The Röxy Suicide – “Don’t bore us, get to the chorus!”

We wanted to know more about Dave Mansfield’s new band The RÖXY SUICIDE, a flamboyant band mixing glam, new wave and early punk!

Dave, we know you from The MANSFIELDS. How and when did The RÖXY SUICIDE start?

The RÖXY SUICIDE started in 2013 in the form that it is now. We went through a few false starts (2012) in trying to find the right people for the band and that proved to be a lot harder than I imagined. How the band got started is pretty simple. I just wanted to keep touring and playing shows and The Mansfields were, at the time, on a definite hiatus. I was getting offers to do a bunch of stuff and I hated saying no so I just put a band together with some random people. As I said, that proved to be a very trying process as I was dealing with unprofessional individuals who didn’t seem to have a clue how things worked or at least how they worked on the level that I function at. The best thing that came out of that was that is how I hooked up with Olieshox who is now The RÖXY SUICIDE’s guitarist.

Wiener/Burger records is releasing a cassette of your first 6 singles. How did that happen? Have you released the singles in other formats before?

I have been aware of Burger/ Wiener for a few years now and I guess the timing was just right for us to hook up. Those guys work really hard and are really doing well at this point. Back in October a few of us went out to Hollywood for a sort of “working” vacation, Disneyland, networking type stuff. The morning after Disneyland I realized Burger Records was like 5 minutes from there so we went over and hung out a bit just to check it out and it was cool. The Singles have been released previously (some digitally, some CD) on Elekktralux Recordings, whom are still handling all the digital end of it.

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You have influences ranging from The RAMONES, The CRAMPS to MÖTLEY CRÜE, BLONDIE and SIGUE SIGUE SPUTNIK just to name a few. Did you have the idea of mixing these influences before starting the band?

No, not at all. In fact, the whole idea originally was to be something in the vein of The Heartbreakers. I love the fact that it came together this way but it was really a bit of a lucky accident.

Have you played many shows so far? Best ones yet? How would you describe your live shows?

We have done a pretty good amount of shows. We’ve done a few with Faster Pussycat, The Queers, Michael Monroe from Hanoi Rocks. You know, just support slots and such. We’ve done a good number of headlining shows as well but the band is still pretty new at this point and our style is just starting to get a little more defined. The shows are high energy and lively. That’s a good way to put it. We subscribe to the “don’t bore us, get to the chorus” philosophy. We do a good job of that.

It’s been 30 years since HANOÏ ROCKS’ drummer Nicholas “Razzle” Dingley died. I know you’re a fan too. Any story to share? How did you first get into HANOÏ?

Unfortunately I don’t have any stories involving Razzle himself, but I do have some of Michael and Sami Yaffa. One night we (The Mansfields) were playing the Cat Club in LA and Sami and Sylvain from New York Dolls showed up. This is when New York Dolls were back on the scene and Sami was playing in the Dolls. Needless to say we hit it off with them and ended up hanging out until they literally threw us out onto Sunset Blvd. after the bar closed. We ended up standing out in front of the Cat Club/ Whisky A Go Go for another hour talking and fucking around. I think what was really ironic about that was I had been watching, in the van, the Bob Gruen film about the Dolls and their first trip to LA when they played like 12 sold out shows at the Whisky. 2 Shows a night for 6 nights or something like that. Then here we are out in front of the Whisky getting all these amazing stories from Sami and Syl. Well, it’s safe to say it’s just sad that Razzle died so young and so long ago. Sometimes it dawns on me how much some of these guys have missed out on ya know? It’s a shame.

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You’re interested in rock’n’roll history. What are the last biographies you’ve read? Last documentaries you’ve watched?

Yes I am a huge reader and watcher of these things. Memoirs and documentaries are truly inspiring to me. I think maybe the last bios I read were that of Billy Idol and Alex Chilton. I always have about 5 different books going at once on my tablet or hard copy but usually just one Main book that is new to me as I re-read a lot of stuff. Like I just picked up in the middle of the Heroin Diaries and one of Kat Von D’s books too. I see a lot of documentaries but I’m thinking the last one I watched was either the Alex Chilton/ Big Star one or the making of Ziggy Strardust and the Spiders From Mars.

First and last records you bought?

I recall the first 2 records I ever bought with my own money were Motley Crue’s Shout at the Devil and Billy Idol’s Rebel Yell. In fact, those were also my first two concerts ever. April ’84 Motley Crue at Colorado Springs City Auditorium with Saxon Supporting and August ’84 Billy Idol at Red Rocks with Clash Supporting. Not a bad way to start. Last record I bought was either Deap Vally’s “Sistronix” vinyl or The Cramps “Rocknreelininaucklandnewzealand” live vinyl.

Best shows you’ve seen this year?

Sean Lennon, Motley Crue / Alice Cooper. The RÖXY SUICIDE actually headlined a show with Richie Ramone in Denver and I have to say that was one of the best shows of the year as well. Richie and his band are for real man, super great stuff there and I loved hearing the Richie era Ramones songs live like Smash You, I Know Better Now…Ya know stuff off of Animal Boy, Too Tough To Die and Halfway To Sanity.

The MANSFIELDS recently played a few shows, right?

The Mansfields played a show just before Halloween. First show in 5 years. It’s interesting because we have come back with a new albums worth of songs and some old favorites but it just seemed so easy to do the show, it was effortless. I am now just singing in the band and we have brought on board an organ in lieu of bass. It’s a super cool Crampsesque kind of thing. It’s an amazing new chapter and what’s great about it is we are getting a lot of offers to do bigger stuff without knocking ourselves out for it. I guess we already did an awful lot of hard work over the years, it great to have people now coming around and recognizing that fact.

Are you thinking of bringing The RÖXY SUICIDE to Europe? Any vinyl release planned yet?

Yes, very much planning on bringing The RÖXY SUICIDE to Europe. Can’t wait man, can’t wait. I haven’t toured there since 2008! Long time. I know that the key to coming over there is finishing a full length and of course, can’t tour proper without the vinyl pressings. The songs have to be great…not good but great. It’s a process but we are getting there.

http://www.theroxysuicide.com/
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The Mansfields

The MANSFIELDS are back in Europe so we caught them just before their gig in Séléstat, France. Dave Mansfield (Vocals/Bass) tells us more about the band, this tour, his love for vinyl records and horror movies.

How has the tour been so far ?

So far it’s been good, we’ve been to Spain, Italy, Switzerland, Austria, it’s been really good.

Any difference compared to last time you were here in Europe?

We started the tour in places we haven’t been like Spain and Italy. We haven’t played there before!

Any line-up changes since the last tour?

No it’s still the same, same guys: Doug, Tommy and myself.

You’re on Gearhead records, how is it goin’?

It’s goin’ good! The album came out in July, the first press of the vinyl has almost sold-out! So far, so good! It’s a really cool label.

Have you toured a lot in the U.S?

Yeah, we toured in all of the U.S, everywhere!

What are your favourite places to play there?

We were talking about that earlier, L.A of course, Southern California, Texas has been good, New York, pretty much all of the major places have been exciting. Also places like Memphis, Nashville are very good too. We always had really big shows and fun times in Memphis!

You seem to have different influences in the band, from 50s/60s rock to glam, punk rock, etc. Are you all into these musical genres or is there like a punk rock member, a glam/sleaze one or something like that?

No, oddly enough, all of us are into almost exactly the same stuff, from 50s rockabilly and Sun Records, Elvis, Johnny Cash, 60s pop stuff, 70s punk and glitter, etc. Nobody is like the rockabilly guy or the glam guy…

So you don’t fight too much in rehearsal?

Nah.. Well we fight every single one pretty much (laughs) but it’s cool, it’s usually fighting over arrangements or little things like that.

How do you usually write a song? Vocal line first or music?

The first thing would be like an idea like hearing a good old song and wanting to do something like that or a cool song title. I try to come out with a cool title and figure out “what that song should sound like?” Just trying to work on the vibe, maybe on a chorus but the lyirics themselves are usually the last thing I write. When something grabs me, like a title then I can start thinking about what that vibe would sound like in the song. Then the melody line, the verse kinda comes along with the music. But the actual words, I like to write them last.

On a visual point of view, The MANSFIELDS also have a kind of horror movie influence…

Oh yeah, that’s a big part of our influences, old universal monster movies. There’s a little bit of that in our music but it’s more a live thing. Trying to picture the Monster’s living room is what we try to do live.

But you don’t define yourselves as horror rock?

No, a band like WEDNESDAY 13 is all about horror. Wednesday only writes about that. For us, it’s just a vibe, little touches of it. It’s in some of our songs too but not all of them.

Have you seen any new good horror movies lately?

Probably the last one is Rob Zombie’s Halloween! The remake which I thought was really good. That was a good one!

Speaking about Halloween, aren’t you a bit sad to be here in Europe while it’s Halloween time in the US?

Yeah Halloween is one of my favourite times to be home! We do a huge Halloween show every year so it’s a little sad, I’m kinda missing that but I’m probably happier touring over here! (Laughs.) I wouldn’t trade being here for being home now! Three more weeks to go!

As the gas prices went up in the US (though it’s still not as expensive as here!), do you think it’s easier to tour in Europe now?

Well, I don’t know if it’s easier… It’s probably easier for us because we have a good booking agency to take care of lots of details and stuff like that. In the US, if you’re completely on your own and are an unkwown band then it’s really hard. We’ve got to work or do whatever and play shows at home and save and save and save to be able to tour. But we’re pretty lucky, we’ll be on tour for a month with The QUEERS around March in the South and South West, that will be good! They’re still doing good so we’ll be sure to play in front of a couple hundred people every night. Economically, it’s tough in the States right now and it gets harder to book bands because less people are coming out.

Any new bands you’ve liked lately?

They’re not really new but The SOUNDS from Sweden. They’re working on a new record right now. But actually, there’s been a lot of cool bands lately. I still buy a lot of records. If I se a band I like, I’ll try to get their stuff. Labels are doing cool things like colour vinyls, I love vinyl. Downloading is not for me, I like to have something and I always try to find it. Trying to have a cool package has always been important to me. You can’t download that!

Anything else to add?

Just… Our driver, she’s nuts! She’s killing us! Cracking that whip (laughs)… nah she’s great! Thanks for taking the time to do this. I appreciate that.

http://www.myspace.com/themansfields