A Conversation: A Nu-Metal Band Ten Years Later, Alive and Kicking: A Conversation with Wayne Static of Static-X

A Nu-Metal Band Ten Years Later, Alive and Kicking: A Conversation with Wayne Static of Static-X

Static-X has surely been through a lot. You could say they have survived a literal war, becoming one of the handful of bands to live through the death of nu-metal. Not to say that these guys were really a nu-metal band, because in all reality they weren’t. They just didn’t have that type of sound. They have been successful just to say the least, even though they fell to the wayside a little bit with their fourth, ‘Sart a War,’ and fifth, ‘Cannibal,’ records. Their latest, ‘Cult of Static,’ has the band literally picking up the pieces, right where they left off following ‘Machine.’

They are getting back to the top of the heap, not only with their new record but also with a headlining slot on this years’ revived Sno-Core tour. With a little help from Saliva, before the band dropped off the bill due to singer Josie Scott’s ailments, and Burn Halo, Sno-Core is finally a relevant tour again.

During some of his downtime of the tour, the bands’ vocalist/mastermind/guitarist, the revered Wayne Static, chatted with me regarding how headlining the Sno-Core tour is going, what the set list will look like for the band this out and whether or not Wayne has a preference on what he likes to play live.

Get eXposed: Tell me about this year’s Sno-core. How has the tour been going so far?
Wayne Static: We are having a great time like we always do – going out and killing it on stage. We are especially having fun since it is our first tour in a long time. We have been home for over a year making the record, so it is nice to get back out on the road.

GE: Have all of the bands been getting along?
Static: Yeah, it definitely is. That’s part of what Sno-Core is. We didn’t get to pick the bands because they sort of put the package together. I think it is cool having a bunch of different bands like that. Hopefully it will bring in some different people who haven’t seen us before. I don’t see any problem with it.

GE: What has the crowd reaction to Static-X been like on this tour? Do you find that you are getting an even mix of old school and new fans?
Static: Yeah, every year it grows like that. It gets a little bit bigger as we pick up new fans and the older fans keep coming back. It is a huge mix of fans. Believe it or not, on a couple of dates on this tour there has been this older couple that has come out to see us play. They were right down in the pit, right in front of me with all of the kids. It was crazy.

GE: What does the setlist look like this time out?
Static: This setlist is like a greatest hits list. Usually for the first tour when we go out and I like to do the hits and then the next time we go out the material will be a little more obscure than before. This time out we are playing pretty much every single we have ever put out. It is really a cool setlist this time out. We are coming out with ‘Lunatic’ and playing three tracks off of the new record, and playing two or three songs off of each record basically. We have been opening the show with a new track, and I like to do that for this first tour since the album is new. Later in the year we will probably open with a classic. I remember on a tour we just did we opened with ‘Fix’ off of ‘Wisconsin Death Trip.’

GE: For the new material you’re playing off of ‘Cult of Static,’ do you find the fans are picking it up or do you have to announce each track?
Static: On this first tour, I always announce it. I say ‘we have a new record out and this is a track off of it,’ and you kind of have to do it since we are out here trying to sell records and get the word out on it. We have to do that since MTV doesn’t play music anymore and we aren’t really a huge radio band right now. That’s how we get the word out. Slowly, the fans will catch on and then by the end of the year our fans will know our new material and I won’t have to announce it anymore as more people know the new songs.

GE: How has the crowd reacted to the new material?
Static: Yeah, absolutely. Everyone has been digging it.

GE: Do you have a favorite song to play live?
Static: I don’t know. Im not sure if I really have a favorite song or not to play live. Some of my favorite songs I’ve ever written we don’t really play live. ‘Tera-Fied’ is my favorite songs off of the new record but we aren’t playing that one live. We will be playing it later in the year. It’s one of those songs that isn’t a single so you have to have the record to know it. One of my favorites that we did get to play is ‘Skinny Man,’ off of ‘Start a War,’ and we played that one on our last tour. Really, it doesn’t matter to me what we are playing as long as the crowd is happy. If they are happy then I’m happy.

GE: Do you have a preference of what material to play on tour? Like, do you prefer older material to new material or vice versa?
Static: I like to keep things mixed up. We never go out and play the new record. We always play everything from the entire catalogue. And even when we switch things up we play something off of each record. There are some fans that only like our new record and then there are some who only dig our new material, so we really try to play everything.

GE: Do you have any surprises in store live?
Static: You mean like explosions, stuff like that? No. It’s a pretty straight up show. We party on stage, do shots that my wife serves us wearing next to nothing at all and stuff like that. I think that’s better than explosions.

GE: I want to ask about your songwriting from record to record. Your sound has varied somewhat from record to record, how do you approach each record when it comes to writing?
Static: It’s a little bit of both actually. You can try and steer it in a direction but only to a point. I write what I write and whatever seems like it feels right. My original intention with ‘Cult of Static’ was to be heavier, with more death metal influences. A couple of the songs turned out that way but you can only steer it so much.

GE: What can we expect from Static-X the rest of the year?
Static: We are going to Europe in June, then Australia after that. Up then is a full US run and maybe two, we will see how it goes. We are going to be touring and touring.

To keep up to date on all of the bands on-goings, head over to www.myspace.com/staticx.