A photographic account of heavy music in Portland, Maine
Brevity is not Boo Leavitt’s strongpoint.
This is an observation, not a complaint. Recently, we contacted Covered in Bees’ frontman for info on tonight’s show with El Malo and The Monsters. In an email, we asked Leavitt for brief replies to our questions, stressing that it wasn’t a Q&A-style interview.
Instead, we received a 600-word response. It’s like a typed version of the inspired, stream-of-consciousness stage banter Leavitt is known for.
So, for the benefit of mankind, we’re going to bend our own rules and post Leavitt’s tome, lest it languish forever in darkness.
Post Mortem: What’s the status of Covered in Bees’ forthcoming album?
Boo Leavitt: After almost two long years, Portland Death Punk Volume #5: Corpse in the Mattress Motor Lodge is almost ready for pressing. Scott Elson just did some final touches on it, so now we are figuring out how we want to press the album: double CD or a 12-inch record with a download. Corpse is an 88-minute radio-play musical with a 14-song soundtrack, so I think a double CD would be perfect: a radio-play disc and a soundtrack disc. If you are having a hard time picturing it, think of Corpse as “Surfin’ M.O.D” meets Evelyn Evelyn.
PM: What’s the status of the video you did for Troma Entertainment?
BL: The owners of the Portland Daily Sun were afraid that the footage would get too much attention, so they forced the footage out of business by suffocating it with threats of lawsuits. The “Troma Institute of Technology (TIT)” video footage did the best it could, but Portland could deal with such a sexy video. The TIT video hopes to pull itself together in a new format soon, but it is really too soon to tell. The footage from the TIT video wishes no one ill will.
PM: Have the Bees played Empire before?
BL: The Bees have played Empire at least twice before. Once for Darth Vader’s annual Tex Mex Sex round up and once for Palpatine’s niece’s Bat Mitzvah. Great place. Try the dumplings.
PM: Describe the openers in one sentence apiece.
BL: I am really bad at this. Monsters, DIY punk, are not Rustic Overtones. I’m pretty sure El Malo, salsa-core, are not Rustic Overtones. I told you I was bad at this.
PM: What can people expect from the Bees tomorrow night?
BL: Punk. Metal. Jokes. About 15 songs. A broken string or two. The crowd will be made up of dudes with beards and girls in cute dresses. Maybe some dudes in dresses and ladies with beards. All are welcome … if they like awesome.
PM: Do you guys always take requests? If so, how many songs are in your repertoire? How do you remember them all? … Constant rehearsal of back-catalogue stuff?
BL: If you have a request, we might play it. If we haven’t played it in a while, we will almost always learn it again before the next show. That’s why every show is different. We have about 50 original songs in our regular rotating set list. Maybe another 50 we have forgotten or don’t really play. We also have a mouton of covers, but I have a hard time remembering covers so we don’t play them as often.
We practice weekly, running through the next show’s set list or working on new songs. Ed (Porter), Doug (Porter), and Tristan (Gallagher) are geniuses; they remember everything. I am the weak link, but I can fake it pretty good. “Red, Fred, Bread, Oh yeah!” No one cares what I am saying as long as I point at things and pretend to kick Ed in the nuts. We have fun. What was the question?
PM: Is there anything you wanna get out there?
BL: Anyone can start a band or a ‘zine or a blog or a podcast. Anyone can write a play, write a book, write a movie. Hell, anyone can shoot a movie. I am not talented. I am not special. At best I am the fat kid always eating a slice of pizza in the 80’s summer camp movie, not the hero, not Cory Haim or Feldmen. Anyone can make art. Some of you are reading this and have wanted to do something. Give me 30 minutes every day. Doodle dicks. Outline a story. Record your best joke into your iPhone. Do it a little bit every day. After a while you’ll have the first draft of a book. A rough screen play. A comic. Maybe a podcast about cats. You can do it. I’m nobody, but I somehow talked my way into a band. Give it a try. I promise i will go see your band, read your comic, download your podcast, buy a ticket to your movie. Hell, the Bees will let you use some songs. You already have one ticket sold.
Thirty minutes starts now.
(Also I have a podcast called Munjoy Division with my partner, Cat.)
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Covered in Bees, El Malo, and The Monsters
9 p.m. today at Empire, 575 Congress St.