Written by Heylee Piche.
Last week, over beers and karaoke music involving either the best or worst Jim Morrison impersonation I’ve ever had the pleasure of witnessing, I sat down with founding member of the Vancouver-based band The Toxiks, Jayme Black. Many old, war stories were shared, from crazy rock shows at debaucherous band houses to touring across the country. The man with the voice takes us behind the scenes to talk about his new project that leaves the sleaze rock roots of his past behind.
Right…so as a dude, first of all, what is your secret to hitting those insanely high falsetto notes? How does one accomplish that?
Jayme: You lose a ball from testicular cancer…
It’s only funny because it’s true.
J: Actually, though, it’s pretty hard being a singer. You can’t just tune your voice to pitch like you can on an instrument.
Man, could you imagine if you had tuning pegs attached to your neck, though, so that you could!?
J: That would actually be really sweet.
You would look like Frankenstein!
J: Even better!
Okay, but in all seriousness, I actually don’t know how you started The Toxiks. You moved away from Victoria and no one really heard from you for a while…
J: I actually started working on The Toxiks before my previous band, The Lust Boys, imploded. I started writing a bunch of songs that they didn’t want but I really loved, so I kind of just kept them to myself. Then once I moved here, I showed the songs to one or two guys that I had recorded and played guitar on. I actually recorded most of the tracks in the shower when I first lived in Penticton.
So you’d record stuff inside your shower?
J: Yeah, it’s the best place to do it! The place I was living in at the time had the best stand up shower…
So who are the other guys that ended up being interested in the project?
J: There’s Sean Spear, Nate Pole, and Ryan Hrycan. Sean Spear is actually a legend. He used to play guitar in Bishop’s Green. Ryan plays rhythm guitar. He’s played in a bunch of different bands, like, he used to play in the Sound City Hooligans and he’s also currently playing in another band, Daddy Issues. Nate is our drummer. He’s killer at mixing and recording. He also does a lot of lighting and sound for shows as well.
So there’s definitely some punk influences in there…
J: Yeah, I’d say our sound is a mix of the Ramones, Motorhead and Blood For Blood.
You guys are playing a show soon right?
J: Yeah, we will be playing on Valentine’s Day at the Rickshaw!
Check these guys out on facebook: www.facebook.com/thetoxiks
And what better way to spend your Valentine’s Day than hanging out with a bunch of punks? Who needs a lover when you’ve got music right?