The new album In The Black from Canadian metal queens, Kittie, is probably their most ambitious since 1999’s Spit. With angst that was lacking from last years Funeral For Yesterday, and lyrics laced with relationship turmoil, Kittie returns to their original sound on Black, more so than previous albums, while still managing to keep it fresh. Proving that ten years later they still can leave an impression and a hook in your ear, while still melting your face off. I had a chance to sit down on their tour bus with them before their October 26th, 2009 show at The Intersection in Grand Rapids, and see how things are going.
FM: In The Black is my favorite Kittie album yet, and I believe your most ambitious since Spit. What inspired you go to in the direction that you did on the new album?
Morgan Lander: It’s my favorite, too. We wanted to make sure it was the complete opposite of Funeral. (Writing-wise, production-wise, and all that stuff). Going into the studio we had a set idea of how we would like things to sound, and we knew that if we were going to be recording with Siegfried Meyer, who actually was an engineer on Oracle, that we would be getting exactly what we wanted. That was kind of the point. We basically went and recorded the album without a label. We just wanted to do exactly what we wanted to do. And it turned out exactly the way we wanted it to!
Mercedes Lander: Party!
Morgan: We wanted to make a fucking awesome album, basically! We wanted to top everything we had done before. We wanted it to shadow the last release. We basically just wanted to be born again, and re-introduce the band, which is why we have our picture on the cover. Everything comes full-circle and we wanted to show that 10 years after our first release, we’re still awesome, we’re still kicking it in the face… With boots… Big ones.
FM: What do you do on your days off from touring?
Mercedes: Watch ‘Nip/Tuck’.
Morgan: We usually go to a truck stop; shower; hang out.
Ivy Vujic: At the last one we found a dog. Fed it, and found it a home.
Morgan: (We’re good Samaritans.)
Ivy: You find things to amuse yourself. Usually, we’re absolutely in the middle of nowhere… That one day off we went to New Orleans, that was awesome.
All: Oh, yeah!
Ivy: Went to the French Quarter and got smashed.
Tara McLeod: We did what you’re supposed to do in New Orleans.
Ivy: [Drunken jock voice] We got Bourbon-faced on Shit Street!
Morgan: But, other than that, it’s usually just a travel day and we hang out on the bus, find a seat, put a blanket on.
Mercedes: Plus, the last couple days off, I know I’ve been sick. And Morgan started getting sick, so it’s just going downhill from there, and we’re all not very well in the sinuses.
Tara: Are you sure you wanna get that close to all of us? You’re taking a risk coming on the bus.
Mercedes: I don’t think I’m contagious anymore. I’ve been sick for 13 days and I don’t think you can be contagious for that long.
Morgan: Yeah, it’s just hard to get well when you’re sharing recycled air.
FM: Apparently some people at my work have swine flu, so this is nothing…
Morgan: Oh, yeah?
FM: So, what bands have you been listening to lately?
Tara: We just discovered a band called Big Elf. We all love them.
Mercedes: They’re amazing.
FM: How’d you discover them?
Mercedes: Our radio rep came to our show in Dallas and dropped off a bunch of CD’s for us. The Big Elf CD was in there.
FM: Do you know anything about them?
Mercedes: Not really, other than that the singer wears a top hat, and plays a huge keyboard setup.
Morgan: Yes, an indulgent keyboard setup. Hmm, I’m trying to think of what else have I’ve been listening to on my iPod? I’ve been going to sleep to Aereogramme a lot lately. Thanks to Mercedes. They’re from Scotland. Scootland!
Mercedes: The new Coldplay record. Love it. It makes me pee my pants.
Morgan: The new Behemoth album is pretty fucking awesome. Sometimes I go to sleep listening to that in hopes that I’ll wake up and be more evil. Bwahaha. Just kidding.
FM: I remember back in the Spit days, that you were fans of Silverchair. I’ve always been a Silverchair geek as well up until the last album.
Morgan: You didn’t like it? I think that Daniel Johns’ relationship took a shit, and then he went crazy a little bit, and that last album was representative of that.
Mercedes: I really liked that last album though.
Morgan: No, I like it too.
Mercedes: I like music that sounds like crazy people make it.
Morgan: Except for Today Is The Day.
Mercedes: Well, yeah.
Morgan: He is crazy.
FM: Last question. What’s your favorite cereal?
Morgan: What’s my favorite cereal? [Gasp!]
Tara: Count Chocula.
Morgan: Cinnamon Toast Crunch. Hands down.
Ivy: Apple Cinnamon Cheerios.
Mercedes: I don’t know, man. That’s a tough one.
Tara: [Half-sarcastic] There’s so many great cereals out there. How can you pick a favorite?
Mercedes: The Reese’s Peanut Butter Puffs are fucking good.
Morgan: Yeah, those are very good, but I think they’re a close second because Cinnamon Toast Crunch is the fucking best.
Tara: You just gotta eat it fast, right?
Morgan: Oh yeah, otherwise it gets soggy. That’s why, when I eat it, I’ll pour a giant bowl and put just a little milk in, and eat from the bottom up.
Ivy: Strategic eating.
Tara: We love cereal.
Ivy: Kittie loves food in general.
Mercedes: And Jimmie John’s Subs.
Tara: Usually the meat is the epicenter of a sub, but this avocado spread was the best part.
Mercedes: I didn’t get a lot of avocado spread! Got a whole lot of those fucking sprouts though.