Primitive Weapons Support The Dillinger Escape Plan at Rock City

Words: Glen Parver
Monday 16 January 2017
reading time: min, words

It's almost a band of scenesters. Two of the members own and operate Saint Vitus Bar in Greenpoint, NYC which, in its five-year history has become the centre of everything heavy in New York, having played host to such acts a Megadeth, Anthrax and Nirvana (minus Kurt, obviously - they played there after their induction into the Rock 'n 'Roll Hall of Fame). The band itself features ex-members of bands such a Gay For Johnny Depp, White Widows Pact and, erm, The Wanted. This week, they hit the UK for the first time supporting The Dillinger Escape Plan, so we spoke to guitarist Arthur Shepherd to find out more...


So how did you guys all meet?
We met while I was working at a bar in Greenpoint, Brooklyn. Dave Castillo and Chris Enriquez were patrons and wanted to start a new band with me as they both came from the Long Island hardcore scene and liked my old bands growing up. Eric Odness worked at that same bar and brought some mid western noise rock flavor to the mix. It all clicked immediately.

What other bands have influenced you?
There is so much but I would say nineties hardcore, post hardcore and noise rock is big in our world. Quicksand, Jawbox, Jesus Lizard, Unsane, Born Against, Fugazi, Shiner and many years of metal.


Your first album The Shadow Gallery came out in 2012. What was the response to it?
The response to our first record was amazing! The reviews were great, we were drawing really well in NY. We toured the US as much as we could that year which was amazing. We actually recorded The Future of Death in 2013 on the heels of all that work but it took a long time to come out.

You’re now touring with The Dillinger Escape Plan. How did that come about?
Ben Weinman from Dillinger put out our record on his Party Smashers Inc label so they take us out whenever we can do it. It is very hard for us to tour as we are all business owners and some of us are fathers but we love doing it, it's what I have done my whole adult life. Touring the UK is expensive, so come out and help us out if you can.

Were you fans of Dillinger before you got this support slot?
Yes, we all were fans of the band. They played my venue, Saint Vitus Bar, and we became friendly with them from that.

Have you ever been to Nottingham before? Do you know much about the city?
I have been to and played in Notts many times. My old touring sound guy is from there and was the house guy at The Old Angel for years. I have played Rock City, Old Angel, and a few others with my old bands Gay For Johnny Depp, and Instruction. I love it there and it's the city that gave us the Sleaford Mods, who rule!

Are you fans of Robin Hood?
Ha! I have been to Ye Olde Trip To Jerusalem a few times which always reminds me of that story.

What was the last thing that made you laugh out loud?
Probably something on my podcast, The Automatic Crowd, about something completely inappropriate.

What was the last thing that made you cry?
Anything involving children getting hurt in the news. Becoming a father has turned me into a real softy.

If there was one question you wish I’d asked you, what would it be?
Can I get you a beer?

And what would your answer to that be?

Primitive Weapons' debut album The Future of Death is out now on Party Smasher Inc/Cooking Vinyl. They are supporting Dillinger Escape Plan at Rock City on Saturday 21 January. 

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