Ben Parker from the Superman Revenge Squad band took time to chat with The Other Side Review’s Nicole Mendes. This is what he had to say:
TOS: Your band name is very original. How did it come about?
BP: Unfortunately, it’s probably not as original as you think. It’s the name of a group of super villians in the Superman comics. I called myself it because I thought of myself as a band with one person in and thought it would be funny to call a one-man band a squad. Now the band has expanded beyond just me, it might seem less funny. I still like it though.
TOS: Your debut album is being released next month. Did you enjoy the recording process?
BP: I really enjoy writing the songs and I like playing them live, but recording them is just stressful to be honest! I like having them documented though.
TOS: What are your feelings regarding the upcoming album and do you have any expectations for it?
BP: I’m just really glad it exists. I did a gig with the band on my birthday last year as a one-off gig thing, and so it’s really nice to have the songs we played documented rather than lost forever. I don’t know if I have any expectations for it really. Obviously I’d like as many people as possible to listen to it, and I’d like them to like it, but I’m not expecting to become a household name or anything!
TOS: Being part of a brotherly duo, do you believe a family connection can play a part in music production? Do you think it is easier to write and record music with your brother than with a non-relative?
BP: Well, I find it easier to record with Adam as I’m used to playing music with him. We seem to understand each other pretty well.
TOS: Who or what are your musical influences?
BP: I started getting into music through heavy metal as a teenager, so I would probably put people like Iron Maiden and Anthrax as early influences, although you won’t hear them in my stuff musically. I do mention Persistence of Time by Anthrax and briefly go into ‘Can I Play With Madness’ by Iron Maiden on the new album though. Then I got quite obsessed by Dinosaur Jr, the Afghan Whigs, the Smiths and the Cure for some time. And then it was Belle and Sebastian and Will Oldham. Arise, Therefore is probably my favourite record, which is by Will Oldham calling himself Palace Music.
TOS: If you could be a superhero, which one would you be and why?
BP: I’d probably be Superman, but I would be Superman when he was first created in the late thirties as this seems a more innocent and pleasant time to be a superhero.
TOS: Ben, I believe you have just finished your third play. What is it about?
BP: It’s a play for Halloween and so tries to play with horror imagery and clichés whilst really being about characters feeling vulnerable and bored by life.
TOS: Have you always been interested in playwriting?
BP: I’ve always been keen on creating stuff, be it songwriting or short story writing or whatever. Playwriting is great when you have a theatre group willing to put your plays on!
TOS: Does Adam have any side-projects at the moment?
BP: Adam’s main band is called Live in Regret, who are quite different to the SRS Band!
TOS: With the album being released, what can we next expect from the Superman Revenge Squad Band?
BP: We’ll see! The band is something that will only be available for special occasions really, as a band. We’ve only played two gigs – one on my birthday five years ago and the other on my birthday last year. We’ve only done one recording, which is the album. But we might do another gig to celebrate the album being released, maybe.
TOS: If you could collaborate with a musician, dead or alive, who would it be and why?
BP: I’d quite like to do a recording with Jim White from the Dirty Three. I only say this because I saw him drum with Will Oldham once and it was stunning. Other than that, if I could meet musicians that are no longer alive, I’d love to sit in on a recording session with Duke Ellington and Billy Strayhorn present but I’d just watch and wouldn’t play as it would be a bit intimidating.
The Superman Revenge Squad’s album can be found on Audio Antihero’s website. CLICK HERE to listen to There Is Nothing More Frightening Than The Passing Of Time.
The Superman Revenge Squad – ‘A Funny Thing You Said’ (2013) review