Interview with Switchblade Cheetah:
Choppy: What prompted you to become Switchblade Cheetah from the Glampunk of Peppermint, were there any similarities in sound or was SC a totally new start in style?
Switchblade Cheetah: Peppermint was essentially nothing more than a misguided attempt to score a record deal. We didn't enjoy doing it, and all the recordings have been destroyed. Switchblade Cheetah was formed in response to that bad experience.
Choppy: Early on you had a kind of fractured hardcore sound, but on the first album The Bone Gospel it begins to disintegrate, melody and harmony begins to enter the picture. What influences and personal changes caused this.
SC: I think Cheetah's early sound was mainly an attempt to distance ourselves from our previous band. Not long after the release of our first EP, we actually started to feel just as limited as we did in our previous band. I think it was around this time that we started to open up and incorporate more melody into our sound. We've both always been into melodic music, and Cheetah's early stuff is actually the sound of a band attempting to repress its natural melodic impulses. The later music is more representative of who we really are.
C: What were your lyrical influences and themes, were they personal or based around other influences? I am particularly thinking of Chapel of the Bitch and High Heeled Trash Sucking Scum.
SC: Trash Suckin' is obviously all over the place musically, and is probably the best representation of our different influences, which range from classic country like the Louvin Brothers to early punk and lo-fi stuff. Chapel is almost exclusively a result of our love for 60s garage rock and psychedelia, although we do jump around a bit on that album as well.
C: How often have you played live, what has the reception been like?
SC: It's been several years since we played live, but we generally got a good reaction...at least from the people who didn't walk out. The shows were not very audience-friendly, in fact, one of our main purposes of playing live was to berate the hipsters in attendance. In addition, our live shows were comically intense, to the point that Brian suffered several on-stage injuries during our short playing career.
C: I see you kinda rooted in Scum Rock, on stage injuries is testament to this, but you are essentially progressive, your discography constantly evolves and shifts. Where do you want to take Switchblade Cheetah, at this point about half a year since the album's release, where do you want to go as a band?
SC: Our primary focus right now is Smoke Mountain, but Chapel is a good representation of the direction Cheetah is headed.
C: You mentioned you have another band; Smoke Mountain, do you see this as a separate project or a side wards way of evolving Switchblade Cheetah? Also does Neon Lushell have any influence on Switchblade?
SC: Smoke Mountain is a completely separate project, but we think Cheetah fans will dig it. It's heavily influenced by 70s doom metal. All I can really say about Neon Lushell is that its in a world of its own. I'd definitely recommend it if you like Cheetah's stranger stuff.