The Misfits are forever going to be etched into punk rock history. Both for their iconic influential style and what the band represents. We were lucky enough to chat with founding member Jerry Only about the upcoming Australian tour.

 

SCENEzine
What’s been happening with the Misfits this week?

 

Jerry Only
Well we just left Denver we went up and down the west coast and that went really great. We had a day off in Denver now we are headed towards Chicago and then we wrap up our USA tour in Kentucky. Then we come down and see you guys.

 

SCENEzine
Is Australia somewhere you are personally excited when you realise your about to head back over here?

 

Jerry Only
Yeah it’s starting too get cold over here so it’ll be good to get back to summer weather.

 

SCENEzine
You are coming over to play the album Static Age in full. One of our favourite tracks is “Attitude” could you take us back in time to the song writing process. Did you realise at the time how good it sounded?

 

Jerry Only
Yeah I liked “Attitude” I thought that it was kicker. Real straight chords, good to play and to the point. I wrote the lead not that there’s much of a lead there (laughs). That album it is what it is. It’s very basic but very well crafted at the same time. It’s something we can be proud of because there was nothing else really out at the time like that. You listen to it today and when we play it live it goes over so well. So many tracks on there are classics. The flow and arrangement is so good. We play it every night in order.

 

SCENEzine
Around the time of writing that was there a punk community in New Jersey or were you considered outsiders?

 

Jerry Only
Well we are still outsiders. We were in a scene of people that were much older than us. They were more into doing drugs and going out every night than working out on equipment. That’s what we do. We would work out on machines plus craft and paint our own stuff. We were a very d.i.y band. We didn’t really go out there and screw up. Other bands either ended up broken up or dead so there’s really not much of a scene left from when it started. I mean Blondie’s still out there and Danzig’s still out there so there’s a few still kicking.

 

SCENEzine
Is it hard for you to stay in shape on tour?

 

Jerry Only
Yeah it’s impossible. The thing is that you sleep while you travel and when the bus stops it’s just a habit I wake up.
It’s hard to get a good nights sleep. The set is long and gruelling so it wears you down and you start to get sick.
Once you get sick other things start to go. So I think it’s important to try and get as much rest as you can and work out as much as you can. Working out seems to stimulate your body unto healing. I find the better shape your in the quicker your body reacts to being destroyed.

 

SCENEzine
Over the years a lot of people associate Misfits with CBGBS. For people who never got to go there can you describe what it was like to play in that venue?

 

Jerry Only
It was like an alley with posters stapled all over it. The floor was all uneven and everything was posters seven inches thick. Everybody who played there posted stuff all over the place. It smelt like beer and the bathroom smelt like piss.
It was like a cowboy saloon it was crazy. The monitors had blown and the toilet ran forever. It was generally a shithole. But it was fun everybody got to do what they wanted to do. Nobody gave a shit that was the beauty of it.
Hilly let bands come up and play when other places wouldn’t have them. Misfits, Dead Boys, Ramones, Blondie well Blondie’s hard to say no to (laughs). I really miss Hilly and CBGBS.

 

SCENEzine
It is true you are also going to play Earth AD in full in Australia also?

 

Jerry Only
Well maybe not at every show it destroys every part of your body. You’ve gotta use the magic dust sparingly (laughs).
We should be able to pull it off on the first show and last show of the tour at the least.

 

SCENEzine
When you look down at the setlist and see “Die Die My Darling” coming up how do you feel?

 

Jerry Only
Well it’s on every setlist at the end. It’s always saved until last. When I hear “die die my darling” it’s good cause I know I’m on my way home. To me it’s a comfort.

 

SCENEzine
Earlier this year Rise Against played in Australia and were joined on stage by Gerard Way of My Chemical Romance and they covered “Astro Zombies” by Misfits. Is it still flattering when you hear of other bands covering Misfits songs?

 

Jerry Only
It’s supposed to be flattering. It puts you out there as a standard. Gets more people out there wearing our shirts.
I’ve heard fashion models in Paris with long legs and little boobs are wearing our shirts tied up around their waste with their ass hanging out. I bet they have no idea what our band is about (laughs).  Misfits signifies to many people a certain style and mentality. When bands cover Misfits it’s a sign of respect.

 

SCENEzine
Misfits have always had awesome cover art. Blown up on vinyl it looks especially cool. Are you amazed by the resurgence of vinyl in recent years?

 

Jerry Only
No I always knew it would happen. I have a lot of vinyl myself. Old records that I picked up for twenty five cents a piece at the record store. I always liked vinyl as a format the more I deal with cds the less I like them. I do like the fact that the don’t have to fast forward or rewind but I don’t seem to keep cds for very long. Whereas my vinyl I’ve had for my entire life.

 

Misfits

 

SCENEzine
This may be a weird question but since Christmas is around the corner any chance you’ll play some Misfits Christmas songs in Australia?

 

Jerry Only
Maybe actually you know what that’s a pretty cool idea. Probably we could do “Blue Christmas” real quick. The Grinch though well I’m not doing that (laughs).

SCENEzine
Over the years you’ve gained a reputation for being kind and having time for your fans. Do you think that’s what keeps Misfits fans so loyal and sets you apart from other band?

 

Jerry Only
I just treat people the way I’d like to treated. My opinion is we just try and keep it as straight up and possible and share it with everybody. I think a lot of bands don’t actually don’t like what they do. They are being forced to by a label and they aren’t who they want to be. We try to not let anything get to our egos our heads.

 

SCENEzine
We’ve heard you are currently working on the next album. Do you have a rough idea when you are hoping to put it out?

 

Jerry Only
Well we are aiming for August next year. We are playing in Transylvania. So what I’m hoping to do it’s probably unrealistic but I’m giving myself a short time span. Rather than saying I’ll take another three years to write a new album. So I’m looking to get the album recorded to release it at that show. That’s my perfect world to release it in August leading into our 40th anniversary.

 

SCENEzine
Can you leave us with a last message for your Aussie fans?

 

Jerry Only
Yeah. How are you guys staying on the earth when your on the bottom. How come you don’t just fall off (laughs).
I bet you never heard that one (laughs). Hang in there we will be there soon it’ll be good. We will hit you with a full head of steam. Thank so much, see you soon.

 

(interview by Christian Ross)

 

Misfits Tour

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