INTERVIEW WITH LÖVE RAZËR BASSIST METAL MIKE
Date: April 18, 2018
CANADIAN SLEAZE ROCKERS LÖVE RAZËR’S DEBUT FULL-LENGTH ALBUM HAS BEEN A MUCH ANTICIPATED RELEASE FOR SLEAZE ROXX EVER SINCE THE GROUP’S DEBUT THREE SONG EP ‘ROCK ‘N’ ROLL ADDICTION’ LANDED THE #5 SPOT ON THE SLEAZE ROXX’S TOP TEN ALBUMS OF 2016. THE TIME HAS FINALLY COME WITH LÖVE RAZËR’S NEW STUDIO ALBUM ‘BORDER CITY REBELS’ ABOUT TO BE OFFICIALLY RELEASED ON APRIL 23, 2018 WITH THE BAND’S CD RELEASE PARTY FIVE DAYS LATER AT THE ROCKSTAR MUSIC HALL IN WINDSOR, ONTARIO, CANADA. HOWEVER, IF YOU PRE-ORDER THE ALBUM, YOU CAN LIKELY OBTAIN IT IN ADVANCE OF THE RELEASE DATE. SLEAZE ROXX SPOKE TO LÖVE RAZËR BASSIST METAL MIKE TO FIND OUT ALL ABOUT THE NEW ALBUM.
Sleaze Roxx: Your new album ‘Border City Rebels’ is coming out soon. For people that know where you guys are based out of, I think that the album title makes a lot of sense but for the people who don’t know, how did you come up with ‘Border City Rebels’?
Metal Mike: You are exactly right. It’s because we are from Windsor [Ontario, Canada] which borders Detroit Rock City. You know, we were kind of sitting around… Our opening song is titled “Outlaw” so we were kind of thinking ‘Outlaw Rebels’ and that wasn’t really flowing. And then I just kind of thought ‘Border City Rebels’ and we all looked at each other saying, “That’s the one!” So you’re exactly right. It’s because we’re right on the border with Detroit. It’s a border city and we were just trying to fit in the word ‘Rebels’ somehow so that kind of flowed perfectly.
Sleaze Roxx: It’s taken a long time for your new album to come to fruition — or at least, it felt like it for me [laughs] — so what was the writing process like for the album?
Metal Mike: Yeah. Absolutely. So the album is actually coming out two years to the date exactly of ‘Rock ‘N’ Roll Addiction’ [EP]. The writing process, we just wanted it to be in your face, slamming rock album, from start to finish. You know what I mean? So we were really focusing on bigger choruses, great guitar riffs, big drums, catchy vocals — all that kind of stuff that everyone wants to hear. We tried to pick our best songs to put on the album. Those are the ones that we decided to go with.
Sleaze Roxx: Now, I saw that you released two videos already. How did you decide to release those two songs for the first two videos?
Metal Mike: There’s always creative differences and choices of course. The first song that we released, we wanted it to be high energy. Sydney and I had a cool idea to have this dark kind of theme for “Venom.” We ran it across the guys and you know, not having a Hollywood budget, we were like, “Yeah. We could totally pull that off.” So we decided to go with “Venom” ’cause it has that high energy. [It’s a] little different than the last video that we put out. That’s why we decided to go with “Venom.” We wanted to do “Stuck Under You” because we wanted to show people that we also have a ballad but it’s not you typical ’80s ballad. We kind of put our own twist on it. I think that people appreciated that as well so that’s why we chose those two.
Sleaze Roxx: For “Venom”, you had some snakes in the video. Whose snakes were those?
Metal Mike: Yeah. So that was Bonez’s uncle Gary. It was his snake and he ended up giving that snake to Bonez as a gift for Christmas. That snake’s name is “Baby.”
Löve Razër‘s “Venom” video:
CreditsVideo Directed, Filmed and Edited by Ryan Brough of Zeebrah Media – https://zeebrahmedia.comAudio: https://slr-studios.com/—————————…
Löve Razër‘s “Stuck Under You” video:
On August 4th, 2017 Löve Razër played at Seacliff Park Amphitheatre in Sydney Snow’s hometown of Leamington, Ontario at the Hogs For Hospice motorcycle rally…
Sleaze Roxx: [Laughs] So you guys have been playing — I guess rehearsing — live a lot of the new songs. Have you played all the songs that appear on the album live already or are there some that have never been played before?
Metal Mike: We have played them all live but for our next show, the album release party [on April 28, 2018], we will put on a different show. We are going to have some more things going on, more chores[graphy], stuff that we’ve worked on as a band. Like more memorable kind of stuff if you know what I mean? Instead of just going to a show and watching people play, se are trying to incorporate things that people are going to talk about just because it will be something that you’d remember.
Sleaze Roxx: Yes, yes. So you are pulling out all the stops for your coming album release party. That’s what I am hearing.
Metal Mike: And it will be the first time that Sydney ever plays guitar on a song with us. He’s not playing the guitar on every song but there’s one song on the album that he’s going to pick up a guitar for. So that’s going to be fun.
Sleaze Roxx: Did you find that it helped to play the songs live before recording them?
Metal Mike: It did and it also helped us pick which ones that we felt were the best for the album as well. Whatever songs went over the best kind of thing.
Sleaze Roxx: Can you tell me which ones did not make it?
Metal Mike: There was one song called “Toast To The Night.” That song — we’ve been playing that song actually for the last year and a half now. We decided not to do that song because it was a little repetitive so we decided not to go with that one. We wanted to record more songs for the album but you know, money was an issue so just had to go with our best ones. “Toast To The Night” didn’t make it and another one that didn’t make it is “Wrong Way.” We’ve also played that one live before.
Sleaze Roxx: I think that I’ve heard both those songs lie actually.
Metal Mike: You know what? I think that we played those songs when you were at the last show [that you attended].
Sleaze Roxx: So you guys were touring machines in 2016. Not as much in 2017. How come?
Metal Mike: Because it all came down to studio time, working and getting the pre-productions ready. There was a lot of time put towards that. I was working a lot doing sound on weekends so that was interfering with my weekends. Now my weekends are open again so you’ll be seeing us play a lot more shows. Probably more shows than we even played in 2016. You’ll see us in Toronto very soon I’m sure!
Sleaze Roxx: Excellent. And what are your favorite songs off ‘Border City Rebels’ and why?
Metal Mike: Let me pull up the tracks. I should have known that was coming.
Sleaze Roxx: [Laughs]
Metal Mike: I think that my favorite song off the album is actually the opening song and it’s titled “Outlaw.” It’s just got a slamming opening riff and then it goes in a head banging style riff that Bonez wrote. I just love it. I love playing it live, the feel of it. I think that it’s going to be the biggest song on the album personally but I might be bias ’cause it’s also my favorite song [laughs].
Sleaze Roxx: Why didn’t you release that one as a first single?
Metal Mike: Because we actually — we talked about it — but what we wanted to do for that video, it would have cost is probably four times as much as what “Venom” cost us. We are the kind of band that if we do something, we just want to do it right. We don’t want to half ass things so we are hoping that we can release a music video for that one, for the idea we had.
Sleaze Roxx: So I noticed that Bonez lost his Slash top hat. What happened there?
Metal Mike: He would wear it sometimes and then he wouldn’t wear it. And sometimes he teases his hair and sometimes, he doesn’t. Bonez is just — you get what you get with Bonez. I love him [laughs].
Sleaze Roxx: [Laughs] One thing that I never asked during our first interview is how did you guys come up with your band name?
Metal Mike: Löve Razër — yeah! So that name was actually Crissy Stixx’s idea and then Bonez is like, “We should spell it with a ‘e’.” And we were like “Why?” He was like, “Well ‘raze’.” We typed into Google and “to raze” means “to destroy.” To basically blow something up. We were like, “Well ok, that’s perfect.” So that’s why we spelt it with a ‘e’ instead of an ‘o’. Yeah. It was Crissy Stixx’s idea. I think that it was between Löve Razër and oh… I’ll get you the other one. Something…
Sleaze Roxx: [Laughs] It couldn’t be that good. You can’t remember it.
Metal Mike: Exactly. If it was something that was memorable… When we typed it out and we looked at it, we were like, “OK. We can really make that pop on a poster.”
Sleaze Roxx: There’s also some similarities to Mötley Crüe the way they wrote their names with some of the dots on the vowels. Why did you guys do that?
Metal Mike: Well, I think because at the time, we were all huge into Mötley Crüe. When we typed in Love Razer with the umlauts, we just thought that it had more character and it resembled more what we are like as a band. I find that our fans in Europe can really relate to the umlauts. They all seem to dig that. I know that a lot of people love us out there so we were like, “Alright. Well, let’s just throw the umlauts on. If we don’t like them, we can take them off down the road.” It’s not a big deal but we just left them. Everybody seems to really like that.
Sleaze Roxx: How did you guys come up with your album cover?
Metal Mike: So Sydney reached out to — her name is Gisele Ippoliti. She actually did artwork for Hardcore Superstar and a bunch of other sleaze rock bands. Sydney had been following her for a while and was like, “Guys, we got to get her to do our artwork.” He sent us some examples and we were like, “Of course.” We all thought of the idea, you know, to be on a train and in the background you can kind of see Detroit and the Embassy Bridge, which is on the border of Detroit and Windsor. It just looks like mayhem basically right? So we gave her those ideas and we gave her art features. I wear like art make-up. Bonez’s guitar. We gave her all that stuff. The first draft, she said, “Hey. Do you guys like this?” And we were like, “Yes, we do.” She did a really good job of that.
Sleaze Roxx: Why did you decide do go with artwork rather than the first cover, which just had you four guys posing?
Metal Mike: This time, we’ve gone a very different route for the cover. And that’s exactly why we wanted to do that. It’s something different. It’s something to get excited about. You know because we have so many live pictures. I just feel that you can go on social media and look at those all day but artwork is something that is unique and that took time and a lot of patience to get it right. We wanted to do something that our fans would appreciate.
Sleaze Roxx: Cool! So what are your plans going forward for 2018?
Metal Mike: We are looking at some distribution deals, playing a lot of festivals, a lot of shows. Bonez is going to be coming over soon. We are going to start working on new material already. We don’t want to stop the songwriting process. So basically, the train ain’t slowing down. It’s going to keep on going full tilt forward. That’s for sure.
You can order the new album Border City Rebels directly from Löve Razër‘s website.