The Melvins do play well with others. Across a span of 24 studio albums, 12 EPs, 12 live albums, 68 singles (or so), the band has collaborated with more than 30 other musicians. In fact, their latest album, Hold It In is a full length collaboration with Paul Leary and Jeff Pinkus of The Butthole Surfers.
So, Punknews' John Gentile spoke to frontman Buzz Osborne about some of the band's collaborations. You can click read more to see what Osborne thinks about working with Jello Biafra, Lustmord. Leif Garrett, Mike Patton, and more.
I became aware of the Butthole Surfers years and years ago. Iâ€™ve been a fan of that stuff for a long, long time. Maybe thirty years ago. I always thought that they had a good pop sensibility. People always thought that they were weird, but they had a pretty pop based song structure. I thought that they were pretty normal, but they were just so good at it.
It was super easy working with them. They have great sensibility about songs. They wrote some of the songs on Hold It In. I was happy to have them do it. Iâ€™ve always been like â€œtake what Iâ€™ve got and do what you can.â€ I believe in artistic freedom. Most people just donâ€™t.
Jello is at least as weird in person as he is on stage. Heâ€™s a handful. Letâ€™s just put it that way. Iâ€™m not particularly interested in his political angle, but I am interested in his songs. I donâ€™t always agree with him, but itâ€™s always fun working with him.
I donâ€™t think people should go to musicians for answers to political issues, necessarily. Thereâ€™s a vast world of knowledge out there, but generally, people only go as far looking for an answer until they get the one that they want. I think thatâ€™s a mistake. I think you should look at all kinds of things, being politics or anything else. There are lots of places that you an go, there are lots of things you can see.
Did he get where you were coming from?
No. He didnâ€™t have a clue where we were coming from. We did that whole tour with him because heâ€™s out of his mind. I have no idea if he enjoyed the tour or not. He was struggling with drugs, and it colored his world view. We were really only around with him a little bit of the time. We didnâ€™t expect much out of him. He was kind of a fuck up due to the drugs. Is that a surprise?
Tom is one of my favorite people in the world. He is a great artist, number one. Heâ€™s a hard working guy. He believes in things the same way we do. Heâ€™s just gifted. I donâ€™t know how else to put it.
One thing about Tom, is that on Facebook, he seems to have a lot of critics and Iâ€™m not sure why.
Well, Iâ€™ve never looked at his Facebook. But, I couldnâ€™t get into a critics mind. Once in a while, Iâ€™ll read a review that I agree with, but by and large, I feel as though reviewers have their minds made up before they listen to the record. Reviews are amusing, generally.
Sheâ€™s very headstrong. We have a good relationship. Weâ€™ve been married twenty years. My advice is to not look at each otherâ€™s pockets.
The more drums the merrier. More is more. Thatâ€™s what I found interesting about a two drum lineup.
Heâ€™s always been Mr. Nice Guy to me. Heâ€™s always been a fan and a stand up individual. I think heâ€™s a freak. Thatâ€™s my main interest in him. Heâ€™s a total freak. Way more eccentric than people imagine. I donâ€™t even know where to begin. Heâ€™s weirder than people think and thatâ€™s a wonderful thing.
This is one of my favorites. I believe in letting musicians do what they want.
Do you have a working relationship, a brotherly relationship, a friendly relationship with Dale?
All of the above. Weâ€™ve been doing this for a long time. Itâ€™s how we make ends make. I trust him, he trusts me. Our relationship is based on trust and understanding. I donâ€™t trust him. He doesnâ€™t understand me.