RAT-A-TAT-TAT! Dale's new solo album is out now on CD & Vinyl at Joyful Noise Recordings. He's also got a new merch store at BLIXT where you can pick up a copy of the album as well as a new t-shirt design! "Crover assembled an actual band to help him out. Redd Kross bassist Steve McDonald asked Crover to open for Redd Kross, Crover asked McDonald to play bass for him, and the rest is history. It’d be difficult for even the multi-talented Crover to put on a live show by himself without one of those one-man-band contraptions. In addition to McDonald, Kasai (ex-Big Business, Plan D) helps with keyboards, synths, jawharp, and backing vocals. Mindee Jorgensen (Dangerously Sleazy) sits behind the kit live and contributes additional drumming and some sweet saxophone skills here. His former Altamont bandmate Dan Southwick plays bass on “Tougher,” a track Crover cowrote with Kasai."
Dale was interviewed by Little Punk People, he talks about Rat-A-Tat-Tat!, his favorite music to listen to in 2020, and the music he grew up on on.
Dale spoke with Dean Delray for his podcast Let There Be Talk about his new album, the next Melvins album, being Neil Young and a lot of other things.
Northern Transmissions has a new interview with Dale where he talks about his new solo album, the Melvins 1983 album due out next month as well as the near term future of touring.
Dale had a conversation with mxdwn about the new album and other goings on in Melvins World.
Dale Crover photo by Buzz Osborne
Dale gave Apple Music some insight to each track on Rat-A-Tat-Tat!
“Moclips is the name of a little coastal community in Washington, not far from where I grew up, that I used to spend some time at as a teenager, having fun. But that has nothing to do with anything, really. This is one of the tracks that ended up on the weird lathe cut thing. I know we remixed and added some stuff, but this was just a thing we came up with on the spot. It reminded me of something that would be on a Twin Peaks soundtrack.”
I Can’t Help You There
“This song came out of a conversation I had with Mindee about seeing ghosts, and then also just mental illness, I guess. It sounds like a Neil Young-style riff to me, with a Zeppelin bridge. We made a video for this song—me and Toshi and his partner all did it together, coming up with all the ideas and filming and editing it. We’re wearing these creepy face masks that have our own faces on them. It was kind of inspired by The Cramps playing at the Napa State mental hospital.”
“This is the one song on the record that’s co-written. Toshi wrote the music and then I came up with the vocals. To me, it has a little bit of a Deep Purple vibe. I think that’s because Toshi is playing the organ and I’m doing the crazy leads. I can’t remember what [effects] I put it through, but it just sounds like the guitar is being strangled to death or something. Lyrically, it’s me telling somebody that I’m sick of their bullshit. It’s a fuck-you song, more or less.”
“I actually wrote this song on GarageBand. A friend of mine bought me this cheap little thing that you can use to plug your guitar into the phone and record it in GarageBand. So I just used all the instruments that are already there, but I used crazy effects to completely mess them up. Then I got Mindee to play saxophone to replace the programmed sax samples I had put in there, and then had Steve play bass on it. Toshi said the scratch vocals I did sounded like I was drunk and yelling at someone, so we decided to keep them.”
Shark Like Overbite
“This was inspired by a dog I had named Arthur. He had a crazy overbite. If he was laying on his back, he looked like the movie poster for Jaws, where the shark is coming out of the water to eat the swimmer. I think somebody even nicknamed him Sharky. When I wrote the song, I’d been listening to a lot of Graham Parker. It’s possibly the poppiest thing I’ve ever written, but I figured what the hell.”
Supine Is How I Found Him
“Originally, I think this was just a drum track for the lathe cut. I wanted to keep that pretty sparse because the grooves are so small. But then for this record we piled a bunch more stuff on, like an adding electric sitar. My drums are actually triggering the sitar on this, so it sounds really weird—almost like it’s having a conversation.”
I’ll Never Say
“I think this one might be my favorite. On the last record, I did a song or two that was acoustic, and I wanted to do more of that stuff. So I bought myself a 12-string guitar and tried to do something that was similar to ‘Andy Warhol’ by David Bowie. Steve’s bass playing is really great on this, too. I’m not sure, but I think maybe the song is about trying to comfort somebody who’s dying.”
“I think this was one of the lathe cut things too, but I’m not sure. It’s got these distorted nightmare drums, and then I added vocals and some keyboards in there after. I’m really into this PIL record called The Flowers of Romance, and I think this has that kind of vibe. But I was also thinking of this band Brainiac on the vocals—they had some cool vocal effects and they weren’t afraid of distortion. And we certainly weren’t on this song.”
“I’ve got a pretty unhealthy obsession with The Rolling Stones, and this one is kinda Stonesy for sure. And again, Steve did some cool bass stuff. I think this one might just be he and I, if I remember right. The song was inspired by a murder that happened in my neighborhood a couple of years ago, though I may have made part of it up. But the murder was real. It was a mystery for a while, but I think eventually it got solved.”
The Bowie Mix
“I called this ‘The Bowie Mix’ because that’s my favorite mix of the Stooges’ Raw Power. I think the Iggy [Pop] mix is cool, but it just didn’t make it any better. Anyway, this is another one I came up with in GarageBand. Since I’ve been playing in Redd Kross with Steve, some of the songs have a glam rock vibe to them. And there’s a ton of drum overdubs on this, which we did when I replaced the GarageBand drums with real drums. I don’t think I even wrote words for this song—I was just making stuff up off the top of my head.”
“The title means ‘wet floor.’ It was also the title of the lathe cut vinyl, and this was possibly the first track I recorded for that. Again, it’s me doing a little drum haiku and then Toshi giving me some cool effects to improvise and play along with. It’s just a nice little interlude.”
Kiss Proof World
“This one's old. It's a song I wrote probably around '92 or '93. It’s funny because somebody just sent me a picture of this compilation tape that this guy from my hometown of Aberdeen put together back then. I forgot all about it. He had this four-track set up and wanted to record songs. I think what I recorded might’ve been an early version of this song. So I told him he's got to send me a copy of it because I want to hear it.”