With songs like “Lycantrope Nerd” [sic], “Sarlac Pit” [sic], and “Robocop,” and about 8 or 9 songs about Ben Casey, this is a punk band that geeks out pretty hard.
I met the band in Dave Ninja’s basement in Sacramento. I went in a fan and came out a 12th level half-elf.
Tell me about your nerdy band.
Joel (guitar/vox): We are the perfect combination of sloppy, poppy, and crappy.
Dave Ninja (bass): I’ll just throw out some key words/phrases that tell our history and help with our metadata: 1993, santa cruz, first ep, secret center sessions, 1995 sacramento, bananas tour, hat nerd ep, boner, 3 cds, this interview.
Jay (drums): Every dollar we get goes into the pipe.
What are your top three ninja skills, and how have they helped your band?
Joel: Roll with punch/fall. If you just keep rolling, they can never submit you. Same principle as “If I stay in the air, I cant be beat.”
Dave Ninja: Tibetan Death punch and saying “Whose necks?” Also, it’s a lot easier to carry equipment when you’re drunk. I think that’s a skill.
Some band said some shit about your band and I was like WHOA and they were like YEAH and I was like NOT THOSE GUYS and they were like YEAH THOSE GUYS. What do you think was said, and who do you think said it?
Joel: I bet it was that guy from that show in Santa Rosa back in 95. He said he didn’t like bands that pretended to wear glasses that didn’t need glasses (so many bands like that), but the joke is on him! Dave and Jay DO need glasses. I’m the only poseur who uses glasses purely for eye-safety!
So how do you respond?
Dave Ninja: We figured there were three of us and only one of him, so it would be a brawl. But we ended up just running away saying “leave us alone, we’re just going home.”
Jay: “You’re kissin’ your life goodbye.”
Your band has a song called Rivendell. As you know, so did Rush. How else has Rush influenced your music?
Joel: I LOVE that song RUSH by Big Audio Dynamite II. It has influenced my whole life.
Dave Ninja: I used to like the album Presto with the song “show me don’t tell me,” but now I just like the memory of the time we attempted to cover Tom Sawyer.
What would you say to a female fan if one ever came to your shows?
Joel: “You don’t get special treatment, babe. The show is still sold out.”
Jay: “You wanna get high as the sky?”
What is something you do… WITH A VENGEANCE?!
Joel: Bring home the jokes!
Dave Ninja: I watch the dvd of “Die Hard With A Vengeance” with a vengeance.
You guys love the video games. If you were forced to choose, by like, a rabid chocobo, would you rather give up playing music or video games for a year?
Joel: Probably video games. I actually haven’t played that many video games since I moved to Grass Valley, and since Legends of Wrestling for the PS2 DOESNT have Ric Flair, I don’t see myself playing any time soon. Now make a game called “Ric Flair’s Wheelin Dealin Kiss Stealin Wrestling,” and we may have something.
Your band gained a level and received 20 skill points. Allocate them across Musicianship, Lyrics, Sex Appeal, Summoning Power, and Gil Toss.
Dave Ninja: I’d roll 4d6 and remove the lowest one and put that many points in Summoning Power. 1d4 for Sex Appeal, lyrics and gil toss. I’d use any remaining points to buy a boat that I would then name “Musician Ship.”
If you could contribute one Four Eyes song to Guitar Hero or Rock Band, which tune would you choose?
Joel: Bosworth’s Daughter
Dave Ninja: Ben Casey 6
You guys have been around since 1993. When do you think you’ll tune your guitars?
Joel: Hey, I resemble that remark!
Dave Ninja: Close enough for jazz!