Mercedes Lander - Kittie

June 18, 2002

Tell me a little bit about yourself and the band.

I play drums for a band called Kittie. The band consists of me, myself, and I, and my sister Morgan. We have a brand new bass player named Jen. We formed in 1996 and we just played the local scene for a really long time in London Ontario where we're from. One day we just happened to play a show and have a label come across us. After various lineup changes we've actually come across a bass player that's really good.

Tell us about your brand new bass player.

We'd like to stick with her. She's really an amazing person. We played some club two years ago and her old band Spine was playing, the other unsigned act there. Basically we just kept in touch and when the time came for us to get a new bass player, we gave her a call.

What kind of an audience range do you have?

Anywhere from teenagers to 40 year old men wearing Motorhead shirts. We have such a different fan base from everybody else I think. Old dudes with Iron Maiden shirts come up and say "yeah, you remind me of old Carcass." Then you have the other kids. We also have hard-core kids. We have everybody listening to our music which is really good.

You play a style of music that is dominated by males. Have you had to overcome a lot of obstacles? Like maybe preconceived notions about female bands?

I wouldn't know any different because I've never been in another band before and I have never actually made it. We have worked just as hard as every other band out there. Yeah, there are some obstacles but I think no more than any other band has to go through.

Do you feel that you've overcome them pretty well?

Pretty much, yeah.

Tell us about your new album Oracle.

Basically Oracle was written after a very long, long five to six year period of not writing any songs whatsoever which really sucked because we had just been constantly touring and pushing the first album. We never had time to sit down and write songs. We took five months to write the album and everything just ended up flying out and exploding. We had five months to write the album and then we went to the studio and recorded all the songs that we wrote. We're not the type of band that writes 20 songs and records 20 songs and then picks them. We just write as many as we have to. We basically recorded the album in two and a half weeks in the studio in London Ontario. The studio that we've done all of our previous recordings. Our first record and all of our demos. It's really a comfortable atmosphere. My favorite song on that record is probably either "No Name" or maybe "Mouthful Of Poison". I like those songs a lot. "Mouthful Of Poison" was the second song we wrote and "No Name" was the last song we wrote before we went into the studio.

Do you feel that songwriting has matured since Spit?

Obviously. All the songs were written six and a half years ago. Obviously people are going to grow as musicians. Grow as people. Practice makes perfect basically. Be better at what you do.

Do you feel that you wrote Spit rather hastily?

Not really. I think Spit was written over a real long period of time. We were a brand new band then, six years ago. Obviously our writing skills weren't going to be at the par to where they are now.

Your song "In Winter" is getting a lot of radio airplay.

I don't know. I don't live in America. Is it?

They don't play your stuff in Canada? Why is that?

No, of course not. We have MuchMusic. Radio doesn't play it unless it's college radio. It's like a metal show or whatever.

I figured being from Canada...

No, we're known in Quebec.

You guys did videos for "Run Like Hell" and "Pain".

Yes, it was a live video. We shot it at Harpo's in Detroit. The best venue ever. It holds 3,000 people and we ended up selling it out which was really cool. We were really excited about that and basically shot the live video.

Can you tell us about your tour with Flaw, Skinlab, and My Ruin?

Yeah, it was great I guess. Actually Skinlab took us out on our very first big American tour back in the summer of '99. We definitely had to pay them back and those were really cool people. We love them all very much. We decided to take My Ruin out because they don't have a label and we were just trying to help them out. They are great people and we really enjoyed them very much. Flaw are really nice people too. I've never been a fan of their music but they're all really great musicians and very nice people. But we're going out on a tour with Shadowsfall, Poison The Well, and KillSwitch Engage in July. I think that's going to be a great tour.

You did some shows as part of Ozzfest in Europe.

Yes, we were. We got to play with Slayer and I got to see Slayer play with Dave Lambardo finally. It was cool. I never thought that was going to ever happen again. It was definitely awesome. I was so excited to see Slayer. That was my third time seeing them and I'd never seen them with Dave Lambardo. The Ozzfest has always been really cool to play whether it be in America or whether it be in Europe. We had a lot of fun in the summer 2000 playing the Ozzfest. The Ozzfest in Europe was really cool to because we were friends with a lot of people. A lot of the bands that were on the tour and we definitely got to have a lot of fun. The crowds were amazing too.

How did you get selected for Ozzfest?

I don't even know anymore. I think we just submitted our name and they picked us basically.

The tour is starting in July. How long is it going to last?

It's probably going to be an eight week tour. It's going to be a really big one. It's probably going to go all the way to the end of August and maybe early September. Keep checking kittie.net for dates.

Where will you be touring?

I know we're coming to Texas. We're going to be doing five or six dates in Texas. We'll probably go to Austin, Dallas, San Antonio and I heard we're going to Corpus Christie too. I know we're going to El Paso too. We're going all through Texas. We've done tours before where half the tour is in Texas. We love Texas so much.

We're a pretty big state. Any other comments or ideas?

Come see us in July.

Kittie