Scratching Post hail from Canada. A 4 piece playing music that obviously has a "metal" edge to it, but with enough pop sensibilities to appeal to those whose interests do not allow them to be seen to listen to "metal". If you manage to get hold of a copy of Flamethrower, give it a listen, it's good. This interview took place with Nicole some time in the recent past..
Q: Besides yourself, who else is in the band:
Mark Holman: guitar
Jeff Depew: drums
Phil Zeller: bass
Nicole Hughes: vocals, guitar
Q: And how long have you been together:
A: Scratching Post has been together for over 5 years now although not with this particular line-up. We've had about a million member changes with me (Nicole) being the only original member at this point. THe current line-up has been together for about a year and a half.
Q: How would you describe the sort of music you play:
A: Well, it's definitely a mixture of pop and metal but when you describe it like that people think Skid Row or Bon Jovi or something. It's hard to explain. I guess the songs are pop-flavoured because of the vocal melodies but the music is metal.
Q: How many albums/eps have you done:
A: We released a 7 song CD in November '95 and our full length album "Flamethower" was released in March '96. We're working on new songs for our second proper album right now.
Q: I believe you're getting ready to record a new album. How's that going:
A: Like I said, we've been working on the new songs. We're a little confused about what the plan actually is at this point though. Since we were signed to a major and then dropped within 6 months, it's all a little confusing. We re-recorded a heavier version of "Flamethower" for The Enclave but now that they have folded we're not sure what we're going to do with it. We still may try and get another label to release it. Or, we might just put in on a shelf and forget about it. But, at this point, we are looking towards album #2.
Q: What are your influences:
A: I'll tell you what my influences are since the rest of the band has totally different influences: On the metal side I'm into Voivod, Sepultura, Life of Agony etc. On the rock side I'm into Boston, Styx, Journey, Thin Lizzy, Van Halen, Scorpions etc. On the pop side I'm into Weezer, Juliana Hatfield, Seaweed, Rocket from the Crypt etc.
Q: Is it easy for a band to try and break out of Canada:
A: Yes, I think it is really easy. We live in Toronto so that means we're really close to a bunch of major U.S cities--they're all within a 12 hour drive. It's really easy to get U.S exposure that way. Outside of North America I guess it depends on the record label you're on and how well they do at promoting your music in other countries. So far, we haven't had anything released outside of North America.
A: You've recently been recording at the same studio as Voivod. How did that go:
A: It was great!!! It was the best 2 month-long party!! Michel, Piggy and Eric are all really amazing people. We were recording the new version of "Flamethower" for the Enclave and they were recording their new album "Phobos". We all became friends really quickly and both bands actually helped each other out a lot. Michel played the gong on our record!! It was great to be in the studio with a band like Voivod because they are such amazing musicians--totally inspiring. We just played 3 shows with Voivod--warm up gigs for their European tour. The shows went really well. I have never seen a band more amazing than Voivod in my life. They are absolutely the tightest and heaviest band I have ever seen. Again, it was totally inspiring.
Q: And finally, has to be asked. Spice Girls. Good or bad:
A:I think they're amazing!!! I actually own the record and a t-shirt (I didn't buy them--it's just that the Enclave was distributed through Virgin in Canada so we got lots of free stuff from Virgin). We listened to it in the studio with Voivod and I'm not going to name any names but I wasn't the only one who didn't despise it!!
If you want to contact the band, the easiest way is by sending an e-mail to Nicole