DISCLAIMER: This is a parody of the Edsel Dope interview published here back on Nov. 4 and only to be taken half-seriously. The anonymous author of this parody claims no affiliation with STATIC-X, Tripp Eisen, DOPE, THE MURDERDOLLS, BON JOVI, or MARILYN MANSON. If brevity is the soul of wit, then the following interview is soulless. Take it with a grain of salt, pepper, and a pinch of angel dust. Lighten up and have some fun. Hell & Keel.
When it comes to opinionated rock guitarists who speak their minds, few come close to STATIC-F's Trick Elzen. Exuding undeniable charisma and confidence that has often been mistaken for sheer brilliance, Trick has established a reputation for running a tight ship over the course of three well-received full-length major label albums with three different bands that have seen the guitarist sharing the stage with everyone from KID ROCK to SLIPKNOT to DOPE to PIMPADELIC. Currently & permanently a member of STATIC-F following a split with DOPE and then THE MURDERDOLLS, Trick is working on spreading his philosophical & political ideals while continuing work on STATIC-F's third album, due sometime in 2003.
Having recently traded verbal jabs with members of Edsel Dope's DOPE and Joey Jordison's MURDERDOLLS over his own departure from both bands, Trick Elzen recently sat down and answered a few questions exclusively for BLABBERMOUTH.NET about his political philosophy, musical vision and reputation for being easy to get along with, and just basically an all-around nice guy.
Q: Your debut album with DOPE, "Felons and Revolutionaries", was considered a relative commercial success and set the stage for their follow-up, "Life", which a lot of people had expected would take the group to the next level. From your perspective, why didn't this happen?
Trick Elzen: Who cares?! I'm out of that band now. But seriously, it got out there to the die-hard DOPE fans and a shitload more people have downloaded it, cuz then you don't have to buy it! They just got off tour and they feel like their fan base is as strong as it's ever been, which I think is extreme rationalization, and wishful thinking. As strong as ever? What?. I just think maybe they missed that "average Joe" buyer who bought it on a whim, 'cause it was six bucks and there was lots of buzz around the first album and MARILYN MANSON was still fresh in everyone's mind at that time. I actually can judge DOPE's popularity based on an overpriced second album that their label didn't get behind. Epic sunk a lot of money into that first album and "Life" had to take off right away or DOPE would just become a tax write-off. It was "now or never". And the album just didn't take off. The new music on "Life" has gotten out there one way or another, and that's all that's important because I co-wrote a few of the songs and they reproduced a few of my leads and stuff, so I feel really attached to it in a weird sort of way. I think it has been a blessing in disguise. It forced me to take a step back and look at DOPE with an open mind. It was a band without much substance riding on the coattails of a few different fads. MARILYN MANSON being the dominant example obviously. We're knee-deep in writing what will be our third album and we are fully supported by out label, Warmer Brothers, which feels really good. For me, STATIC-F (and my fellow bandmates: Wade, Kev and Toby) was a brand new relationship and a chance to start over again on the business side of things, with feelings of mutual respect and fairness something sorely lacking in the DOPE organization. There are still a shitload of DOPE kids out there and I am always concerned and love talking to them and owe them a lot. It's always good to see those familiar faces out on tour from the DOPE days, and I know DOPE doesn't get to tour much.
Q: At what stage of the songwriting/recording process are you with respect to STATIC-F's third album and how does this compare to DOPE?
Trick Elzen: We have a ton of shit recorded. More than ever, actually. Most people know that in the studio I've had to deal with Edsel's claim to being "sort of a one-man band". He's a regular Trent Reznor. That's why it's refreshing to have the musical responsibility falling on the entire band. Which happened with DOPE after the first tour. Since the addition of guitarist "Virus" to DOPE, I've realized that friendship falls by the wayside when fame seems imminent. The two of us have built an incredible friendship over eight years, but desperation is a tender trap. He writes like crazy and he sings and plays guitar like an angel, but will anyone ever really hear what he does? Let's hope so. I would like a thank-you note from Edsel for pushing him to get his partner "Virus" in the band. Something that Edsel was dead-set against, but Prestone (original drummer of DOPE) & I fought hard to make happen (like we did to get Acey into DOPE, too). But now, I finally have a band that is willing and capable of taking on the responsibility of writing and recording songs with me, while developing a friendship & mutual respect as a normal human being. Between the four of us we have around 80 songs being considered for the new album. Some of it is heavy as fuck and in the typical STATIC-F sound, and some of it more is experimental and quirky. I think "Life" showed DOPE's ability to venture into places that only BON JOVI would dare go these days. It's very important for them not to make the same album over and over and this time just try to do whatever will sell. From what I hear, their new stuff is sort of a combination of both of BON JOVI and MARILYN MANSON, with even more musical growth because they are better musicians and an even better now at copying their favorite bands. I think they are moving in the right direction. For STATIC-F, we will always be heavy, we will always be STATIC-F. And I will always be pissed off for all the right reasons about all my former bands. We are still a band that came from all parts of the country and landed in southern California, and right now Wade and Kev are still happy they moved out of Chicago. It's just too cold there in the winter. It's the rock n roll dream for us right now. We each have a house with a studio in it. And we rehearse and record every day that we are physically able. We all live here in the Beverly Hills/Malibu area and our creativity is in full swing. We date models, actresses, secretaries, strippers and porn stars. It's the way it should be. A band that is all in it together for the long haul. I'm so happy that Wade can drink his expensive box-o-wine and the rest of us can watch football on Sunday and then stumble down to our posh Los Angeles rehearsal space and just have fun playing. Even if it's just jamming old SLAYER songs. Sometimes we don't even sing. We just plug in and jam on some cool disco riffs while hot strippers dance in full view. I think we've realized that there doesn't have to be a "corporate music hell", and that our label has valid opinions and we listen to them because they basically let us do whatever we want to do. We don't mind big hot-shot producers and we'd rather wait to go back to the basement "where it all began". We are doing this because it's what we love to do and its 100% for ourselves and our fans at this point. We have written all of the new record so far with no outside input. It's all self-produced thus far. It reminds me of the way it should be done. Wade and Kev said STATIC-F recorded the first demos this way. Only they're doing it with my help and not Kofuki. I guess it's refreshing to be in this situation. It's nice to be treated with mutual respect. I like to scare people and Toby loves to fart. Keep your eyes open and your noseplugs ready 'cause we got a lot more to do before we wrap all this up (the interview I mean). P. U.
Q: In light of the recent personnel changes and the rumors that have surrounded the band during the last few months, can you please clarify what the current lineup of the DOPE is and where they got their names?
Trick Elzen: DOPE is Edsel Dope (vox/gtrs), "Edsel" comes from the car "Edsel" that was a huge flop back in the 1950's, Virus (lead gtr/keys). "Virus" comes from the fact that he is always sick. Racci Shay (drums), he got to change his name back to Racci from "Sketchy" cuz Acey is now gone and "Racci" and "Acey" rhymed and that was just not cool, eh. "Sketchy" came from his love of drawing & penciling. Sloane "Mosey" Jentry (bass), "Mosey" comes from the fact that he is lazy and shiftless and it was a nickname coined by Edsel. Simon Dope (keys), "Simon" comes from "Simon Bar Sinistar" the evil villian from the "Underdog" cartoon, I think. Edsel's brother [Simon] has been absent from shows lately, but can you blame him? He's been moonlighting as a video game producer for Activision. He just finished up the new "Tony Hawk Pro Skater" game. Simon's not really a musician in the traditional sense of the word because he doesn't really play "music".
Q: Edsel recently had some harsh words for SLIPKNOT drummer and MURDERDOLLS guitarist Joey Jordison over the way he secured the services of his last guitarist, Acey Slade, after he was apparently told that Acey was going to be in the group only temporarily. What do you think it was about the way Joey handled this situation that made Edsel feel so betrayed by him?
Trick Elzen: It's time to back-peddle because Joey is still the drummer of SLIPKNOT and it'd be better to remain on good terms so as to still be able to tour with them. So I'm sure Edsel will say that he doesn't feel like he said anything harsh about Joey. He'll say he "just told the truth" about what happened. He'll say "I don't think Joey betrayed me, and I still consider him to be as much my friend today as he was before this all went down", well you're right! Joey didn't think of you as much of a friend before this went down. If Acey was loyal to the DOPE cause, he would have made a different decision, but any member of DOPE would have jumped at that offer. Don't ya think? People often forget what got them where they are, and how important each member of the "team" is. It's a very hard thing to find in this business. I'm glad I found it now with STATIC-fucking-F.
Q: Edsel was also quite vocal about the fact that he felt that the MURDERDOLLS' image was patterned after that of DOPE. I quote his previous statement: "It's obvious that Joey knows where to go to find what he's looking for and by the looks of his new band, minus the 12 pounds of makeup, he's been eyeballing us for quite some time. I can only take this as the highest form of flattery." MURDERDOLLS frontman Wednesday 13 recently addressed this issue, stating in reference to Edsel: "His guitarist Acey quit DOPE to join MURDERDOLLS. He now claims to have copyrights on dreadlocks, the color black, people holding microphones, walking upright, and middle fingers...because 'he did it first.' " What is your response to this?
Trick Elzen: When he said, "Joey knows where to come to get what he's looking for," it was in reference to the fact that Joey needed to replace me. But Acey came close to joining THE MURDERDOLLS (REJECTS) several times So he and I could have been in together at any point. It's not irony, it's practicality. I'm sure Edsel is sympathetic and understanding about "borrowing" image ideas *cough* MARILYNMANSON* cough*....... I don't think Joey would deny being a fan of DOPE and what we did (at that time) and Edsel would not deny being a fan of MARILYN MANSON and what he does and how he looks and sounds and how he talks and acts. As far as the other shit is concerned: I'm sure Edsel doesn't want to get into a pissing match with these guys, he doesn't drink enough water nor have enough piss. We all wish Acey well, sure, sure. He's a great guy. I really do, we all do. The way he quit DOPE was funny and predictable, especially that he left them hanging. By doing that, he acted like a punk, but can you blame him? At the end of the day, I know he's not a bad guy and I applaud him for what he did. Actually I instigated it, which is the real irony. I am sure one day Edsel will see Acey and everything will be cool and they'll sit down and talk about old times, back at the turn of the century. I know no one wants to make enemies and neither do I. It's all a power struggle. And scratching and climbing at the ladder of success. I heard Edsel said this message to Acey: "Acey, If you're out there, we ain't gunnin' for ya, bro". If you're out there? Gunnin' for ya bro? Who talks like this? Look out Acey, whatever he says usually is the opposite of what he really means, but you know this all too well. Beware: sniper in the bushes. Edsel Bin Laden. As far as Wednesday's comments... Fucking brilliant! What did you expect him to say? He hung out with us when DOPE came through North Carolina, Edsel used to hang out with MARILYN MANSON and his band. So what? Oddly enough, I'm sure Edsel didn't resemble MANSON quite as much back then. Remember, bro, you didn't bring me into the big game I was alongside you when you entered it. Semantics? Not quite. I delivered a full band to Edsel and a full band to Joey. So in a fucked-up way we're all connected, man. Isn't that nice? Well you're all connected to Tripp at least. Don't start talking shit about me or pretend that you don't like my band because I was there when you said "let's copy STATIC-F" It's all a bunch of bullshit, and it's only gonna lead to more silly nonsense. I promise you we will cross paths some day. And you better hope I don't have my 350 lb. bodyguard that has a license to carry firearms. Cuz you'll be picking your entrails up off the floor. (just joking now, calm down)
Q: You were booted from DOPE under acrimonious circumstances, with both sides claiming that personal differences were largely to blame for the split. Do you still have a friendship with Edsel and what do you think about your decision to give up a spot in the MURDERDOLLS so that you could focus exclusively on STATIC-F?
Trick Elzen: Let's set the record straight. I was asked to leave, then asked to return 4 days later. I set certain conditions for my reinstatement into DOPE, but Edsel was could not meet these terms. I set the terms a little high. I think I made the right decision. And I made the right decision with THE MURDERDOLLS. Sometimes you have to put your personal agenda up in front and everything else falls in place. I was faced with the same decision on a smaller scale with DOPE and I made the correct choice there, too. We live and we learn.... and I was correct in each decision so far! To answer your question about friendship. We never had a friendship. I will give Edsel credit, he did try to develop a friendship with me, but I rejected it. He knows this is the truth. It is very cruel to be honest, sometimes. And that was the other half of the problem. I refused to kiss ass to stay in DOPE. Everyone can relate to that. Edsel tried to position himself as "the boss" and no one likes to answer to a boss. What happens? Rebellion. A band should be, well? a band! So, no, we are not friends. He talks all kinds of shit to the kids on tour about me and my band and spends way too much time and energy on me and his dislike of the things I do. Let it go, bro. Sorry that you are reminded of MARILYN MANSON every time you look in the mirror. It's been like two years, and it's old fucking news. Get over it and shut the fuck up. On another note, please brush and floss your teeth, and go to the dentist before you wind up picking your teeth up off the floor. I don't have anything else to say about that guy, good, bad or ugly. It's such a waste of energy. But let me go on for a few more sentences. No, I'll stop. Wait. One more thing: I'm so sick of hearing about what he said about me this week or that he wants to punch out me and my band. I'm so sick of hearing his comments on my outrageous & shocking t-shirts. I guess I'm just very offensive. I'm done with him. I will not say another word. Wait. OK, well I was done with him two years ago. He's like a chick I dumped that won't go away, stop talking about me. I don't love you anymore, in fact I never did. And your dick is crooked. I think even Acey will back me up on this one. Wait, I just talked to him and he does back me up.
Q: Edsel has personally developed a reputation for himself as a difficult person to be in a band with and to tour with. How much of that is justified, and how much of that do you think is simply a consequence of false rumors and innuendos generated by people who have an "ax to grind"?
Trick Elzen: I've heard Edsel say: "I live 100 percent for this band, and I expect a lot from anyone that is in it with me. I don't say "please" all the time, and sure, sometimes I can be a dick. That's a difficult thing for a lot of people to deal with. I'm extremely focused to the point of being a bit insane at times, but that's what makes this DOPE ship sail." Self-admittedly insane. And that's maybe why that ship is sinking. I always put my band first, I stand up for what I believe in and I don't take shit... that's why I am not in that band any more. Though I am happy I could influence so many of the lyrics on the "Life" album. And make no mistake about it, I did. Fun lyrics to read, feeling a personal connection. I can now relate to how BON JOVI's ex-girlfriends feel. Considering the fact that the people making most of these claims about Edsel were all in my circle of friends and were extremely talented and would have found a niche with or without DOPE. That's called believing in yourself. Check it out, man. Who has an "ax to grind"?? I can hear Edsel's ax clear across the country, grinding away. Turn off that stereo, open your window & listen. *bzzzzzzzzzzzzz* I can't put much stock in anything negative that he says about me or anyone else. Bitter lemons, sour grapes. Tasty. I gave this guy the opportunity to have a kick-ass band so when he played in front of thousands of people he wouldn't look like such an ass, considering the lame-ass pseudo-musicians he had playing with him when I met first met Edsel. I felt like, "dude, let me hook a brotha up with some real players". We played songs that Edsel wrote and recorded, but he always claimed that he was open to our material too, but let's just use these songs to get things rolling. Which I felt was reasonable at the time for expediency. Right on. Since I had just auditioned for MARILYN MANSON a year earlier I was totally into the image ideas that Edsel had borrowed from that concept. It got a bit tiring hearing him go on and on about MANSON so much, but hey, whatever. I just wish he'd give MANSON credit and not pretend to have made up the DOPE image on his own. Give a brotha some credit. At least thank MANSON on your CD. Did anyone notice, those of us who bitch the most about Edsel haven't strayed far from....... damn does he have a copyright on dreads? How many people have dreads? Damn, I'm sorry, I should cut my hair. Well thanks for the beauty tips and hair style. And at this time I would like to take a moment to thank Edsel's inspirational mentor: Mr. Manson. We accomplished with DOPE, together, what Edsel never could on his own. He was resented, because he was sort of a dick, and not for anything else. And if I'm a dick for saying this, then so be it. I really didn't need him, like he needed me. I really don't need anyone. All I need is my guitar, and my Supergirl doll, and my porno DVDs, and my Lucky Charms and my Trix cereal. Yeah, my Trix cereal, I love my Trix cereal. That Trix Rabbit is silly. Just plain silly. He's my good luck charm. I sleep with him at night. No one complained when people started asking for their autographs, except Edsel who was more interested in smoking pot. What a stoner. They just wanted an autograph on an album that Tripp played guitar on and Prestone played drums on. What's the big deal? We did bitch early on about things, but things were ironed out just fine. Well, not really. When we became certified, full-fledged rock stars (which was quite an honor), we continued to bitch the same as usual. Just 'cause everyone knows your name, doesn't mean you're important. Everyone wants their share of the glory, but if you don't get it sometimes you cut and run. Especially when you're a rat on a sinking ship. I am starting a "DOPE death pool". Who's leaving next? I've never been unclear about the way I am. I kick ass. I deliver. I don't cut and run. I make carefully planned decisions. I bust my ass 24-7 for any band I'm in that's worthy of it. I make no apologies for making shit happen, unless it's making a shit in my pants. For that I am truly sorry. As far as Edsel being difficult to tour with, I don't know. You try it and get back to me. I think I'm a lot of fun to tour with. I've toured with lots of bands that like me and I like them. I like me, my mom likes me, my fans like me. I'm very happy with myself. I'm as pleased as a maggot in a week-old deer carcass. I've toured with all of the guys currently in my band and some who are not anymore (Kofuki), and got along just fine with them. If you want references I would be more than happy to provide them. Trust me I'm a nice guy. I mean, shit, man, fuck, Racci's (formerly Sketchy) been offered 'bout every gig under the sun in the last two years, and he chooses to tour with Edsel, "the most difficult frontman in rock and roll", so the only conclusion is: Racci (formerly Sketchy) is either a masochist or he just hasn't been offered the right gig just yet. Even Edsel auditioned for a major band [rumored to be POWERMAN 5000 — ed.] when the "Life" CD was in full swing and was prepared to desert his band, but he didn't get the gig. What the hell's up with that? Hypocrisy of the highest order, that's what. I think I have a reputation for being easy to deal with because I take responsibility for all Trick-related issues, and I am just basically a swell guy. I really am. Except during a full moon. That makes me quite moody. If I have something to say, or if I need something, I say it or I do it. I don't send my tour manager, or my bodyguard, or my personal assistant to do my dirty work. Or say "yes" to someone's face and tell my manager, body guard, or p.a. to tell them "no" in order for me to save face. That's plastic Hollywood bullshit and I won't play that game. Not that there's anything wrong with Hollywood. It's a great town, but I personally like West Hollywood better. Can you relate? I don't act like your friend and then go behind your back and change my tune. With me, what you see is what you get, unless I have something to hide or want to shake your hand then break a promise later cuz I had my fingers crossed. But I picked up that habit from being in DOPE. I think a lot of people are intimidated by dishonesty. But that's only natural. Now, as far as rumors go, if five dopey people have it out for you and they set their mind to spreading bad things on the internet, they can create the illusion of a situation being far larger than it is. Take DOPE's fan base, for example. They just blow everything out of proportion. Those people can blow me. Well, not the male people, cuz I am not gay (just for the record). I don't have time to acknowledge useless people that have nothing better to live for than spreading bullshit gossip about me. Actually, I'm lying, I do have the time, that's why I'm talking right now. Another news flash: Edsel didn't start playing music to be accepted by all. The majority of the people that hate him are the exact people that he wants to hate him. That number is just growing a little bit too quickly. Exponentially actually. Slow down. You're doing a fine job. Keep it up. You're just not a smart guy. You're crafty, yeah crafty.
Q: DOPE are about to embark on the "12 Dollar Riot Tour" with SKINLAB, PRIMER 55 and SOCIETY 1. What do you think of the idea for this package tour?
Trick Elzen: DOPE's label only supported one tour for them on the "Life" record. Otherwise it would have just been a money pit. Can you blame them? It's all business. No matter how nice of a guy you are, you still have to deliver something marketable. If you're a jerk, then you better have something really really marketable. After touring non-stop on "Felons" it was a shitty situation for them to be in. They were supposed to do a tour with MACHINE HEAD at the end of last year, but their label pulled the plug on it at the last minute. I'm sure they were pissed and I know that must have bummed out a lot of kids. Not as many as they'd hoped, but still a good handful. Knowing you have pounds of fans out there that want to see you play and not being able to do anything about it must have really sucked!!! As soon as they knew they were getting dropped from their label, they probably started planning how to spin the press reports to make it seem like they "left the label". They needed to be out there playing these songs, any songs, to their fans night after night. Out of sight, out of mind, ya know. I know nothing's cooler to me then hearing a 1/4-room full of kids yell "Fuck Tha Police". Well actually hearing a full room is cooler. I'm sure they put this tour together in order to show the kid(s) that not only are they actually still around but that they never really left. Cuz there was a rumor that they had left. I know there are three other kick-ass bands to help make the show an all round smash. Sounds like fun, get there early, get there really early & buy some CDs and shirts. I'm sure a big step was getting everyone to agree to keep the costs down without compromising the impact of the show while still allowing DOPE to make the majority of the proceeds. I think if everyone is willing to inconvenience themselves a little bit, DOPE could still profit. I'm sure they can deliver this show to the fans for next to nothing. And in today's economy $12 is actually next to nothing, isn't it? Well not for me. With $12 I could feed a family of four. They really should give something back to all of their fans that have stuck by them throughout all the bullshit spewed by DOPE's controversial, confident, charismatic, cocky, coveted, outspoken, outrageous, obstinate, mangy, mental, misunderstood, MARILYN MANSON-copying, provocative, pretentious, pot-smoking, pusillanimous, poseur frontman.