I remember it like it was yesterday; the moment that my soul curdled and was shit on. The year was 1992. People were already into wrapping flannel shirts around their waists, but it hadn’t yet become cool to be depressed. I was a strapping-young-lad of eight. It was lunchtime, and while waiting for my chicken noodle soup and chocolate milk, I was sifting through daytime television. Flipping along in the innocence of my soon to be soured childhood, I stopped, jaw-dropped, on the Jerry Springer Show.
There on the television was a sight bewildering to my Ninja Turtle and G.I. Joe-mind. It was a sight of horror and gnarlyness; a sight of sci-fi absurdity.
There, sitting in a chair, surrounded by other such spectacles, was a giant humanoid barbarian looking creature. He had a face like old hamburger meat, and a head that looked to belong to Satan himself. He had two giant blades coming out of his back and spikes all over his shoulders. His legs were clearly human, but the rest of him was something from a smack withdrawal hallucination. The creature was Oderus Urungus, front man of the disgusting and epic space-metal band “GWAR.”
As the story goes, eons ago there existed a mighty group of galactic warriors known as the “Scumdogs of the Universe.” The Scumdogs roamed the universe terrorizing their victims and appeasing “The Master” until one day they grew too strong and were banished to the worst place in the universe: Earth. Here they rested for millions of years until pollution de-thawed them from their Antarctic coma. Since that day they have been roaming the planet using their powers of space-metal rock and lewd antics to torture the human race.
Their goal? The complete destruction of the human race and existence itself.
In their time on Earth, besides torturing humans, they have been nominated for two Grammys and have appeared on The Jerry Springer Show (aired in 1990, the show I saw was a rerun of this episode), the Joan Rivers Show (1990, 2006), Mystery Date (1991), Viva La Bam (2008), and Empire Records. Gwar was featured in the Super NES video game Beavis and Butthead in Virtual Stupidity, where the main objective of the game is to attend a Gwar concert. Most recently, Oderus Urungus has been showing up on the Fox News show “Red-Eye” as their “intergalactic correspondent.”
Yes indeed, Gwar is much more than a metal band, but as Oderus has put it, “it’s just a bunch of rotting humanoid diarrhea that isn’t meant to do anything but barely entertain you.”
Recently I caught up with Oderus Urungus and had the displeasure of having a chat with him.
Nick Khattar: So what’s up? You guys are in Florida right now?
Oderus Urungus: Yeah, yeah. We just started this huge fucking coast to coast-up and down, all over the fucking place tour with Red Cord. We’re also doing some shows with Lamb of God. It’s fucking completely off the hook!
NK: Shits going off for you guys!
Oderus: Yeah! Shows are huge. It’s the greatest fucking … its the 25th Anniversary of “GWAR”!
NK: You guys have been celebrating that now for two years.
OU: Yeah well it’s been 25 years since Gwar was unearthed in an Antarctic stronghold and it’s been 25 years of unrivaled mayhem ever since. Every year has been bigger and this year is the biggest Gwar show ever. So everybody’s gotta get out and go down to the show and go through the enduring, enjoyable cultural ritual that is Gwar!
NK: Abso-fucking-lutely! We are pretty excited that you guys are coming all the way to Halifax.
OU: Yeah! All the way! Canada has a lot in common with our homeland of Antarctica, but the one thing that Canada has that Antarctica doesn’t have is people. And what Halifax has is people that support the fucking hell out of metal and love their Gwar! So yes, we will be there very soon trying to destroy that section of the world.
NK: So rumour has it there is a second World Maggot that may make it on tour this time?
OU: Yeah there is a rumour that there is another one but we haven’t seen it yet, so hopefully it will make it on this tour. But we’ve had a ton of other things that beat the shit and eat people, ya know, like maggots, giant dinosaurs, cybernetic/intergalactic assholes. I mean there’s just a ton of shit up there.
NK: So how’s it been working for Fox?
OU: Oh yeah, they are great! They basically told me from a distance that they’re smart enough to only let me be used at their affiliate stations, but there’s a couple times I’ve been down in the studio in New York and it’s been really awesome. I have been instructed by my manager, Sleazy P. Martini, not to kill or eat anyone. And I’ve held to that so I’ve had a lot of success doing it. So as long as I don’t kill the host of the show, I think I am in there!
NK: By host you mean Greg Gutfield?
OU: Yeah! He is a delectable little Pillsbury of a Doughboy, and Oderus and him get along well. Every time I am on the show I am sure it is going to be my last but they just keep calling me back.
NK: So you guys were at the Waken Open Air festival in Germany this year, how was that?
OU: Yeah we played that gigantic fucking metal fest. The barricade was about 30 metres across and we were confronted with about 100,000 screaming Germans. When we were killing Obama, they thought we were just killing a black person. That was pretty funny. We were like, “No, no, no. We’re not just killing black people in general, that’s actually President Obama and he deserves to die.”
NK: So you guys aren’t down with Barack and Roll?
OU: No, no, we like him a lot actually. I think he is definitely a step up from the last President. It’s interesting to see though how Americans are freaking out that they finally have a black president, but there has been a ton of black presidents all over the world for hundreds of years. And they’ve even had black and female presidents at the same time. And then everyone in America is like, “Oh, really?”
NK: So what is Gwar’s role in being a politically outspoken band?
OU: We basically hope to show the human race that our stance on politics and politicians is that they are completely fucking useless. They should just be the people setting up the timetables, not telling people how to live. So basically our stance is that they should all be put to death, or made to fight each other, to death, with the crudest of weapons, for the entertainment of the masses. Yes, there should be crude anarchy in the streets, we believe. Let people fight it out, and let the barter system return. Let Gwar be their futile overlords. This is a system we advocate, we understand it is a little different than what most people would want.
NK: So word on the street is that you guys are recording another album while touring to be released in 2010?
OU: Yes, I’ve heard this as well. What has started as me just randomly blabbing in some interview has turned into a question I am regularly asked. So I have not even run it by my band mates at all, and I will gladly agree to this: yes! We’d love to put out another album by the end of the 2010 and it doesn’t seem that difficult to do it.
NK: So what’s the deal with your battle against Cardinal Sin?
OU: Well we got off the planet this year and went back to outer space and found out everything sucked out there. Essentially Cardinal Sin had turned outer space into one gigantic Branson let’s just say. Just a huge bad TV show full of terrible strip malls and corporate headquarters. There wasn’t any crack or strip clubs or heavy metal anywhere. So we had to come back to Earth to get the things we love. Earth is the only place left in the whole universe that has crack! That’s why we stand side by side with the humans (who we created by butt fucking apes remember) to defeat this menace Cardinal Sin.
NK: Will Cardinal Sin be showing up in Halifax?
OU: I think Cardinal Sin will be showing up at the Halifax show. So get down there! It’s more than just a fucking show. You better come on because we are going to be struggling for the fate of the human race. I mean, do you want to be destroyed by Cardinal Sin, fucking intergalactic puritan asshole? Or do you want to get raped to death by Gwar? I think the choice is obvious.
Editor’s note: Gwar played the Cunard Centre on Oct. 29. If you were only confused by the author talking to Oderus about an upcoming show that already happened, then you should be proud of yourself.