Static-X’s Wayne Static: ‘Pighammer’ is About Transition [Interview]

2011-09-27

Story by Anne Erickson

Interview: Wayne Static says debut solo album took a year to write and record

Static-X ringleader Wayne Static has a cult of fans that enjoy all things heavy and electronic: riffs that grind and groove, strong motorized rhythms and barking vocals. On Oct. 4, Static will release his debut solo release, Pighammer (via Dirthouse Records), and he kicks off his tour is support this week.

The industrial metal star put a full year’s work into the release, carefully developing the songs and delivering them with precision and soul. “I really wanted to go back and recapture my original vision for the whole evil disco type of thing,” he said. “I think there are more keyboards and loops and electronic elements than have been present in the most recent Static-X material. I really wanted it to be more focused.”

Speaking from Los Angeles, Static checked in with Audio Ink Radio to talk about Pighammer, starting his own label and getting clean from drugs. Read below to see what Static has to say, and listen to the podcast of the chat via the player!

[audio:http://audioinkradio.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/09/Wayne-Static-Interview-2011.mp3]
Have you wanted to release a solo album for a while, or was this a recent desire?

I’ve wanted to do it for over 10 years, actually, but being the main songwriter for Static-X, I knew I would have to put the band on hold for a while in order to do it. So, it’s something I’ve wanted to do for a long time, and I had a great time doing it. It’s very rewarding to do it myself and not have to compromise with anyone else.

What influenced the writing on, Pighammer?

There are always two aspects of it. Musically, I always draw from the same types of things. I’m inspired by really cool grooves and drum beats and loops and draw upon that. Lyrically, it’s generally what’s going on in my life at the time, and this record is about transition and going on as a solo artist and starting a record label. My wife and I moved to the desert together and spent some time getting off drugs and cleaning up, and the record deals with all of that stuff.

Pighammer comes on your own label, Dirthouse Records. Do you plan to sign other artists to the label?

I would like to sign other artists. The whole thing is an experiment at this point, and everything is going well at this point, so if this record does well, I’d like to sign some other bands, too.

People are so excited for this release on Oct. 4. Did you expect such a great response to doing a solo project?

I really didn’t know what to expect, but I’m very happy everyone likes it. I think it’s a really strong record. I spent a whole year writing and recording it, the longest I’ve ever taken. I really didn’t know what to expect, honestly, but I’m very happy everyone’s into it, and I just hope they come out to the shows, as well.

On tour, will you play anything from Static-X or only solo material?

I’m going to play a few new songs from the Pighammer record, and then the bulk of it is going to be old Static-X material. That’s what a lot of people are going to want to hear. I’ve always liked bands that play a lot of their old stuff. When you go to see someone like Korn who’s been successful forever, they always play four or five songs off their first record, and I’ll always do that same thing.

What band members are you taking out on the tour?

I’ve got a bunch of local guys from L.A., [and] just pulled some guys from various bands. Ashes on guitar, Brent on bass and Shaun on drums. It’s really tight and sounds great…

I’ve read that the first single, “Assassins of Youth,” is about your struggle with drugs and to get clean. Do you hope it helps others struggling with addiction?

Well, everyone has their own struggle with that. For some people, the best thing from them is to go to rehab, and some people can do it on their own. In our case, we did it on our own, because we really wanted to. I don’t know if anyone can really help anyone with that. You have to get to a point in your life where you really want to get off drugs to be able to do it, but as far as the music, it meant something to me and it was exciting for me.

Do you think Static-X will ever get back together?

I’m just focusing on the solo project, and I haven’t broken up the band officially or anything like that, but everyone’s kind of gone their separate ways and are doing their own thing in other bands and things like that. So, we could get together sometime in the future, but I don’t really know. I’m just having a great time doing this right now.

What’s next for Wayne Static?

We have a few weeks of this U.S. tour, and then we’ll announce more shows, and we plan to tour overseas next year. We’re going to keep on touring, and then when there’s downtime, I’ll get started on the next solo record.

 




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