To many, including myself, The Casualties are a shining force of taking no shit from anyone. Utilizing their aggressive style of street punk as a weapon, they have used it time and time again against corporations and brought up different issues that are going on in the world today. In this interview with the political slayers, we talk about their new album Resistance – out now on Season Of Mist Records – and about their more recent touring cycles.
Mind Equals Blown: So what does the word “resistance” mean to you guys personally in terms of substance and current events?
Jake Casualty: To us we mean Resistance to society and the current way it functions. As punks we live our lives differently and we want people to know there’s a place for them outside of what our society has deemed possible. You can be the individual you want without compromise.
It’s no secret that The Casualties are politically driven. While the world is filled with issues, what issues in particular do you address in your new album Resistance?
One issue we talk about in a song is “Morality Police.” It’s about those couple hundred kids in Iraq who got stoned to death for wearing tight clothes and dressing different and the punx in Indonesia who had their heads shaved and were made to bath in a lake to wash away their ideas. It’s fucking ridiculous to think that these kinds of acts are still happening but they are. Most powers in the world want to kill other people in the name of God when in fact most religions were supposed to be peaceful – leave it up to mankind to make others suffer in the name of their religion. The United States is just as guilty of this thought process as well, “you’re not like us so you must be wrong” mentality.
Although I’m sure you hear this with every new album, this album is leaps and bounds more aggressive than, say, Under Attack. Was it intentional to make this album that much more aggressive or did it just come out like that?
I would say it is most definitely the hardest one to date. We have all been listening to heavier music plus touring with some more thrash bands but The Casualties always were on the heavier side of hardcore punk anyways so I guess there’s no real surprise there haha.
You guys recently joined Season Of Mist to release the new album. What made you want to go with this label that’s more known for releasing black metal and avant garde metal?
They were excited to work with us and we were excited to work with a metal label that has so much interest in The Casualties, plus The Casualties are entering a new era so it all makes sense.
The song “Modern Day Slaves” has a notable thrash metal influence. What was the writing process like for this song and what bands were you listening to at the time that you feel may have had an influence?
Yes it does, to us it’s all the same family of music so when we were touring with bands like Gwar, Toxic Holocaust, English Dogs and Havok I suppose it wore off on us a little. I mean what rocker doesn’t like Motorhead and Venom???!!!! We just write riffs and then drums and vocals come in when we have a structure, so to speak. When we are recording things we are changing [them] right up to the last second.
The punk genre has been cut apart over the past couple of decades. Where do you feel punk music stands today and what other bands can you give credit to keeping punk true to its anti-corporatocracy roots?
I think punk music is very strong today. There’s always someone who feels it’s important in the world and there’s always a place in the world where punk thrives. Right now it may not be the US or UK but more south/central America, ASIA and Europe. New bands I feel are keeping the spirit alive are Acidez and Violent Affair.
What are your guys’ thoughts on this pop punk fad that the kids have been latching and suckling off of lately?
I feel that the pop punk thing has been dead for a while already, replaced by screamo vocals set to club beats…. there’s no anthems there for me but the public will be fed the mindless shit it always has been. VIVA HARDCORE PUNK!!
So you guys have been touring with Gwar a lot lately. How have those shows been and what is it like touring with them?
Yes and we would tour with them forever hahah. They are really professional and totally down to earth. We actually became friends outside of touring with them. The shows are always packed and we get to play in front of a new crowd that likes the heavy shit. Not to mention you get to watch the best live performance of all time every night.
What songs do you guys plan on keeping as live staples from Resistance?
We will play a bunch but basically the Casualties Army decides that at the end of the day. I would like to play “Brick Wall Justice” every time.
After your extensive touring circuit you have coming up in Germany and Russia, what is next for the band?
After the euro tour we have a few shows in the states but a really big North American tour in February and a big festival tour in Europe in the summer.
What sort of literature or films would you recommend people to check out that have influenced your lyrics and have influenced you all to stand against the various issues you feel are bringing the world down?
I would say “The Weather Underground,” “Roger and Me,” “Hori Smoku Sailor Jerry,” “Style Wars” and “Stoked” to name just a few.
Any last words for your fans?
Thank you Casualties Army for your continued support, check out the new album Resistance and we will see you all soon on this world tour!!