Interview With Cherry2000
by Jim Wagner

I am wet and pissed off. I just bought a myself new camera, a Canon EOS 1N. It was expensive. Now it's a piece of junk. It is soaked in beer delivered from the lips of Rachael Chaos, lead singer for Sydney's Cherry2000. After the gig, I go up to the stage where Andy is coiling up the leads and Rachael is sitting side of stage drinking a beer. 'You, uh, blew my camera'. 'Well, says Rachael, 'we probably blew you mind too.'

I had to agree. So I just turned on the tape recorder and this is what I got:

So, Electricult for your new album Criminal Damage. What's the story?

Rachael: They're not really goths but they do scrub up pretty well and they seem to like tombstones, but who doesn't, they liked what we were doing and were basically complete sluts so we said 'fuck yeah!'

Andy: They're the only people in Sydney who like us. We were playing one terrible pub gig after another and in comes this guy one night, and he looks like a cross between Ziggy Stardust and Michael Hutchence, and this guy is with him who looks as flash as a rat that has never seen real sunlight and is wearing a white suit and has white hair. They say they're from this band called Dead Inside the Chrysalis. They go 'Erm, we really, erm, like your stuff, and yeah, erm, we'd like to release your stuff on our label Electricult. Well we just said, 'Sure thing, you amazing freaks. I mean, definitely. We are in, close the gate.'

Rachael: 'Erm' is like Manek's favourite word.

Has your association with the Electricult scene alienated any of your electro-punk fanbase?

Andy: Yeah, maybe it has actually. But then they're so alienated anyway, it's hard to tell...

Rachael: No, cos I do what I want, when I want, and with who I want, how ever the fuck I please, that's the heart and soul of what it is to be a part of Cherry2000....and to believe!

What do you say to people who brand you as not true punk, because you're basically electronic and don't use guitars etc?

Andy: We play so loud we can't hear them. Also, eventually, we become deaf.

Rachael: Those are the ones who first have their mind and perception on reality totally blown away. First they hate it, but then they can't help themselves and love it.

Are you psychedelic?

Rachael: Well, hmm... well we have our moments. There is that state one reaches...

Andy:  Once I was out in Grafton and a vegetarian friend of mine asked for a vegetable pastie. He got a meat pastie with two pieces of carrot in it. So you can't easily be a vegetarian in the country in Australia.

How do you go about writing a song? I assume you can't just plug in your guitars and jam like a regular band?

Rachael: Well I wouldn't know how to play a guitar, and we don't own any, so that would be a no. I tend to put together a sought of story and some crazy situation or person or both then we put together the theme music to the story. It then all goes in the meat mincer and hopefully, a fuck off tune pops out the other end, you never really know how its all gonna turn out though...

Andy: I think I would like a real rock band, with the drums, bass and two guitars under my control, but this is the only way I can achieve that without actually enslaving four musicians. It's a good compromise. I know, though, that Rachael's amazing vocals and lyrics would just shine in front of a good punk/metal band. I hope to hear that one day, and be in the audience and just sorta soak it up.

I wanted to talk about your live show, because it's not a conventional set-up, I mean there's only two of you for a start...

Rachael: Yep, Just the two of us. It's very different to the average band set up and it sure as fuck makes out for a serious cardio work out on my behalf, as Andy has his work cut out for him behind his fancy box. We also incorporate on-stage antics with local perfomance artists, such as one angle grinding super slut Rush Electra, which adds a little more chaos in the mayhem mix. The live shows are fast furious and a little wet from time to time as you were lucky enough to experience.

Andy: There's only two of us, but we each have about six personalities. These personalities all like to rock, except for one of mine which also likes to listen to Brian Eno and read books on Zen, but fortunately he likes to rock as well.

Do you ever worry that's you'll trash your own gear?

Rachael: Funny you should mention that. It was a few months back when we went on a tour to Melbourne and Canberra, and all in all I think I managed to collapse all the gear three times. We would be going crazy and then I 'd be like, Hey who pulled the plug, only to look down to see my legs entangled in our leads and the gear all on the floor.....however the Rock Gods were looking down on us and the gear lives on.....for now! Mind you I've been served my orders to remain clear of the gear...

Andy: Each time I turn on my boxes, and they miraculously come to life, I am thankful. I spend a lot of time working around problems with the gear until I can afford to repair it. I've got all kinds of tricks and shortcuts.

Who do you rate?

Rachael: Men! Thick hard, fast and always ready to deliver, Mmmmmmmmmmmm you know it!

Andy: I rate Judas Priest. And the Judas Priest song I rate the most is 'Grinder'. That reminds me of a story a friend of ours told us about this guy, his name was Jude. One day Jude, who plays classical music on the piano and is bad at sport and really good at mathematics etc and really geeky, and everyone at school hates him, one day he's riding his bike to school wearing a gigantic helmet his mum has made him wear. And all the kids laugh at him and start shouting 'Safehead! Safehead!' And he gets embarrassed and takes off the helmet and won't wear it again. Not long after, he gets knocked of his bike by a schoolbus and lands on his head. Kids report seeing part of his brain on the pavement. He spends about 18 months in hospital. When he emerges, he's the world's biggest Judas Priest fan and he's really cool, confused but cool.

Rachael: Oh right! You were talking like, how do I give a shit for in the tune department, well the list is endless. But most crankin my world would be Ministry, AC/DC - Bon Scott times - and Wendy O., Joan Jett.... you know, the mates that rock by my side!

Gee, thanks for talking to me and wrecking my fuckin camera. Is there anything I should see while I'm in Sydney?

Rachael: Yeah, you should definitely cope a load of those Dead Inside the Chrysalis motherfuckers, because they're some dirty-arse prettyboys if ever I saw. God damn!

Andy: There's a little bistro just under the Harbour Bridge on The Rocks side. Go in there, ask to speak to the chef, his name's Robert. Tell him I sent you. Tell him he owes me $50.

Rachael: Thanks for your time.

Andy: Yes, thanks. And thanks for understanding about the camera.

Rachael: We'll pay you back went we make a gold record, hahahaha!

 Photos by Victor Musat


Back to Interviews