Thursday, 14 March 2019

Top Tens: Heathcliff's Top Ten Punk Rock Influences

Heathcliff (the whole band):

1. Straightline
Not only have these lads always been Munich’s finest skatepunk act, what is more, these friends have always inspired us when it comes to persistence, dedication and devotion. They played their sound when there was absolutely no scene for skatepunk in and around Munich and they still do simply because they love what they do. Almost everyone in Heathcliff has played in different bands for the last 20 years, with different styles of music until we finally agreed on making music that comes straight from our hearts. So here’s to Germany’s Skate-Punk-Trash kings… We love you guys.

2. Forus
When these amazing French dudes first dropped their killer hymn “I only go to school for the handrails”, the song immediately blew us away. This brilliant mixture of classic heavy metal tappings combined with ultra-fast skatepunk inspired us to go for it. They have created an amazingly unique sound and we simply love it.

Bust.E (drums and vocals):

3. Satanic Surfers
Well… what shall I say… HEROES OF OUR TIME. When I fell in love with skatepunk at the age of fourteen, I fell in love with all the bands on my first ever skatepunk CD… It was Fat Wreckchord’s “Survival Of The Fattest”. Back then I thought that these bands can’t be overcome… until I heard “Hero Of Our Times”. Boom. A drummer that plays incredibly fast and creative AND sings. I wanted to do the same and so I started rehearsing day and night. Also, I always love their thriving, melancholic and yet somehow positive songwriting.

4. Sublime
Brad’s songwriting and the general performance of this Long Beach masterpiece has given me strength and time to calm down and think throughout my life. I do love so many styles of music and in my humble opinion, this band found a way to actively or passively bring those styles together, which is quite a thing. I love my punk rock, I love my reggae, I love my ska, I love my rap and I love catchy, handmade tunes… Unfortunately Brad’s time came way too early.

Flash (guitar and vocals):

5. Mute
Actually our singer Basti showed this band to me years ago. I was stunned when I heard their riffs, vocals and those insanely nice guitar works. That was the moment I realized what kind of music I wanted to write and perform. Until the present day, I'm a huge Mute fan.

6. Blind Guardian
I know, this one busts out of all borders, but back in the days a friend of mine showed me this band. I was caught after the first seconds of listening. Especially when I decided to go for lead guitar stuff, it was those melodies and licks that got me through the first steps and further. That kinda shows my "heritage" in music.

Bernie (bass):

“If A Wilhelm Scream and Propagandhi had a sexy bearded baby, DARKO would pop out of the womb”… I love their crazy technical playing that always fits their very melodic and powerful songs. I bought the Bonsai Mammoth vinyl at a concert in Munich and played it non-stop for a couple of weeks. And as a bass player I have to say that Karl is such a cool bass player with a great presence on stage.

8. Lagwagon
I started skateboarding in the late 80s and through that came to punk music and therefore many of my favourite bands are to be found in the 90s. So besides a lot of other bands to name (also outside of the punk genre), Lagwagon for me are something special. They often have that cool melancholic touch to their harmonies and melodies but at the same time are the perfect soundtrack for a great sunny snowboarding day with your buddies. And they are also more than just a memory from good old times – I also really dig their latest (OK, not brand new) album “Hang”.

Manu (guitar):

9. Millencolin
I was a kid on a bus to our school skiing week when someone let me listen to Millencolin on his Walkman. I was totally stoked and from there on listened to that tape in an infinite loop over many weeks. I am remembering rewinding the tape in my Walkman all the time. They got me into fast melodic skate punk.

10. NoFX
I have loved going to concerts since I was a kid and I was always interested in the guitar equipment that bands use. I am now playing with the equipment of my childhood dreams: a Gibson Les Paul and a Mesa Boogie Mark IV. The same equipment as Eric Melvin from NoFX. Such a cool band! I like their music AND their punk attitude! Some bands (including our band, sometimes) focus a lot on playing technical, fast and tight. That’s cool, but sometimes it shouldn’t be too serious. Why don’t we play a gig totally drunk?! The music might suffer but sure not the fun! That’s punk rock!

Heathcliff's debut album #chilloutradio was released on March 9th. You can stream and download it from their Bandcamp here. Also be sure to like Heathcliff here.

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