(Photo by Tim Tronckoe)
Thanks for speaking with me.
Hey brother, no problem.
Your new band Doyle is made up of the final line-up of your previous group Gorgeous Frankenstein – what made you decide to make this a new band?
Why change the name?
That was my singer’s call. Alex, he’s a crazy fucker – the imagery he puts to the songs is just insane. We were texting about the new record and he just texted me and said “Let’s call it Doyle”. Are you sure? “Yeah.” But you know, with Gorgeous Frankenstein no one knew who we were. We did two tours and would go out and play to 50 people and 49 of them would tell me they didn’t even know I had a new band! So it made sense to just use my name.
How did the songs for “Abominator” come together? What’s your songwriting process like?
Well, I write all the music myself – guitar, bass, drums, and then I send it to Alex for words and vocal melodies. It’s all my own music – I’ve done this for too fucking long to play other people’s shit, y’know [laughter] So, I would record demos of the guitar and bass, and program the drums and then send transcriptions of stuff to Alex so he has a sense of what to put lyrically to the music. He is an intense dude, and some of the shit he comes up with is just the sickest, and that’s just who he is! He is the genius, I’m just a guy who plays guitar. But you know what, it’s all about the songwriting. I am a hack at guitar, I know two chords, but I can write songs, y’know. That’s what gets people moving and involved.
We weren’t even sure what to call the record and I was driving and the title “Abominator” just came to me and I texted Alex to see what he thought. He was excited about it, so it became the last track we did and the title.
It’s an appropriate title – the new stuff is fucking heavy! Was that intentional?
No, I just write what comes out. I don’t have a tree in the backyard that I pluck stuff from and say I need this type of song or that type of song. I just sit down with the guitar and these are the ideas that were the most interesting were the ones we worked up. We actually had 38 songs to work on. We worked on more than half of them and then picked the eleven we wanted for the record. We have the 2nd album almost finished.
Yeah. When we tracked we had six songs left over and figured, what the hell, so we went back in and recorded a few more. I have three songs left to put guitar on, but it should be out in a few months. The first record doesn’t even come out on physical CD and double vinyl until the 29th (of October) but we’ve been selling it at shows and it’s been available digitally for months.
And how is the album doing?
It’s been great. You know, it’s the first thing I ever downloaded. I got an iPhone and my album was the first thing I purchased [laughter] But it’s cool because the physical release has an extra track and it’s a tri-fold digipak with a 16 or 18 page booklet with art and the lyrics.
That sounds cool. You’ve been a special guest on the Danzig Legacy and 25th anniversary tours playing the Misfits songs that are over 30 years old. How has that experience been?
It’s just like going to work, you take your tools and do your job. I’ve spent my life playing those songs, and I wasn’t in the band from the start but have played those songs over and over. It’s fun, the crowd loves it.
You’ve said in the past that Glenn is like a mentor to you – what have you learned from him over the years?
Well, he taught me how to play guitar and I learned songwriting from him. I think I learned that it’s important to fucking just do your own thing and write your own shit. That’s important, you know. He’s very supportive and he always does what he wants to do, and I’ve definitely taken that with me.
Who or what inspires you musically?
Well, when I started it was Alice Cooper and Bowie, and then punk came along and the Ramones, the Sex Pistols and the Damned were really important to me. When the Misfits broke up, I stopped playing music for a few years and one day my friend brought over Van Halen and put that on, and I was fucking blown away. It was “Van Halen 1”, and the guitar playing was fucking insane! But you know, the songwriting was also good. And that’s what I hope to inspire. You have some 16 year old kid sitting in his room, playing Eddie Van Halen or Yngwie Malmsteen licks spot on, but who fucking cares? Do something original. That was what punk was all about.
Aping some guitar solo might be technically impressive, but it lacks soul.
So what’s on tap for you next? Do you have plans to tour “Abominator”?
Yeah, we’re going to try to cover the world. Lots of touring. We have the second record coming out, now quite sure when yet, and these last couple of dates with Danzig. It’s all good.