Interview by: Brian Cross – Photos by: Diana Guay
After warming up the crowd before Hypocrisy’s headlining show at the Worcester Palladium on May 28, 2010, we were able to get in a chat with the supreme pirate himself, Admiral NoBeard, bassist and vocalist for Swashbuckle. Mere text cannot adequately convey the Admiral’s sarcasm and humor, but we’ll try our damnedest in the midst of our laughter, mateys. Grab a bottle o’ rum and join us for a hilarious, curse-laden discussion on musical influences, life on the road, the rivalry with Blackguard, and perhaps some tidbits on the forthcoming album. Yarrr!
MPJ — First and foremost: how did the whole pirate motif come about?
NOBEARD — Well, investment banking was gay, so we decided to steal a whole bunch of shit. Can we say “shit”?
MPJ — Of course.
NOBEARD — Shit, piss, fuck, AIDS, Muppet cocksucker…got that out of my system.
MPJ — People always ask if they can swear during interviews.
NOBEARD — I’ll try to say “boner” after every sentence. Bonersauce!
MPJ — When putting your sound together, were there any other particular bands or acts that influenced you?
NOBEARD — We were pretty much influenced by a lot of old 1980s thrash metal, a lot of 1980s power metal, too: Blind Guardian, Helloween, that type of shit. As far as thrash goes, definitely Exodus, Testament, Anthrax, M.O.D., S.O.D., Tankard, Kreator, Sodom…all the shit I grew up with when I was a kid, you know? Other than that…Yanni, John Tesh, and Enya. Bonerjams.
MPJ — There’s only three of you in the band, but how do you pull off your “wall of sound”?
NOBEARD — There’s a new invention called “amplifiers.” I don’t know if you’ve ever heard of it, but if you plug your guitar into one of them, then turn it up to ten…I know Spinal Tap went up to eleven, but there’s no eleven on our amp. Because we’re not Spinal Tap…yet. Bonerjams. We just play the way we always play: fast, hard, and loud. We don’t give a fuck! We’re there to have fun, and make sure everybody else is having fun. And if they’re not? Fuck ‘em!
MPJ — What’s the best tour you’ve ever been on?
NOBEARD — Every time we tour with Korpiklaani, it’s always fun. It’s always drunken fuckin’ retardedness. The last tour we did in January was probably one of the better ones. It was a great show; kids were stage diving, high-fiving, jerking off in the middle of the pit…you know how it is. Probably the most fun tour was Paganfest in Europe. I got to see Unleashed every night, and I was fuckin’ stoked about that! I’m a huge fan of Unleashed, and I grew up listening to them. I got to sing a song with them at the last show, and everybody got wasted and fuckin’ retarded. Bonerjams!
MPJ — What started your “rivalry” with Blackguard?
NOBEARD — What didn’t? Touring with them, that’s what started it!
MPJ — What do you do to those guys, other than giving them a hard time on stage?
NOBEARD — We do that, and when we’re off stage, we also give ‘em shit. Basically, it’s a whole big shit-giving. It’s Shitsgiving. It’s like Thanksgiving, but no thanks: just a lot of shit. We just fuck with ‘em; it’s pretty cool to do. We’re dicks, and we don’t care! We like having fun, and they know our sense of humor by now. They just deal with it, and we just fuck with ‘em. They’re used to it…I think. If not, then fuck you, you bunch of frog motherfuckers! Ribbit ribbit ribbit! (everyone laughs)
MPJ — Is the song “This Round’s On You” on your upcoming album because of them? (One of Blackguard’s well-known songs is “This Round’s On Me.”)
NOBEARD — Oh yeah, it is!
MPJ — Can you tell us anything else about the upcoming “Crime Always Pays”?
NOBEARD — Yeah, the songs are longer this time. The last one had a lot of two-minute wonderjammers; now we have songs a little bit longer. So, all you fuckin’ faggots out there complaining that you can’t have an attention span longer than thirty seconds, eat shit! It’s a more concise record than the last one. I think it sounds tits. I don’t know what else to you tell you; microphone in my face, bwaaaaa! It’s gonna be good, it’s gonna be heavy, it’s gonna be fast, it’s gonna be retarded. It’ll be like the last one, but with longer songs, less songs, and more shit talk.
MPJ — Was the “Ask the Admiral” video series on YouTube your idea?
NOBEARD — Yeah, Nuclear Blast [Records] wanted me review CDs and shit, and that’s cool, but I like doing other sorts of shit, too. So I came up with “Ask the Admiral,” so people can write in with their feelings, and I can ruin their lives by telling them that they suck. People have written to us already, but we haven’t had a chance to answer the emails yet. Once we do, it’ll be on the tubes! Then you can talk as much shit as you want, laugh at a little girl with a skinned knee, and….I don’t know. Robble robble robble!
MPJ — Any last words?
NOBEARD — Blackguard sucks! Buy our record, eat shit, dicks touching dicks, gay sex, tiddlywinks.