subculture hub. Most issues I discover fascinating or good are typically handed by in additional conventional press.” Even escorting without an agency mags like Discorder “have large points with regard to content material. I bear in mind not with the ability to get a assessment when an outdated band’s single was Number one on CITR’s chart. After I requested what was up they advised me to cease being entitled. It is like—I didn’t play us a bunch of instances to get us to Quantity 1 in your fucking chart. I’m simply making an attempt to promote this shit and desire a blurb so I don’t have 100 copies underneath my mattress eternally!”
Nickel’s ambition is in some unspecified time in the future to “open up” Neon Waste to different contributors, he says. “I notice that I can’t do all of it by myself, and actually don’t need to. We are able to run our personal press, our personal scenes and never need to cater to anybody or anything. I believe that everybody is burnt out for a similar motive I used to be and doesn’t need to get entangled with one thing they view as being a passing part… or perhaps they’re too busy working 60-hour weeks as a result of this metropolis is such a punisher. The town is on fireplace and persons are leaving all the time as a result of native politics are fucked, gentrification so rampant, and nothing is inexpensive. When was the final time you went to a punk-rock present and the median age wasn’t 30?”
Chain Whip’s new album, 14 Lashes, comes out this week, with a report launch present on August 31 on the SBC, that includes three different bands that Nickel is passionate about. “Creeping Chill, from Edmonton, are a rad new hardcore band that I like quite a bit. Cheat are a model new band from the Valley that I’m excited to see; and Bootlicker is a band made up of individuals from Kamloops and Vancouver. We’re releasing the 7-inch right here for them as properly, and I used to be not too long ago requested to play guitar for them which has been actually enjoyable. They’re a fantastic band and I’m honoured to place out that report and play within the band.”
The shortest tune on 14 Lashes, “Spectator”, clocks in at a mere 47 seconds lengthy, packing in two full verses and choruses. The lyrics—aside from the shouted refrain of “Spectator”—are fairly a lot inconceivable to decode and not using a lyric sheet, however Nickel informs the Straight that it’s about “people who contribute nothing in addition to half-baked critiques and commentary. Folks which can be too chickenshit to try to create one thing. They’ll have nice jobs in policing or human sources someday.” (Ouch!)
14 Lashes by Chain Whip
All of the lyrics on 14 Lashes have been written by Nickel, who will likely be together with a lyric insert with the report, “so everybody can mock me for my prose, which is extremely inspired. So long as you begin your individual band too!”
The Chain Whip/Bootlicker album launch present takes place on Saturday (August 31) on the SBC. See the Fb occasion web page for particulars.
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