ELECTRIC CIRCUS: Lawless calls 1987's Electric Circus "the biggest pile of shit ever made by anyone in the recording industry." "It was a tired record made by a tired band," he explains"The whole P.M.R.C. thing was going great guns by then and death threats were a daily occurrence. We had the F.B.I. on the road with us. It really started to get to me. I'm 6'4" and totally capable of taking care of myself; I've never been scared of anyone or anything . Suddenly, I was jumping everytime a floor board creaked.
1997 REUNION : "I hadn't performed a proper W.A.S.P. show in too long," says Lawless. "I toured for six months in 1992 behind The Crimson Idol, but I just sort of stood there and performed that album in it's entirety. Last year, I was driving down the street when I suddenly realised there was this huge hole inside of me. We were on the Sunset Strip, right in front of the Whiskey, and I turned to my manager and said, 'I'm dying inside. I have to call Chris and see if he wants to go back on the road'. I knew what I had to do and. And now I've done it. We're cranking this machinery back up to full speed.


BLACKIE ABOUT CHRIS : He is mad. His soul is mad. You have to spend 24 hours with him to understand how he is.We are the most extreme people I know. He's the angriest man on this planet. People often ask "Does he still drink?" But they fail to realise that his drinking is the symptom of the disease. The disease is madness.


SONG WRITING : "I look at songs like a puzzle In the sense that I have a vague idea where certain parts are going to be. I'm pretty good at chop rock because I go in with a hatchet and start moving stuff around until it feels right. It takes a lot of  effort to get the songs to where I feel they were their strongest."


SHOWS : "I am a follower of an old rule in the showbusiness : "Leave the audience wanting more" - better a shorter and heavy show than a long one which starts to bore the people after some time.


FAN DEDICATION : "I think there is no luckier person on the face of the earth. We have a fan base similar to band like the Grateful Dead. Unbelievably dedicated. When you have that kind of fan base.... it's hard to put into words why  it is like that... it makes me very humble as opposed to becoming arrogant. I keep thinking "why me?"  We have a cult following. We have the most devoted fans in the world. I've never seen anything like it. If we were 10 times bigger, we'd be the Grateful Dead." 


INFLUENCES (BLACKIE) : "I am careful not to listen to other bands when I am in the middle of recording, as I don't want the songs to be influenced by them. Over my life, I have
been influenced by Steppenwolf in a major way. Born to be Wild was one of the first songs I heard. The Who, the Beatles, have all been an influence. 


CROW INFLUENCE ON MAKEUP (1997) : "No, because I haven't seen the movies as I created the make-up. Of course I did know the figure and have seen photos as well but I never had the idea that my make-up is so similar to the Crow's one. I was either inspired by the big L. A. - gangs. I sat there and tried some make-up creations and I missed something and so I got the idea with the tears. Here in L. A. we've two competing gangs, the "Bloods" and the "Cryps". The single band members get a tattoo after comitting their first murder and this tattoo is a teardrop underneath the eye. I painted two tears and moved them directly under my eyes and this is the whole teardropstory . . .


ABOUT THE STAGE SHOW : "It's what I call confrontational theatre, or psychodrama. I used to say it was psychotic people doing drama. No rock band did it like us. It made us uniquely different. We use confrontational theatre to manipulate the emotions of the viewer; manipulate them like a movie like Platoon or Silence of the Lambs does. It leaves you with an uneasy feeling because you've been emotionally raped. There was no rock band that did confrontational theatre as good as us, even though many have tried. Think about it, there is a nun on a 13 foot cross and I rape her with a knife and I pull her fetus out---it certainly gets your attention. And that doesn't even begin to describe what we do on stage. It's definitely not for the faint of the heart. You either like it or you hate it. It's the Roman Coliseum put to Heavy Metal music. 


CHRIS ON KFD : "K.F.D. was very much collaboration. Chris is a genius in the studio but he is totally mad. to write lyrics, all I have to do is walk behind him and copy down the things he says."


LIVE IN THE RAW AND DLA : "The first live-album had some kind of special arena-show-feeling while the new one delivers the feeling as if you play inside of a hot, sweaty garage for some of your best buddies - these vibes are just like day and night. "Double Live Assassins" is exactly the kind of a live-album I've always wanted to make. Live, heavy - just like a punch in your face. This should be the sound of each live-album - concentrated power and nothing else !" 


CAREER HIGH POINT : Lawless' pride and joy is The Crimson Idol, W.A.S.P.'s worst selling album. "I was frustrated by people listening to me with their eyes and not their ears," he says. "And also by not getting the critical respect my songwriting deserves, so I consciously broke a cardinal rule of the music business and didn't market this album in the manner that built my career. I said, 'Damn all this! I am going to make them listen seriously'. I got what I wanted. I appeased the critics - Rock World magazine in Britain named The Crimson Idol one of the 20 greatest concept records of all time - but I turned my back to the public. Still, I love that record, and the work itself should be the reward, not a momentary destination on the way to fame or fortune.


BAND'S GEAR : To withstand the torture, Lawless relies on custom BC Rich Warlocks which "stay in tune under some pretty extreme conditions" Holmes is devoted to Custom Jacksons. "I want the loudest, gnarliest pickup there is, so I use 19k's with double magnets. I also squeeze so hard I have ti use the thinnest possible frets or everything I play would go sharp. Both Blackie and me use SansAmps because Marshalls are too temperamental and you can really beat the crap out of SansAmps on the road. We're sick of shit that can't stand up to a little punishment." The memory of malfunctioning equipment clearly enrages the volatile musician and he concludes with a ferocious promise, "If you really want to see blood, come with me to the next NAMM convention when I go to tell all those manufacturers how fucked up their stuff is.