Me and Doug, the bass player, joined together in Ď96 or Ď97. We started working together and I was just coming out of a project out of L.A. called Jet Black and he was just coming out of a project called Motherload. We put our ideas together and started working together and started writing. Started fitting out some really good songs and really good ideas if you like. We decided to form a band and Load Point Pull was born.
Was the musical direction of this band different from the previous ones that you were in or was it similar?
It was definitely different. It was unique and thatís what really got our attention. It was different. It was something new. It sounded really fresh. We got some great feedback from our friends and fans and we just rolled with it.
How did you guys come up with the band name?
We get that question. The story is, I have a book of a million ideas like most writers I hope do. Iíve got hooks, lyrics, words, titles, and millions of things. One of my ideas I had in there was a title called ďLow, Point, PullĒ and we had a band meeting with the other two guys we had at the time that were working with us. We decided that yeah, okay Low Point Pull. Letís go with it. So we scheduled our first show and the next thing you know, Doug says heís got all the fliers printed off. I said cool, let me check them out. So I look at the fliers. Not only the fliers but all the ads in every magazine in town and it said Load Point Pull. I said no, no man. Thatís not what we decided on. The venues liked it and we just stuck with it from then on out. It was branded on us so we took it and ran with it. It worked out good.
You might as well since you got all that shit printed up.
Yeah, no doubt. I went ďoh no, Doug. Iíve got some bad news.Ē Heís like ďwhat?Ē I said ďthatís not what we talked about. Weíve been talking about this for months. How could you do this?Ē But it worked out for the best.
Thatís funny because when I put down on my calendar that I was doing an interview with you guys, I actually put down Low Point Pull.
Yeah, weíve had some funny misspellings and just misdoings with the name. Weíve had backstage passes printed up with Load Light Pull. There was a big banner cast up behind us. They had little computer generated logos that would fly above the bands in one club we played. I looked back there and it was Load Light Pull. I was like oh, my God. This is ridiculous. Funny. Good times.
Thatís what being in a band is all about.
Thatís right. You know it.
You guys put out a record last fall called Down In Flames. Can you tell me a little bit about that piece of art?
The guy that designed our logo is a really good friend of ours that we go back with a long ways. His name is Phil Mahalovich. He is a phenomenal graphic artist. Great ideas. He just sat down one day and we brought him into the project and said ďwe need some artwork. We need a logo. Letís work on one.Ē This buddy of ours spit that logo out. That was the first one. It obviously started out with a little line drawing. A little line sketch with a font true type. Just a one line font. Our web designer and him got together and worked up 3-D graphics on it but the font has always stayed the same and itís just catchy. Itís a great looking logo. He did a great job and now with Down In Flames, we just took it and added some flames to it. Some color, some 3-D, some dimension, and itís just a great logo. Iím really happy with it.
Iím dating myself here. I come from the age where they first had LPs and then they had 8-track tapes.
I still have some as a matter of fact.
My favorite thing about buying an LP was always the artwork on the cover. Then they came out with cassette tapes and CDs. My favorite part of any CD is to open it up, put in the CD and listen to the music, and look at the artwork. There are just some people who have such cool artwork on their shit. I always appreciate that because Iím a really visual kind of person.
Iíve got to give my bass player Doug the credit for that design. He wants to elaborate as much as possible. He wants to always put on the big show and have the biggest artwork. I hold back sometimes and I kick myself in the ass for doing that because it always ends up working and heís always right. We should go full board. Like my dad taught me, donít do nothing half assed. If youíve got to do something, donít do it half assed. Go all the way.
Absolutely, because people love that kind of shit. I was talking the other day with someone who mentioned how some people have iPods now and whatís the point in selling CDs anymore if you can download stuff from iTunes. There are two problems with that. Problem number one is that I like to change the music in my iPod from time to time and I want a hard copy of whatever it is in case I want to put it back in my iPod later or I want to listen to it in my CD player. The second problem is that if you download everything off of a computer you donít have all of this nice artwork.
Youíre right. Also when you purchase the Down In Flames CD, thereís a code inside there to where we recorded four cover songs and you can only get to those cover songs if you have the code inside the CD which Iím sure will get leaked out from friend and friend and friend. But thatís just a little incentive to buy that. Get those little extras with it like that.
Absolutely. Tell me a little bit about Down In Flames. What all went into writing that record and the inspiration behind it.
Wow. It was a long, tough project. A long drawn out process to create that CD.
It wasnít one of those ďoh my God, we did it in two weeksĒ kind of thing?
No, no. This was four years in the making.
Thatís like half the time of Guns Ní Roses Chinese Democracy.
I know. Thatís the top secret name of that disc actually. ďWeíre going to work on the Chinese Democracy.Ē But yeah, itís been four years and quite a few member changes and a lot of turmoil. A lot of headaches but we got through it. Me and Doug are the writing force. We are Load Point Pull. My band is my band and all. We work as a democracy but you know how this business works. Some guys just canít hack it. They donít want to wait. They canít work with the one year mixing process. We are perfectionists. We want to put out a good product.
You want to put out some kickass shit.
Yeah and it might have taken us a while but in the process we were building a recording studio. We had to take almost a year off to build a studio which benefited us in the long run because we mix and produce our own stuff. Doug my bass player engineers 99 percent of it.
Everybody has their own recording studios. I think thatís so cool.
I know. What would cost you five million dollars back in the day when I recorded my first album in the 80ís now costs $500,000 at home now.
Yeah, that was such a money making deal back then. Of course now you donít have all these major record labels anymore. What gets me about all that was there was all this fucking money to be made in the record business and the bands hardly saw any of it.
But everybody else got rich.
Itís very sad. Thereís so many evils in this business. Even back in the day when I was coming up in the industry, if your hair wasnít long enough you werenít cool. If you were going bald you ainít going to get a fucking record deal. Iím sorry dude, you ainít got no hair. I did the L.A. thing for 10 years and I fought with that. Theyíre like ďwell, you need some extensions.Ē Iím like fuck you and your extensions. Who are you to tell me what I need to wear and what I need to look like. Well, theyíre the ones with the money. So many artists were looked over for that reason. Their weight. Their look. Itís so ignorant. It was sad back in the day.
Yeah, and now you can look like done over dogshit and itís cool.
Right. What a fucking industry, huh?
You got to love it.
I find it endlessly fascinating. Ever since I started my webzine Iíve learned so much about that. Itís endlessly fascinating.
Iím looking at it right now as a matter of fact.
I was reading something on the Internet where someone sent me an article. Axl Rose has been working on Chinese Democracy ever since Jesus Christ was a corporal and now heís negotiating for more money before he releases the masters. Iím thinking who in the fuck who wants to pay him anything.
Right. No doubt. God, I give the guy credit but that last performance I saw with him which I think everybody in the world saw, was just horrendous. The last couple of times Iíve seen him, I donít know what happened to that poor bastard. Love him to death but oh my gosh, I donít know.
There was one year where I had a choice of going to see Guns Ní Roses or Ozzy Osbourne. I finally decided on Ozzy Osbourne because I was afraid that if I went to see Guns Ní Roses the fucker wouldnít even show up. This was at the time where he wasnít showing up for half of his appearances.
I was at one of those. Well, I was there.
Doesnít that piss you off?
Yeah, it sure did. The crowd sat there and waited for an hour and a half before he came out on stage and then they sang four songs and they called it a night. I was like youíve got to be kidding me. That was stupid.
I would have found him in the parking lot and fucking bitch slapped him.
How can you do that to the people that keep you going? That keep you alive as an artist. Your fans period.
I think some people along the way forgot that their bread and butter was totally dependent on other human beings.
Right and I understand the dependencies. I was on the meth pretty hard out in Los Angeles and a few years wasted where I could have been kicking ass in that town and I was just locked away in a fucking room just snorting meth. What a waste of so many years. You look back and why, why, why did you do that?
Iíve often wondered what attracts people to that stuff and how do they find themselves in that situation?
God, I donít know. I think itís the old saying ďmisery loves company.Ē Anthrax. The more people I would meet that were just secluded and strung out on that shit, the more theyíd want to feed it to you and want you to hang out with them and like they say, itís like a disease. I got hooked on it and couldnít get off it for a long time.
Iíve seen people that have been hooked on that shit forever and they get really scary looking. Donít these people see themselves in the mirror?
I know. I moved back to Kansas City back in Ď95 and sobered up and got off that shit. Thatís when I started hitting it with Doug and created Load Point Pull.
What finally made you decide to get off of that shit and how hard was it to do that?
It was tough. I lost a record deal in Japan. The band I had in Los Angeles, we had a good deal going up with a record label in Japan and we just couldnít keep it together. Couldnít get to rehearsals. I throw myself in that mix too. At least I was showing up for rehearsals. I was there. I didnít miss the rehearsals but some of the other guys were just wacked out of their brains. Our attorneys found out about it and the record label found out about it. They said ďweíre done with you guys.Ē When I lost that deal, thatís when reality set in. I was like whoa, I just threw 10 years of my life away. It was crazy. Then I moved back here and I did it. I did it. I got clean and sober on my own. I just went through some heavy withdrawals for a few months but thatís what changed my mind right there.
Well, if you had waited a few years you could have been on TV on Intervention.
Thatís one of my favorite shows now. I love that show.
Isnít that show wild? I watched some of that shit. This is how not to be.
Did you see the episode with the Days Of The New character? I canít think of his name but that was a good one. I donít think he kicked it. I think heís still fucked up. God forbid I hope he isnít but what a great talent wasted.
Did you see that one episode where that girl was an alcoholic for the longest time and then she finally kicks the alcohol and it turns out later on she became a drunk again.
Which one was it? The one who was drinking in the office every day?
Yeah, that was sad. It was pathetic. Thatís horrible. Thatís a nasty assed drug too.
I love my Heineken and my Crown Royal but not to that extent.
Right, exactly. Same here.
It took you guys four years to get your Down In Flames record together.
Yeah, it took four years. Itís done and itís out for the world to hear. Hopefully itís going to do well. Weíre hoping and keeping our fingers crossed.
Will it take another four years for the next release?
No, as a matter of fact weíre in the studio right now. Weíre getting a head start on it and weíve already got four songs completed. I think weíre going to go about this next release in a different way. I canít really say anything. Itís kind of top secret. Weíve got a great idea on the way weíre going to attack this next bunch of songs. Hopefully it works out.
Hopefully it wonít be four years.
No, it wonít actually. Thereís going to be a new release on our MySpace site here pretty soon of some of the new material. Weíre going to do some Internet releases.
I was jamming to some of that shit you guys have on your MySpace.
Very cool. Thank you.
I visited that.
You guys have a new drummer.
We do have a new drummer. Itís Toby Foulk from Swill. Good friends of ours here in Kansas City who have just disbanded. Swill is no more. Great bunch of guys. Great band. Got to give it up for our local bands here. Weíve got a handful of really good bands here in town and that was one of them. I think Phil Swill just got tired of the business and he just retired from it. So Toby being a great drummer just filled the shoes of our last drummer and hopefully heís going to be the one who sticks with us. Heís a hell of a guy. A great drummer. Heís working out great and his chops are just phenomenal. Heís got to be one of the best Iíve ever played with, thatís for sure.
He was voted on by your fans or people just suggested him.
He was. I guess before we even knew it that Swill was going to disband, we started getting e-mails and we started getting fans coming up at the shows saying ďhey, Toby is your guy if Bobby doesnít work out.Ē I guess they even knew that Bobby was going to bail on us before we even knew so. I was getting the hints left and right from everybody and then Bobby actually came up. We had that final meeting. We just knew it wasnít working out and we wanted to part ways being friends instead of stupid band animosity bullshit. We sat down and told Bobby that we know he doesnít feel it and we just wanted to hear it from him. We wanted him to let us know if he was done with this so we could move on and he said that he was kind of done and he thought that we should get Toby to play drums for us. I was like okay. So we had his blessing with Toby and Tobyís in it 110 percent and hell, like I said we just got four songs done in the studio in the last month and almost fully complete so weíve just got to go in and do some production. Weíre going to do some Internet releases which I think youíre the first one to hear that news. I hope it was okay that I spilled that.
I have the little horns sign going. I know all about it. I see you guys have some cool interviews on YouTube. I think YouTube is so awesome.
I do too. I love it.
Somebody told me about it one day and I went on there and I found all these old cheesy videos that I liked as a kid.
I know. I just got a video of me in Omaha back in 1986 I believe it was when I opened up for Banshee. The band I was in was called Nasty. I couldnít believe it. I was blown away. I got an e-mail from a guy who said ďI think youíd like to see this.Ē I come to find out heís got the whole video he recorded back at the soundboard and it sounded great. It looked great. Itís just great footage to have. I just started creating some sites of some of the old bands I used to be in. I used to be in a band called Fortress. I just posted up a site and we have an album that was released back in 1984 and I put those songs up on Sno Cap and theyíre just selling like hotcakes. Great feedback from people who still listen to that album and still have it in their collection and now you download the MP3s. Theyíre just fucking tickled pink. Itís getting great feedback.
I was surfing around on the Net looking for some information about you boys and I came across something that said you had a heart attack last summer.
I did. On the 4th of July I was performing at an outdoor concert and I had a heart attack. I dropped on the stage. Got three stints in my heart.
That must have been pretty damn scary.
Yeah, it was scary. I dropped like a rock.
Yeah, thatís what I said. Holy shit. It hurt. That shit hurt.
I bet it did.
Like nothing you can ever imagine.
I am so glad you survived that shit or we wouldnít be talking right now.
Youíre taking better care of yourself now.
I am. I am taking better care of myself.
Good because I donít want to read anymore shit like that.
Rock stars dropping like flies. That freaked me out when Kevin DuBrow died. What the hell.
I know and I got to say I knew Kevin. He was an acquaintance of mine. He was a great guy and a great talent. Heís going to be greatly missed and Iím sure you heard that over and over again but I just want to put it out there.
Thatís so true. My first introduction was the Metal Health cassette tape that I had. I grew up on those guys and what was really cool was that I got to interview him a few months before that happened.
Wow, that was awesome.
We talked about the Rehab record that they had put out. Iím glad to say that I got to talk to him before that shit went down.
Are you guys doing any gigs and are they in town or do you travel around a little bit.
Well, we do travel. We try to stay regional just to really work in Toby right now. Getting him to know the songs. Weíre getting ready to work up a set just in case we get a show that pops up. Hopefully we might be playing the Ace Frehley show coming up at the end of this month.
Isnít that so cool that heís back out?
Yeah, I know. I hope we get that gig. We just also got an offer to play the Memphis Music Festival coming up July 4th weekend.
No heart attacks.
No heart attacks. That will be my anniversary. Thatíll be a big bash. Weíre looking forward to that and hopefully the Austin Music Festival coming up in August. Those are the only two things going that weíve just discussed in the last few days show wise. Besides that, we just want to get these new songs recorded and get some product ready to be rolled out. Down In Flames hasnít even begun to hit the airwaves but hopefully it will. Weíll be able to keep rolling and doing well.
You guys are excited about that.
Yeah, real excited.
Any other thoughts or comments?
You can check us out on www.myspace.com/loadpointpull or www.loadpointpull.com. On YouTube you can find a couple of videos of us out there. Thereís a handful of them. Just want to thank www.rocknetwebzine.com for the interview and thank you Angela for everything.
Load Point Pull