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DDT - Instrument / Band (2 type)
1999 - Los Angeles, CA

From Canada, home of Alanis Morrisette, beer, Mounties, and sentences ending in "eh", comes an exciting new musical blend with the name of DDT. The quintet is signed to The Music Company, a simply-named record company headed by Lars Ulrich, drummer for Metallica.

DDT's release "Urban Observer", provides a great mix of musical styles blending punk, rock, funk, hip-hop, and some oddities thrown in resulting in a great sound that is entirely their own. Songs like "Hey Steve" lament the constant re-introductions to such 70s TV shows as "Bionic Man", with a hilarious middle section featuring singer Cory doing the 'creation' monologue from the show, with Sean Connery accent. "Can't Take My Eyes Off You", possibly a love song, proves to be a rant on rubberneckers who have to pause to view roadside accidents. "Blue Haired Crime" points at a neighbor of singer Brian Howes who stalkingly abuses him at every turn at their residence.

DDT recently finished up their tour with a show in Los Angeles, at a very poorly booked dump that did not do their show justice. We took some time to hang out with some of the most energetic musicians to emerge in years and share some words with a few members, who throw out comments as they feel necessary. The discussions range from other bands to TV shows to stories on the road, and sometimes even about who the band is and their history.

K2K: OK, we've been sitting here talking about Rammstein and Wendy O. Williams or whatnot...
DDT: Wendy O. Williams. (laughs) They did this great promo in Canada on Much Music with Wendy O. Williams.

K2K: (sarcastically) Before or after she died?
DDT: Well obviously AFTER she died. (laughs) She was all junked out on this thing and then, like, "Wendy. Wendy." (nudge) (then slobberingly) "I want my This Much Music right nowwww", and then she went back out. It was so harsh. I can't believe that they let her play.

K2K: I thought she didn't do anything.
DDT: She looked like she was. She was looking all like sedate.

K2K: So, who is who in the band?
DDT: Brian is one of the singers, slash, guitar player. Cory, the other singer, slash NOT guitar player. Mike plays guitar as well. Dr. Dave plays bass. And Bob on drums. Bobby. "Sporty Fucking Machine", we call him. In German we used to call him Bobby Braun.

K2K: How long have you guys been together?
DDT: Seven years. Since 1993, 1992 1/2. March.

K2K: What or who are your influences?
DDT: Influences are diverse from everybody in the band. Everybody grew up on different shit. Totally different. You've got your AC/DC. You've got your Tupac. Minor Threat. Fugazi. Seal. The Eagles. And "hair-metal", man. Ratt, Mötley, WASP, Maiden, Priest, AC/DC. Maiden has always been a big one with our band. "Number Of The Beast". Bruce Dickinson's last solo record ROCKS!

(The whole discussion suddenly turns to the entire history of every member of Iron Maiden, what they've done, and what the band is doing now)

K2K: How old are you guys?
DDT: About 29, 28. No, 21. 21! And 12.

K2K: OK, what was the deal with the "Backstreet Boys" look on the back of your latest CD?
DDT: We thought it was fun. It's the anti-Backstreet Boys actually. If you look at that picture, it doesn't look like we play the style music that we play. So, it psyches you out a little bit. It's a psyche-out picture.

K2K: That whole 'N Sync look amused me to no end.
DDT: We don't take ourselves too seriously. We make idiots of ourselves.

(Then the conversation turns to discussing Rancid and other such bands, culminating with...)
DDT: Well, you know what? If you look at Rancid, they're kind of the "punk" Backstreet Boys. All their mohawks are perfectly shaped and everything is perfect.

K2K: "Hey Steve" was written about your fascination with [Bionic Man of TV fame] Steve Austin. Right?
DDT: It's syndication actually and how everything comes back. We were recording here [in Los Angeles] and we had this one channel and it was, like, Wonder Woman. I thought, "Wow! I used to watch this, but it doesn't look as good anymore." So, say, it came back in the early 90s and all the 70s shows came back and it was all cool. Suddenly it's like, 1998, and it's come back again. That's enough. It's enough already. I've had enough. It's like a bad pizza. (Inserted) Yeah, that's my quote! Cory said that. When you're young and you're looking at it and you're liking it, that's cool. But then you look at it again when you're older and it just doesn't quite look the same.

K2K: What is that song, "Blue Haired Crime"? What are you singing there with your "brr-rubber biscuit, bring it down, bring it down"...
DDT: Aaah, the lyrics are in the CD. It's "ripping up a pension cheque and tired, sick and tired, sick". That's funny because you know what Bob thinks it is? He thinks it's "Whipping up some chicken, with some fries, with some fries, yeah."

K2K: So what's the story with that?
DDT: (Brian) She lives one floor above me in this apartment. She's still there. She yells at me all the time. I still live there. If I'm cooking something, she's mad because the smells are going up there, so she tapes up all the doors and windows so no smells can come in. If I'm playing guitar in there, she's all GRRRRR. She threw bird-seed at me. She's got blue hair. It is frickin' bright blue, and she didn't dye it that way. That's the way it is for real. Like one of those acid rain trips.
DDT: So to save Brian's life and keep him in his apartment, we put his landlord in our first video for the last record. Now he's like the Lord of the building because he's like national TV and stuff all the time. His kids and his family is all psyched.

K2K: Who inspired "Walkabout"? Isn't that about models?
DDT: No, no. A bunch of dingbats from Vancouver. Some bands who used to be nice guys and then became assholes when they had a little taste of success.

K2K: "Pistol Whipped". Where did that song come from?
DDT: It's a metaphor for power and for people who abuse power. I saw a record company guy and some bands that were trying to get signed and were really hungry. This guy was getting beer for him and getting the band to set him up and crap. That kind of shit really bugs me. It's all metaphoric.

K2K: So, where are the better crowds for you? States? Canada?
DDT: States. Oh yeah. Well, although it's hard to say. We played our last gig in Vancouver and the lines were nuts. They turned away about 200 people at the door. Our friends were in line and got turned away. Earlier when we used to play it was not a whole lot of people, but now it's nuts. We haven't done a lot of shows lately in Canada but we have in the past.

K2K: Where is your favorite place that you've played?
DDT: We opened up for Candlebox and they slayed. They were hot. Then again, Denver was extremely cool. We played the Columbine Festival [for the shootings] and went on about 3 p.m. We also played a radio show on a side stage for a couple of thousand people. It was absolutely bonkers. When we finished, we signed autographs for about 12 hours. We went to see Cake play and got swamped by everyone. Two hours nonstop signing autographs.

K2K: What is the strangest thing that has happened to you on the road?
DDT: The milk truck. We had a milk truck. We toured Canada in the middle of winter in a milk truck. It was a converted milk truck. We end up getting this milk truck and we're driving for about 3 1/2 hours. The gear, the way it was loaded, the inside of the wheels were rubbing together. It had duelies on the back. By the time we got about 3 hours out, it had heated up and BLAM, all the tires blew. We're all over the road. So we ended up paying about $900., we got this guy out at, like, one in the morning. We're all giving him T-shirts and stuff. He's fixing the truck. That story went on for hours. Bobby's worst moment would be when he passed out sleeping in the back and woke up frozen. We drove like 15 hours or something. Water was leaking and his arm was frozen to the side.

We did a tour with Scorpions and Alice Cooper once. Big huge theaters. We thought, we're not going to match these bands too good, so what should we do. So we thought, let's do some Iron Maiden. We went on and started playing "Trooper". The band came on and we're ripping out the music for the "Trooper" and the Cory came out and started singing. The Scorpions were in the back thinking, "Are they playing Iron Maiden?". Always take a chance. You have to take chances.

You know what a neat trick is? To get into the other band room and to drink all their rider (editor's note: A rider is the band's booze requests.) first. You just get so fucked up and sit back and drink their whole rider. And then during their encore, you just rip everything off [clothing] and go up and hump Steve Vai's leg.

K2K: You humped Steve Vai?
DDT: Yeah! (major laughs)

K2K: Was he good?
DDT: His cowboy boots got in the way. That happened. In Vancouver during the beginning of DDT. We opened up for Steve Vai. Devon was the singer for Steve Vai. He was from a local band called Strapping Young Lad. We drank his rider, we ran onstage and he was doing his guitar solo and was getting all mad. It was kind of strange because he looked at the crowd and then he looked at us and he went, "Oh ohh. I'd better make this look like part of the show." He started smiling again. We were running around with our pants down. Totally naked. They kicked us out. We couldn't go get our gear or anything until the next day.

Written by Philip Anderson

Philip Anderson is a musician, in addition to being a writer/photographer. He has performed as a guitarist/vocalist, as well as songwriter, in several bands over the past 20 years. As a writer and photographer, he has been published by several magazines and in several books, and had his works appear on television.

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