AYO WHATS UP IT’S BEEN A MINUTE HUH. I’M SURE YALL’RE WONDERING THE SAME THING: “OH JEEZ I WONDER WHAT BAND I KIND OF LIKE THIS WALKING ROCK BAND GREATEST HITS MIXTAPE IS GOING TO MAKE FUN OF TODAY?”
LMAO IT’S MY OWN BAND LOL.
FOR THE LIKE 3 OF YOU THAT READ THESE AND DON’T KNOW ME PERSONALLY I’M IN A BAND BECAUSE OF COURSE I AM I HAVE REALLY SEVERE OPINIONS ON THINGS THAT DON’T FUCKING MATTER AT ALL AND I’M 24 AND HAVE A NOSE RING STILL.
ANYWAYS MY BAND AND I HAVE A NEW THING COMING OUT SOON AND FIGURED IT’S TIME TO PLUG AWAY.
SINCE I THINK IT’S LAME WHEN LOCAL BANDS MAKE AD CAMPAIGNS FOR A BANDCAMP ALBUM THAT’LL GET MAYBE 55 PLAYS MAX AND THE LAST REMAINING SHRED OF SHAME I HAVE LEFT HAS MANIFESTED ITSELF AS MY RULE FOR NOT POSTING ABOUT MY BAND UNLESS WE HAVE SOMETHING TO OFFER, I FIGURED THE NEXT BEST THING WOULD BE TO HAVE A QUASI-NEPOTISTIC PLUG ON A WEBSITE I DON’T TECHNICALLY WRITE FOR BUT I DEFINITELY GENERATE SOME TRAFFIC FOR, YA DIG. BESIDES WE ALREADY DID SOMETHING LIKE THIS WITH OUR LAST RECORD WHERE Y’ALL PUT IT IN FRONT OF A SPACE BACKGROUND FOR SOME REASON (I’M SERIOUS), I FIGURED “FUCK IT SURE WHY NOT” WHICH IS THE EXACT RESPONSE BRIAN HAD WHEN I PITCHED THE IDEA OF INTERVIEWING MY OWN BAND USING A SERIES OF QUORA QUESTIONS I FOUND THAT HAD A BUNCH OF DOWNVOTES AND SOMEONE QUOTING IT AS BEING “INSULTING” QUESTIONS TO ASK A BAND AS THE BASIS OF AN ARTICLE.
THE FOLLOWING IS A TRANSCRIBED VERSION OF HOW THAT WENT OVER. SOME THINGS HAVE BEEN MOVED AROUND FOR THE SAKE OF CONTINUITY, SOME THINGS WERE ADDED AFTER THE FACT JUST TO HAVE A CLEAR ANSWER, BUT THIS IS WHAT WENT DOWN. IMMA HAVE TO TAKE MY CAPSLOCK OFF (RIP) FOR THE SAKE OF Y’ALL BEING ABLE TO READ THIS WITHOUT YOUR EYES BLEEDING.
Scene: The warehouse in Bethany, Connecticut where we practice. The squatter on the top floor is making loud noises trying to get us to be quiet. He’s a dickhead. My bandmates, Sean Walsh (bass) and Mark “Marco” Carotenuto (drums, vocals) are ranting about some fucking mozzarella pasta salad Mark brought with him from Whole Foods. It’s almost one in the morning, a dampness is in the air as we gather around my iPhone. Mark is also, as he often colloquially says, “baked ziti.”
Mark takes a bite of the salad. “Yo tell me this is not blazing. This shit is balazinggg yupppp, with the sauce.” Sean interjects: “The sauce is so good. The sauce yo.” This is the 6th time they’ve brought up the pasta salad since I started recording 47 seconds ago. Mark takes a piece of cheese between his fingers and for some reason begins to sing, “Hold up I’m gonna eat the cheese.” Sean nods in agreement. We begin to argue about whether mayonnaise is good or not (it’s not). We are almost 3 minutes into my recording when we eventually compose ourselves enough to look at the first question.
Step 1*What's the name of your band? What's the origin of that name? Have you changed the band's name before?
MT: Wow, this is a strong one to start with.
SW: The answer to all three is “yes.”
Mark and Sean begin to go through the salad again. Mark pulls a piece of basil from the tub “Yo is this arugula?” he asks.
MC: Wait, what’s the question?
MT: “What’s the name of your band?”
MC: (excitedly) Oh! Lucretia!
MT: I got the name by going through Wikipedia on “random article” when I was like 16. I remember reading about her, the classical/mythological Roman figure of Lucretia--
Mark interrupts me to say “this is so good” before eating more of his salad.
--and thinking, “Oh wow, that’s fucked up. ‘Lucretia’ would be an absolutely awful name for a metal band,” and I just stuck with it.
Step 2*Please list the name, age, school, and respective instrument of each band member.
Mark looks up in genuine confusion.
MC: What’s the question?
MT: (laughing) “What’s your name, you fucking idiot?”
MC: Mark! Marco!
MT: They want the name of the band and the name of the you.
MC: Lucretia, Marco 😊.
SW: I’m Sean, Lord of the Low-End.
MT: Age? We’re all 24, we graduated high school together. Go Gaels Shelton High Forever.
SW: What’s the other question? School?
MT: I guess it’s for kids. Next question was “what’s your respective instrument?”
MC: Guitar! (Mark is a guitar player by trade).
MT: That’s not what respective mea-
MC: DRUMS! They call me bambam.
SW: Bass, but I really just do feedback.
MT: I play guitar and do vocals. I go weeenee and then I go dgugguauaug.
MC: This is stupid. Next question.
Step 3*What genre of music do you consider your work to be? Who are your major influences?
SW: I consider our genre...tolerable?
MT: A friend of ours once said we were crust punk for people that shop at Hot Topic.
SW: I’m influenced by Franz List. We’re New Age.
MC: Yeah we’re New Age.
MT: The New Age of Riffs.
MC: No. Just New Age.
MT: As for influences for the band? Converge, Coalesce, Glassjaw, Guns ’N’ Roses. Shit like that. Personally, my biggest influence with anything music related is The Chariot. Guitar-wise, it’s like Jim Root and Mick Thomson (Slipknot), Kurt Ballou (Converge), Michael Mason (Gaza, Cult Leader). Also Tim Collis from This Town Needs Guns, and the guys in Six Gallery, but it doesn’t show a lot with Lucretia. I also really like Code Orange Kids and ripping off anything Andy Hull has done (Manchester Orchestra, Right Away Great Captain).
SW: Our influences are drinking beer.
SW: Scoring. And this pasta salad.
MC: Steven Adler.
MT: Anyone besides Adler?
MC: That’s it. Just Adler.
MT: Lil Addlerall.
Mark loses his shit due to this joke about a soundcloud rapper having the name “Steven Addlerall.” Mark and Sean then started talking about how good the pasta salad was for another minute. The day after we did this, I texted them asking what their actual influences are. Here are their texts verbatim:
SW: I dont know I never had an influence besides curiosity and experimenting. If i had to pick a bassist who influenced me I’d say either geezer butler of black sabbath or the boi kc wolf [of The Chariot]. As of recently my inspiration has been through either takeshi of boris or various noise artists.
MC: (In response to my text “besides Matt Bruso [Vocalist, Bury Your Dead] and Steven Adler [Drummer, Guns ’N’ Roses] what are your influences for drumming and vocals”): Idk man lol disclose?
Step 4*How long have you all known each other? How did you meet?
MT: Too fucking long.
Everyone voices agreement.
MT: I’ve known Mark since the first day of kindergarten. My mom was like “make a friend” and I saw Mark and thought, “Oh that kid looks like a dork. ‘Hey you like Kabutops? Ight. Bet. Let’s get it’.” I think Sean and I met in 7th or 8th grade.
SW: Yeah, that’s about right, I’d say.
MT: I was fat and Sean had weird hair so we had to get along.
MC: Sean, I don’t remember when we met.
SW: We were in the same cluster in 7th grade.
SW: Yeah, you were in my group when we went to Lake Compounce. It sucked.
MC: Lake Compounce sucks dude.
He holds up the tub with the pasta salad.
You want a sip of this?
Step 5*When did you form your band? What inspired you to make music together?
MT: We started in like 2010ish. I was in another band with Tony [Goncalves, Lucretia’s original vocalist, who quit the band in early 2018]. Everyone quit except for me and him, which is pretty ironic to think about now.
Everyone laughs for longer than that joke deserved.
MC: (Leaving the interview to go to the bathroom) You know why I came in.
We needed someone to play drums and Mark felt bad for us and owned a drum set. Both of which are also ironic now.
MT: Then we broke up for a while when I went to college. We decided to get back together in like 2015, but our original bass player stopped showing interest so we asked Sean to come in
Sean was originally in another band, Blackthorns, but would sometimes fill in.
MT: I remember calling him like, “hey, Sean, wanna be in the Kreesh?” and I heard him stop his car and in a super-serious voice just say, “yes.”
SW: I was in New Haven, I was about to get tacos. I was like (somberly) “yes.”
MC: Yo I’m just throwing this out there, Alessandro [Maione, Sheltonite, friend of the band, Avant-Garde artist/musician] got it in motion. I was with him at our friend Lianne’s house and he convinced me to do it.
MT: Yeah, I remember dude, I was there.
MC: No you weren’t.
MT: Dude, I drove you.
MC: No you didn’t.
MT: Maybe I drove Alessandro. I was there though.
MC: Okay, then what did he give me in exchange for the Lucretia reunion?
MT: A cigarette.
MC: …okay maybe you were there.
Step 6*Do you have a record label? Are you a member of any music organizations?
Everyone laughs. Sean refers to us as being part of “Crunch House, LLC.”
Step 7*What can you tell me about your instruments? (i.e., Are you subject to brand loyalty or will you play with whatever's available? What made you choose the instruments you have now? Was it cost or was it a style/model/brand/color preference?
MC: I don’t own a fucking drum kit.
SW: I’ve been using the same bass (a Squier P Bass) for like 12 years.
MT: I’m left-handed so I take what I can get. I like the ESP (an LTD TE-200) I use ’cause it kind of looks like Jim Root’s Telecaster. Originally, when I was a kid, I wanted to be a singer like Corey Taylor or something, but I can’t sing so I settled with guitar. I don’t give a shit about guitar honestly.
MC: (referring to his salad) I wish I had more of the basil.
MT: Mark has literally texted me 10 minutes before we play asking whose drum kit he’s using for a show.
MC: You want Mark, you get Mark.
MT: Sean, what made you decide “The bass. That’s the one for me?”
SW: Oh, Jim (his next door neighbor) said he needed a bass player and I was like “Oh yeah, I play bass.” I didn’t have one or anything.
MC: Next question.
Step 8*Where have you performed? What are your favorite and least favorite venues? Do you have any upcoming shows?
Everyone immediately says “Crunch House” as a favorite venue at the same time.
MT: Least favorite? Probably that VFW in Thomaston.
MC: What the fuck was that?
SW: The one with The Crooked Sound?
MT: Yeah I didn’t like that place.
SW: What’s the worst place that we played?
MT: The Cave has good sound but that show we played was kinda dumb.
We played a 4 band bill there where tickets cost $15. One person paid to get in.
SW: Yeah, that sucked.
MT: The Cave is actually a good venue; I like it as a spot, but that show we played was just too much.
SW: I also was, like, dying from a fever, so that sucked.
MC: Yeah, I hated that night .
MT: Tuxedo Junction was pretty bad from the one time we played there when we were like 17, but it’s been out.
SW: I played the Room once and I hated it.
MT: We got banned from the Space in like 2012.
Step 9*Which songs do you perform most frequently? Do you ever play any covers? Do you have a set playlist?
SW: All of them.
MT: Doomy (“Untitled”/Rat Song).
MC: Our entire set dumbass.
SW: (referring to the salad): Yo, is that a pepper?
MC: What’s the other question? What covers do we play?
Mark begins chanting “Entombed, Entombed” in reference to us frequently covering “Wolverine Blues.”
MT: We did Guns ’N’ Roses, “It’s So Easy” once. “Roots Bloody Roots.”
SW: (referencing 2012 Lucretia): Vanessa Carlton, “A Thousand Miles.”
MT: Yo, back in the day with Vanessy.
MC: Getting stressy with Vanessy.
MT: We were gonna do a The Locust cover but never did.
MC: Yeah dude, it was hard.
Step 10*Who writes your songs? What are the main themes or topics for most of your songs? Do you think these topics will change over time?
MT: I’d say I probably write like, 50%-75% of it?
SW: Chris Cornell (Lucretia’s long time recording engineer/producer) ghostwrites our songs. He was in Soundgarden.
MT: It’s collaborative. I’ll have an idea for something and I’ll bring it in to hash out. Normally, I’ll get stuck on a riff, and we’ll draw something out of the air together that works. I try not to get too set in stone about how things sound.
SW: Mark comes in with that boom-boom and I hit ya with the strummy-strum.
MC: Bam bam bam.
MT: As for themes? I used to just write abstract things about being lost or sad and interject it with extremely blunt and direct lines, but I’ve made the conscious decision to stop writing lyrics about being a solipsistic cur about halfway through this EP’s writing period.
MC: I don’t know what that means .
MT: *metalcore voice* Wah. I’m sad. No one’s ever felt sad besides me! Grr.
MT: Sometimes I write lyrics with just stream of conscious nonsense. “Saul Hudson” off the new record was written on my iPhone while watching a YouTube video waiting for my girlfriend to finish getting ready for the day.
SW: You write lyrics for people who write the cool “S.”
MC: (Pointing to himself): Yuuup.
SW: You can’t write the cool S, Mark.
MC: Oh I thought you were saying Coalesce. (Laughing) For real, I thought you were talking about the band.
MT: I do love Coalesce.
MC: No, you know how no one says their name the same way? I thought it was that.
MT: WHAT MORE DO YOU WANT FROM ME.
MC: No I get it, the cool S.
MT: SOME SORT OF APOLOGY.
SW: Coalesce should change their name to “Cool S.”
Step 11*Could you briefly describe the music-making process?
MT: That was the last question?
MC: No, “what’s the music-making process”?
SW: When Mark and Michael love each other very much.
SW: Lovechild Sean.
MT: Sometimes I’ll just walk around mouthing chugs.
SW: I can be off-time and Chris will fix it.
MC: (attempting to be serious for the first time in this interview that’s been going on for 20 minutes) I would say the process goes like, Mike comes in with an idea. And we (pausing) make it happen, you know? We uhh…you know.
SW: Then we crack the Liberty Bell.
MT: We crack the eggs to make an omelette. I’m the eggs but you guys are the accoutrements .
MC: Yeah, I’m like getting some onions, a little peppers.
SW: The smoked mozzarella from that salad.
MC: So good, dude. That mayo sauce.
MT: Mayonnaise is fucking gross, dude.
SW: Get the fuck out of here.
MT: We basically just make a really good omelette and then some kid with a top-knot comes up to us and is like, “yeah, I don’t like eggs,” but like, we didn’t make it for you, dork.
SW: Mayonnaise makes anything good.
MT: We also record instruments live. It’s easier for us and we’re better at reading each other than we are at playing consistently to a click track. We’ll record guitar, bass ,and drums live and then I’ll add a second guitar; sometimes for parts I’ll add a third with something stupid, like an HM-2 and a fuzz or something. We also usually spend more time getting feedback sounds than we do on recording vocals and shit.
Step 12*What are your rehearsals generally like? Do you have a set time each week in which you practice or are rehearsals more spontaneous?
MT: It’s always at like, 11:00 p.m. at this warehouse in Bethany.
SW: It’s spontaneous, I guess.
MT: Here’s how the rehearsal system goes: I message the group-chat, “hey you wanna practice this week?” No one responds. Like 4 hours later, Mark will send me a message outside the group-chat like, “so whats good? we practicing tonight?” Then I ask Sean in another message outside the group-chat if he can, and like five hours after, he’s like “sure”. Then I ask the guy who runs the practice spot if it’s open that night and he says “No,” and we do it all over again.
Step 13*How has your music evolved since you first began playing music together?
MC: That’s a stupid question.
SW: We’re not fucking teenagers.
MC: That’s a stupid-ass question.
MT: There’s more than two riffs to a song now.
SW: We could have just taken a Buzzfeed quiz at this point.
MT: “What kind of pasta are you?”
SW: That pasta salad.
MC: The sauce dude, it’s so good.
SW: The smoked mozzarella .
MC: It’s a real underdog, you know? No one knows it’s there but it’s fire.
SW: The sauce.
MC: We sippin’ the sauce.
They continue talking about the pasta salad for another minute.
Step 14*What has been your biggest challenge as a band? Have you been able to overcome that challenge? If so, how?
SW: Finding a time to rehearse.
MT: Losing members, arguing about how things are done.
SW: Getting a drum kit for each show.
MT: Every band we’re friends with breaking up so we can’t use their stuff.
MC: “Hey man, great set, can I use your kit?”
Step 15*What's your ultimate direction for your band? Are you seeking fame and fortune?
MT: My only real goal was to open for Cult Leader but The Webster won’t answer my emails.
MC: I want us to be remembered as not sucking.
SW: I want Connecticut to know we score.
MT: I just want to continue the trajectory we’ve had, with every time we release a new thing, a kid I barely know DMs me to be like, “hey dude, sick song, I like it better than your other stuff.”
SW: Be like “no shit.”
Step 16*What advice do you have for people who want to form their own bands?
(Everyone in unison): DON’T.
SW: Imagine if we didn’t do this.
MT: Imagine if we like, liked sports or some shit. Everything would have been so much easier and cheaper.
SW: Imagine if I was athletic .
MT: Come through with the fucking DUNKS.
SW: Like that Lithuanian basketball jersey
MT: The one The Grateful Dead made.
Step 17*How can fans-to-be gain access to your music? Do you have a website with sample songs or a demo CD?
MT: We have a Bandcamp.
SW: Name your own price.
MT: We also have a Spotify, but it’s needlessly expensive and like 80% of our listens are on Bandcamp anyway, so I’ll probably deactivate it by the end of the year.
Step 18*Is there anyone you'd like to acknowledge for offering financial or emotional support?
MT: Yeah, my aunt Eileen, who funded half of everything I’ve ever done in my life. She helped pay for a lot of our early stuff when we were kids; equipment, recordings. She also is the only person who’s bought the same shirt from us twice. Shoutout Eileen, I love you.
MC: My old boss Emilio.
MT: I guess this is just shoutout corner. Shoutout the Bethany Underground.
SW: Shoutouts to Chris Cornell for being the world’s most patient man.
MT: Shoutouts to Prologues.
MC: Brandon Antoniak’s drum kit.
MT: Kidnapped, Boot Rot. Shoutout Liam Fozzaluzzalazzaazlalaza’s drum kit.
MC: Shoutout to anyone in Connecticut with a drum set, because we’re going to use it. Shoutout to the boy Joe for giving me a set that I never used.
SW: Shoutout to Joe for being the only person to want a Blackthorns reunion.
MT: That’s not true dude, I’m down. I’ll do Adam’s parts.
Step 19*Any last words?
MC: Dokken does not suck.
SW: Wimps and posers leave the hall.
MT: Free Bobby.
SW: We score.
MT: I guess we should talk about the record.
MC: Oh yeah. I thought we we’re gonna talk about like, beating off to the bridge in “Rocket Queen.” But yeah, on a serious note, the new record is cool.
MT: Yeah so our new record, 41.3165° N, 73.0932° W (Blindly I Reach O’ Lord), is coming out pretty soon. It’s the least heavy thing we’ve done, which I find interesting.
MC: It’s still heavy.
MT: Yeah, it’s good, I just think it’s interesting that we found ourselves leaning less towards metal on it.
MC: We write what we write.
SW: I think it’s the coolest thing we’ve written.
MC: Fuck it, you know?
SW: Say what you need to say.
MT: John Mayer rules.
MC: When you type this, are you gonna type my parts like how I text?
MT: Like without using half the keyboard?
MC: You know like, proper grammar but like “wyd?”
Half of Mark’s messages to me asking to hang out is just “wyd”.
SW: That’s proper grammar.
MC: Record’s killer though, seriously.
MT: Yeah, you’ll like it.
SW: We score.
At this point we dissolved into discussing what the rules were for being Lucretia. We came to the conclusion that the only rules were:
1.) Free Bobby Shmurda
2.) Beating off to the bridge in “Rocket Queen”
3.) Hating Ronald Reagan
4.) Being able to recite the ending speech Rambo gives in “First Blood”
5.) Being cool and Scoring
7.) Rock ’N’ Roll Nightmare
Upon our decision regarding “First Blood,” Mark broke out into the exact monologue, word for word, which he had memorized years ago, throwing drumsticks like a prop gun and collapsing on the floor during the line that Stallone did. When he finished he announced that he was overdue for an Emmy. He told me to shut up when I brought up that Emmys were for TV, and he was thinking of an Oscar. As we realized we had come to an end, I noticed a slight change in Mark and Sean’s dispositions. Initially, I thought it was a sadness. I couldn’t tell what brought it on, but then I noticed something. The inside of the salad tub was empty. They had nothing left to take.
New Record Out Soon Dweeb.
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