is never at a loss to come up with some new music sound, even when
it comes to the time honored surf-rock instrumental genre. Case in
point is Schlock Singles by the trio known as The
Terrorsaurs. Wild is right word as these guys go primal on an
all instrumental CD that mixes punk angst with surf-rock and you get
something called punk-surf. Anyway the instro mags and web sites are
buzzing about The Terrorsaurs saying they must be on to a new sound
that revamps Link Wray and The Ventures while the results are an exciting
blend of nitro instro. Speaking to mwe3.com about the Terrorsaurs
sound, group guitarist Carl Harris, alias El Guapo, confesses, We'd
describe it as proto-surf. Theres an obvious rock/punk edge
which cannot be denied. We have no definite formula but its
really based around obscure garage rhythms and tracks of the early
to mid 1960's. The way-out looking cover CD definitely puts
this one in the goth-surf instro realm. The Terrorsaurs are rough
and ready and they get their sound in focus on their appealing, self-produced
set of "Schlock & Roll". Caution: The Terrorsaurs make
rock & roll and is definitely not for squares. www.terrorsaurs.com
mwe3.com presents an interview with
El Guapo of The Terrorsaurs
Can you tell us where youre from and where you live now and
what you like best about it?
El Guapo: We're all from central midlands area in the U.K.
near the second city of Birmingham. It's an industrial place but has
a thriving eclectic music scene.
mwe3: The new CD by The Terrorsaurs is called Schlock Singles.
How did you come up with that title for the album? The Terrorsaurs
sound influenced by Davie Allan And The Arrows and Link Wray to name
a couple of 1960s legends. Who were your big guitar influences growing
up and what songs and albums had a big impact on you?
El Guapo: We're pretty much influenced by 1950's/60s
Schlock/Sci-Fi films so really wanted to create a musical background
to those type of movies hence 'Schlock Singles'... Its obviously
surf inspired but features short concise tracks, no guitar solos as
such. Think Everybody Up by The Fender Four... raw, brutal
and not a wasted second. Obviously people like Dick Dale are influences
but more recently perhaps Messer Chups/The Surfites. Having said all
this the Terrorsaurs probably do have a more rock/garage/punk edge
than some surf bands do, and the guitar sound is not dissimilar to
that of the Fender distortion of the Dead Kennedys.
mwe3: When did The Terrorsaurs form as a band? Whos in
the band, what are your real and stage names, and how would you describe
the sonic chemistry among the players?
The Terrorsaurs formed in 2011 with members King Fink (Ian B) El Guapo
(Carl H) and T. T. Shaker (Keith E) we definitely have a sonic rock
edge mirrored by our live shows. Being rock based we have a kind of
hard edged timing and chemistry which suits our live visuals.
mwe3: Would you describe The Terrorsaurs sound as being
surf-rock or surf-noir or is there more an even more cutting punk
rock edge to it? Are there musical parameters in the band or does
El Guapo: We'd describe it as proto-surf. Theres an obvious
rock/punk edge which cannot be denied. We have no definite formula
but its really based around obscure garage rhythms and tracks
of the early to mid 60's.
mwe3: How did you hook up with Wild Records and what is the
relationship between you and the label? What other artists are on
the label that you like
El Guapo: We hooked up with WILD records early 2014 when they
saw our promo vid and we hit it off instantly. We're tailor made for
their distinct attitude. Everything on WILD is pretty ace, Delta Bombers
, Rhythm Shakers, Dragtones it's all vital.
mwe3: Were there a lot of special effects added in during the
recording and mixing process for the Schlock Singles CD? For
instance, track 7, Man Vs. Terrorsaur features some amazing
special effects in the mix that makes you hair stand on edge. What
about that track and what tracks are getting the most airplay and
is there a single from the CD?
Man Vs. Terrorsaur is one of our faves. We just wanted
to create an atmosphere of a man versus monster standoff then fight,
which we think works pretty well. We're very pleased with that track...
it's a great encore at shows! There arent a lot of effects added
at all on the album, the gong on Watusi Moon, the waves
on Psycho Beach, pretty much all us.
Regarding airplay, Monkey Tremolo was featured on Dead
By Mono's No Way Out Vol. 2 CD so it has a lot of airplay.
Watusi Moon tends to get singled out and Cave Beat
also seems to go down well on the garage rock DJ circuits. We have
two new tracks coming out on a limited edition 45 early next year
on Dig The Fuzz records so watch out for that.
mwe3: There are a number of different camps in the guitar instrumental
world. Do you identify with the more melodic and refined sounds of
say The Shadows and the Ventures or with the more hard rock side of
instro rock say more recently with groups like Los Straitjackets?
What rock instrumental bands, among the recent groups, do you enjoy
listening to? Can you make a few recommendations?
This is a tough question but our recorded output has quite a smooth
edge and groove to it sort of like Bomboras, or Huntington Cads at
times. Live though it is quite different it is a lot more raw. Messer
Chups still pretty much lead the way for us but there are a lot of
great garage/surf inspired Japanese bands out there at the moment
Baitones, Theee Bat, Yummys it's like they have rediscovered the rawness
of early, classic garage.
mwe3: What guitars are you featuring on the Terrosaurs CD?
Do you collect guitars and various sound effects and pedals and what
amps and strings do your use on your guitars?
El Guapo: We dont really go in for pedals as such. We
use Fender Jaguar/Strat guitars & Fender Jazz bass... the indestructible
Fenders do us proud. The guitar uses Fender 250H strings with a Fender
Princeton, Vox AC30 and also for some of the recording of the new
album, a Marshall Artiste amp... incredible reverb on this vintage
beauty...! The bass uses Nanoweb strings for a heavy driven sound,
bass amps are Orange. We also use a dedicated spring reverb tank in
The Terrosaurs live shows must be pretty amazing. What are your
concerts like and do you play outside the UK? Where would you like
to play live?
El Guapo: The live show is pure Schlock 'n' Roll :), more edge
than the studio recordings. We also use a fllm backdrop of various
movie clips, in venues that have a projector/screen, to add to the
atmosfear.(See pic on the right) The aim is simply to put on
a show hence the costumes. We've played Spain , France, London, Birmingham,
and next year we have Spain again and Japan, in March 2015. We would
love to play the US, which will hopefully happen over the next couple
mwe3: The Terrorsaurs Facebook page has some great graphics,
especially promoting your live shows. Who does your posters and other
graphics and how important is image in promoting the Terrorsaurs sound?
El Guapo: The posters/flyers/graphics are a joint effort and
all part of the 'package' really, its important that everything
compliments each other, the sound, the compositions, the visuals and
the artwork. There's no nudity on any Terrorsaurs flyer but there's
plenty of suggestion...
Are you planning a follow up to the Schlock Singles CD and
what kind of directions would you like to bring The Terrorsaurs music
El Guapo: We have a new CD album out mid 2015 on WILD records
Atomic Lizard Party, most of it already features in our live
set. Its more of our Schlock n Roll, but with
more up-tempo cuts, and a slightly heavier sound. Theres
also a couple of singles being talked about and a couple of tracks
on compilations. All details will be available on the website. www.terrorsaurs.com