Evil Chit Chat With Dirt From Society 1
Dirt Von Karloff holds down the four strings for Los Angeles-based industrial/metal act Society 1. He has, upon my review , clearly honed a terrifying stage persona, the likes of which throughout Rock history has only been seen from Gene Simmons, Sid Vicious and Jerry Montano. I took the liberty during the recording of Society 1's next album to venture off down the dark and creepy path with this true metal monster.
Rocket: Briefly tell me about your working relationship with Matt Zane. He seems like a real easy going guy despite the grim image he put out there for public consumption.
Dirt: Zane is a really cool guy, and he's awesome to work with. And his stage presence is fucking amazing! He's really helped me come into my own stage persona and really step up the show as a whole...awesome guy to work with.
Rocket: What happened with Earache Records? In a seriously puzzling move, they just flat dropped Society 1 after the record breaking suspension show at Download Fest last year? Any idea why?
Dirt: I have to assume it's because they have extremely small penises. It's got to be a jealousy thing, because seriously, it's a little intimidating...we've all got these fuckin' buffalo rods in our pants...I think it just freaked them out!!! That's all in the past, though. We're getting ready to ink a new deal right now, that's gonna be way better for us...The new album, "Sadist Messiah" is gonna fuckin' kick ass!!!
Rocket: Haha... you are a madman. I hate to ask such a lame next question. How tall are you in your boots up on the stage? You look seven feet easy.
Dirt: Probably about 6'6" or 6'7"
Rocket: How long have you been playing the bass guitar? And did you take lessons or are you self-taught?
Dirt: I have been playing since I was 12 years old, completely self-taught. Never had the patience for lessons from some old douche who would'nt teach the cool stuff, like how to stick my tongue out farther or roll my eyes back in my head! I'm mean those are very important things for a bass player to know!
Rocket: Can you recall the very first song you learned note for note?
Dirt: Firehouse by KISS
Rocket: There isn't quite anything around - for us music players, I believe - that rewards you inside yourself as much as playing your first cover song perfectly from start to finish, wouldn't you agree?
Dirt: I was much happier writing my first song. Much more fulfilling to me.
Rocket: What was your first bass guitar? I have to imagine it was a clunker like the one I first started pounding on.
Dirt: This piece of shit Rickenbacker copy. I have no idea what brand it was...
Rocket: Who were some of the early metal bands you first started to listen to?
Dirt: It started out with KISS and Alice Cooper, then I started getting into thrash, Slayer, Venom, Celtic Frost, which led to grindcore and death metal, early Napalm Death, Carcass and shit like that...
Rocket: We talked recently about how big of fans we both are of Mike Muir and Suicidal Tendencies. Have you always been into punk music?
Dirt: My friend's older brother came back from college with all these punk records like Dead Kennedy's, Misfits and Black Flag, shit like that, that's what really got me into punk.
Rocket: Tell us how you first landed the gig with Society 1. You had to audition, correct? What was that experience like?
Dirt: It was cool, I'd known Preston for years, he got me the audition, so I learned the songs, fuckin' nailed it and it really just moved very fast after that.
Rocket: What bass guitars do you play on stage and in the studio?
Dirt: B.C. Rich Beasts and Silvertone Apocalypse pros.
Rocket: This next question is even more anal but the fans are players too, right? What brand name strings do you play on?
Dirt: I don't really endorse a string company yet, but I really like Ernie Ball's.
Rocket: Who is your single biggest musical inspiration?
Dirt: Gene Simmons
Rocket: I know during the down time of Society 1 preparing for its next terror campaign on us metal heads that Sin is going out on tour with Revolting Cocks this summer and you have been jamming with Krell here in Los Angeles. Have you been having a good time with that?
Dirt: Yeah it's fun. Krell are old friends of mine. I was actually in that band before I joined Society 1. We just got together to jam and have some fun, do some shows and shit. They are a great fucking band, and I had a great time jamming with them!
Rocket: I have asked this question in all of my interviews to have some fun. What was the one time while coming up through garage bands where things just went plain awry on the stage for you?
Dirt: Oh fuck too many to mention...one just recently, at a KRELL gig, we completely blew the PA two songs into the set, that's it, show over....that really sucked!
Rocket: Is your terrifying image and performance on stage something you cultivated from watching old horror movies as a kid? You are one freaky dude up there.
Dirt: Totally. I always wanted to be like a cross between Frankenstein's Monster, Leather Face and Jason Vorhees.
Rocket: Finally, if you had never discovered the bass guitar, what do you think you would've done for a living instead?
Dirt: Fuck, I don't know!!! I've had such tunnel vision for so long I have no idea what else I would do....That's a real hard question, man....this is all I've ever wanted to do!
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