Jucifer loves you

interview with Amber, June 2008

Please give us a short introduction of yourself so we know who we are typing to?
Hi, it's Amber Valentine, guitar/sing/scream person for Jucifer and a woman who knows how to move heavy equipment.

So what was the reason you joined together to start Jucifer? And why did you choose Jucifer as a bandname? Accidently typed a J instead of a L?
Popular music sucked except Nirvana (this was 1993) and we were two of the only people who understood why.

Jucifer was a word Edgar made up during the O.J. Simpson trial. We had already used a bunch of names--- we changed our name every few shows--- then somehow Jucifer stuck. It's good to chant out loud and also scares old people and panhandlers away if it's on your shirt. (This happened to some fans we've heard)

Maybe you can tell a bit about the meaning of Jucifer? What is the purpose to make music and spread it among humanity?
We're selfish assholes who make music to please ourselves! Then again we feel good when it makes people happy, so maybe we're not all bad...

Musically the music goes various directions. But the majority leans on melancholy. Do you disapprove that people put you in the doom corner? Or do ou like to be categorized?
Doom works pretty well, although we do some fast noisy stuff that might not be expected for that category. We usually have some shocks in store for anyone who categorizes us... it's ok if they do, but they should know it might not prove true.

The fact that you are from the US and releasing a new album about the French Marie Antoinette what does that say? You are interested in the French history or there is no interesting history of your own country?
You're making me laugh!! ...I'm interested in French history. There IS interesting history for the U.S. (our last record, If Thine Enemy Hunger, was about some of it) but not such theatrical mass killings as in eighteenth century France.

Marie Antoinette didn't survive the guillotine as her death penalty. In some of the US states they use the death penalty. Why don't anyone uses the guillotine?
Because they don't know how to pronounce it?

And the song that now flips through my mind is the one of Kreator. Never thought of cover it on this album as a bonus or hidden track?
Maybe it's there and you've just missed it :)

Did you know that Jucifer is a vodka crush organic drink from the UK?
We're coming to Europe to wreak our vengeance on those bastards for stealing our name. I'm not kidding.

The new album is a double one. Why that because it fits on one disc? Or did you do that because you want to release it on vinyl? (I only have the promo CD of Relapse)
It's going to be coming out on vinyl. And, it's long as fuck.

What do you think of CD releases compared to vinyls?
I think cassettes are a better medium than CDs. I have a Black Flag tape from 1984 that plays better than CDs I've listened to once! Vinyl is even better---the best. It lasts forever, the art is four times bigger, and it's more fun to shoot at. Plus, you can melt it to make other things... I rest my case. (But everyone should still buy our CD of course.)

On the album I hear Amber singing French. Did she speak French before or just learn the lyrics and that is it. Do you speak other languages other than English? Any nasty words which will do it in a cafe?
I've always spoken a little French but not well. Same with Spanish. I know a few choice words in Russian, Japanese, Chinese, and Italian. I can say hello, thank you, ask where the toilet is and then tell you to stick it up your ass.

Are you hanging out a lot when not busy with the band? Do you like to go to clubs, see bands, drink beer, table dancers etc? As I assume you have a daily job and want to releax in the weekend. What is your job?
We're ALWAYS busy with the band. We don't have a day job, just commuting average 2-300 miles per day and setting up a bunch of gear for the show. We also end up acting in movies, or making videos, or doing photo shoots and interviews a lot. On our ’weekends’ (usually Monday-Tuesday), we like to be alone together or just alone. Our small dog dances on the table when she can, trying to steal our food. She has eight tiny nipples!

What kind of education do you have? Did you get you gratuated? And are you working in your profession? And do you have a job you would like to do?
I went to art school (painting major) and Edgar went to film school. We dropped out. We both still make art and are (slowly) writing novels and screenplays.

Do you agree that money is one of the stupidest inventions of all time? I mean if we didn't have to earn money we never had to work. Just trading stuff.
Nah. If not for money we'd have to actually do something different for every thing we needed. Want an apple? Mop my floor. Need a new toothbrush? Change the baby's diaper. Want a car? Dig me a hundred-mile ditch. Money makes it simpler. Cause me, I could dig a ditch for a car, but I ain't changing your baby's diaper. No way.

And what is your opinion on religion as it is the problem why there is war and no tolerance among humans?
Most people want to belong to a group which tells them how much better they are than everyone else. In religion this is extended to the extreme, that some deserve immortal life and others deserve death and eternal hell. Thinking like that it's very easy to justify killing people that aren't in your club.

It's strange because the group instinct implies that we are herd animals--- yet what other herd animals go to war with entire neighboring herds? Yes, pack leaders fight to keep their position and young upstarts fight to take their power. But we seem to be an inferior, self-destructive herd mammal.

Do you follow the global stupidness of humanity in the daily newspaper, televison or internet?
Only a little. I try to maintain my optimism, which is like trying to protect an egg as it rests in the middle of a busy street...

You are just with two persons but like to play live and going on tour. How do you compensate this on stage? Will there be help or just the two as we can see in ’A Partridge In A Pear Tree DVD’?
We have always played with just us two on stage (except 2 songs when Stephen Tanner from Harvey Milk joined us for one show in maybe 1995) and it doesn't seem to require compensation. We feel it's perfect to do it this way.

Something else. Are you two in a relationship? And I don't mean just bandmembers....
Married but still best friends... we're lucky.

Why should be participate in one of your shows? What can we expect on the visual side? And how do you want the crowd to react as a moshpit would look strange.
Actually moshpits happen often at our shows! We don't require anything from the crowd though. Our stimulation and reward both come from what we're playing and feeling together. I do believe in certain etiquette though: if you like it, come closer. If you don't, leave!
Normally we have a spectacular light show, part of which involves lights inside of Edgar's giant clear drums, but it's going to be scaled down, just like our amp wall. we wouldn't have time to set up/tear down our usual gear on shows with so many bands and the festivals. And, he can't ship his own drums. It's going to be different for us but we like a challenge.

I also checked your both sites and I must say that the official one is chaotic and very structured. Is this done on purpose or just lack of knowledge?
Not sure which one you're talking about but... all sites about us have been made by other people, sometimes throwing things on in a hurry. There are even a couple of totally outdated sites that for some reason no one can get removed. The best place for info right now is: www.myspace.com/jucifer

Also for fun, check www.myspace.com/juciferswallofamps

And what about the poster with the Roy Lichtenstein hang out dick? And are all the other posters designed by you?
That's a nice one, eh? Most of the posters (dick included) have been designed by lots of different artists. We've done a couple, but they were from photographs we took. I'm just getting into designing on the computer (as opposed to straight old-fashioned art supplies) so we'll probably do more in the future.

Coming to the end is there any shameless elf promotion?
Come support a great tour!! With our friends Today Is The Day, plus Complete Failure and Four Question Marks. It's only taken us 15 years to cross the ocean, so don't miss out!

Also coming soon: ’L'Autrichienne’ double vinyl on Alternative Tentacles, set for July 15. ’Veterans Of Volume’ a new super sweet DVD featuring 8-camera live set, 5 never before released studio tracks & more: available at www.juciferdvd.com. ’Jucifer Rising’ biography by former Flipside writer Jim Hayes. ’Metalhead’ feature film about Jucifer by award-winning director Derek Cianfrance (2009 release).

Last rites
Jucifer loves you
Interviewer: twansibon
Jun 12, 2008

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