Congratulations with the ten year anniversary and the release of ’Right Between The Eyes’. Are you happy with the new album, is everything as you expected it to be and how are the first reactions?
Thank you very much Cor! Yes, we are very pleased with the new album, we did put a lot of time and effort into the songs on this album, This is the first time we did the writing and building of the songs together as a band, and it turned out awesome! It took more time, but it was sure worth it. And this far we got some very good reviews of the album and it seems like our fans (mothers) really dig the new single ‘Black Leather’.
Despite the fact you’ve been around for some time, most of our readers are not (yet) that familiar with Chuck Norris Experiment, can you tell us the story so far?
We are a five piece Rock ’n’ Roll band from Gothenburg City in Sweden. We have been rocking out for ten years this year, and we have released six studio albums, a couple of collections, a live album, and a whole bunch of singles. We like to stay busy. The band started out as a way to cure the boredom in between tours for five guys from three different Gothenburg based bands (Tiamat, Rickshaw & Taurus). We needed to blow off some steam, drink beer & play kickass Rock ’n’ Roll. Those evenings resulted in a one day studio session that became the debut album for The C.N.E. Since then we have been up and down every German road a couple of times, and we’ve been doing a couple of shows in The Netherlands too. And we plan to keep on doing this for at least ten more years.
Personally I did not know you that well either; I once purchased a copy of ‘The Return Of Rock ‘n’ Roll’, which was quite alright, but had not convinced me to keep a close watch on further releases. It seems to me there has been quite some development (less basic garage and more attention towards arrangements and details) or am I mistaken about that?
No, you are not mistaken at all! We are like whiskey or Clint Eastwood, we get better and more good looking with age!! We have been working together for a long time now, and we have been through some changes over the years, but finally if feels like we have the perfect CNE line up, and it is much easier to do a good job when you have fun at work! And we have also been working with demon producer Chuck Tonic for a long time, so I think all pieces are coming together now, it takes a lot of time to reach perfection, and we still got lots of tricks to learn. But yes, sure, I am very proud of the new album, it is the best we ever done.
Especially the guitar riffing and soloing have some pretty spectacular moments; is that just a matter of technical development or has it got something to do with a change in approach or gear also? What can you tell us about the gear, the composing and recording process anyway?
There is a simple answer to the question about the awesome riffing and the sweet guitar solos! When the lead guitar spot got free, Chuck The Ripper changed from rhythm Guitar to lead guitar, and he handed over the rhythm guitar to Chuck Rooster who returned from a couple of years vacation from the band! So the rhythm section is the best there is to get, and the lead guitar makes me cream my jeans! I am the singer in the band, so I am not at all into the gear. I am happy as long as it sounds great, but I know that Rooster uses an old kickass vintage Marshall 100 watt top with a 4 X12 box, and that The Ripper uses a girly Peavey 5110. This time we recorded the drums and rhythm guitar in one studio in Goteborg and then we took the rest of the work to the sixth member of the band, Chuck Tonic at Supertonic Music, where we occupied his basement for a couple of weeks filled with rock, Kentucky Bourbon and Dutch porn.
Some tracks even seem to have some space for small changes or extension when played live. Since I’ve never seen you play live, are you guys a band who prefer to stick as close as possible to the original versions, or is there a chance to hear some alternative versions of your songs, when performed live?
I am a sucker for playing the songs as they were written and recorded, in my mind that is what people want to hear, or at least what I want to hear at a show. But the Dakota & Rooster are more than willing to destroy a good song in a live set. So sure, you will hear some alternative versions during a CNE live show!
Who would you consider to be your examples, who made you guys want to make music, and which band(s) would you really like to share a stage with?
Motorhead and Ramones. It is kind of hard to share stage with The Ramones, so let’s hope for a chance to share stage with Motorhead before Lemmy kicks the bucket.
You already shared stages with quite some (also pretty big) bands. Which bands were the most memorable and do you still have a band on your wish-list to share a stage with?
I have so many bands that I think it would be cool to share stage with. Ghost, Alice Cooper, Bronx, Clutch, Turbonegro, Entombed. Yeah, I can make you a two-page list of bands I dig, Haha! We shared stage with The Supersuckers just a week ago, and that was a blast, nice guys, and a great Rock ’n’ Roll band. We have also shared stage with Peter Pan Speedrock a couple of times, also totally awesome guys, and they sure kick some ass on stage. A band that I was kind of surprised I liked so much was. Trail of Dead that we played with in Bonn last year, they are great song writers and they put on a really good live show.
Your work has been released by several labels. ’Right Between The Eyes’ is released by Transubstans. Why that choice and how is the cooperation with the new label?
I had my eyes on Transubstans for a couple of years because I am a big fan of their releases, and they are really nice and easy going guys and it looks like they are doing a good job for the bands in their rooster. And of course, they are also based in Sweden, which makes everything much easier for us, we had too many bad encounters with German labels in the past.
Like some other bands from your area, you seem to have a thing with limited edition splits, live and seven inch vinyl stuff, what can you tell us about that and will the (digital downloadable) ‘The Singles 2004-2013’ become your ‘Cream Of The Crap’ (with lots of hard to get/sold out stuff) available on vinyl also (eventually)?
Yeah, we are really suckers for those kinds of releases, and as long as all the fantastic small record labels all around the world wants to release us, we will do it. And yes, there will be a vinyl release of the rare stuff sometime later this year, or early 2015. We have already done one Picture LP CD with rare stuff called ‘Hot Stuff’ which goes from the start up to the ‘Return Of Rock ’n’ Roll’ album. The new one that will be called ‘Hotter Stuff’ will take off where the first one left and go up to date. Hopefully it will be a double 10 inch release. And we have some really cool 7 inch releases coming up this year too. We are doing splits with Marvel, Bloodlights, The Dwarves and a CD split with The Egyptian Gay Lovers.
You’ve been a regular visitor of our German neighbours. Any chance to see you on Dutch stages for your promotion tour?
I really hope so, we had a good time last time we played there. And, the Dutch girls are way hotter, and the beer is better, so I see no reason for not leaving the Autobahn for a couple of shows!
Thanks for your time. Any hot news or other things you want to share with our readers?
Thank you for having me! Yes I have one thing to say to your readers; get in the van, drive to one of our shows in Germany in April. Dortmund is not that far away. Bring girls, weed and some tulips! Cheers!