My mainest man Slim Twig just released his first full length album entitled, Contempt! When he first gave me a special early listening copy, he had written Conempt! so I'd like to announce that I'm officially taking credit for the T in this epic album, and any good review attained thus far is now null and void on account of not mentioning my influence.
To celebrate this special occasion 'Slim' and I sat down for an email conversation about music and life, unfortunately he never answered his questions, while I slaved away answering his. Here it is Tom Henry, Slim Twig:
ST: Tom, in October you posted an interesting interview you did with Modern Guitars Magazine that made several references to guitar virtuoso Greg Howe. What is your opinion of virtuosos musical or otherwise? Do you consider yourself a virtuoso of the blog scene? Lastly, how did Howe respond to your negative assessments & were you successful in uncorking an interdisciplanary virtuoso beef?
TH: I've always thought of myself as the Kevin Eubanks of blogging. Eubanks is the wisest of all guitar virtuosos, he's had to listen to every single Leno monologue for the past twenty years. when you live through Leno monologues, twenty minutes becomes a week, and when you add that up Kevin Eubanks is something like 150 years old. I also appreciate that he never plays a song over fifteen seconds long, These guys like Howe think it's cool to play songs that go into the three and four minute range.
As for Howe, I don't think you can really call it a beef, it's more of a 50 cent/ Ja Rule situation. He's through. I single handedly took a guitar rif master and rendered him less cool than a drummer. The only sessions Greg Howe is taking part in now are in Lance Bass and Clay Aitkens new "band" if you know what I mean. I mean that he's gay and not in the good way - in the inappropriate derogatory way.
ST: Your fascination with celebrity has seen you defaming everyone from Jay Leno to Seth Rogen. Still, I notice you haven't taken a crack at many celebrity musicians or musician / actors (Russell, Keanu, Bruce etc...). Are you intimidated by the possibility of a battle of the bands or rock-off challenge? What about a dance off?
TH: Rogen and I actually made up. He's casting me in his new movie, I play a guy who thinks women are hot and likes beer/weed.
Regarding the actor/musicians you mentioned, they all tend to have large muscles and/or the ability to download karate moves, so you pick your battles.
I'd be open to a rock off but I'd have to set a few ground rules; no instruments, no sounds made with mouth, no noise allowed for that matter, no body movements. Did I mention I was regional standing champion '98-'99? The rules for the dance off would be very similar.
ST: Recently you collaborated with local photographer, and Toronto music scene documentarian Danielle Nemet (of Sombre Reptiles photoblog fame). Do you find the local music scene to be at all inspiring? Do you go to 'gigs' with any regularity?
TH: I do frequent Toronto gigs. What really bothers me about Toronto's music scene is the lack of adaptability. In my mind if U2 is the most popular band, then really everyone should be attempting their sound, that's just simple economics. Long story short, the answer's no, there are no good bands in Toronto, and I double as a Toronto music critic, so that opinion is actually fact.
ST: What is your desert island record, or do you still not own a stereo?
I still don't own a stereo, but my favourite album is the No Country for Old Men soundtrack.
ST: Lastly, who is the smelliest, or most groupie-abusing member of Vampire Weekend? Do you have any other amusing tour stories from your stint as maraca shaker in this cute african pop band & critical favourite?
TH: Firstly, I need to correct you, our sound is purely original, so there actually are no African influences. Furthermore in addition to the maraca, I play the djembe, kalimba and marimba. In answer to your question, all of the members of VW (the band) use Axe bodyspray almost religously, and it's impossible to abuse a groupie, they love it.
There is this one really funny story.We were touring once and we all had to sleep in this small hotel room that was meant for probably three less people then we had, and we all just looked at each other and said; "Well, this is life on the road."
Slim Twig's Contempt! is out now, you can buy it in stores and internets, I'm assuming.
and if you haven't heard this guy please go to myspace.com/slimtwig