Originally published in ‘zine issue #2, 1991
Sick Of It All, up and coming hardcore from New York on Relativity Records, went on tour with Napalm Death, Sacred Reich, and Sepultura in the United States. This New Titans on the Bloc tour was a bit of an odd combination, you might think, but we’ll get to that later. Lou and Pete from Sick Of It All and I sat down on the tour bus that they shared with Napalm Death, and we began with the We Stand Alone 7”, when I asked how it was selling.
“As far as I know, it’s doing pretty well,” Lou said, who is the vocalist. “I think it supposedly sold 20,000 so far,” Pete, the guitarist, added.
Lou: “That was just, like, without any tour behind it or anything.”
D.U.: Do you like how it turned out?
Lou: Yeah. It’s just, at the time, it was to show to everybody that we were still around and to show that the two new members, which now one of them has left, and we got our old bass player, Rich, back—
When did that happen?
Lou: We did a two-week tour with Agnostic Front up in the northeast and up to Canada, and that bass player, Eddie, he didn’t like the way things were, I guess, and he wanted to make more money at it. So what he did was, he got offered a job playing in the backup band for the Cycle Sluts From Hell. Now he gets paid 300 bucks a week to sit around and play behind four bad singers. No musical integrity, but I guess he’s living well.
Are you getting sick of not having a stable lineup? Like every six months or whatever somebody leaves?
Pete: It’s pretty stable now. It looks like it’s gonna stay for a while.
Lou: It kinda gets annoying as in, like, we coulda had a second album out already if Armand and Rich had stayed when they said they would. And we prob’ly wouldn’t be in this position now.
Did you have anything set up for a second album, or is that completely out the window now?
Lou: Right now we have eight complete songs, and we’re still writing more now. And when we get back from this tour, in October we’ll record.
“We resent everything always!”
Do you have any plans for a new video?
Pete: Yeah. When the new album comes out, we’re supposed to do a couple of them. We haven’t chosen anything yet.
How are you gonna get more creative control than you did last time?
Lou: We had pretty much creative control. It’s just the argument about they wanted to get our record [Blood, Sweat, and No Tears] in certain chains. That’s why they wouldn’t print the lyrics. They would’ve printed the lyrics, but with all the curses bleeped out it was ridiculous. ‘Cause the song “Bullshit Justice,” y’know, the title is “Bullshit Justice.” It’s not gonna be “blankblank Justice” on the record. So we just decided to leave the lyrics out and have people send away for it. You get it in the mail, you know, uncensored.
Are you gonna get more say as far as the videos go?
Lou: Definitely. I think we’re gonna get more creative control, ‘cause now there’s been some changes at the label.
Pete: And we know more. ‘Cause [prior to the “Injustice System” music video] we never shot a video before in our lives. We never knew what we were doing. We just, like, let them do it, y’know?
Lou: We let the people at the label know where we stand right now, and they understand that.
So since In-Effect got dissolved, are they [the record label] treating you better or the same or what?
Lou: Well, right now it’s the same, because it just happened a little while ago and we’re on this tour, so nothing’s really changed. When we get off this tour, if things don’t change, we’ll see what happens.
Do you resent being stuck on this tour, sort of being the odd band out?
Pete: We resent everything always! [laughs]
It’s what Sick Of It All is all about, right?
Lou: [laughs] I mean, personality wise we get along with all the bands and they all get along with us, and we all like each other’s music and all that. But it’s just—
Pete: There’s too much politics involved with everything. There’s too many managers, road managers, stage managers, promoters, promoter managers, assholes, this, that—
Lou: Tour promoters, local promoters—
Pete: Everyone can talk you into anything they want because they’re such, y’know—
Lou: Yeah, and the thing that we don’t like is, we thought the package tour was geared so that everybody could see four good bands for a cheap price. And some nights we’ve been playing, it’s been, like, 20 dollars a ticket. Now, some people say, “Yeah, but that’s five dollars a band.” You’re going, “Yeah, but you think those people going to see Sepultura’re really coming to see us too?” Or, I know our fans, 90 percent of them aren’t gonna like any of the other stuff that’s here.
Pete: And, like, so they will come and pay 20 bucks to see us. We don’t like doing that to our fans.
Lou: We’ve even said that we just hope we don’t lose our old fans by being on this tour, ‘cause I really don’t see us picking up any new ones. I mean, ‘cause we’re not heavy enough for a lot of these people, you know?
Do you have anything to say that we haven’t covered?
Lou: I just thank everybody who supported us. And it’s like we were saying about this tour: I think it’s a good idea, but I dunno if people are ready for tours like this.
Pete: It should be cheaper. Prices of everything should be. T-shirts, door prices, it should all be cheaper.
Lou: That’s the real gripe we have about this tour, is the selling of the t-shirts for outrageous amounts of money. I mean, maybe metal crowds expect it, but our crowd certainly doesn’t expect to pay 20 bucks. ■
Photos: Sick Of It All playing that day