Ex- Life, Sex, Death guitarist Alex Kane talks about his Chicago roots and U.K. success in AntiProduct

Ex- Life, Sex, Death guitarist Alex Kane talks about his Chicago roots and U.K. success in AntiProduct
November 21, 2011 | By More
Alex Kane is probably certifiably insane.  He took nothing short of FOREVER to hook up with us for this interview which has taken a series of phone calls, emails, chats and extended waits.  Having said all that, we must admit he, his band and THIS interview are all worth it.  We decided to give him the career retrospective treatment in short format and covered quite a bit of ground in short time, everything from his Chicago roots and short stint in Enuff Z’ Nuff (don’t ask), his major label roots with early 90s attention whores LIFE SEX & DEATH and his awesome new band AntiProduct.  Alex somehow manages to keep all these balls in the air, have a day job gig working with Disney show, “I’m in the Band” alum Caitlyn Love and still find time for regular softball playdates with fellow rockers like Athena Lee.  Check out our interview and check out his band AntiProduct, they actually rock as hard as he says they do, I wouldn’t steer you wrong.
Legendary Rock Interviews:   You’re from our area here, what was it like comin up in Illinois and what got you into music?
Alex Kane: Tortuous hell!  Why do you think I left?  Shirley, I jest.  Actually,  us Life, Sex, Death guys had been used to doing three hour long set in the midwest consisting of a matinee set for all ages and two sets for the “grown ups.”  So we get to L.A. and they’re all, “Hey, can you do a 35 minute set,” and we like “How many?”  So our Midwest work ethic had trained us to be unstoppable and too STUPID to notice any obstacles once we were in Cali.  What got me into music to begin with was knowing I would be utterly useless at anything else that didn’t involve a guitar and hanging with strangers.  It was all awesome but often times it takes hindsight to appreciate just how amazing a time it was.
LRI:  A lot of people don’t really remember the little mini-scene going on in Chicago area and that whole Thirsty Whale, Medusas, Chicago Rocker era…we have an ancient photo of you in Enuff Z’ Nuff (laughs), what are your memories of that whole bygone time and place?
AK:  Enuff Z’nuff…vague at best.  I think I was in the band maybe what 6 months or so.  I do recall getting my first erection (which Chip admired for the full hour and a half ride from Blue Island back to my North Side “City Kid” digs.  Not like he wanted to eat it, but more admiring it’s tenacity I believe.
LRI:  (laughs).  Wow, he spends a lot of time talking about his own weiner so I guess that makes sense.  What led to you leaving the Chicago area?  Was L.S. D. originally a Chicago or L.A. project?
AK:  Nah, we were, are and will always be from Chicago.  No matter where you live or what you do, you are always from Chicago or the Midwest for that matter!  I’ll run into Midwest dudes at festivals we’re doing or out in the world touring, dudes you never met before and you immediately go “OK, I get you.  Let’s go do stupid shit and act like we didn’t know it was wrong.”  We split Chicago because honestly, at that point, the music biz was really centered in LA.  The biz hadn’t really noticed us or anyone in Chicago too much after  Cheap Trick, a few offshoots and the Wax Trax/Industrial world, so while we were killing it and drawing 600 kids, no one gave a shit.  So we said, OK.  we’ll go to you and make you give a shit.  We were individually and collectively very focused.
LRI:  The story of LIFE SEX DEATH’s record deal is a pretty famously told one, including a HUGE bidding war,  which Warner Brothers won.  Again, hindsight being 20/20, did they do enough to promote the band in your eyes to justify their original interest in the band?
AK:  Um, ok.  It’s ’92.  Nirvana is literally destroying the entire paradigm of the then music biz (hair metal, lame hair metal, and Oh God, Somebody Paid To Record This Slop!?!?!?) and suddenly you have this BAND, L.S.D.  A weird Ramones-y, Cheap Trick, Metallica hybrid (bad and unclassifiable enough right there) with a stinky, bespectacled, dancing psychotic singing about giant vaginas and with our most commercial radio friendly tune called Fuckin’ Shit Ass.  So, who the fuck do you pitch this to?  The criminally insane?  Where is the built in demographic for this hugely opulent treasure trove of the record buying public.  NO WHERE!  Duh!  But, nonetheless, the band has resonated for nearly 20 years to the point where people STILL today this day will come up to me at gigs and be like, “Dude, LSD!!!!”   To which I then I go, “You’re 18!?!?!  How the fuck…?”  Also, a bunch of musicians, the hugeness of which is depressing to me, frankly, that rate the band as having been special and like us.  So, as a lifetime player, respect from other guys who do what I do really DOES means a shit ton.  It’s all good!!
LRI:  What was it like shooting those MTV videos like “Schools For Fools”  for the Life, SEX, Death album, “The Silent Majority” ?
AK:  Fun.  Self absorption is either a deeply spiritual and postive manner or  a nihilistic pile driver of a life but either way, you are there.  Dig it.  You’re one of the lucky ones.  Be grateful and pass it on that anyone cares.  If I was a basketball player, I’d have to practice, work out, meets the fans, marry a Kardashian.  It’s the price of admission no matter how horrible.
LRI:  Well we can’t avoid the most OBVIOUS and controversial question….people still argue about your singer Stanley’s mental stability or whether it was all just a gimmick, for those still arguing about this all these years later on youtube and shit can you definitvely answer?
AK:  I will say this about Stanley.  He is fearless, he is inspired, he is one of kind, he was miles before his time, he made some very interesting choices in how he chose to live his life and, I assure you from the inside, everything you heard is, in this rare case, absolutely and utterly true.  And trust me as well, what we didnt let you know is much much more weird and fucked.
LRI:  Would it be safe to say that despite how much people love the band that long rumored second album will still NEVER be released and a reunion of L.S.D. is NEVER going to happen?
AK:  Yes John, that would be safe to say.  LSD, like my new band AntiProduct, can only be all the way on with total, albeit temporal, commitment.  Neither of these bands can exist if its not meant to destroy everything.
LRI:  How long after LSD did you kick around before getting started with another project?
AK:  I left Life, Sex, Death to start a band with Matt Kramer of Saigon Kick, one of my all time favorite singers.  So, about 8 hours.
LRI:  Damnit if your next band wasnt awesome…. your bio is DEAD ON as far as Antiproducts influences…We hear them all because they’re our FAVORITE bands….Name one thing that Cheap Trick, Ramones, KISS, and SLAYER all bring to your sound and the music you make?  I also hear Alice.
AK:  Well, let’s see…………….Cheap Trick-everything pretty much, the melody, arrangement, irony, fuck you we dont care we are what we are attitude.
The Ramones for that freight train come to stare you down and change your life vibe, Kiss obviously for the bombast, show, kitsch factor and Slayer for the devil riffs. The one we forgot was Abba for all the male/female  harmonies
LRI:  Does the appearance of ANTIproduct tend to surprise people when they actually hear the super catchy Archies-esque music?  The song…”Hey (Let’s Get It On)” comes to mind.
AK:  EVERYTHING tends to lead to surprised people the first time anyone sees AntiProduct!  Me, utterly losing my shit, three super hot incredibly rockin women, and the most kick ass rhythm section of all time making you unstoppably horny.  What’s not to like?
LRI:  Does the input of the girls and specifically the vocal harmonies allow you to go places that other bands can’t?
AK:  I think so.  Obviously, like the girls can for starters, that kind of element in rock,  no one can do what AntiProduct does.  Simple.  Kiss theatrically, the power and onslaught of the Ramones and beauty of gorgeous girls singing incredibly complex harmonies really well in latex.  I’m your fuckin’ hero over here guys!
LRI:  The girls are obviously easy on the eyes but they more than deliver musically….do you guys have to physically lift up the jaws of the audiences on occasion?
AK:  We are very saddened when we dont literally, physically need to resuscitate audience members.  We’re all EMTs there for you.  If people have enough energy to clap and keep up, well, fuck, then I aint done my job!
LRI:  “Surfin the World” and “Bungee Jumpin” are really interesting lyrically as well as musically.  Which tends to come first for you, the hook or the lyrics?
AK:  It all kinda comes at once and then I fine tune shit once I come back down to earth.  It is kinda like teleporting or some shit.
LRI:  Antiproduct has really made an inroads overseas and are very popular there.  Are the audiences over there a little crazier and more inclined to such insanity?
AK:  HMMmm….I will for sure say this, without pissing on the US fans, but yea Europe and England in particular, the audiences are truly incredible.  Ask ANY band who’s played in a bunch of places and the truth is the English kids are genuinely, incredibly amazing.  I do consider most AntiProduct “fans” to be be friends though, so to be honest, I am biased.  We have such a bond with our guys and gals that dig us.  Seriously.  We’re watching eavh other go through life now and Im so proud they are part of my life.
LRI:  What’s on the horizon for the band?  Are you gonna be touring stateside or appearing in a celebrity porn or perhaps a stint on celebrity rehab?
AK:  Im actually planning on spending my time from Dec 21, 2011 to Dec 21, 2012 being the biggest hedonistic drug taking slut that reality will allow.  If this is the last year, babes, I for sure am NOT spending it at the gym.  If I wake up with a Hunter S. of a hangover of Dec 22 2012, well then, Im quitting everything and living at the gym reading the bible doing sit ups saving orphans and paying taxes.  But not until then!!!!
LRI:  Any last words for the sweaty unconverted masses that have yet to check out your obviously kickass fun little phenomenon?
AK:  Yes!!  I fuckin love you guys.  We ARE in this together and aside from health and family, be they blood or not,  everything else is bullshit and…FUCK THE BANKS!!!!  Now please go find AntiProduct on the web.  It’s worth the search.

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