Wayne Static: Piracy Is Discouraging, but the Music Wants to Come Out of Me

Categories: Interview, Q&A

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Wayne Static, industrial metallist
The evil disco is back in the desert. We're not talking about some new trend of goth raves, or another event like Bloodfest 2013. This is about dirty, raw energy. Industrial metal, functioning at its highest level of stamina.

That's right -- Wayne Static is back to provide a whirlwind of Static X hits, from the earliest to the latest, as well as a few songs form his 2011 solo album Pighammer.

All that fans have known for sure about Static X of late is that there's been some trouble in metal paradise. Wayne confirmed that the band disbanded in June 2013, from disputes between himself and the band's former bassist Tony Campos over the rights to the use of the Static X name. On top of that, Wayne had been out of commission for about a year due to a hernia injury caused by his constant touring and intense live shows. This tour is his first since recovering.

To clarify, according to Wayne this tour is a full-on Static-X Show--he just can't officially call it that. The main difference is that he's brought back the old-school Static-X drummer Bevan Davies, who was on board from 2007-2009. Rounding out the line-up is guitarist Ashes, who has been in Wayne's act since 2011, and bassist Andy Cole, who made his debut with him at the tail end of the Static-X tour in 2012.

Up On The Sun talked with Wayne Static about how illegal downloading has changed the way he makes music, his collaboration with DMC, and new material in 2014.

What can fans expect from your current tour in terms of a set list and stage show?
Basically it's the same band other than a different drummer from last year. We were touring as Static X last year, and having legal issues with a former Static X member, which is making it unable for us to use the name Static X. Wayne Static is basically Static X at this point, and even more so now because I'm bringing back the former Static X drummer. It's a full-on Static X show, I just can't call it that. We'll be playing some of the old stuff from the first album, some of the new stuff, and some of everything in between.

All right, yeah I wasn't sure if you and Tony [Campos] came to an agreement in order for you to use the name or not.
You know, I tried to make a deal with him and he doesn't want to do Static X anymore, and he's happy doing Soulfly. I can't come to a reasonable deal with him; He wants so much money to use the name it's ridiculous. I don't make that kind of money.

He and I aren't on the best of terms right now. But we're just going out and doing the Wayne Static thing and building it up that way. My fans know what to expect. We're gonna come out and give a kick-ass show. Just have a party.

How have you been doing since recovering from your injury? Is that affecting your stage show at all?
It's been doing good. That's been the reason we have been off tour for a year. I developed a hernia during the tour in 2012 and it just kept getting worse and worse, and eventually I just decided to cancel the end of the tour, which was the Southwest tour on the last two weeks. I had surgery and spent a month in bed, then spent a couple months figuring out how to walk again. Since then I've been taking it easy. It's only been the last couple months when I've really felt like myself again and felt like I could push myself. I'm finally back to the point where I feel like I can put on a proper show and not hurt myself again.

You know, with a normal job I could've gone back to work nine months ago, probably. But with Static X shows, they are high energy, and that's how I got the hernia to begin with. It's very physically demanding.

So your plan is not to half-ass it, is what you're saying.
My plan is to go balls out. I wanna go out and really have a good time and go 100%.

You've said that when it comes to new material, it gets hard not to repeat yourself. Are you referring to the instrumental sound, or your songwriting?
Um, just in general--it becomes hard after 15 years of making records. I think I've made like six or seven studio records now, and that's not including all the songs that didn't make it on the records, like 100 songs.

So it becomes difficult to keep it fresh yet still make something that my fans are going to appreciate. I don't want to take some crazy rough turn and put out some ballads like Aaron [Lewis] from Staind. I want my fans to always hear it and say, 'yeah that's Wayne Static' but I want it to sound fresh too, you know? I hate bands that make the same records over and over and over, like AC/DC, like so many bands that make the same shit over and over. [Laughs] What's the point of that? The whole point of making music is to challenge yourself and that's where the gratification comes from.

So what's currently inspiring you with new ideas?
I don't really do it like I used to. I mean, in the old days I'd listen to other music and get inspired, you know? Like I'd listen to a Skinny Puppies song and get inspired to write a song. Nowadays I don't really listen to a whole lot of music. When I go sit down to write I just sit down with my machine, guitar and keyboard, and whatever comes out of me comes out. I just try to do something that has a cool groove to it and something that I haven't done yet.

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