Mercy Killers - Craig
Interview Date: August 05, 2006
Associated band: Mercy Killers
Please state your name and your role in the band Mercy Killers.
CRAIG: My name is Craig. I play guitar and sing for Mercy Killers.
Why did you call yourselves Mercy Killers?
CRAIG: Actually, when I was starting the band with Sam, our bass player, he already had the name. I racked my brain for months trying to find another name and came to the conclusion that band names are always awkward when you start. It’s what you do afterwards that the name takes on shape and meaning. Needless to say, Mercy Killers has grown on me. I like the duality and balance. It’s a name that at least makes you stop and think. While I don't kill and am not a killer, it’s a thought-provoking name. I'm more on the Mercy side. Dark or light, which way will you go? I like to think of it that way.
What influenced you to enter a career of music? What bands have impacted that even more since you've became a band?
CRAIG: I've been playing in bands since I was 15; I'm 28 now. I tattooed my hands when I was 18 to ensure I couldn't have a white collar job. I despise the corporate machine that is our country and didn't want to be a part of it. I wanted to distance myself from that as much as I could. I love the ideals we're founded on, but I think it’s quite obvious now that we're a disgrace and an abomination, hypocrites waving the banner of 'leaders of the free world.' I refused to be a part of the problem (in my eyes); I'd rather search for ways to be a part of a solution. Contribute to society instead of tear it down. Punk has always been about changing injustices to me. Anyways, I figured that way, by tattooing my hands; nobody would hire me in corporate America so I better make something work out! While now that I'm involved in the music industry, and don't like a lot of things about it, I wouldn't change it for anything. I love to make music and more than that, make people happy, inspire people like I was inspired when I listened to records growing up. I entered the "career" of music long before this band so the second part is hard to answer. At this point, I don't listen to other bands at all. I just like to make art and music.
How was the experience releasing your self-titled EP on Rancid Records?
CRAIG: Tim was cool enough to put something out for us because we had nothing out. We recorded it ourselves between our practice studio and my bedroom. We thank them for believing in us for our first release.
What led you to sign with Hellcat Records? How has the shift been from Rancid to Hellcat?
CRAIG: Tim wanted to put out this band; he believed in us, and it was a honor to put out a record on Hellcat and Epitaph. I grew up listening to records on those labels. He put out our EP on Rancid records as a way to introduce us before the Hellcat record. He is co-owner of both labels so there was no real "shift." The only difference being Hellcat is part of Epitaph, a bigger label, so they have more resources, etc. I hope I got that right! *laugh*
You have a new album due out August 22nd on Hellcat called Bloodlove. Why did you choose this title?
CRAIG: I choose this title for two reasons. It’s the name of a song, which refers to a fetish for blood. It also is a deeper way of loving someone. Saying that you love someone so much you would love their very essence: their blood. Kind of like family... I'll leave the rest up for interpretation!
The song Pamint De Mort paints an image of love and death. What can we expect for the overall mood of the album? What inspired this mood?
CRAIG: I guess you can expect a lot of exactly that, a full spectrum of experiences and emotions, from love to death. There are songs about struggle, tragedy, songs about rebirth and success. I always write about personal things, real events and emotions... I guess my life inspired the mood of the record.
Do you have any large tours planned to support your new album Bloodlove?
CRAIG: Unfortunately no, there are no touring plans as of yet.
You have an upcoming re-release for your self-titled EP that will be a split with Enemy Rose. How did this re-release come about with I Scream Records?
CRAIG: Enemy Rose features members of the Heartaches, great friends of mine from Belgium. Tommy, the singer for Enemy Rose and I were talking about our new bands we were starting, and it just seemed natural to put out a record together; it made sense. We were both trying to do something a bit different from our previous bands, and why not introduce ourselves together? They could promote us out in Europe, and we could promote them out here in the States. I love those guys so much and am so happy we got to put out a split together!
Mercy Killers will have a street team soon. What are your plans for the street team, and how can fans get involved?
CRAIG: That's still a fledgling project. Wow, someone pays attention to Myspace! I think we just mentioned that in a bulletin once. The street team is going to be a network for fans that really want to support us, get involved in promoting our music and spreading the word. We have some really loyal, dedicated fans and friends, and this will be a place where we can work together and share ideas. Most likely it will be a private profile on Myspace, and that's how we'll communicate. As far as what we'll do? Lets just say I'm a big fan of DIY promotion... spraypaint... graffiti... expect something different and fun.
If you could do a tour with any band(s), dead or alive, who would be on it?
CRAIG: Hmmm that's a tough one; I have an eclectic taste in music. I would have to say Johnny Cash, Depeche Mode, the Beach Boys, and the Damned.
Thank you for your time. Do you have any final comments to your fans and readers?
CRAIG: Thank you for the interview, and thank everyone for their support! We hope you all enjoy the new record.