Roadrunner Records - Slipknot's hard-hitting, aggressive metal anthems are getting…
- Posted on Mar 8th 2010 8:08AM by Linda Laban
Sweetapple not only donated his surname to this garage rock project, but also instigated the band's formation. Following the death of Petkovic's mother after a devastating fight with cancer, the Cleveland native, completely paralyzed with grief, armed himself with a ton of cigarettes and simply got in his car and drove. And drove. He didn't have a plan; he just needed to get away. He ended up in the vicinity of Vermont and called his friend, Sweetapple, who he knew lived there. Sensing things weren't right, Sweetapple invited Petkovic over and introduced him to Mascis. Being a songwriter and musician, who had lost his parents, Mascis advised Petkovic to write some songs and they'd form a band. So, after he returned to Cleveland, he churned out some songs, lots of songs, and enlisted Parnin. The result is the toe-tapping, head-nodding rockers on 'Love and Desperation,' which was recorded in Cleveland and Massachusetts, and will be released on Tee Pee Records, Apr. 20.
Other than that, Sweet Apple is a thorny bunch of seasoned rock vets, who will play their first show at SXSW 2010. "This band is everything backwards," Petkovic tells Spinner. "We still haven't practiced. We have SXSW and we haven't practiced once. We get there Wednesday and the show's Thursday. We will practice Wednesday night and Thursday morning. This is the most backward band," he says affectionately. "It just doesn't make sense."
Describe your sound in your own words.
I'd say desperate sing-alongs. Yeah, that's it.
How did your band form?
Basically, it was like come up with a bunch of songs and we'll do a band. It was as simple as that. We didn't practice or come up with a sound. It was pretty much about existing in the natural sense.
What are your musical influences?
I always love personas. For me, this might be obscure, but I love Marlene Dietrich and Klaus Kinski -- the tawdry sensuality of Marlene Dietrich and the brute swagger of Klaus Kinski are the two things that animated me. Music wise, I love big image. Something that's iconic. We live in a time when there's so much cut and paste sensibility. I like something that grabs you, a sculpted image. Somewhere between atmosphere and impact, and something that has a lasting quality to it.
How did you come up with your band name?
Dave's name is Sweetapple. That's his real name. He's from Newfoundland, Canada. There's not that many Sweetapples around. We were coming up with a name and I thought the Desperation. Then Dave said, "How about Christ." I was like, "No!" J was like, "How about Heavy Blanket?" I said, "That's so suffocating, please!" We had no name, so finally the only name we could agree on was Sweet Apple.
What's your biggest vice?
I don't really have a problem with vices, because I've got like a hundred of them. I can whittle them down to about 95 at any one time. I've got rid of some. Lets see: I don't sleep, I bite my nails and I was smoking about three packs a day when I was really down. I'm impatient. Are these vices or not? It's a vice if you don't turn it into activity. If you don't sleep and you turn it into activity, is that a vice? I love candy, actually that might be my biggest vice. Gummy Bears? Apple Sours? The colorful packages.
What's in your festival survival kit?
For SXSW? If I had Gummy Bears, I'd be pretty happy. I just found this ginger-infused vodka -- I love it. So that and Gummy Bears.
Who was your first celebrity crush?
Nastassja Kinski, because I'd think, "My god, if I could get it on with Nastassja, even though she doesn't have good relations with her father, then I could maybe hang out with her dad too." She was totally hot and he was totally cool.
Beatles or Stones?
It is a tough one. The Stones had more fun and hotter girlfriends. I'd have to go with that one. I love the Beatles too. This is funny -- when we were trying to come up with band names, I asked Dave and J which they thought was a better band, Motorhead or the Beatles. J's like, "Motorhead." I'm like, "What? Why are we even doing this?"
What's the craziest thing you've seen or experienced while on tour?
I had a promoter pull a gun on us when I asked to get paid, because we played late. The drummer of this band I was in was so cheap he didn't have any luggage, so he put his stuff in trash bags. We flew into LAX and we're waiting for his luggage, and it arrives strewn all over the carousel. We had to scramble all over to pick up his stuff. He had a pogo stick that he took everywhere and then we were waiting for that too. So, we were really late playing. I was too embarrassed to tell the promoter why, and then he cracks me over the head and pulls out a gun, and says, "Get the f--- out of here."