Editor’s Note: It was a gorgeous day in Iowa, very sweltering day, as Wednesday 13 headlined their esteemed “Condolences Across America” tour, which featured special guests Invidia and Gabriel and the Apocalypse. Joseph Poole(who was in Murderdolls) is one of the more underrated musicians and showmen fronting Wednesday 13, as they brought out costume changes and essentially making their show at Lefty’s in Des Moines feel like an ongoing live production with a movie feel to it. Each song of theirs tells a story and I was looking forward to picking his brain on various topics. Without further delay, here is my conversation with frontman Joseph Poole of Wednesday 13.
M.T.C.: Since we were talking about medical marijuana before the interview, let’s start off the interview by offering up your views on medical marijuana.
Joseph: My views are very strong, I think it should be legalized all over the country, my take on it is not everyone’s take, but where it’s legalized in parts of the country, it’s brought in so much money to those places, it seems like a no-brainer, when people smoke weed, they don’t get hurt, they don’t commit crimes, they just sit back and relax, and in some year there will be some people that will look back on it, and be like, “why was this illegal?” *laughs*
M.T.C.: It just seems like history repeats itself. The venue for this show changed from Vaudeville Mews to Lefty’s Live in Des Moines, how has the “Condolences Across America” tour been going so far?
Joseph: It’s been good. We started the tour in Europe first, we did Germany, and to other places, it’s been two months of traveling and touring, its been a lot of fun getting up there playing some new songs and seeing people dance to them, it’s been good.
M.T.C.: How was performing at Download Festival this year?
Joseph: It was awesome, but it happened so quick, it was so great. We had this pyro company come out and do fire and all of this stuff, so it was something cool to have at our show. It felt like KISS was playing.
M.T.C.: Would you classify KISS as an influence on your career?
Joseph: When I was growing up, KISS was all about the imagery, it was like they were space aliens, but I’m a really old-school KISS fan, but they haven’t done a whole lot else for me over the years, but when they had their first reunion tour, I went and saw that, but I felt like they should’ve closed the chapter on it then, but visually KISS was over the top, but they really contributed as characters but yeah I was influenced by them and Alice Cooper and Twisted Sister, but we just try to put our own stamp on it.
M.T.C.: Very cool, what does Wednesday 13 provide in a live setting that other bands may not necessarily provide in a live setting?
Joseph: Our show is more like a movie, it’s more theatrical, there’s costume changes, there’s masks, I also don’t talk to the audience, I don’t ask them, “how are they doing”, once we start, it’s a show. I think that’s different than the average band at a live show, we really try to bring a cool atmosphere, we try to bring our songs, we really try to achieve that, and you’ll get to see that tonight.
M.T.C.: Based upon the live production, is there any movies or any influences that you draw from?
Joseph: Not really, we don’t really try to create it that way. All of our stuff is based upon our songs, but there’s always movies that might be familiar to people, we have silhouette lighting on stage, which might remind people of The Exorcist, those certain things remind me and others of that, we don’t go in and say we want to recreate this thing from this movie.
M.T.C.: Give me a story that is not so glamorous in the life of touring. People think it’s all glitz and glamour, but what is a big challenge in some of touring?
Joseph: The idea of getting burned out, it really can be a job. Everyday, it’s the same stage, it’s hard to remember certain venues, it’s a lot of work, people don’t realize it, they think it’s all glamorous and stuff, but when you’re stuck on a bus with ten people, and you have to decide on showering, washing clothes, having any privacy, and stuff like that. But, we’ve gotten used to it over the years, but now I feel more comfortable being on tour than I do being at home. This is more home to me than home because we spend so much time on tour. When this year is done, I’ve basically have been home for three months. It’s been a lot of work, but I tell people all the time, if you’re not in this business for the long haul, then it’s not gonna work. Like AC/DC says, “it’s a long way to the top”.
M.T.C.: June 2nd, “Condolences” was released via Nuclear Blast Records, give us a day in the life of the writing process for the album in the Wednesday 13 camp.
Joseph: Just different stuff. For this record, we did it differently than anything that we have ever done before or anything like that, normally, I would write the majority of the stuff and send it to the guys, and they might add certain parts to it, but on this one, we basically went in with a couple of song ideas, and everything else we have made up on the spot, we basically took the entire month of June off to write this album, we spent three weeks just waking up, eating Fruit Loops, getting the guitars on, basically our goal was to write one song per day. Some days we didn’t get a song in, we hit brick walls and nothing came out, some days we would come in with two or three ideas. We spent every day trying to write the best song, we focused on writing killer tracks for this record, every song had to be as good as the next song, so that was really cool to sit there every day and work on a song, and to bounce ideas off of each other, so we would share the demos with the other guys.
M.T.C.: You have released two singles “What The Night Brings” and “Condolences”, what does the night bring in your mindset?
Joseph: To me, I just wanted to capture a cool, fun Halloween type of vibe to the song, I’ve been known for doing fun, campy, tongue-in-cheek kind of stuff, and this song had more of an evil touch to it, but it’s still definitely a Wednesday 13 vibe to it, there’s no super dark meaning to it, I just wanted to capture when I was a kid and when I was scared of the dark, and I was scared of the nighttime, and when the sun went down, I was thinking of Freddy Krueger and all of the horror movies and watching that stuff when it was brand new, so for me, it kind of brought back to me when I was a kid and how scary it was when the sun came down.
“What The Night Brings” by Wednesday 13
M.T.C.: What about the “Condolences” single? I love the theatrical aspect behind the video.
Joseph: Yeah, I love the single, it’s my favorite track to play live, it’s my favorite video that I have ever done, we spent a lot of time and a lot of work on that video, and I wanted to basically create my funeral, so I wanted to have my friends and my family, and I love how it goes from all white to all negative and complete darkness, just really trying to capture the vibe of that song. It’s a cool video, it’s the first video that I have ever done where I got the first edit back, and I loved it and I didn’t want to change it. Usually videos take a lot of time, but it’s turned out great, but yeah, we killed it, it’s my favorite video I have ever done in my whole career. It’s a cool song too, our A&R guy who is signed with the band said it was one of his favorite Wednesday 13 songs of all time. It’s one that I felt really proud of.
“Condolences” by Wednesday 13
M.T.C.: It definitely seems to connect with a lot of people. Anything else you would like to add in regards to the band or plans after this run?
Joseph: We have a lot of touring coming up, but we are in this for the long haul, our band spends our whole lives on tour and that’s what we like to do. So next year, we’re going to keep going on this until it’s time to work on the next record. Rinse, repeat, rinse, repeat. *laughs*
M.T.C.: Any place that you’re looking forward to?
Joseph: On this run, we have Canada coming up, we haven’t been in the western side of Canada for a long time, so we’re really looking forward to that, we have a lot of fans that are excited about that. It should be cool.
M.T.C.: Thank you very much for taking the time man!
Joseph: Thank you very much and this should be good!
And there you have it! Wednesday 13 has added a second leg on the “Condolences Across America” tour with Eyes Set To Kill and Repulsur serving as direct support for Wednesday 13. Check out tour dates below!
Thursday, September 21st- The Warehouse in Clarksville, Tennessee
Friday, September 22nd- The Concourse at The International in Knoxsville, Tennessee
Saturday, September 23rd- Ground Zero in Spartansburg, South Carolina
Sunday, September 24th- The State Theatre in St. Petersburg, Florida
Monday, September 25th- The Dungeon Tavern in Panama City, Florida
Tuesday, September 26th- The Masquerade in Atlanta, Georgia
Friday, September 29th- Canal Club in Richmond, Virginia
Saturday, September 30th- Shocktober Feset in Sinking Spring, Pennsylvania(Awake At Last will also be performing)
Sunday, October 1st- One Center Square in Easton, Pennsylvania
Tuesday, October 3rd- Diesel Concert Lounge in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Wednesday, October 4th- The Machine Shop in Flint, Michigan
Thursday, October 5th- The Rock Pile in Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Friday, October 6th- The Rock Pile in Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Saturday, October 7th- Piranha Bar in Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Sunday, October 8th- Brass Monkey in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Monday, October 9th- Middle East in Cambridge, Massachusetts
Tuesday, October 10th- Saint Vitus in Brooklyn, New York
Thursday, October 12th- HMAC in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania
Friday, October 13th- The Agora Theatre in Cleveland, Ohio
Saturday, October 14th- Aftershock Live in Merriam, Kansas
Sunday, October 15th- Outland Ballroom in Springfield, Missouri
Thursday, October 19th- Sunshine Studios in Colorado Springs, Colorado
Friday, October 20th- Mesa Theater in Grand Junction, Colorado
Saturday, October 21st- Diamondz Event Center in Jerome, Idaho
Wednesday 13 will also be supporting “Condolences” across Europe after their second leg of “Condolences Across North America” is completed.
Thursday, October 26th- Manchester Club Academy in Manchester, England (w/Courtesans)
Friday, October 27th- Glasgow Garage in Glasgow, Scotland (w/Courtesans)
Saturday, October 28th- O2 Academy Islington in London, England (w/Courtesans)
Tuesday, October 31st- La Boule Noire in Paris, France
Wednesday, November 1st- Melkweg Upstairs in Amsterdam, Netherlands
Thursday, November 2nd- Bi Nuu in Berlin, Germany
Friday, November 3rd- Headcrash in Hamburg, Germany (w/Tell You What Now)
Saturday, November 4th- Bi Nuu in Berlin, Germany (w/Jenny Woo’s Holy Flame)
Tuesday, November 7th- Chelsea in Wien, Austria
Wednesday, November 8th- Hansa in Munich, Germany
Thursday, November 9th- Keller Klub in Stuttgart, Germany
Friday, November 10th- Legend Club in Milano, Italy
Sunday, November 12th- Congress Center in Basel, Switzerland
Monday, November 13th- FZW in Dortmund, Germany
Tuesday, November 14th- Kulturzentrum Schlachthof e.V. in Wiesbaden, Germany
Find Wednesday 13 at the following locations: