The LessOffs are Californian melodic punk band which recently released the new record via FirstOff Records and I reviewed it for this webzine. I immediately liked the band and it was only about time when I will be able to ask the guys some questions for this webzine. Read the interview here!
Hello and welcome to my webzine! For start, how would you describe The Lessoffs to the readers of this zine that didnt hear your band yet.
(Shitbird) We’re a melodic punk band with pop punk sensibilities. Honest lyrics about broken hearts and drinking.
What does the name mean?
(Jake) The name doesn’t have any real significant meaning it came from a friend I went to high school with. We were in the process of putting a band together at the time so he came up with the idea of calling ourselves “The Lessoffs.” Everybody thought the name was ridiculous so it never made the cut. I brought it up to an old guitar player years later as a joke and he loved it. The name eventually grew on me so I decided to use it for this band.
How did you get in touch with the underground music scene?
(Shitbird) I got into punk when I was 12 years old. I skated and surfed and was listening to a lot of thrash and metal. Punk rock instantly struck a chord with me. All the rebellion and anger in music that I could play. It just made sense.
Why is this diy underground scene and ethics so beautiful?
(Shitbird) To me, because you’re not beholden to anyone. what you do, you take credit for. How you do it is totally up to you. It’s also great in the sense that it’s an education. You have to figure it out or ask. Knowledge is real power.
What is more important in your music, the lyrics or the riffs, what comes first when you are making a song? Where do you get your lyrical inspiration?
(Jake) For me personally the lyrics are the most important part. I wanted to sing songs that people could relate to. Of course, catchy riffs are a part of that too but for me growing up it was the lyrics that really connected me to a song.
Usually the music comes first when I’m writing songs. On occasion I may have lyrics written down before hand sometimes I may even have a title that I really like and I want to build a song around that. But for the most part usually music first.
My lyrics come from life experiences usually a past event that took an emotional toll on me at some point. Sometimes I write about friends that have gone through tough or emotional times.
How big is the scene in your hometown?
(Shitbird) Actually it’s pretty sizeable and pretty tight knit as well. Most of the bands are friends with each other and there isn’t really a sense of competition. Just a ton of great punk bands, from young guys to guys my age that are all pretty cool and supportive.
Are there venues and clubs and fanzines, bands?
(Shitbird) Jake and I are pretty lucky in that we live in Down Town Riverside. We have two great historical venues that bring national acts in pretty regularly. The Fox Theater and The RMA. Bands like NOFX, Social Distortion, The Offspring, The Cult, Pucifer to name a few. Also there’s a few medium sized clubs that have hosted a TON of national and regional favorites Like Voodoo Glowskulls, Guttermouth, Mike Watt and the Minute Men, MDC, Revalation Records did a fest here a year or so ago with Gorilla Biscuits, Youth of Today, Ignite, and CIV. Not too many fanzines anymore, although in the 90’s there were a TON!
How is living in California in general?
(Shitbird) It SUCKS, dont move here, ever- Nah, It’s great. no joke. We’re an hour away from the mountains, the Beach, the desert and L.A. and San Diego. Traffic sucks, but it’s a fair price to play for year round great weather and killer music scenes.
We hear in Croatia that there is pretty there, is there such thing as American dream?
(Shitbird) Man, that’s tricky. I do okay, but that’s not the case for everyone. I think it’s still a thing, but it’s fading.
How was the feedback on your last album?
(Shitbird) We got a lot of positive response! Unfortunately we had some line up shake ups and it stalled out how much we were able to support the album.
How are you satisfied with FirstOff Records?
(Shitbird) TOTALY satisfied. We had worked with Kyle before and just got a great vibe off the guy. He’s a no bullshit go getter that just makes it easy to want to put in the work. We’re looking forward to great things in the future!
How does The LessOffs gig look like? (Shitbird) confusing sometimes, Ha! Yeah, we play with a lot of hardcore punk bands. sometimes the crowd isn’t sure how to react to our less super fast, super shouty songs. but once they start feeling it, feeling what we’re doing, they get into it!
Do you guys tour a lot?
(Shitbird) We try and play locally as much as possible. But we did a 6 day run with some friends of ours from Vegas this time last year from San Diego to San Jose with shows in Santa Barbara, Bakersfield, Santa Cruz in between. We just did a little weekender with some other friends of ours (3 days) from Riverside to Las Vegas to Santa Clarita. We try and get out to Vegas a couple of times a year, and we’d like to get out on a south west tour soon.
Have you ever been to Europe?
(Shitbird) We have not. but if that’s an invitation we could talk!
What do you think is the main difference between the European and American crowds at the gigs/festivals?
(Shitbird) I’ll let you know when I find out!
What does the future hold in store for The LessOffs?
(Shitbird) The immediate future is gonna have some new music in it. We’re working on new songs and we’re planning on getting back in to the studio towards the end of June. After that, time will tell!!
Thats it for the first time, thank you for your answers. For the end, tell me one thing. What do you guys know about Croatia?
(Shitbird) Man, okay, Honest- not a whole lot. Maybe I need to do some reading!
Maybe you heard for some Croatian band from our scene?
(Shitbird) I have not! What Croatian punk bands should I be listening to?
Follow the band on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/lessoffs/
Follow FirstOff Records: https://www.facebook.com/firstoffrecords/