Over the summer in 2014 I was supposed to have an e-mail interview with Nail$, vocalist for UK band THE HELL. Well, a whole bunch of wires got crossed and a short while ago that e-mailer turned into a phone conversation when Nail$ decided to come down to Prosthetic Records L.A. office and start fucking shit up. What followed is arguably the craziest fucking interview I have ever been a part of. See for yourselves:
Nail$: (Laughs) oh, I’m glad you saw that interview. I was just talking about that; she really loves us. We’re best friends now, Buffy and us.
Amps: Oh, that’s good. Sarah Michelle Gellar is my ex-wife, she just doesn’t know it. So tell me…how did THE HELL get started and where is it going?
Nail$: Well we all met at a fight in a pub in Watford, and we were all sort of impressed with the way we all punched each other in the head. So we thought, “We should try and do this in time” which led to our percussive process. And then we just layered some guitars over punching each other in the head. It’s quite organic. I think after we’ve sold ten million copies of this record we’ll start singing and become a real reggae rock band.
Amps: You don’t really fit into any one category, so what THE HELL- see what I did there?
Nail$: Yeah mate, very clever!
Amps: -do you consider yourselves? Hardcore, or what?
Nail$: We’re a hardcore metal I don’t know what to be honest. We just make noise and swear (laughs).
Amps: Gotta say that Groovehammer is a really fun record, but you guys can also throw down musically with some serious riffs and breakdowns, especially on “Bangers & Mosh” and “Battleship.”
Nail$: We’re all pretty much the best in our field. We hand-picked members from other bands who shall remain nameless and forced them to join THE HELL the same way we forced Prosthetic Records to sign us.
Amps: When was the last time the Groovehammer smashed the skulls of dicks?
Nail$: Oh, I’ve been doing it all day. On Monday night I was at Loaded on Sunset and I smashed the skull of Andy Dick. It was great to smash the skull of Andy Dick with the Groovehammer Dick. That’s why I’m over here on holiday for a couple of weeks, just smashing the skulls of dicks, really. Smashing the skulls of dicks in the UK is fun but it’s nice to get some time off and do it in other countries.
Amps: Do you have any plans to bring the madness over here to the States? And how long do you think you’ll be out supporting the record?
Nail$: Well, we’re sitting on some top secret information there. It will be soon, don’t worry. We’ll be playing everywhere.
Amps: What goes into the making of a record from THE HELL?
Nail$: Basically we all get really, really, really drunk until we can find the best combination of swear words possible, then write heavy music underneath it. We start with the words, and then we build it down from there. The most important thing is to get the swearing right, and then we kind of work the music around it. We’ve got about 40 members, so we all sit around the boardroom and we have a chart with all our favorite swear words, and we try and work them into sentences, or abusive phrases to put in a row.
Amps: What do you do to get all revved up and amped up for a show?
Nail$: I drink as many beers as possible, that’s my personal pre-show ritual. Black Mi$t (vocals, guitar) also drinks as many beers as he can, but we’re different in that I don’t pull the tab all the way down and he likes to open it properly to get more beer in his mouth. Also we bang our heads against the wall and beat everyone else up. Especially at festivals, ’cause there are so many bands there to beat up, it really gets us in the mood for the show!
Amps: Away from the lads in THE HELL, what do you like to do?
Nail$: I like to read- (Amps asks, “WHAT?” incredulously) – I’m a big fan of the Harry Potter books. I also ride a unicycle, I’m an Impressionist painter, and I call myself “mon-ay” like money.
Amps: How do you think THE HELL will achieve World Domination?
Nail$: Mainly through beating everyone else up. We’re taking an old school approach through extensive touring and beating everyone else up. And WHEN everyone’s been beaten up THE HELL we’ll be the best band in the world. I mean, we ARE the best band in the world but it’s just a matter of beating them up until they admit we are.
Amps: Say something to all the dicks out there.
Nail$: You’re all dickheads and if you don’t like us you’re a dickhead. And if you do, you’re still probably a dickhead. But either way, we’re equal opportunity and we’d like all you dickheads to come see us. And I just like you being angry, because you’re all dicks. And I’m a dickhead, so you being angry makes me happy.
Suffice to say during this ten minute interview I laughed quite a bit. Nail$ is a riot to sit and chat with, and I only wish we’d had more time. Definitely pick up your copy of Groovehammer, available now through Prosthetic Records. THE HELL, you dick!!