Reverend Backflash entered my world earlier this year after someone said they might appeal to Hanoi Rocks fans. I dove into their back catalog and discovered that their latest album ‘Too Little Too Late’ was on its way. It’s an amazing album packed with hooks, riffs, joy, attitude, and has that intangible quality that makes some albums all that more special. This album could appeal to everyone who enjoys the Wildhearts to the Hellacopters to the Backyard Babies to the Ramones to Cheap Trick. The melodies are huge but packed with plenty of RAWK. Jack Nasty (vocals/ guitar) was kind enough to answer some questions for us here at RPM Online.
It seems you guys are hitting the world stage a little more than you have previously but have been playing together for a long time now. Tell our readers who you guys are and what brought you together.
Hey man, thanks for asking 😉
We’re 4 guys from Vienna, Austria. We grew up in the outskirts of the City. Being into rock music, having nothing to do and receiving no attention from girls, founding a band was the only reasonable way to go. I think this is probably the most heard answer to this question, isn’t it? Yeah, it’s also the most accurate…Since then 15 years have passed and we have grown older but not an inch smarter. Stevo and me are still in the band. At the same time, we had some changes on bass and drums, but that’s normal when you’re going hard. On Bass, Luke has been part of the Band for 5 years and Max is playing the Drums for 3 years now… So we have been playing in this lineup for quite a while…
In our teenage years we listened, on one hand, a lot to those classic big Rock’n’Roll bands like AC/DC, Motörhead, Kiss, Guns ‘n’ Roses etc. and on the other hand to 77 Punk rock like the Dictators, the Ramones, the Dead Boys, MC5 and so on. And bands from Scandinavia like the Hellacopters, Backyard Babies, Turbonegro, etc. taught us how to listen to these bands, how to interpret them, and how to keep going what these guys started. If you wanna be a Rock ‘n’ Roller that’s your duty …
Growing up we found more bands to consider when it comes to our Rock ‘n’ Roll, Powerpop bands when it comes to songwriting, and some Country singers when it comes to lyrics.
This third full length “Too Little Too Late” is a monster of an album. How did these songs come together?
Thanks man! Glad you liked it! This time I wrote most of the material at home with the acoustic guitar, and then we give it a try together in the rehearsal room. When we are writing songs, we spend a lot of time rehearsing, trying out different beats and shifting parts etc. sometimes, in the end, the song sounds totally different than it did at home. But its also really important to find the moment when it’s enough! Don’t do too much songwriting! Keep it spontaneous! If you played it that way when you played it the first time, it might be the right way. Changing doesn’t always make it better … don’t over think …
Who came up with the idea for the intro to the guitar solo on ‘Never Turn Over?’
We played the song a couple of times live before we recorded it. We used to do a break down right before the solo. I would say something to the audience, ask a question, tell a story, just to have some dynamics in the show. I liked the feeling of it and suggested to do it the same way on the record …. you know just to fuck with their minds hahaha
I have enjoyed the first two videos (‘I Do Not Get You’ and ‘Never Turn Over’) as they clearly present some different sides to the band. Jack, you seem to enjoy making videos and are incredibly expressive in them. Tell us a bit about how they came together.
I listen to the song! If you wanna do a Cover for a record: listen to the record! If you wanna do a video for a song: listen to the song! If you have a great idea and it doesn’t fit the song, it isn’t a great idea.
You have to be aware of the feeling of the song. The video should have the same feeling and by so putting this certain feeling, mood, even more in focus. It could be about: feeling alone, winning, feeling, being disappointed by someone, having hope for the future, feeling hurt or hoping to die. You don’t have to say something smart, but you have to say something … and you have to say it with your fucking heart!
‘Spinning Records’ has become one of my favorites. Well, one of my 12 favorites would be more accurate. Any thoughts of making a video for that one?
Is the title a reverse nod to the New York Dolls?
No, we didn’t have that in mind when we came up with it. Actually, we had it as a song title first. And later on we decided to use it as the album title as well. I think it fits the record well…
What is the musical climate like in Vienna?
Oh it’s okay. We have some nice venues. Smaller ones that can be booked pretty easily and also bigger ones that make the city a regular tour stop for bigger bands on European tours. There are quite a lot of people interested in Rock/ Punk Music- a very dedicated, still growing Rock scene…
What would your dream tour be for supporting this album?
We are going to tour Austria, Germany, Czech, Hungary, Switzerland and Italy with the new album.
Spain, UK and of course the States are on the top of the Bucket list for us. Those are probably the places where people would get our sound the most. And if we’re talking dreaming: being on the road for 6 months in a row with a big headliner 😉
What are some of you guys’ favorite albums?
Puh! Tricky Question! Cause there are so many that have meant a lot over the years.
But some records I will never forget, not necessarily cause they are the “best” but because they really had an impact on me might be:
Total 13 – Backyard Babies
Appetite for Destruction – Guns ‘n’ Roses
Exile on Main Street – Rolling Stones
Rocket To Russia – Ramones
Full Moon Fever – Tom Petty
Scream, Dracula, Scream! – Rocket From the Crypt
Demolition 23 – Demolition 23
What have been the highlights of your career so far?
Sounds like I’m just trying to promote, but I have to say the new album. I think it’s by far the best we have ever done. The recording, the release, the videos for the singles, a really great Release-Show in Vienna, best project so far! Being out there on Tour with great friends playing a record live, I love it.
Are there any embarrassing onstage moments you would like to share?
Well, if you play live things can happen. Things will happen. Broken strings, forgotten lyrics, blackouts on stage… Stevo even got electroshocked once; he went down and passed out but luckily enough he was okay!
When things go wrong on stage, you should be happy because it’s a great opportunity to show the audience your showmanship by handling the situation spontaneously with calmness and maybe some humor. If you do it well, it will lift your performance, and people will remember it. In the circus, they always screw up some trick on purpose, so the audience understands how hard and dangerous the trick is… hehehe
What comes next for Reverend Backflash, outside of hopefully world domination?
Touring with the album will be our main occupation for the next 12 months. And that’s good, cause playing in a band should always be about playing your music live.