Monster of Metal: A Conversation with GWAR’s Frontman Oderus Urungus

Music / October 25, 2011
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In today’s fast-paced, digital landscape, bands come and go like clockwork.

Even the bands that stay for the long haul often suffer line-up changes, label shuffling, and musical reshaping that distort their original image and sound that had propelled them to fame. It’s rare to see a band stay in tact for many, many years. So if there’s one constant in music that you can count on to never disappoint, it’s GWAR.

Since the band’s inception in the late 80’s, the thrash/metal kings have remained a staple in the metal community. However, their longstanding reputation has less to do with their music, and more to do with their masterfully crafted and utterly insane live shows. Dressed head to toe as awesome, alien monsters, the band has created a certain mythology about themselves that play out in their satirical and blood-soaked live shows. Though, what really makes their shows memorable and completely over-the-top is how they have “incorporated” many pop culture icons and politicians into their acts.

During the Bush administration, GWAR would come up with new ways to slaughter a Bush impersonator onstage, often ending with his spewed guts and fake blood gushing into the audience. Since then, GWAR has gone on to sacrifice (for the greater good) the insufferable icons of Sarah Palin, Paris Hilton, Osama Bin Laden and just about every American President since Reagan (save for Obama). In fact, GWAR’s political antics have become so renown that front man, Oderus Urungus has gone on to appear in many T.V. shows to talk about politics (including a spot as an “Intergalactic Correspondent for Fox News’ talk show Red Eye).

Last Thursday, GWAR’s latest tour stopped by Washington D.C.’s 9:30 club with thrash metal band Ghoul, and hardcore heroes, Every Time I Die for a raucous and bloody performance. Before the show, Meets Obsession sat down with GWAR frontman, Oderus Urungus to talk about their latest tour, pop culture, and why they can’t stand to kill politicians onstage any more. To say the least, the interview was about as lewd, crude, and outright offensive as you’d imagine it’d be (which, of course, was awesome).

MO: You guys have very elaborate and fantastically designed costumes and stage design, where do you get the inspiration for your costumes?

Oderus: That’s a misconception right there. They’re not costumes, they are clothes. This is everyday, garden variety, scumdog-ian war fashion. Also, I’ve been wearing the same fucking thing ever since I was born. I was born fully clothed as a matter of fact, and I’ve had the same outfit on ever since. I’ve never felt the need to change it with the whims of fashion changing as they are. WE SET THE FASHIONS GODDAMNIT.

MO: GWAR must watch a lot of MTV and stuff to keep up on pop culture, what are your thoughts on the current state of pop culture?

Oderus: THEY SUCK.

What about an artist like Lady Gaga who is sort of doing the same type of thing as you—elaborate costumes and live performances. Do you feel like she’s ripping you off?

Oderus: They’re all just trying to emulate their masters. You can’t beat a child, especially a retarded child, for trying to ape the mannerisms of its master. You shouldn’t beat it anyway, BUT WE DO.

We beat them incessantly. In fact, we found that Lady Gaga, she didn’t last but about half a song before she just basically disintegrated, so we had to get a fatter celebrity to kill on this tour. And we got her, the fat whore from the Jersey Shore! Every night we’re carvin’ up Snooki, AND THE KIDS ARE LOVIN’ IT.

MO: Yeah, it seems like every tour you’ve got the latest insufferable celebrity to butcher on stage.

Oderus: We have to kill them. It’s the common man’s job. It’s the common man’s justice is what GWAR is. We’re fulfilling a need that the courts of your country simply cannot….as the latest Casey Anthony….Pierson….Lacey….missing chick in Aruba who got buttfucked by her appointed bodyguard or something, one of those all-inclusive Mexican love holidays where she wouldn’t fuck the dude so he strangled her and fed her to a shark. Or something. Anyways, we’re sick of all that crap.

One thing that’s for sure about this new GWAR tour is that we didn’t put any politicians in on it, because WE’RE SO FUCKING SICK AND TIRED OF THEM. They suck so bad that we can’t give them anymore press, so we’re just ignoring them and hoping they all just die. We’ve spent so much time killing politicians [onstage], and they just keep growing back!

MO: With the whole GOP debates going on, you should just line them all up on stage and get rid of them all in one foul swoop.

Oderus: But they must have this fucking demon that lives under The Pentagon that grows these creatures. They’re biological constructs, they’re meat puppets goddamnit! We used to wonder how we can fucking decapitate George Bush every night and found out the C.I.A. was growing new presidents quicker then you could geraniums!

MO: Have you ever considered running for office?

Oderus: Well, I mean, there wouldn’t be any running. I would simply proclaim it and it would be: “There, I’m President! Nah, I don’t like it, I’m not anymore. Now I’m President again!” You see, the absolute power that I wield….or yield? No wait, wield, I think it’s wield [ed. note: it’s wield].

I just don’t have any interest in that! In outer space, politicians only exist to be crucified on the planet of the crucified politicians! And I believe there’s lawyers there as well, we figured there’s way too many politicians and lawyers so we’d move them to another planet and kill them all at once.

MO: Is that what you’re platform would be?

Oderus: Yeah, DESTROY THEM!

MO: Just destroy everything?

Oderus: DESTROY. EVERYTHING.

MO: And rebuild society through the ashes of destruction?

Oderus: GAHHHHH! YES! [Oderus gets caught up in a series of other-worldly grunts and growls]. Any kind of syllable that sounds like something an Orc would say, that’s my policy.

MO: That’s a political platform I’d stand behind.

Oderus: OF COURSE IT IS. YOU WOULDN’T HAVE A CHOICE.

MO: GWAR’s live shows are like a horror movie come to life- Grotesque, graphic, and vile. I recently watched The Human Centipede 2, and it reminded me of something I’d see in a GWAR show. What are your thoughts of some recent horror movies?

Oderus: It didn’t hold a candle to the first [Human Centipede] did it?

MO: I don’t know, man, it was pretty vile and disgusting. More so than the first one.

Oderus: Was it really? I really like the first movie, I haven’t seen the new one yet, I’ll have to check it out.

But most recent horror movies, I can’t really say that I like many new ones. I tend to hate remakes, but every now and then they’ll make a good one. But there’s a lot of good new horror movies out there. I didn’t think I’d like the Dawn of the Dead remake and I liked that. I don’t know what this The Thing remake is going to look like though. Has that come out yet?

MO: Yeah, it’s not very good. It’s sort of a prequel and a remake, it’s not terrible, but not good. Doesn’t hold a candle to John Carpenters The Thing.

Oderus: Bummer. I think if they had any nuts they’d do something after the events of [John Carpenter’s] film. Pick it up with Kurt Russell freezing to death with his buddy…..WHOAHHHH [Oderus spills his chili all over the place] I just vomited all over the goddamn place. That sucks, that’s good shit too. I’m going to eat.

MO: That sucks. Anyways, that’s all I got, thanks for taking the time to talk with me!

Oderus: GET THE FUCK OUT OF HERE!


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Matt Cohen
Matt Cohen
Matt is currently obsessed with Rap Snacks, post-hardcore, pizza parties, and Carl Sagan's Cosmos.




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Monster of Metal: A Conversation with GWAR's Frontman Oderus Urungus