Phil Anselmo Talks On Horror Film Festival, Housecore Records, Touring and More

Phil Anselmo Talks On Horror Film Festival, Housecore Records, Touring and More
October 11, 2013 | By More

Phil Anselmo has had an eventful 2013, having released his solo album, Walk Through Exits Only and toured it, he’s now  getting set to enjoy the sweet, sweet taste of Autumn and his Housecore Horror Film Festival down in Austin, Texas October 24-27th.  It’s four days of kickass music (GWAR, DOWN, Bloody Hammers and more), twisted horror flicks, special guests and basically the most fun you could ever imagine.  I got Phil on the phone to talk about the Film Festival, his album and more and had a blast speaking with him, read on…  (Lead Photo: Gene Ambo)

Legendary Rock Interviews:  Hey Phil, how’s it going?  I am digging your solo album, it’s helping to wash out the crap residue from watching the Evil Dead remake on pay per view….I want my 6 bucks back.

Phil Anselmo: (laughs) I love you already.  Goddamn it, I hated it too, it’s terrible.

LRI:  What are they doing to our childhood memories Phil?

Phil:  They are just shitting all fuckin over em man.  My god, why can’t anyone do anything good?  I do have some good news on that end, as far as horror goes, I’m throwing this fuckin horror convention down in Austin, Texas called the Housecore Horror Film Festival at the end of October.  One of my favorite things about it beyond the awesome guests like directors and bands and vintage films is the fact that over the last few months I have been able to watch some really great submissions from lesser known film directors out there.  Dude, I am here to tell you; there IS hope for horror yet because there’s some motherfuckers out there who are really, really making some killer, quality films.  Some of them are shorts, some are midlength and some are full length feature films  There are some really fuckin cool things out there and I CANNOT wait to turn people on to some of this shit.   I really can’t, that’s probably one of my favorite things about doing this festival.

LRI:  You don’t have any Rob Zombie directing aspirations do you?

Phil:  Not even at all!!  I just like watching the fuckers!

Get yer ass down to Austin to see the Housecore Horror Film Fest October 24-27th

Get yer ass down to Austin to see the Housecore Horror Film Fest October 24-27th

LRI:  You were involved in your Haunted House before that you were working with, was that kind of thing the highlight of your Autumns growin up as a kid like it was mine?

Phil:  Oh dude…absolutely.  That’s why I made the fuckin thing, if you’re into horror films or horror bands you had to have loved the old haunted house experience growing up.  I liked the walk-through haunted houses, I like the old carnival haunted houses where you ride in the cars and all that fuckin shit.  I love all that shit man so I guess when the other guys were out buying titty bars I was making haunted houses so….there you go (laughs).

LRI:  There’s actually one up our way near Joliet, Illinois which takes over an allegedly haunted old prison.  If you can make it all the way through they give you your money back….

Phil:  Ahhh, that actually sounds pretty fuckin cool but I guaran-damn-tee you I’d be going all the way through and making my money back!

LRI:  Your label  Housecore isn’t what some people think it is.  It’s truly a throwback to the old days of people running a little label hands on and doing shit their own way exclusively.  Obviously you’ve heard of Jonny Z and Marsha Z (Megaforce Records) and Brian Slagel (Metal Blade) and you know their stories, what was your influence as far as wanting to actually do something like that? 

Phil:  Honestly, the biggest influence was my being a young guy, getting signed to a major label, not realizing the fucking ramifications of actually doing such a fucking thing.  When you’re young and you’re approached by a major label and they say “We want to sign you for 7 records” at first you feel flattered because you think “Wow, they want us for seven whole records, they must love us” but little do you know or understand, it’s a binding contract and 7 albums is a fucking insane chunk out of your life.  You are exclusively signed to that fucking label and you need to jump through every hoop in the fucking world if you wanna create other music and put it out on different labels and shit like that which is really fucking a no-no and against the rules in that world.  That’s where I totally fucking rebelled back in the day by doing Necrophagia and all that shit under a psuedonym.  For me, I wanted to create a label where if your name is on the fuckin simple one album contract and you deliver that one fuckin album, I don’t care if you turn around tomorrow and put out a whole different record on another label because honestly that is the freedom of music.  That’s showing the musician respect as a musician and that was my first real thought on doing Housecore Records.  I wanted to do a label that was musician friendly and I think that we are, very much so.

LRI:  If someone would have told you as a kid that you would one day have your shit together enough to have your own record label and put out music that gives you goosebumps would you have believed them?

Phil:  No, not at 15 or 16 years old, not even at 2o or 22 man.  I’m a pessimist at heart and when people predict big things or put a lot of expectation on a career or a record or anything like that before its time I am the first one to say “No, no, no no, don’t fucking even SAY that” because in essence by saying it you’re setting it up to be a letdown to begin with.  Honestly, I let things come to me very organically, very naturally and then I take it from there man.

Phil Anselmo and the Illegals performing in Chicago, Illinois.

Phil Anselmo and the Illegals performing in Chicago, Illinois.. Photo by Gene Ambo

LRI:  What surprised me about the “Walk Through Exits Only” album is that with all due respect to DOWN and all of your other projects this little blast of energy feels like the most out and out FUN record you’ve been involved with since  Pantera’s “Reinventing The Steel”.  

Phil:  Oh, thank you so much brother, I really appreciate that.  I appreciate that so fuckin much.  I wanted to show people a different side of the old sense of humor of me in a way.  There’s a lot of tongue in cheek, sarcastic fucking things that I say on the record that could be taken one way or another.  I think that sometimes when you listen to a band or a performer who’s supposed to be very rebellious or anti-authority sometimes it can be a bit of a letdown so to have that shock value back in there.  Take the song titles or the whole fuckin album title, “Walk Through Exits Only”.  I’m not the type of motherfucker that’s gonna sit here and spoon-feed the fuckin listener.  I’d rather have people take something and listen to it and make it their own really.  Sometimes I feel compelled just to write a line that could mean a hundred things to a hundred different people.  Let me put it to you this way, I like to architect things lyrically and let people themselves finish the building I’ve begun so to speak.

LRI:  I’m glad you mentioned the title track, that is just so fitting and obviously it could be interpreted as a classic “Fuck You” but there’s music history commentary and all sorts of other shit I’m reading into it as well. 

Phil:  When you take the hook line from the verses, where I say “It’s runied, everybody ruins music”.  For me, its like, you’re always gonna have your critics.  You can name any band that puts out any record, it’s gonna be loved and it’s gonna be hated.  Music’s like food, you can love it or hate it or be indifferent to it or you grow to like it eventually.  So I know that no matter what I did, I could have just fuckin done a violin and spoon record with nothing but yodeling and some people would have loved it and some people would have fuckin hated it.  God knows, we put a lot of effort into this record and all that but still, at the end of the day it’s up to the people to make up their own minds as to how they take it.  For me, it’s like, fuck it.  It’s gonna be what it is and people are gonna feel they way they’re gonna fuckin feel about it.  What can I do about it?  Nothing.  Put one foot in front of the other and keep on fuckin truckin, that’s what I’m gonna do.

LRI:  You’re good friends with Hank 3 who I love talkin to and you guys both tend to follow your gut instincts, he released an album featuring a live auctioneer which is pretty unheard of.  You respect Pantera’s fanbase immensely do you ever feel like you are walking a line between understanding what it is they love about you and following your heart?

Phil:  Not at all, not at all because honestly for me, Pantera is a sacred thing.  It’s a very sacred thing for fans and for myself because the musicians that encompass that fuckin band are still bar none the greatest musicians I have ever played with and I think that the approach to the songwriting  is very, very different than anything I’ve ever done, especially because of that particular talent in Pantera.  So, it’s a sacred thing and I’ve never, ever, ever gonna tried to take the place of a Pantera and I never will.  Now that we got that shit out of the way, Hank.  I LOVE Hank to death.  He is one of my closest brothers in this whole fucking music community and I’ve got the utmost respect for him.  Every time I see him or speak with him I look forward to it, I love that boy.

Phil's solo record "Walk Through Exits Only" kicks ass

Phil’s solo record “Walk Through Exits Only” kicks ass

LRI:  Some of us old school Pantera fans felt a little bit of vindication watching the “Remastered” version of VH1 Behind the Music where you look right into the camera and point the finger directly at the show for their wrongdoing.  Did you feel any relief in doing that or were you still thinking they were gonna spin it somehow when it came out?

Phil:  You know what?  You can’t ever tell what these assholes are gonna do and at the end of the day, all I can do is speak the truest possible way.  I’m the type of motherfucker where I speak what’s on my mind, I think that’s why people dig me to begin with, if they dig me at all and I also think that’s why people hate me.  If you’re outspoken and you say what’s on your mind,’re gonna get stones thrown at you and that’s alright.  That’s no big deal man, that’s part of the fuckin god damn biz and whatever but as far as the whole Pantera story goes what people seem to forget is that I’ve got a book coming out too on the entire subject and I’ll say this….Pantera for me, is a whole lot more than its demise.  There are some incredibly positive Pantera memories that far, far outweigh the breaking up of the band and all the negativity.

LRI:  Once you guys strapped it on it became a living thing…

Phil:  It is, it is.  Music is forever, music is forever and once its recorded it is history and it’s part of music history.  That is the magic fucking thing about  music in general.  Beethoven’s Fifth?  I mean, give me a fuckin break.  National anthems all over the world, no matter how old they are, they’re still fuckin played and loved and et cetera, et cetera, et cetera.  It’s documented, it’s done and it’s part of history and you can still purchase it so yes, it is a living, breathing, real thing and the fact that Pantera has not been around since 2001, I’ll say this; we still are a business and we still have to work together in some capacity and I got an email the other week from our management and I was extremely surprised when I read in this email that 52 percent, 52 percent of our modern day sales of music, remastered copies of Cowboys From Hell or Vulgar or even Tshirts were to people between the ages of 15 and 25.  Do you know what I put that down to?  GREAT PARENTING!  Let’s hear it for the parents out there!  Bless their hearts (laughs).

More info on this year's Housecore Horror Fest at bottom

More info on this year’s Housecore Horror Fest at bottom

LRI:  You’re right on that for sure.  The other thing that blows my mind is when I turn on the radio and hear “Walk” or “Psycho Holiday” on a station that plays middle of the road, safe modern rock or classic rock mostly because I know for a fact the same station was NOT playing you in 1994.

Phil:  Wow.  That blows the old man’s mind too!  It’s like wow,  they’re trying to make me even older than I’m supposed to be, these motherfuckers.

LRI:  Thanks again man, good luck and have fun at the Horror fest, last question til next time.  Touring can be fun or it can be a huge drag and drain on you all depending on how you approach it.  Your initial run of tourdates with the Illegals was short but hit the country in all the right spots, do you enjoy touring these days as opposed to the long, massive, never-ending treks back in the day with your Pantera brothers?

Phil:  Absolutely man!  It’s well documented that over the years I have beat this skeleton to death on tour and for me, doing short stints are easier on the body, easier on business here at the house and easier on the schedule because remember, I still have another Down EP on the way and I have other things on the docket so I like to make room for everything.  The physicality of it all really isn’t that big of a deal these days and I’m feelin pretty fuckin good but still I will tell you man, if I could jump aboard the Star Trek Enterprise and fuckin have myself beamed to every goddamn show, that would be AWESOME.  Then I could fuckin tour for years and I wouldn’t mind at all.  It’s just the grind of airports and vans and buses and all that shit, all the travel shit that’s lame because once I get into the cities I love talkin to people, I love hanging out outside and shootin the shit with folks and then enjoying the show and then afterwards hangin outside and talkin with all the folks, I really do.  I love all that part of touring, that’s the big payoff for me but damn man, do I hate planes and buses and all that traveling and waiting shit.

Emo’s East & Beauty Ballroom
2015 East Riverside Drive
Austin, TX 78741

October 25 – 27, 2013

THURSDAY, OCTOBER 24 – DIRTY DOG BAR (Badge/Wristband/Pass Pick Up Party – Free Party)

Cavalcade 1:00am
Lord Dying 12:00am
White Widows Pact – 11:00pm
The Black Moriah – 10:00pm
blackQueen 9:00pm
Goatcraft 8:00pm
Doors: 8:00pm / Open registration 5:00pm

Down 11:00pm
Goblin 9:50pm
Warbeast 8:55pm
Ancient VVisdom 8:00pm
Doors: 7:00pm

Repulsion 4:10pm
Pallbearer 3:00pm
Child Bite 2:00pm
Head Crusher 1:00pm
Doors: 12:00pm

GWAR 11:00pm
Melvins 9:55pm
Whitechapel 8:55pm
Goatwhore 8:00pm
Iron Reagan 7:35pm
Doors: 7:00pm

Honky 7:00pm
Star & Dagger 6:00pm
School of Rock 4:30pm
Doors: 4:00pm

Hate Eternal 4:10pm
Bloody Hammers 3:05pm
Death Will Tremble 2:05pm
A Band of Orcs 1:10pm
First Jason 12:15pm
Doors: 12:00pm

Philip H. Anselmo & The Illegals 9:25pm
Eyehategod 8:15pm
Skrew 7:15pm
Doors: 6:00pm

Pig Destroyer 4:10pm
Primitive Weapons 3:00pm
Hymns 2:00pm
Dead Earth Politics 1:00 pm
Doors: 12:00pm

Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Category: Interviews