SIEGE INTERVIEW (ENGL)


INTERVISTA IN ITALIANO: LINK

1) Hi guys, how is it going? What are you guys doing right now? Are you still active with some bands?
“These SIEGE reunion shows, and rehearsing for them, understandably have our full attention. And the fan’s reaction has been explosive. It’s been incredible meeting old European and UK pen pals, and seeing how our message has continued to resonate.
But many good things have led up to this. ‘Sitting in’ on drums and playing some SIEGE songs live with the Providence punk powerhouse Dropdead at Maryland Death Fest a couple of years ago was the start of what would lead to this resurgence and return to the stage.

2) Can you name 5 records that are a mandatory influece for Siege, and why are so important for your sound?
Well, we’d have to start with Discharge ‘Why?’, and ‘Hear Nothing…”. They’re just  timeless hammering political noise, and their  early singles, as well. And SIEGE were big DEVO fans.– Hearing ‘Smart Patrol/Mr. DNA’ played live was fucking unbelieveable. This was the band we bonded over as kids. D.C. Void, and the noisy guitar – the comp tracks on ‘Flex Your Head’, and the split 12”. Early S.S.Decontrol and early Gang Green (when they were a 3 piece), certainly, as well.


3) For a brief period, Siege was fronted by the legendary A.C. frontman Seth Putnam (R.I.P.). Some says he was a crazy guy and some says he was a nice guy. Can you share with us your memory of him? Can you tell us some gig related story?
Seth jammed with SIEGE when he was younger, and he was… unusually dedicated to extremity, in music and performance. He used to take several busses and travel several hours, just to get to rehearsal and sing with SIEGE.

4) Same goes for your first singer Kevin Mahoney, that is not among us anymore. Would share your memories about him? He had a really unique voice approach!
Screamin’ Kevin Mahoney was quite a character; a harsh, harsh voice but a very kind man – a poet, involved in his employees union, and he enjoyed tipping a bottle or two. And the live shows with the original line-up of SIEGE were fucking insanity.


5) There are a lot of Siege cover around. What’s the best, in your opinion?

Napalm Death’s version of ‘Walls’ on their Peel Sessions, without question. And Exhumed’s ‘Drop Dead’. I like the more metallic ones, personally.

6) How did you came up with the idea of the “Grim Reaper” song? Is totally different from the other songs…
Mahoney and I were really into Flipper – their lyrics, and the saxophone on sex Bomb, of course. Mahoney liked a lot of stuff with sax – like James Chance, and a lot of ska, also. And SIEGE loved horror movie soundtracks. But a lot of bands had their weird ‘slow’ song – SSD did ‘Police Beat’, Govt Issue did ‘Sheer Terror’ etcetera. We were just expanding on that – but much more severely.

7) Was Siege a part of the Boston hc scene? How it was the hc scene of  Boston in the 80s?

Well, SIEGE were never ‘Straight Edge’ like many of the ‘original Boston crew’. But to be growing up when this music was first happening, in an art and college town like Boston, was absolutely incredible.


8) Can you tell us how it was having contacts with the other bands and the scene in a period where internet wasn't part of the game?
There were a lot more clubs in the city booking original, hard rocking acts and shows, for one thing. Plus it was easier for kids to rent their own hall and put on their own show; it was true DIY – a spirit which is still alive in scenes everywhere, I’m happy to see.

9) Are there some young act that deserve our attention in your opinion? Do you know some italian bands?
Ah there are so many bands out there still rocking with a positive message. But today on my turntable I had Tragedy ‘Nerve Damage’ lp, Thulsa Doom from Philly, and FYPM – anything Erba does. I listen to a lot of new music, actually. As far as Italian bands go, we all loved Raw Power, of course, and I’m a big fan of Giulio and Cripple Bastards – he just sang a song on an anti-war opera I wrote and recorded called ‘So Be It’ which is coming out from Deep 6 Records.


10) How it was to be a punk? Something that can be understood only if you lived a certain era or it is still something alive?
Being a punk is holding a middle finger up to anyone who judges the way you want to live. It says a ‘fuck you’ to the square, old ways – including and especially in music, recording and performing. Punk Rock is fiddling while Rome burns. With one 3 chord- riff we usher modern-day Pharisees toward their political and ideological pasture. As long as their pigs and their oppression and fucking opinions there will be punk and its sub-genres. 

11) Beside punk music, which other music style do you love?
I listen to electronic and ambient music like Tim Hecker and Sky Burial/ Michael Page, and contemporary classical – Takemitsu, Elliot Carter, Morton Feldman. But I am listening to Chaotic Dischord –‘Fuck The World’ at the moment.


12) Can you tells how the band got together?
The instrumentalists from SIEGE knew each other since grade school – we bonded over a love for the early classic horror movies – the Italian masters of course foremost amongst them. Later we got into Punk and New wave, and I met the singer, Screamin’ Kev Mahoney, through a friend in my private school drama club. SIEGE’s singer Kevin Mahoney was the brother-in-law of Rick, the singer and bassist of the Boston hardcore band Jerry’s Kids.

13) There’s any funny/weird live related moment that you can share with us?

SIEGE’s recent EU shows, at Holland’s Bloodshed Fest and Temple of Boom UK have been fucking crazy – the fans made them so. I want to salute the freaks in Leeds UK, Nic Bullen, Malik, and the Scottish Punk family as well as Elios Eatgrapes and Olaf, of course. 


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