Interveiw From Q101
Thanks to Zero Muzzle for sending this to us.

JV= James VanOsdel(interviewer)
MR=Mark Rew(singer)
KB=Kerry Brown(drummer D'Arcy's hubby)

JV - Picked as the next big thing out of Chicago for the past 3 years. Will it happen this year? Quite probably. The new album Hot Saki and Bedtime Stories from Catherine. A totally different sound. Totally cool. They're here. They're live. They're next.

Cut To Ad

JV - Here on the local music showcase on the new rock alternative, Q101. I James VanOsdel and here in the studio with me is Catherine.

Play "Four Leaf Clover"

JV - All right, Catherine, on Q101, the local music showcase. That's about the last song I expected you guys to do tonight. That's the first blockbuster single from the soon to be blockbuster album, Hot Saki and Bedtime Stories. That's called Four Leaf Clover which is the only duet you do on the record, which you do with D'arcy, who sings all over the record. But that's the legitemate duet on the album.

MR - Uh, she sings on two songs.

JV - I thought she sang on more.

KB - Mark just sounds like her.

MR - No, it's like this girl vocal effect that we found.

JV - Well, um, yeah, it works. But that sounded great. And let's run down some Catherine history. Um, you guys have, the new album we'll talk about. It's unlike anything we've come to know from Catherine. You've gone through personnel changes. Run down your history in like 10 words or less.

MR - Well, Jerome Brown and Neil Jendon formed a band. Then Cliff joined the band on bass guitar. Shortly after that I suppose, I think. I wasn't in the band then. Then Kerry (Brown) joined. I think within a space of a couple weeks.

KB - You joined.

MR - And then I joined. And then we played together quite a bit.

KB - Thousands of shows.

MR - We released an EP and a full length.

JV - The EP originally came out on March records, that was Sleepy.

MR + KB - Right.

JV - Which Billy Corgan produced and then TVT picked you up, not too long after that.

MR - Right.

KB - Based on that EP. They heard that, and then they said 'Here's some money, make a record.'

JV - And then November of '94 you put out Sorry! Your first full length.

MR - Right, and then shortly after that Cliff left the band, and then Keith joined us on bass. And did a lot of touring again.

KB - And then Neil and Jerome quit. So there's actually no original members of the band left.

JV - Neil and Jerome. Jerome's now in a band called Glow. And I don't know what Neil's doing. And this all happened fairly recently. And here you are, you've got this new album. Which like I said, the band started out, your slogan, or the band's slogan was 'Better Living Through Noise.' That's been the motto since the Sleepy EP. And the big wall of guitar feedback or crunch is gone, and what's left is a pop experimental a totally different band, sonically.

MR - Also, before we go any further, I want to say that Fever is playing guitar with us. Also, at this point. Which is another big change.

KB - Also on keyboards and percussion.

MR - And a very positive change. And Gus is Todd?

JV - Another song that's interesting on the record is 'It's Gonna Get Worse.' It's almost alarming in it's pop sincerity. It's a shocking thing to hear 'When your love is done and gone, and everything you know has come undone, you better have fun.' It almost disturbed me.

MR - I'm sure it disturbed the person it was written about. Quite a bit, more than you. But, yeah, that song sort of was 'Cars' influenced, how the chorus was so pop. Essence of pop. It wasn't intended to be that, but it sort of turned out to be that. And I think it's a very nice sounding song.

JV - Absolutely. The only, like, old-school Catherine song that I can kind of trace on the album is 'The Angels.' It's the only song that sounds more old-school.

MR - Right, yeah, it has that little bit of a more driven, harder.

JV - There's the urgent open to the song, and just the distortion.

KB - Which is surprising because it's the last song we wrote on the record.

MR - Yeah, it was the last, the very last one. JV - See how it all comes full circle.

KB - It's just a giant circle, huh.

JV - OK, well let's do another song. Or let's, like I'm going to play with you. Um, I'm gonna watch.

KB - Come on in and jam.

JV - Yeah, I'm completely unskilled. Do another song. What do you want to do?

MR - Yeah, we'll do a song called 'Black Light.'

JV - OK, that reminds me. Black Light has one of the best lines in it. 'Welcome to loser town.' I think that would make a great tour name. Catherine's Welcome To Loser Town Tour.

MR - I dunno, I don't know if I want to reinforce that attitude.

KB - I think the t-shirts should say 'You're gonna lose.'

MR - 'You're gonna lose everything.'

JV - Um, song about relationships?

MR - Um, Black Light, Kerry and I, Kerry, Keith and I wrote it together. And it was more like one person building off another person's line. I would have to say it is definately one of those melancholy relation songs where, you know, it's grey whether it's going to work out or not.

JV - Here you go, it's Catherine on Q101. Play "Black Light"

JV - It's Q101, the local music showcase, I'm James VanOsdel, and that's Catherine. A song called Black Light from the forthcoming album Hot Saki and Bedtime Stories. And, um, along the lines of bedtime stories, Sign Of The Cross is a kind of a bedtime story, isn't it Mark.

MR - Yeah, actually it's more of a wake up song. But it could be a lullaby to. An any time sleeping song.

JV - This is a song you wrote for your son right?

MR - Yeah, it is. When he was about three, I was singing to him as he was waking up, and I just sort of formed the words as I went along. And the more response I got out of him, the more response he got out of me. And it turned into I think a really nice song, but a lot of people think it's an evil song before they've heard it.

JV - Sign Of The Cross, mark of the beast. MR - Yeah, that sort of thing.

JV - And this leads to another question. It's got to be hard. Being in a band is not your traditional job. You don't work a set amount of hours each day, you don't do the same thing each day. Mark you've got a kid.

MR - Two. JV - Two kids, my. Kerry, you've got a wife, you've got Scratchie Records going on. Do you guys have problems just being yourselves? Being normal human beings, with this whole band thing going on?

KB - I lose Monday through Friday. There's no such thing as a weekend. That much I know. I dunno, I've been doing it for so long, my dad was a drummer, my uncle was a drummer. My first job was at a radio station. I'm just sort of used to it.

JV - And you wisely chose something different. What about you Mark?

MR - Well, I gotta say that my life for me, or my routine is very normal to me, you know, it seems like that's just the way it is. But I'm very thankful and happy and thankful to have a supportive family and wife who. Especially my wife. She allows me to have what I think is a normal routine. Without that support it would probably be next to impossible with the kids, you know.

JV - And that's the secret to a good relationship. Being supportive. Exactly. Um, do you have any favorite restaurants in town?

MR - Well, I just ate at the new, let us entertain you restaurant, Kung Pao.

JV - How is that, I had that at Taste of Chicago, the Thai noodles.

MR - I had the salmon, this wok seared salmon, with, I forget what they called the spinach, but it was rather dried and crispy and it was fantastic. Probably the best Chinese food I've ever had.

JV - There you go, a 4 star review. Do you get pissed off? Do people ever say to you, 'Hey, didn't you guys used to be Catherine Wheel.' You ever hear that.

MR - No, they never said 'used to.' They just think we are.

JV - Oh, they just changed their name, it's like that whole 'Oingo Boingo' to 'Boingo' thing.

MR - Yeah, and I mean it doesn't matter very much, but maybe it can start to bother me more.

JV - Yeah, I'll keep pressing the issue. Well, along those lines, you've guys have been around for a while, or the band Catherine has been around for a while. Any frustrations along the way. Here you are your second full length...

MR - No, it's been a breeze the whole way through, just a bowl of Cheerios.

JV - And that's completely false so, legitematly, what's been the most frustrating thing?

MR - I guess, it just seems like, it's just been difficult to get the proper attention, and I think it's just finally starting to happen. Because I think we did make a really good record, and people are listening to it, and seeing that it's something that should be listened to and paid attention to. In the past, I dunno, wheels flying off the bus, the tour bus, was frustration.

JV - Wait, okay, that leads into another story.

MR - Being arrested.

KB - Losing all our money in Vegas.

JV - The arrest story. OK, lets talk about Vegas Glam. A song on the album. IT sounds like a T. Rex song to me. This is a, your bus broke down, and you ended up in Vegas, and lost all your cash. In a nutshell?

MR - Exactly. We were actually, we didn't even play there, which is even sadder. We were just driving through on our way to Salt Lake City or something, and about 4 or 5 miles out of town, in the middle of the best NBA Jam game, triple over time, or was it double?

KB - Double.

MR - Two of the rear wheels flew off, and lost one, found one. Spent the night in Vegas, and we went to the casinos. I've never been to Las Vegas, it was my first time there. I lost all the money I had on me, which wasn't a lot, thank goodness.

JV - See, it's good that you lost all that money, now you won't go back. It's like aversion therapy, you have the worst possible thing happen to you in Vegas, and now you won't be suckered into going back and losing more money.

MR - Yeah, maybe so. I just kept thinking of my grandmother, she goes there all the time, and makes a lot of money.

JV - So does my grandmother, maybe they hang out. I swear to God.

MR - It's gotta be a grandmother thing. And you've got to. And it's not an easy thing to do.

JV - Oh she meets people, she talks of the slots all the time, she has a blast. One of the lines in the song Vegas Glam is 'I'm not gonna stop until I've lost everything.' Which fits in. MR - Isn't that the only line in the song?

JV - Do you feel like as a band this time out, 'OK, second full length. Sorry! didn't go as far as we thought it would.' Do you kind of feel that way this time out, as a band. Like you're going for broke this time out?

MR - Yeah, I would definately say we've made that commitment.

KB - Well, we're already broke, so we're going, we're past broke.

MR - Not completely.

JV - We're going for beyond broke.

MR - I think we're really going for it. I actually told our manager that this song was for him. When we wrote it.

JV - I should mention actually that as guests of the local music showcase you get something very special.

KB - Are those pigskins?

MR - Oh, it's a million dollars!

JV - All band members. (In a very serious tone): All guests of the Q101 Local Music Showcase receive Porky's brand fried pork rinds.

KB - Yeah.

JV - So you all walk out the door with one of these. It's made with special hot seasoning.

MR - Excellent.

JV - Since you're broke I figured it would help supplement your diet. And that's all courtesy of the Q101 vending machine. Anything else we should know about the retooled for 1996 Catherine?

KB - We have a giant inflatable butterfly. For the stage show. The explosives. Come out and see the show, that's all I can say.

JV - Pyrotechnics are a winning touch for any band.

MR - I just think you're going to hear an entirely new sound from us. Or if you've heard us in the past, it won't sound quite the same. It will sound like guys that can play two chords instead of one.

KB - Jazz fusion, more fusion.

JV - OK, what are you gonna leave us with? MR - We're gonna do the last song off the new album, Good Luck Charm.

JV - And this is one of the more quiet songs on the album, it's acoustic. It's a love song. More or less?

MR - Yeah, definately, it's one of those songs that you know, maybe one of those things you wanted to say to someone you were in love with, and just never got around to it, and maybe you just didn't say it the right way. Like one of those Elton John songs.

JV - I just want to mention one more thing, I was very scared when I got your new album, because there was a song on there, Make Me Smile, and then there's Don't Touch Me There, and I thought, 'Oh God, tell me they're not doing Chicago and Tubes covers,' which they weren't. Which you weren't. I was very afraid, but that wasn't the case.

MR - I didn't know that those were, were those the same titles?

JV - Yeah. MR - Oh, someone brought it to my attention that Don't Touch Me was a Clint Black song? I think.

JV - OK, that's out of my frame of reference. But the Tubes I know. MR - No, I didn't know that. I that's the first time I've heard that.

JV - OK, guys, best of luck with the new record.

Band - Thanks.

JV - This time around, go for broke. Go for the gold! Ok, it's Catherine live in the studio. It's Q101's local music showcase.

Play "Good Luck Charm"

Return to the Band's Page