TEXAS THUNDER - Representing the Lone Star State are members of Skatenigs, Geto Boyz and ZZ Top. Standing L to R are Phil Owen, Skatenigs; Geto Boyz producer Mike Dean; Digital Services' John Moran; ZZ Top's Billy F Gibbons, Digital engineer, Cody Coe; Skatenig Lance Moulder. Seated are Geto Boy Scarface and Skatenig Billy Jackson

Dancing About Architecture:

Butts, Cocks, and Stuff

Ken Lieck

June 22, 2001: 

Since I mentioned MiNiSTRY, I should add that off-and-on Austinites Al Jourgensen and Paul Barker have been hard at work (with new drummer Max Brody from SANGRE DE TORO) kicking back into action with a new best-of disc (and recent accompanying video), plus a new song on Steven Spielberg's E.T. for the 21st-century flick, A.I. Fans of the MiNiSTRY offshoot REVOLTiNG COCKS, meanwhile, can look for that act to act up again in the future as well. While parked in the alley next to the Red Eyed Fly last weekend, Phildo Owen played me some rough tracks intended for upcoming projects by both REVCO and the SKATENiGS. A savage battering of the old Archie Campbell standard "Gloom, Despair, and Agony on Me" makes for one particularly brilliantly twisted track. Hey, Buttholes, pay attention to these guys! I'm thinking Hee Haw-based industrial music may be the big hit commercial trend of the future.

by Ken Lieck

With MiNiSTRY's album "Dark Side of the Spoon" out this week, Al Jourgensen's former REVOLTiNG COCKS associate Phil "Phildo"

Owen reports that the new line-up of his SKATENiGS is also set to get things rolling with their first live show as a four-piece (aside from a SXSW spot last March) at La Zona Rosa next week (opening for SOAK) as the 'NiGS continue working on their own new album, The Money Shot. Interestingly enough, "Bad Blood," the MiNiSTRY track that appeared in advance of "Dark Side" on the "Matrix soundtrack" album, is said to be about rivalries among Jourgensen's Texas compadres. So, is there any dirt on Owen and the 'NiGS, who opened for MiNiSTRY on several tours, and whose "Stupid People Shouldn't Breed" album was anonymously produced by Jourgensen, in the song? Well, Phildo says that while there was a small "incident" between Jourgensen and himself in the past, he doesn't think the song is in reference to him, and "if it is, it's real loose." In checking up on a few other local bands of the loud and hard variety, like TERMiNAL 46, who've recently been asked to cut a track for a MiNiSTRY tribute album and will release their own new CD, "Very Still Life", in July or August, and HUMAN, who are taking a six-week break for a band member's wedding, then hitting the road in August, I found some tentative belief that the song concerns an argument between Jourgensen and Owen at Emo's. There's the matter of the usual difficulty of deciphering Jourgensen's words to factor in here (I've failed to make out much more than snippets like, "White lies, it's no surprise!"), and in the end Owen reports not getting any calls asking him to be involved in further REVCO recordings any time soon.

C'mon, motherfucker!

The monster comes alive;  SKATENiGS!

MiNiSTRY frontman Al Jourgensen must be a descendant of King Midas because everything he brushes with his fingers turns to gold. The Jourgensen-produced SKATENiGS record "Stupid People Shouldn't Breed" is no exception. Like Rick Rubin, Jourgensen imparts bits of accumulated wisdom on all his projects, and although he may not have actually written the SKATENiGS' riffs (then again, he might have), he turns them into his own with the twist of a knob or addition of a spokenword bit. Much of "Stupid People Shouldn't Breed" sounds pretty similar to Jourgensen side ventures like 1,000 HOMO DJs, LARD and REVOLTiNG COCKS, which is understandable since he worked with SKATENiGS' Phil Owen in REVOLTiNG COCKS and shares Owen's warped, esoteric mindset. Like MiNiSTRY and a handful of other industrial-metal acts, SKATENiGS fuse soundbites with roaring, barked vocals, barbed guitar riffs and straight ahead drumming. But while MiNiSTRY creates angst-filled symphonies, SKATENiGS would rather take a cue from such groups as SUiCiDAL TENDENCiES and flex its muscles for fun instead of railing with blind rage. Even the political samples on "Fight Da Suckas" and "Loudspeaker" take a back seat to the macho, fist-pounding riffarama. Test your IQ with "Chemical Imbalance," "Horny For Evil" and "Roadkill." 

© 1978-1999 College
Media, Inc. Used by permission. 


(Megaforce Records)

reviewed in issue #21, 9/30/92

As you may have surmised from my thoughts on the cassette advance, I loved this album. Now, don't get me wrong; this isn't a new sound or even terribly original. It's just damn fun. If clubs around here would play this album, I would dance for a long. I would probably destroy what is left of my knees. Sure, "Chemical Imbalance" is positively infectious, but as that is an old song, the rest of the album contains the test. And it passes. While it is currently PC to hate racism and not be sexist, I also agree with these sentiments. One weird thing: I get a real
GWAR kinda vibe off this. Sorta like the Go-Go's thing with the OFFSPRiNG. No good reason, but it's there. Thought I should mention that. 


(Red Light Records)

reviewed in issue #51, 3/31/94

Returning to a Chicago home, SKATENiGS come out a little more like a gloss BLACK SABBATH. Same crunchy guitar sound and fun lyrics. I personally think these folks are highly addictive. If the new album sounds anything like this, then I'll jack in for another long fix. 



(Red Light Records)

reviewed in issue #56, 6/15/94

After a short sojourn with Megaforce, the SKATENiGS return to another Chicago label. The music stays consistent. Cheeze-metal riffs and industrial beats power these folk as always. Phil(do) Owen spits out the pissed off/often puerile lyrics with reckless abandon. In other words, highly addictive. While "Chemical Imbalance" is the ultimate
SKATENiGS song, this set is just as fun as Stupid People. If you have never acquainted yourself with the
SKATENiGS, get it together and throw this in the discer. You'll come away a fan. 

Phil Owen talks about "What A Mangled Web We Leave" album:

Signing with Red Light:
"John Fichera, who runs Red Light Records is a good friend of Reed at Track Studio in Chicago, where we cut our first record. He gave Red Light my phone number and I hooked them up with management. We had been shopping six songs to majors and we were getting strung along. Fichera was really into the project and that's what we wanted to hear - some enthusiasm. As a result, we decided to go with a good independent."

"There's a lot less pressure having our own production company and studio. It's like night and day. The only hard part is getting some fresh ears - someone you trust to hear the music and make sure you're doing the right thing. Sometimes you go for periods of 48 hours in the studio and your ears are just beat. As far as organizing things and preparing for the studio so you don't spend all your money, it works out great."

"Everything was finished when we got to the studio. There were a couple of new songs that we added new parts to, but we did a lot of pre-production. Matt Mitchell added another twist to it all."

The new member:
"Our keyboardist is Wendy Nelson. She's been a friend of the band for quite some time and she's been playing piano for nine years. Our previous keyboardists were just playing samples; on this record we actually have keyboard parts written in. It makes it a lot easier on stage."

Beavis & Butt-Head connection:
"It was great. I think it gave our last record a second wind. We weren't touring, we didn't have a label and the promotion was over. They said our video sucked about 12 times and that it sucked in a way they had never seen before. Beavis & Butt-head is a simple format and in short doses they're fine. It has certainly helped bands like
WHiTE ZOMBiE. They deserved the hell out of it too. That record should have sold on its own merit."

First video: "We shot 'Regret' in Los Angeles. We used Cameron Casey who is the man behind-the-scenes in a lot of rap videos. He gave us this look that was real street, but dark. No rock band has had a video like this one."

"I'd like to say it'll be soon in the U.S. but we're still looking for the right tour.
We can't wait to tour all around the U.S."

- Sheila Rene (R.I.P.) - Transmitted: 94-08-12 09:42:10 EDT









Ranch apocalypse...