The Michael Ho Response

I saw your band on television the other night. Perhaps it's just my perception of how the world's ears have turned, but I really didn't expect to see you on one of my six channels, even if it was pushing two in the morning.

The clothes, the tattoos, your fans trying waay too hard... Sometimes when I'm looking at it from a distance, It's not hard to see why people used to scoff at me when I tried to wear it on my sleeves.

They call you progressive, they stamp you with ridiculous umlauted buzzwords no one could possibly live up to. The interviews ask you about piercings, hairstyles, and body art... Nothings changed. With all the major label punks and garage rockers pouring their authentic integrity all over everything, who has time for any of this silliness anymore?

With my television occasionally receiving music video footage these days, I've found myself re-acquainted with all the posturing and self-aggrandizement that comes with the act of trying to look like you're a rock band. Music will always be cool, but the industry itself still desperatley needs an enema.

The worst thing that can ever happen to anyone who's admired from afar is to take themselves too seriously. From game show hosts to presidents pretending to be warlords, pretension is the proverbial dog crap under your shoe. Maybe we don't always see it right off, but the smell is impossible to mistake…

Flashback to the early 80's - the upswing of competitive surfing as a lifestyle and a sport. There was this major contest being held in Hawaii, and they were interviewing the all the competitors beforehand.

The 1st guy says: "Winning here is the key to the championship"
The 2nd guy says: "It's gonna be a total revolution out there. Full-on shred."

And then they turn to local legend Michael Ho, and he says,

     "Whatever man, I'm just looking to catch a few barrels."

From the first note to the last unintelligible lyric, I was hooked. I think it's the energy that draws me in. The intensity that gets into performers sometimes when they're using an opening song to ramp themselves up for the rest of the show.

I catch myself tapping my foot, bobbing my head, getting into it… God, it looks like fun up there.

The TV host walks up and asks a couple of questions, something about your tour, something about the new album. And then he says, "How important is it to you to get your unique new sound out to the people?"

    The guitarist scoffs and says, "We're just another metal band, man... No big deal."