As a site that focuses on the world of horror, specifically movies and horrorpunk music, it was always my intent to use this as a platform to help spread the word amongst the masses. While this will apply to films as well, it is certainly more imperative when it comes to the horrorpunk scene. While horrorpunk fans are certainly some of the most passionate fans you will ever meet, it is a genre that generally does not reach outside of the community. If I am able to get even one person to go out and check out some of these bands, then I consider that a great success. These bands are some of the hardest working people you could ever encounter, and definitely deserve the recognition that can at times allude them.
I have had the privilege of being Facebook friends with the awesome Shadow Windhawk for a few years now, and I have been able to witness through that his growth from being in DieMonsterDie to his solo project, right through to his current project Shadow Windhawk And The Morticians. I feel very honored to have been given an advance copy of their debut, the Casket Spray EP for review, and moving forward it seemed appropriate that the very first interview for the site would be with Mr. Windhawk. I was then informed that since the whole band is so excited and passionate about the project, that this interview had been expanded to being with the whole band. So without further a due, I present to you the first ever interview conducted by Mister Gore’s Deadhouse!
Who Are You?
Shadow Windhawk: My name is Shadow Windhawk, I’m a singer / songwriter and film studies major currently studying screenwriting and creating music in Salt Lake City, Utah. I was the lead guitarist / backing vocalist for the legendary underground SLC horror punk band, DieMonsterDie and I play guitar as a member of (former Blitzkid bassist / vocalist) Argyle Goolsby’s live band. Currently I am writing songs, singing and playing guitar for my own band, Shadow Windhawk and the Morticians.
Rich Misery: I am Rich Misery, I play bass and do some vocals in SW&TM, and I am straight edge.
Trip M.D.: Trip is my name, M.D. stands for Manic Drummer. But who am I? That’s an entirely different story…
What Is Your Current Project?
Shadow Windhawk: Right now I am working intensely with my new band. We have a few aces up our sleeves for 2014 still…there is much more to come from us that we are already working on. At the moment, we are hot off the release of our debut EP, “Casket Spray”, which was released digitally through all major online music retailers on Feb. 21 this year via my indie label, Black Flame Records. The album is being pressed to CD this week and we are very excited about how it has been received so far, the good reviews seem to just keep coming which definitely makes me a happy man. We’re also rehearsing for and preparing to book our debut show / official release bash for the new EP at the moment.
Rich Misery: The Morticians is my main focus. I also sing in a band called Burn Your World, and play guitar and sing in a band called Curseworship. Very different stuff, though.
Trip M.D.: Currently I’m drumming for Shadow Windhawk and the Morticians.
What first got you interested in the horror genre as a whole?
Shadow Windhawk: I’ve been fascinated with horror and the traditions of Halloween since I was a little kid, my first introduction to it came via watching old tapes of Dark Shadows with my dad when I was around the age of three, and renting the Universal Monsters collections over and over again on VHS during that same time period. It just went from there. As I got older, I started renting and watching slasher classics on VHS like “John Carpenter’s Halloween” and “Texas Chainsaw Massacre pt. 2”. I became totally obsessed with the gory makeup and fake blood…the fantasy of horror and the imagery associated with it became my favorite form of escapism. Some kids were into anime and pokemon or whatever fad was happening at the time. But I was always taken by the macabre, weird shit. I kid you not, in third grade I wrote my first big book report assignment on a non fictional book I had read about Vlad Tepes (the Impaler). I often found myself dreaming of being a monster on screen one day. Little kid me would imagine getting to play in the fake blood for hours on a film set, having a blast. Now having been involved with real filmmaking lately as a featured zombie in the Zombie Hunter movie (starring Danny Trejo), I can say the reality of being a movie monster is not quite as glamourous as what you imagine as a fanboy kid with starry eyes…especially when it is below 30 degrees outside and you’re standing in in it for 8 to 9 hours wearing cataract lenses, layer after layer of gelatin, medical adhesive, karo syrup, jerry curl, cocoa powder and all manner of other nasty shit entailed with the makeup. But despite all that I do still love it just as much as I always have. It’s just encoded into my DNA at this point. Horror is my hobby, and a lot of what I love about my life…in it I find everything I really love about storytelling, music and art. And I’m totally comfortable with that.
Rich Misery: The Misfits. First and foremost. They’ve been my favorite band since I was 12. I’ve always been a horror kid, though. Halloween, spooky shit and the VHS section of the local video store did me in when I was a little monster.
Trip M.D.: I’ve always loved being scared. The thrill. The rush of it. How terrified yet excited and amazed you feel all at once. I have loved the Halloween season since I was a little kid. I also worked in the haunted house industry for quite a few years, as well, and got a taste for scaring others. It’s just part of who I am.
What are some of your favorite horrorpunk bands?
Shadow Windhawk: here’s a lot of them, but my all time favorites are Samhain, The Misfits, Blitzkid, The Rosedales, The Other, The Crimson Ghosts, Argyle Goolsby, Left For Dead, Bad Ash, The Hitchcocks, Eerie Ln, Gotham Rd, The Forbidden Dimension, The Spook, The Creepshow, Creepersin, The Spookshow, The Nightshift, The Big Bad, Children of October, The Horrifics, Nim Vind, The Lurking Corpses, The Serpenteens and The Cryptkeeper Five. And I love the first two Calabrese records, too.
Rich Misery: The Misfits, Samhain (my moniker is from a Samhain song), Blitzkid, Argyle Goolsby’s solo stuff, Gotham Road, Mister Monster, The Other, Cancerslug, Order Of The Fly, Zombeast (rip), 1476…
Trip M.D.: Blitzkid. Danzig. The Misfits.
What about bands that don’t fall under the horrorpunk umbrella?
Shadow Windhawk: Ha, well there’s a shit ton of them that I love, too. The Cramps, AFI, Oingo Boingo, Deftones, Skinny Puppy, Danzig, Type O Negative, Black Flag, Ministry, Crosses, Carnivore, Alice Cooper, Slayer, Cevin Key, Ohgr, John5, Ghost, Depeche Mode, Tears For Fears, Echo and the Bunnymen, Joy Division, John Lennon, Sisters of Mercy, Tiger Army, Black Rose Phantoms, Neurosis, Ozzy Osbourne, Amon Amarth, Uncle Acid and the Deadbeats, NOFX, Black Sabbath, Elvis, Electric Wizard, Darkest Hour, Kylesa, Blood Ceremony, Bloody Hammers, Bad Religion, Jimi Hendrix, Isis, Aesop Rock, Skeletonwitch, Red Fang, Damian Marley, Bob Marley and the Wailin’ Wailers, Peter Tosh, Eddy Grant, Jimmy Cliff, The Ramones, Black Label Society, White Zombie, Rob Zombie, Dead Kennedys, Slayer, Russian Circles, Rage Against the Machine, Pantera, Nirvana, Pearl Jam….the list is endless, man. I have noticed over the years that a lot of people like to stereotype the typical horror rocker to be all closed minded to different genres, but I have never felt that way. I love a lot of music for different reasons. And yeah something the fans probably don’t know about me, I am huge into 80’s pop / New Wave and I really dig my reggae. Yep. There it is.
Rich Misery: I am way into hardcore and metal, so this could take years, but I will try to keep it brief: Bleeding Through, Joy Division, Darkthrone, Integrity, The Banner, Tragedy, Converge, AFI, Social Distortion, American Nightmare, Minor Threat, Pennywise, Bad Religion, Swans, Alkaline Trio, Eighteen Visions, Ringworm, Nails, Death In June, Neurosis, VNV Nation, Imperative Reaction, Entombed, Dismember, At The Gates, Undertow, Gorgoroth, God Seed, Gravecode Nebula, Himsa, Black Flag, Seizures, Heiress, Ancient VVIsdom.
Trip M.D.: Led Zeppelin. The Who. Black Sabbath. Type O Negative. Motörhead. Judas Priest. Iron Maiden. Social Distortion. Flogging Molly. White Zombie. Rob Zombie. Alice Cooper. Amon Amarth. Oingo Boingo.
What are your favorite horror movies?
Shadow Windhawk: Shit man, you’re throwing out all the tough questions…among my favorites are (and I should note, pretty much none of these are remakes with only a few exceptions – I hate remakes), Bride of Frankenstein, Dracula, The Invisible Man, Phantom of the Opera, The Hunchback of Notre Dame, Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, The Man Who Laughs, Frankenstein, Day of the Dead, Dawn of the Dead, Texas Chainsaw Massacre pt I, II and III. Phantasm I – IV, Zombi, John Carpenter’s Halloween, They Live, John Carpenter’s The Thing, From Dusk Till Dawn, Dellamorte Dellamore, House By the Cemetery, Deep Red, Suspiria, Inferno, Opera, An American Werewolf In London, American Psycho, Halloween III: Season of the Witch, Re-Animator, The Lost Boys, Candyman, Street Trash, A Nightmare on Elm Street I, III and IV, Friday the 13th pt. 6, Last House on the Left, The Hills Have Eyes, Hellraiser, Hellraiser II: Hellbound, the Tales From the Crypt HBO series, Nightbreed, Return of the Living Dead, The Last Man on Earth, House on Haunted Hill, Nosferatu (the original and Herzog’s remake with Kinski as Orlok), Night of the Creeps, Basket Case, Subspecies, Puppet Master I and II…this list really just goes on forever, too…
Rich Misery: The Bride of Frankenstein, Friday the 13th I-IV, Halloween (’78, say NO to remakes kids!), Slaughter High, A Nightmare On Elm Street, Texas Chainsaw, Street Trash, Subspecies, Puppet Master, Serpent and the Rainbow, Re-Animator, The Blind Dead series, Night of the Creeps,Body Double, Lost Boys, Cannibal Holocaust, Nightbreed, The Thing, Return of the Living Dead, Hellraiser, Nosferatu, Night of the Demons, Evil Dead, Videodrome(sci-fi/horror), Basket Case, Maniac…I am big on slashers and 80’s VHS trash. All the Universal and Hammer stuff, too.
Trip M.D.: Night of the Living Dead. Return of the Living Dead. Nightmare on Elm St. 1-3. Hellraiser. The Thing. It. Texas Chainsaw Madsacre (original). Dawn of the Dead (both original and remake). Beetleguise. They Live. Jeepers Creepers. Gremlins. I’m just gonna stop there..
What are some of your favorite non-horror movies?
Shadow Windhawk: Now this one I don’t get asked about much…and yet again, another endless list which I’ll try to keep brief here…some of my favorites in random order: Kill Bill I and II, The Seventh Seal, the Indiana Jones series, Elvira Mistress of the Dark, Ghostbusters, Pulp Fiction, the Star Wars Trilogy (the originals), Princess Mononoke, Spirited Away, Akira, The Breakfast Club, The Godfather, Fast Times at Ridgemont High, The Forbidden Zone, Citizen Kane, O Brother Where Art Thou?, Double Indemnity…just to name off a few.
Rich Misery: Documentaries, Clerks, Big Lebowski, Blade Runner, Star Wars, Ghostbusters, Beetlejuice, Nightmare Before Christmas, Drive, Stripes, Forest Gump, Batman, The Place Beyond The Pines, Back to the Future, LOTR, shitty action movies with Arnold, Van Damme and Segal and all that.
Trip M.D.: Star Wars IV, V, VI. Indiana Jones (not the newest one). Ace Ventura. Dumb & Dumber. The Mask.
What do you have planned for horror fans in the future?
Shadow Windhawk: I am cooking up all sorts of horrors with the Morticians at the moment! Expect a LOT more music from us, that is for certain. Also keep an eyeball out for some very cool (self-financed) collectible vinyl records…perhaps a split 7” or two. 😉
And obviously before too long here, as I mentioned, we will be announcing our first local gig / official release party for the “Casket Spray” EP. Hopefully down the road a pace there’ll be a US tour in cards and who knows, perhaps a smaller festival in Germany…you never know what might be around the corner next and with my new band being so young and 100% motivated to take what we’re doing to the next level, I feel like the sky is limit for us at this point. For once I know that with this, we’re going to push it all as far as we possibly can. Rich and Trip are great bandmates and contribute a ton to my music. They give me renewed hope that together we can make a lasting contribution to horror punk and leave our mark on this scene. There’s so much I am excited for with the Morticians.
Trip M.D.: Blood… Lots of blood… Honestly, you’ll just have to wait and see.
Now for free reign, anything you want fans of the site to know about?
Shadow Windhawk: Yes! Our debut EP, Casket Spray is now available digitally from Black Flame Records…you may buy it at all major online music retailers.
+ We are also streaming for free on Spotify!
+ If you haven’t done so yet, please connect with us at our official Facebook page: http://facebook.com/shadowwindhawkandthemorticians.
We are also currently climbing the national punk charts on ReverbNation (ranked #1 locally, #68 in the USA as of 2/26/14)…so we encourage all of our fans and listeners to head over to http://reverbnation.com/shadowwindhawkandthemorticians and check out our page there. Listen to the Casket Spray EP on the player and help us continue to climb the online charts!
Finally and most importantly, my indie label Black Flame Records is releasing a very limited first pressing of Casket Spray (on CD) on March 4th, 2014…the discs will be made available exclusively through our BandCamp store for only $8: http://shadowwindhawkandthemorticians.bandcamp.com
I would also like to say thank you to my family, my girlfriend and all of our loyal Morticians’ Assistants worldwide…everyone who has supported us so far. You guys are the wind beneath my wings and I am glad you’re all enjoying these new tunes as Rich, Trip and I bring this new monster we’ve stitched up to life!
Rich Misery: Keep posted on our facebook, bandcamp and reverbnation pages for some cool stuff coming up. We are getting some things together for all the horror kids out there.
Also, check out my other bands on Facebook. /burnyourworld and /curseworship respectively. Those are for fans of black metal, hardcore, doom/death metal, and noise. All of our stuff is free.
Trip M.D.: Just how fucking much I appreciate every god damn last one of ’em! Seriously, I’m still in shock over how rapidly our music is spreading! It’s nothing short of truth to say that a band is nothing without their fans, and you guys are the fucking best!
Well, that wraps up the first ever Deadhouse Interview. I want to thank the guys for taking the time to do this, as it is much appreciated. Stay tuned for more fiends and ghouls!