OF THE WIPERS, THE JESUS AND MARY CHAIN and PHANTOM RATIO Gets Candid!
By: Ginger Coyote
I am going to let Brad describe himself for you... "O.k. I am a PUNK and God told me to Rock, It's a revelation I don't expect everyone to understand. I was kidnapped and defiled when I was taken from the loving backwoods home of my Grandparents..In Dillard,Or. (find it on a map, if you can find a map with Dillard on it) Taken,, to exist with pimps prostitutes strippers drug addicts and assorted reprobates of all kinds. The type of people I would later seek out of my own volition. "
Punk Globe: Give us some background on yourself?
Brad: I was born of outdoors- timber hunt & fish folk, My Dad was A logger as was his. I bought my 1st Guitar with money from my job pumping gas after school (15?) I used to go to punk rock shows every week end I really loved The Wipers (original line up) Black Flag , The Sub-Humans(Canadian), D.O.A. The Dead Kennedy's, The Dils, The Dicks etc. And I really dug all of it as it appealed , totally to my alienated, outcast, outsider life at the time also I was very very Mad. I always remember any night The Wipers playing as always being one of the better ones. We all had to fight in those days or be physically assaulted because of even LOOKING like a punker, especially in Hick Town Portland at the Time.
Whereas now it's not even remotely what it was then ,by virtue of which fact it really ISN'T now. It's just a hip style for people who have no idea how fucking GLORIOUS and yet .. How painful it is to be an exception. Now it's the 'punk rock retro revival revolution' C'mon kids every body sit down. Punk Rock used to be an action word we used to think people my current age were sickening bores now kids are trying to look the way they think, we did.. "Yea, Right On Yo'.
Punk Globe: What was your child hood like?
Brad: Any way I did belong to the Police Athletic League in Seattle and boxed for awhile it was one of the few sports i was any good at i got a broken nose and I broke another kids nose when i was about 14. When I was 15 i discovered punk rock which was about the time i decided to get a job for the sole purpose of buying a guitar. But I never considered myself a musician, even to this day I say what I am is actually a performer. My first band was the Spaztics, we were really bad and we used to play with The Rats often who are now the celebrated "Dead Moon".
Punk Globe: Were you an original member of The Wipers?
Brad: I was not an original member of The Wipers , but neither am I the last . I was on everything from "Youth of America" on up till the "Power Of One" and Greg's newer solo stuff. I couldn't believe it when I got the opportunity because it was something that even I considered as an unrealistic dream at the time. I don't know much about any of the later reunion shows, if there were any, I had moved to the U.K. & got married about 1989.. And I'm not so sure Greg Sage would have been a great supporter of any.I'm not sure when the original Wipers formed but I think they had been around in one form or another since the mid 70's.
Punk Globe: I believe that Courtney Love was a big fan of The Wipers. Do you remember her at any of your shows?
Brad: I don't really remember seeing Courtney Love at too many of our shows but I'm sure i did see her at some. You must remember I've drank insanely and used lots of drugs in the same capacity for many years and committed serious and repetitive outrage .. Anon, so I possibly stand to be corrected.
Punk Globe: Any other Portland bands that you played with?
Brad: I remember Chris Newman's band "the Untouchables" then Napalm Beach. I did a couple shows w/ Sado-Nation right before The Wipers, At the time there were the Rubbers Styphnoids, Lo-tek Smegma, Poison Idea and Rancid Vat, who I also joined in various acts of shame and debauch with just to try to recall a few ..
Punk Globe: Tell us about the venues to play in Portland during the 80's?
Brad: At first there were lots of cool places in Portland for bands. Then people thought it was cool to be violent assholes so places wouldn't rent space for under age shows. And then there were fewer & fewer clubs that would do under age shows for the same reasons. People being stupid (myself included ). I remember the Earth Tavern where the Live @ The Earth the Portland punk compilation was recorded. And The Long Goodbye. I will always remember the night I played with The Wipers we played at Starry Night just off Burnside downtown before it became whatever sleaze-baggery it is now. And an irate punker grabbed a mike on stage and was yelling how he'd been mistreated by the hands of the house crew ( which didn't seem too unlikely) and vowed that any further such discourse on behalf of the staff would result in him or them. " Burning the FUGGin place to the ground!!" After which the current owner of the establishment at that time Barry Horowitz, vowed " The Wipers would never appear in the place again". He however was later placed in prison for tax evasion and thankfully, soon thereafter.. died.
Punk Globe: What did you do after The Wipers broke up?
Brad: I did a few shows w/ Sado-Nation When Lisa Anderson sang and I also played again as I say w/ Rancid Vat. They were not very prominent outside of the anger we were able to kindle among members of the audience. I toured the U.S. numerous times w/ The Wipers and several tours of Europe also which is how I ended up moving to London and marrying an English Girl after my last tour with The Wipers.
Punk Globe: Tell us about working with The Jesus and Mary Chain?
Brad: Then I was able to get a job playing bass for the Jesus and Mary Chain and we recorded a cover of "Little Red Rooster" which was released on their box set and also on an e.p. called " The Sound Of Speed"... I also was in a video for "Later with Jools Holland" where we did "Something I can't Have" and "Snakedriver" (see you tube) ... I was on the "Lolapalooza" tour of 1992 and shortly after that the "Rollercoaster II" tour. On tour with The Mary Chain I got fat ,stupid and lazy,drank way too much took lots of drugs and slept (sometimes) with lots of strange girls, broke my ankle in 3 places, all of which resulted in me eventually getting fired .
Punk Globe: What made you move to San Diego California?
Brad: I moved to San Diego California about 7 years ago, after moving back to Portland and and burning all my bridges. The few friends I had left were on the verge of becoming people who never wanted to see me again, due to a disastrous relationship (?) which led me into an equally disastrous Heroin addiction with equally disastrous results.
Punk Globe: Tell us about your new band Phantom Ratio?
Brad: However I am now pleased to proclaim that I am happier with Phantom Ratio than anything I've done up to this point. We are an underground laboratory, science fiction,sexually charged, circus freak of nature Rock combo, Un-cool and Un-hip,which people seem to love us for.. With Eric Stene on Guitar., Jimi Flynn is on drums and both do backing vocals and of course me doing what I do. Our latest C.D. was recorded about 18 mos. ago and hasn't really been released yet. We were promised this would happen but the party involved says they're "working on it" but after hearing nothing for several months it feels a bit discouraging. We are also planning to go into the studio again very soon and record some stuff that's even superior to the recording now, just barely in existence. We're starting to play a lot more but had set back which culminated with us getting back together sometime back in Jan. And coming up w/ some even better material and we are looking forward to touring but it's difficult without anyone releasing our killer recordings. As of yet to set the frame work for this.
Punk Globe: Any words of advice for new bands breaking into music?
I would highly encourage anyone to check into and research as much as possible by "Chrome and Helios Creed" and to be vigilant in pursuit.
Punk Globe: Any upcoming shows that you are excited about?
Brad: Phantom Ratio will be playing a show on the 16th of July (Sat.) with the White Trash Debutantes, Josie Cotton, Death On The Radio and The Singing Knives at the Redwood Bar and Grill in downtown Los Angeles.... I'm very excited about that..
Punk Globe: What is in the future for Phantom Ratio?
Brad: I'm not exactly sure what the future holds for Phantom but It's HUGE, Big , Bigger than anything previous (which hasn't been much so that's not a very Tall order to fill) BUT, we're enthusiastic highly motivated and Un-realistic.
Punk Globe: What was your reaction to The Satyricon closing?
Brad: Now regarding The Satyricon, I really never gave a shit..ever.. There were so many much cooler places before that dump and I would be hard pressed to find the compassion within myself to cross the street to piss on the Satyricon were it in engulfed in a flaming inferno. The Proprietor George, lecherous rip off, greedy, slimy, and would have far more well suited to the Gyro trade.
Punk Globe: What bands do you enjoy?
Brad: I love Helios Creed, Chrome, Suicide, The Residents (who I saw live last year with Jimi Eric and another guest of my own selection. I've been listening to Blue Oyster Cult, Black Sabbath (Sabotage) and Judas Priest in my car on my way to & from practice and my job about 25 miles away where I work as a machinist. Most of the dealing I have with any music at the moment, is in it's construction and writing. I get a kick out of Storm Large and her Big Balls.. I like her Vagina song "8 Miles wide" ..
Punk Globe: Any last words for Punk Globe readers?
Brad: And in closing.. Punk Rock as we knew it .. Alas is dead come celebrate a spent life, well spent.. at the wake of which.. where you shall all dance and celebrate on it's grave with those of us who should be @ the Redwood on July 16...