Portland’s LONG KNIFE is ripping hardcore with obvious nods to the “Feel the Darkness” era Poison Idea. On New Years Eve, Jerry A from P.I. paraphrased an Oscar Wilde quote to me. “Talent borrows and genius steals,” he said. I asked Jerry what he thinks of Long Knife, per the quote. Are they talented or are they genius? He said he loves them.
Long Knife’s LP came out first, forgoing a 7-inch and going straight for an album on Feral Ward. Within a year of putting out their record, they have self-released a second LP, a 7-inch, and a split 7-inch with Japanese hardcore legends Forward. They’ve toured a lot and are heading to Europe from April 23-May 31. I got the opportunity to ask them a few questions in a seedy shithole bar. Impressively, we were only interrupted twice.
Heatwave: How did you all get together and decide to start this band?
Goto: Me and Chris were playing together with a grindcore drummer and it wasn’t really going anywhere. We wrote the music to “Ghost In The Hall,” though. I asked Joe if he wanted to play, he was playing with me in Burning Leather, and he said yes, and I told him Chris wanted to play. Then we got Colin a few months later.
Colin: That’s when shit got real.
Heatwave: A lot of your songs are about mental health issues and substance abuse from the first person perspective. What’s the inspiration for these songs?
Colin: I don’t know. A lot of the people we know are kinda crazy, so I guess that’s it. Seeing homeless people on the street and knowing that half the people you know and yourself may end up there at some point
Heatwave: How many times have you been in detox?
Goto: One time was on my 21st birthday.
Heatwave: Who is Tony Bartek of your song “Weekend at Bartek’s?”
Colin: Tony is a legendary person from the Portland Metro Area. He used to be in the L.A. Death Squad. He hangs out with a guy named Tophat Shane and a muppet-like man Fazzolori. We like to party with him. The song is about partying with him.
Heatwave: Why the fuck does Joe stand up and yell at nothing, without a microphone, when he plays drums?
Joe: I’m angry.
Heatwave: Angry or hangry?
Heatwave: You’ve all known each other for a long time, what has been your favourite band that each other has played in?
Goto: The Riffs
Joe: The Riffs
Chris: The Riffs
Colin: All right, three out of four!
Heatwave: What about Welcome Home Walker?
Colin: Welcome Home Walker was cool. It was my revenge of the nerds project.
Chris: And Defiance—Goto was in Defiance!
Heatwave: What is your favourite current Portland band?
Chris: Bi-Marks and Estranged
Joe: Even though they never play, it’s still Autistic Youth
Colin: Spetsnaz and then Andy place and the Coolheads
Heatwave: What is your favorite Poison Idea song?
Colin: “Made to be broken.”
Goto: “Ritual Chicken.”
Joe: The medley “Thorn In My Side” by Paintbox on the Poison Idea tribute album.
Chris: “Amy’s Theme” and “Hangover Heartattack.”
Heatwave: Does anyone else party as hard as you?
Colin: We don’t really party. Well, Chris parties. I sit alone in my room and listen to E-40 and Goto gets bummed because no one hits him up on OK Cupid.
Goto: Don’t say anything about Tinder.
Colin: No one has ever swiped right on Goto on Tinder.
Consensus: Andrew WK.
Heatwave: Tell me about Chaos in Tejas…
Goto: Colin drank too many fancy shots at a gay bar and got taken away to detox after jay walking. He got roofied by Scott Moore from Limp Wrist.
Joe: The rest of us almost got arrested on the bridge and had to clean up cigarette butts with Kromosom. That was fun.
Heatwave: How was your tour with Forward?
Colin: It was 100% bitchin. We made great friends. Shout out to Souichi, Akiyama, Ishiya, You, and #1 cool guy in the universe, Fuku.
Heatwave: It looked like you guys needed an adult according to Goto’s Instagram.
Colin: Goto needs to fucking turn his camera off and shut the fuck up. Goto needs to stop sharing goddamn personal moments with the goddamn Internet world and shut the fuck up.
[Random guy walks up and interrupts]
Goto: I agree. I have a problem with social media.
Chris: The Forward tour was one of the best times that I’ve ever had.
Joe: It was a lot of fun and we had a great time. The guys in Forward are really nice and we had a blast traveling with them.
Heatwave: Will you go to Japan?
Joe: We are planning to go to Japan this fall
[Random guy returns, hands Chris a vape pen, Chris accepts.]
Heatwave: What’s up? [to random guy, his name is Pizo]
Pizo: Fuck that, get on the E-Pen, it’s the best thing goin’ on. We’re gettin’ off like mother fucking Wiz Khalifa, but I’m local from Portland Police.
Pizo: Fuck the Police. Get in there right now. Ask my guy, he’s high as a fucking frog.
Colin: Why’s the frog high?
Heatwave: Your upcoming European tour is the second six week tour you have done as Long Knife. How do you do it?
Joe: We just all really like each other and love traveling together.
Colin: We get home and realize that each other are the only friends we really want to hang out with.
Goto: I annoy Colin sometimes…..
Colin: We party and go around and beat people up. We have fun. We will beat people up all over Europe. Don’t put that in there.
Heatwave: Which cities are you most excited for on your upcoming European tour?!
Colin: Amsterdam, to see Tony Mengis
Goto: Paris. It is romantic.
Chris: All of them.
Joe: Stockholm, to see some old friends.
Pick up Long Knife’s “Possession” EP and their album, “Meditations on Self Destruction,” out in Europe on TAKEN BY SURPRISE RECORDS and see them live on tour.
4/18 – Portland (kickoff gig)
4/21 – Oakland CA – The Golden Bull
4/23 – Uppsala SWE
4/24 – Umeå SWE – Verket
4/25 – Luleå SWE – Föreningsgatan 7
4/26 – Oulo FIN
4/27 – TBA
4/28 – Helsinki FIN
4/29 – Tampere FIN
4/30 – Stockholm SWE
5/1 – Malmö SWE
5/2 – Rostock GER
5/3 – Berlin GER – Köpi
5/4 – Leipzeg GER – Zoro
5/5 – Prague CZ – Club 007
5/6 – Munich GER
5/7 – Vienna AUS
5/8 – Ilirska Bistrica SLO – MKNZ
5/9 – Venice ITA
5/10 – Bologna ITA
5/11 – Marseilles FRA – La Salle Gueule
5/12 – Barcelona ESP
5/13 – Madrid ESP
5/14 – Bilbao ESP
5/15 – Bordeaux FRA
5/16 – Paris FRA – La Mécanique Ondulatoire
5/17 – Brighton UK – Cowley Club
5/18 – Bristol UK @ hatchet
5/19 – Liverpool UK – Maguire’s Pizza Bar
5/20 – Leeds UK – venue TBD
5/21 – London UK
5/22 – Liege Belgium – La Zone w/ DOOM
5/23 – Amsterdam NL – OCCII
5/24 – Frankfurt GER
5/25 – Gottingen GER
5/26 – Hamburg GER
5/27 – Bremen GER
5/28 – Copenhagen DK
5/29 – Gothenburg SWE – venue TBD
5/30 – Oslo NOR – Blitz
5/31 – Stockholm SWE