LUCID DEMENTIA - A BADASS BAND INTERVIEW
By: Mediasaurus Rex
Recently, I had the opportunity to interview Sheldon of LUCID DEMENTIA. I’d been playing their music rather regularly (you can get a feel for it here ), and the more I listened to them, the more I wanted to know about them. When I found some footage of them online with a giant demon-looking puppet I was hooked. Was LUCID DEMENTIA a goth puppet-show? Were the rumors that I’d heard of some horror/music hybrid accurate? Are they really opening for ANDROID LUST in Houston on June the first at a club called Numbers? Is their music part of the soundtrack to a horror film called SWEATSHOP? Who were these people, and when would I be able to see their stage show? I had to get to the bottom of the groovy beats and socially-conscious lyrics on the pronto. What follows is some really valuable information about a band that has the potential to really go somewhere.
Can you give us a brief history of the band?
Lucid Dementia, the Band, (actually, the full name of the band is “The Fall and Rise of Lucid Dementia as Performed by the Tribe of the Tantrick Puke Whores”) was [formed] in 1996. After the release of our 1st CD, Twisted, the title song ended up on an international compilation for Female Industrial Artists through COP International, which gave us immediate world-wide exposure. A local Club owner took us under his wing and got us started on the local stage, [an opportunity] which eventually spread out to [performances in] surrounding Texas Cities. Lucid Dementia has undergone various line-up changes, with mainly me, Luci (the puppet) and the drummer as the long-time stand ins. We have been on 1 tour outside of Texas to Colorado Springs and back.
How many members are in the band?
There are MANY “Dementians” (People that help the band in various forms, as well as ex-band members that are no longer able to play with the band but are considered to still be band members). Currently the official line-up number is 5.
Can you describe the genesis of your mascot (Lucid Dementia)?
When I wrote and produced the 1st album, I did it without regard for how I was going to perform it. I had recently been studying about Alfred Jarry and how he performed his Absurdist play “King Ubu” by using simple puppets and such, and that inspired what eventually became “Luci.” I really wanted to do something fantastic, and very different from anything else that was out there.
The story of Luci is this: (Here is a snippet)
“There is another place and another existence, and it cannot be described in human words or even imagined, but it is a place that is of a much higher state than the humans. It should be said here that in this existence, there is no sexuality, no male or female. Humans are known of at this place, and although they are studied, they are used as an example of what we would call evil, and it is against the law to behave in a human fashion. Luci De Mentia was found guilty of this crime and given the most severe penalty—to spend an unknown amount of time among the humans. Luci, in her existence, was a kind of queen, and the crime she committed, the human behavior, was ever so slight, yet again, in her existence, it is an abomination and actually rarely happens. Luci is imprisoned to the human existence, and she is not given a body; she is put here like a ghost. After being here for 13 years, Luci found a suitable body—a timid young man with an insane need to make music. His mind is unstable and makes for perfect manipulation. He is her grand puppet.”
Luci is in constant amazement that human beings, as unintelligent and primitive as they are, are able to walk on their hind legs.
What can the audience expect from Lucid Dementia (the mascot) in a live show?
Half the audience demands Luci, the other half demands Sheldon, so we try to give them both. Normally, we begin the show with Luci for 2 or 3 songs. She IS the lead singer of the band and performs like one. She WILL bite audience members if she can, and she is not above jumping into the audience if necessary. She has a hypnotizing effect on most audience members; some just become disturbed.
What can one expect from the band in a live show?
LUCID DEMENTIA performs a kind of hardcore industrial horror show. We don’t seek to shock audiences; we seek to amaze them. There is always blood, sometimes just drooling; other times there have been live vivisections or brain surgeries. It really depends on how much time the band has and how quickly we have to get offstage if there is another band playing after. We tend to whip audience members into frenzy, so it’s a really bad idea for a quiet, or laid back band to play after us. So far the only one that could pull that off well was Clan of Xymox.
Can you detail the rowdiest live show you have ever performed?
In San Antonio I once fell off a stage into a stack of speakers and messed up my leg really bad, then performed on one leg for the rest of the show. Later someone threw a bottle at my head. Holly had gotten into a car accident that night, and as we found out later, she was performing with a concussion. We once performed at a Punk House in Colorado , and I jumped off stage with Luci on, and a bunch of punks jumped on me and punched and kicked the crap out of Luci and me. That was pretty fun. The last time we did a live vivisection on stage, we had different girls from our dance fan club called The Go Gore Grrls on stage with us, and everyone was smacking each other in the face and hair with blood and gore.
You draw a lot of musical influences from across the board; what are you finding most influential on your music of late?
I used to live in an old house my Uncle built in the 50s and moved out about 5 years ago. Moving out of there and living in a normal house gave me a perspective on some messed up things that I went through while living there. So the next album we are currently working on is inspired by those experiences. It’s probably going to be 13 songs about ghosts. Musically, my core is punk—true punk music, not that pop crap that passes for punk nowadays but true in your face punk music. That is my back ground. This was back when there was no “Goth” or “industrial” or “alternative” but when it was all punk. To me, industrial was the natural evolution of punk music. LUCID DEMENTIA is part of the next evolution of industrial music. That’s what I try for anyway. I let everything influence me, and I hate to be tied down to any one genre. The new LUCID DEMENTIA music will be more aggressive. If I had to name my top current influences: Thrill Kill Kult, Ethyl Meatplow, Mindless Self Indulgence, (Old) Ministry, Cabaret Voltaire, and Hardwire.
There is a sort of b-movie/horror movie kind of vibe that you guys have; can you elaborate on your film tastes?
The name “Lucid Dementia” means “being very clear about issues that are very unclear.” LUCID DEMENTIA is a horror movie. Then again, life is a horror movie. Unless you are very, very lucky, sooner or later something really horrible is going to happen to you whether it’s getting tied down and tortured or dying slowly in a nursing home. I know it’s a horrible way to live, but when things are going well in my life, I start hearing the JAWS theme playing because I know it’s only a matter a time before the next horrible event happens. Can you tell I was tortured as a child? I’m big on Science Fiction horror movies: all the ALIEN movies, lately PANDORUM, and most zombie movies. The movie our music is in is pretty awesome (SWEATSHOP). One of my favorite things to do is watch a bad horror movie and make fun of it, so B-movies are great too.
TWISTED (my personal favorite) is a song about religion, right? Can you tell us the story behind this song?“Twisted” was the first LUCID DEMENTIA song I ever wrote. It is also the most lo-fi song ever recorded for LUCID DEMENTIA. It is also the most famous LUCID DEMENTIA song. It’s all about what everyone thinks “god” is, and pokes fun at how people fight over the concept of “god.”
What are the band's plans for the rest of 2010?
1. Play live as much as possible.
2. Record new music as much as possible.
How did your music get featured in that episode of CBS' NCIS?
They were looking for “poppy” gothic music. The fine folks at COP International recommended us, as well as other folks in bands they talked to. It’s nice to have fans in high places.
Your website says that you will be touring heavily for your next album. Will you be hitting the west coast?
We want to tour more than anything. We would love to start playing outside of Texas more. Right now the economy seems to be making that really difficult, as well as gas prices. A lot of venues have closed as a result of this. As soon as the demand is there, though, we will be everywhere we can.
Anything else you want to add?
Check out the trailers with Lucid Dementia music:
LUCID DEMENTIA will be opening for ANDROID LUST June the first in Houston at a club called Numbers.
LUCID DEMENTIA OFFICIAL WEBSITE
The OFFICIAL LUCID DEMENTIA PRESS KIT
Contact M-Rex Here