Subi recently sat down with Dave, guitarist of No Use For A Name. Click READ MORE to read his thoughts on emo, mainstream success, not being Chris Shifflett, and much more.
SUBI: All right, we've got Dave from No Use For A Name.
S: -and we're gonna ask him a few questions. Do you know anything about Tony's split with Joey Cape?
D: His, uh, acoustic EP that he did?
D: Yeah, I heard it yesterday for the first time.
S: How is it?
D: It's amazing
D: Yeah, it's really really good.
S: Any reason why him and Joey decided to do a split together, besides the fact that they're friends?
D: Well, yeah, obviously him and Joey are really good friends, I mean we're all friends with kinda everybody on the label, but, it's just that I think an idea that Fat Mike had that he thought it would be cool to get some people on his label to do acoustic EPs and stuff like that and it was and he thought it was a good idea because Lagwagon and No Use were one of the first bands signed to Fat, you know?
D: So it'd be a good idea to take the two of them and do a split EP. It's really, really cool and the good thing about it is people will be surprised 'cause there are songs on there that you wouldn't expect to be done acoustically and they're totally different, but really really good, so it's cool.
S: Are they songs off of the band albums?
D: Yeah, songs off of More Betterness and the last album and Leche and Making Friends and so on
S: Do you know when that's going to be released?
D: I don't know when that's going to be released. I just heard an unmastered copy yesterday.
S: Oh, and was the split delayed?
D: Was it delayed?
S: That's what I heard.
D: I don't know if it was or not, to be completely honest with you. I just know that we just took a couple months off, and that's when Tony did it. I don't think it was delayed yet.
S: Okay. And a fan was talking about your stance on MP3s file sharing… You wanna talk about that…
D: Yeah, you know, me personally, everybody kinda has a different opinion about it. I think it herp and-It hurts. Herps… I think it hurts and helps bands, you know? I think it just kind of makes it, at this point, up to us to make sure that we do the best records we can and try to offer things to make people want to go out and buy the CD, you know what I mean? Thatâs why you see more bands doing enhanced CDs or putting DVDs with their CDs and things like that because it gives people stuff that they can't get from downloading the album.
S: Yeah, it gives you something more, that you want
D: Yeah, you get more for your money, and I think that's really necessary. But at the same time, we do a lot of touring and that's a strong basis of our following is the fact that we do tour so much and we do consider ourselves a strong live band. So as long as somebody shares files and they hear about our band for the first time and they come and see us and check us out and get into get into the band that way, then it's definitely not a bad thing. The only thing that makes it hard is there are a lot of bands that are independent punk rock bands that make a really good living selling 50-60,000 copies, you know? But if that record gets on the internet 2 months before the record is released, and gets downloaded 20,000 times, that's gonna make them have a really rough year, financially. So that's why it's kinda difficult, sometimes for bands like us. But you know, it's kinda hard to say. It hurts and it helps.
S: There's a couple questions that tie into that. How would you feel if one of your upcoming albums were released on the Internet?
D: Well, it happened with Hard Rock Bottom. Two months before Hard Rock Bottom came out, it got released on the internet and I have a computer friend and home, who's like, a total geek and he hunted the guy down who put it on and he like, found out his address and found out all this stuff and we tried our best to put a stop to it and just told people, "Look, if you have it, that's cool. But at least like, wait two weeks before it comes out. Don't be putting it out two and a half months before the record comes out, 'cause that's just ridiculous," you know?
S: Alright, what three bands influenced you guys the most?
D: Um, well, we all have different influences, but you know, Bad Religion, The Misfits, uh, there's just so many. It's hard to say. …The Descendents… There are just a lot of bands over the years that have had influence on all of us.
S: Speaking of which, did you hear that Johnny Cash died this morning?
D: Yes, I did. I heard about it last night, actually. It's really, really unfortunate. I grew up playing Johnny Cash songs with my grandfather.
S: And the rest of the band feels the same?
D: Yeah… I mean, how could you not? He's a cultural icon. He really, really is. So it was obviously a shame he passed away, but he was really old and he definitely had a really strong body of work so unfortunately, it sounds lame to say it wasn't maybe a surprise to some people but extremely unfortunate at the same time.
S: Do you guys have any bands that you really don't like or think might be the worst band ever?
D: Um, sure, but I'm not gonna tell you that because that would make me look like an asshole. Hahaha. But yeah, for sure. I mean, there are a lot of bad bands out there.
S: Straight Faced?
D: I don't know who they are.
S: Ah, yeah, my friend Scott interviewed you guys a couple years ago and he said that-
D: Straight Faced… That sounds… It's ringing a bell. I don't know their music, though.
S: I have no idea. I haven't heard them, either.
D: To be completely honest with you, I haven't heard them, so I can't have an opinion on them. I'm gonna tell you they're really nice guys, though. Howâs that? Hahaâ¦
S: Okay, that's fine. What do you think of the new bands that are coming out lately like screamo and pop punk and things like that?
D: Right, um, you know… I think there are a lot of those bands that suck. And I'm not gonna say who they are, but I think there are a lot of those bands who are really good at the same time. We were just on tour with one of them. Sum 41. My opinion, theyâre a great band. And people have mixed feelings about them. You know, people don't really understand, they, some of our fans were surprised that we'd do a tour with Sum 41, but those kids are GREAT musicians. They love what they do, and they do exactly what they want to do, which, from the way I understood it, is what punk rock, or playing music was all about, and they got really popular, and that's NOT a bad thing. But at the same time, in that case, when you have bands that are like that and they're very talented and they're good people, and they're just trying to get their music out there, it helps. I think what sucks is when you take a lot of major record companies and they take a bunch of kids that they think are cute, and they give them different haircuts, and make them get tattoos have somebody write songs for them, and they put them out. I think that sucks. And there are some bands out there that are like that. I know that happens, I don't know who they are or what bands they are, but it definitely happens. But you know what, we're always gonna do what we wanna do, in that, we we're not gonna try and become the next big thing MTV, so if they're out there making that kind of music, and it gets people to go back and listen to where it came from, then it's gonna be a good thing for us. And I would really like to think that that's whatâs happening. Just like, when I was younger, and I listened to a lot of bands, I always listened to the people that influenced those bands. You don't get that much of that anymore. But, at the same time, you can only really hope that thatâs happening, because you take a band like Good Charlotte, who's a great band, whatever, and you know, whatever their influences are, it's cool that people will be into Good Charlotte and go, "Okay, you know what, they like Bad Religion, I'm gonna listen to Bad Religion." You know? Or "They like the Descendents" or "They like Operation Ivy" or whoever, and they're gonna listen to those bands, and that's great. So I think that musicians that slag bands that get famous, are just bitter and jealous.
S: Yeah, that was another question that was asked. "What do you think of bands that get famous?"
D: I'm stoked for 'em. I know a lot of those guys. We've played shows with them. They're good guys. Some people are assholes, and when you seem 'em get famous you think, "Well, that's kinda weird… Whatever" but I mean, he probably deserves it. If he worked his ass off, he deserved it, so I think it's good. Good for them.
D: What sucks is when it becomes like a fast food industry, you know what I mean? Like, one label gets a band that sounds a certain way, and looks a certain way and then you just see a shitload of 'em happen all of a sudden and they're all terrible. And then another one comes along that's a little bit different and the same thing happens and they make them all look like that band, and then they all suck, and then it's a different thing. But the good ones stick around. And two or three years from now, we'll be talking about those bands and we'll be talking about them completely differently than we do now, because they will have lasted. You know, I mean, the bands that are good and the bands that are respectful to the history that got them there in the first place, will stick around. And the record companies, that want to put together cute little boys and make them sing these poppy songs will make their money so we can keep putting out records.
S: Yeah, I definitely agree with that, especially with getting into other bands, like I know as I was growing up with Green Day, and Rancid, which brought me to Operation Ivy and then to tons of other bands
D: Yeah, exactly, and that's a good thing. And it's important for bands to talk about that kind of stuff and not just get famous and go "It's all about me and and it's all about us and look at how many tattoos I got this year" You know what I mean? It's really kinda gay.
S: Yeah, exactly. So, what happened to the three cover song EPs that were supposed to come out?
D: Yeah, you know what… We never did that. Hahaha, I don't know what happened to that. We just got side tracked with the last record and we've done so much touring we just haven't had time for it.
S: Also, if you have, what's the new material like, if you've written any?
D: Ah, you know what, I think Tony's probably worked on some stuff, but, we're starting in two months, really. So we're gonna get through this and then take a break and assess things and start working on stuff and we're working on a DVD which I'm sure you know about, we've been working on it for a long time, and we're gonna try and get that out before Warped Tour next year.
S: Are you on Warped Tour next year?
D: We're hoping to be, yeah, I think so. We're not gonna say for sure, but I hope so.
S: Neat, I saw you guys two years ago when you were there
D: Yeah we're gonna try, everybody tries to get on the Warped Tour every year because it's the cool thing to do for summer, and you can't do anything against it, you know. Like when Warped Tour is going, it's stupid to try to tour around it or try to do your own tour if you're not on it because all the bands that are in our kind of style of genre, all the people are going to go see them for like twenty bucks and if we're playing two or three days after Warped Tour, I wouldn't go see it if I had just paid to go see Warped Tour and spent fifty bucks, you know, so hopefully we're going to get on it so we can play
S: So is it more of a struggle to get on Warped Tour?
D: No, not really, not really. You know Kevin Lyman that puts on the Warped Tour is an amazing individual and he's super generous. There are a lot of bands that deserve to be on it, you know what I mean. So of course, we're going to do our best to get on it
S: It seems like they mostly just have bigger bands now. I mean, thereâs the local stage and all, but you knowâ¦
D: Well sure they pick the bands that are going to draw people for them and that people definitely want to seeâ¦ So yeah we're really excited for next year because it's the ten year anniversary and NUFAN did the first Warped Tour, so it'd be really exciting to get on it. And it's such the best time on that tour, it really is.
S: Iâve heard that it's a lot of fun for bands to play. And there are lots of parties…
D: Yeah it's ridiculous it's a great summer, it's like it's a punk rock summer camp tour for lack of a better way of saying it, you know it's a good time and everyone is really nice, there's no egos on that tour. That's the whole point of that tour, everybody goes out and hangs out with everybody and plays for a half hour a day and you get to know a bunch of people and you get to see these people throughout your lives as you keep going on tour and you make a lot of friends. It's fun. So it'll be good for us if we do it this summer.
S: Okay, and on with the stupid questions. "I missed the train, am I fucked?"
D: Absolutely, you're screwed, you'll never make it back.
S: Do you think Kobe is innocent?
D: Hahahaha, ahh, no, and that sucks, but go ahead…. (laughter)
S: What do you think of George W. Bush?
D: Umm, yeah, I think… you know, don't even get me started. I think he sucks, I think he's terrible. But I can't complain too much, because even though all this shit is going on, we're still traveling the world playing in a band, so it's kind of hard to say.
S: What's the biggest compliment you've ever received from a fan?
D: Uhh, biggest compliment Iâve ever received from a fan… I don't really know about that too much but Iâll tell you a funny think that happened one time when I played in Germany a long time ago a guy came up to me after a show and said that he thought my band sucked and that he wanted me to move to Germany to play in his band because he said it would be much better for me. (laughter)
S: Did he say it all in broken English?
D: Yeah, of course.
S: Ah that's awesome.
D: Yeah he sounded like a robot.
S: Speaking of other countries, lot's of kids want to see you play in different places, like New Zealand. Portugal.
D: Yeah it's nice when you can go to those places, and people really do appreciate it when you go there.
S: Have you ever played "emo game?" if so, do you think it's lame?
D: Uh, Iâve never played it, but I hate emo, how about that? (laughter)
D: You know what I think I hate even more than emo, is the label emo as a band. Emo bands are just bands, you know what I mean? Labels on bands are ridiculous, they're people making music. If you want to like.. People that get all emo, are just… Ahh, just go in the dark and cry. Donât' even… I hate emo people.
S: Yah, there's this emo game online where you can choose your own character and you can be Dashboard Confessional and Connor Oberst
D: I think dashboard is a great band, I don't see them as emo bands, they're a bunch of guys that write songs and play music, that's the way I look at it, I don't see the whole emo thing, or people that are emo I should say. I donât' think emo bands suck, I just think the label of emo is retarded. And I think a lot of those bands would agree with you.
S: But I don't think a lot of those bands do suck.
D: Well sure but Iâm not going to say that because it wouldn't be politically correct .
S: Haha, all right, don't worry about it. In a fight, who would win, a bird or a horse?
D: A bird or a horse?
S: A bird or a horse.
D: I saw a horse scratch his ear with his black leg yesterday so Iâm going to say a horse.
S: That's amazing, more reasoning, because everyone else Iâve asked said bird.
D: Yeah Iâm going to say horse, and I saw a horse try to fuck a street cone on TV yesterday. So Iâve seen horses do some crazy things in the past couple days, Iâm going to put my money on the horse.
S: Okay, who's more cowboy? Clint Eastwood or John Wayne?
D: Oh John Wayne all the way. For sure.
S: Well, what about Clint Eastwood?
D: Clint Eastwood is great but I fly out of John Wayne airport quite frequently and it's my favorite airport.
S: I think he's more cowboy and also more original, I mean, cowboy… he's more of a cowboy hat, horses and Indians kind of guy.
D: Yeah, well when Clint Eastwood dies maybe he'll get more cowboy legendary status.
S: I don't know, Iâm not partial to Clint Eastwood… Anyway, what's the worst insult you've ever gotten from a heckler?
D: Uhh, "Where's Chris?" (laughter)
S: That's funny. Yeah, other people asked that, but I decided maybe I shouldn't ask those questions…
D: I know it's funny. I don't care. I know Chris, doesn't matter, him and I laugh about it. You know what, it was funny, the first show he came to a few years back now when I was playing in the band people were standing in front of me his face on a stick, and he's fucking standing right next to me and drinking and having a good time. he's helping me swap my guitars out, you know what I mean? It was just really really ironic that all these people are going "Chris Chris", and it was just really funny. He came out and played. So all that stuff to me is just really really funny because obviously everybody was really happy for him
S: So , any future plans?
D: Well, we're gonna do, like I said we've got this two moth touring and working on our DVD to get that out and uh, we're gonna work on new stuff but right now we're just gonna make sure that we do as good as we can on this tour and just try to kick ass I guess and do a lot of good shows
S: Any idea when the DVD is coming out?
D: No, excuse me I don't, but I know we're going to obviously try to get it out before next summer, because we think that it would be a great thing to promote and show people and we've been talking about making it for so long. There's just so much footage and it's so hard and it's a lot to put on one person in the band to go it all. So we're going to try to do our best to sit down together and go through it.
S: Wait, who is going to release that? Fat?
D: Yeah, Iâm sure Fat would release it but umm, I don't know. There's no date on it. We're just trying to work on it the best we can, but we've been touring so much we haven't even had time to work on it, but future-wise as releases that are going to come from us, that's what you can look forward to.
S: Well, thanks, that's the end of the questions.
D: Okay, thanks guys, nice to meet you.