Santa Cruz-based rockers, The Expendables, mix elements of reggae, punk rock and ska into their carefree music representative of the chill, California vibe. Growing up surfing, skating, partying and playing music, the Expendables got into music for the good times and the rocker lifestyle. Now, after the release of their fifth full-lenghter, Prove It, they have cemented themselves as a genuine musical force capable of putting out honest albums that stay true to their rebellious lifestyles.
The album, which was produced by Butthole Surfer guitarist Paul Leary and EL Hefe of NOFX, is their second record to come off Stoopid Records, and even features a few appearances by some Slightly Stoopid mates through the album. Another Cali favorite, G. Love makes a guest spot, so it’s nice to know these guys are sticking together, helping each other out.
Prove It is wholly comprised of scratchy guitar licks and a funky drum and bass core that provides a solid platform for their kitschy lyrics about getting high and rocking out. “Come get high with me. There’s no wrong or right we just need to take flight. Come get high with me” they sing on the appropriately titled “Come Get High.”
Or, just listen to the album’s opener, “How Many Times,” another ode-to-the-good-time. “How many times must I awake to a mistake that I’ve made before/Now I’m wondering what happened and why I’m on the floor/It must have been a good night, I must have had a good time.” They’re not brilliant lyricists by any stretch of the imagination, but at least their not too hung over to try.
It’s kind of a bummer when bands over-push agendas onto their fans at live shows. A few people are always into it, but you mostly hear people groaning and moaning, waiting for the next song. So it’s nice to know the only agenda these guys will be pushing is a good time. Because I’m always down for that.
Later this year The Expendables plan to tour nationally and internationally to support the release. Hopefully they aren’t too faded to take the road, but their recent track record suggests they’ll make it out of the house. The sky is clearly the limit for these chillers. Get Prove It now on iTunes and for more information on the band check out their official website.
Eat Sleep Breathe Music contributor, Suzanne had the opportunity to sit down with The Expendables drummer/vocalist, Adam Patterson to find out about the new album, his thoughts on being on a reality show, how even drummers have trouble playing Guitar Hero, and what it was like growing up in Santa Cruz.
ESBM: Prove It is your 5th studio release, how have you grown as a band since 2001 and No Time To Worry?
AP: We have grown as musicians, we have played for over ten years together. Also, our song writing has grown up a little too. We were 18 when we did our fist album and we have had a lot more life experiences since then that has helped influence our songs.
ESBM: My favorite track is “Dance Girl Dance”, what is one of your favorites?
AP: I personally like all the songs on the album. We spent a lot of time on each song so its hard to say that I like one song more than the other. There are songs on this album that are three years old.
ESBM: Your song “Sacrifice” from Gettin’ Filthy is on the Guitar Hero World Tour game. Do you feel that this opens up your music to a completely different fan base?
AP: I didn’t think it would, but I have had people come up to me and tell me that they had never heard of our band before they played us on Guitar Hero. That’s kinda cool. That game has changed the relationship of music and gaming forever. Side note – I can’t get past medium on the drums on our own song….I suck!
ESBM: The film XXX Rated: A Year in the Life of a Santa Cruz Phenomenon follows the band during some of your tour. What was that experience like? Would you ever do a reality TV show?
AP: I’d rather not do a reality show, but we would be stupid to pass an opportunity like that up. We basically just filmed a bunch of shows and parties for a year or so, it was a cool time in our lives. We were 22, 23 still playing back yard parties and being young stupid kids. It wouldn’t be as cool now. we’re pushing 30 and we don’t shoot each other with pellet guns anymore.
ESBM: What was one of your most memorable performance experience?
AP: I’d say when we played with Pepper and Fishbone on the Queen Mary in Long Beach. The crowd was nuts and it was just a great show. There have been so many fun shows that it’s hard to pick one. We just played in New York City on our CD release show on a boat. Halfway through our set I looked over and we were next to the Statue of Liberty. It was kinda a cool moment for me. Strange that my coolest moments were all on a boat.
ESBM:You have played a lot all over the country, where is the best audience NY or Cali?
AP: It’s hard to say. Our fans are ridiculously cool and we have good audiences all over the country. I’d have to say California just because we are from there, but NY brings it pretty hard too.
ESBM: What are you plans for the rest of the summer and when are you coming back to the east coast?
AP: We are going to play a couple shows here and there this summer but we are mostly gonna take a few months off and then hit the road this fall. So we’ll be hitting up the East Side this fall.
ESBM: The Vampire craze is taking over with popular TV shows and movies like Twilight. Being from Santa Cruz, Ca are you fans of the movie The Lost Boys which was filmed there?
AP: When I was a kid that movie scared the shit out of me because all the scenes were places i’ve been to. I love that movie. I still watch it every Halloween when i carve my pumpkins.