ROCKNATION ISSUE 24 PAGE 49 Hello Jerry with Monkeysoop and welcome to Rocknation. How long has the band been together and how did you form the band. Monkeysoop has been together about 14 years. After playing with different bands around the US, I settled in San Antonio and started working with a singer on a new project. Then we recruited Erica on bass. Shortly afterward, Erica and I decided to go instrumental. We recorded a five-song demo and pitched it to several record companies. It was picked up by Sonic Wave International and the rest is history. On your EXPERIMETAL II CD you had some guest appearances by Terry Bozzio and Michael Angelo Batio please tell us about that. As a guitarist, I’ve always admired Michael Angelo’s amazing abilities and we were honored to have him on the CD, where he recorded a killer solo on the song “Power Exalted”. We reached out to Terry Bozzio for his phenomenal drumming and his history of working with Frank Zappa among many others. The song he drummed on, “Balance Factor,” was written in 15/16 time, a virtually unknown time signature. Terry used his recording of our song as a drum recording lesson for Drum Channel and from his testimony on the video, we challenged him just a bit. On our latest CD, “Where the Truth Lies,” we recruited Snowy Shaw on drums and Chris Poland on a guitar solo on our cover of Judas Priest’s “Sinner.” Bill Lindsey of Impaler did the awesome vocals for our cover of Alice Cooper’s “I’ll Bite Your Face Off” for a tribute CD. We’ve also got Bill Manspeaker of Green Jelly and Kevin Goocher of Omen doing vocals on some upcoming recordings. If you had to tell someone what your music sounded like, what bands would you mention? It depends on which album you’re talking about – our sound changes with virtually every recording we put out there. We first started out as a progressive instrumental rock band, where we toyed with odd time signatures and crazy rhythms, many different changes in each song. After meeting Bill Manspeaker in 2010 and joining the Green Jelly Texas franchise band he formed, our music took a turn toward vocal-driven, punk-laden comedy and parody. Our latest CDs have been moving toward more ‘progressive grunge’ with more serious song themes dealing with the grittier, darker side of life. Last year you toured Germany, Netherlands & Belgium. Please tell us about that. It was amazing! We were on the Scumgrind Tour 2016 with Waco Jesus, Cliteater, A Threat to the Enemy, and Krotchripper. We were a last-minute addition to the tour as one of the other bands had to drop out. I set it up and left our drummer a rambling voicemail ending with “By the way, I just booked us on a European tour.” Two and a half weeks later, we flew into Germany with guitars and a snare drum and got scooped up by the tour bus at the airport. The whole week was a blast and the last show of the tour was a huge festival with Suffocation and Cattle Decapitation headlining. And we had a day off in Amsterdam – ‘nuff said about that. We’re making arrangements to go back in 2018. What bands have you appeared with in concert in the USA? We’ve opened for many bands over the years including Green Jelly, Loudness, Lillian Axe, The Bullet Boys, LA Guns, Bang Tango, Phantom X, Grim Reaper, Joey Belladonna, Graham Bonnet, Lizzy Borden, Lordi, Sabaton, Grand Funk Railroad, Michael Schenker, Dick Dale, Johnny Winter and many other awesome acts. What plans do you have for 2017? As we speak (June 11, 2017) we’re on our way to Chicago on the East/Midwest/Canada leg of our “Where the Truth Lies” Summer Tour and in July we’ll be heading out west to California, Nevada, and north Texas (with our first ever show at the Whisky A Go-Go on July 15th) for another leg of the tour, including our second year in a row playing at the Festum Carnis in Wilseyville, CA. We’ll also be opening for Omen, Raven, and Helstar for some shows in August in Texas. In September we’ll be touring Texas with Bill Manspeaker as Green Jelly. We’ve got another full-length CD written and almost ready to record and we’re also working on a documentary that will start principle filming sometime in August. We also just signed with a company in the UK to promote our music all over Europe and to help arrange for a headlining tour in the UK In 2018. Thank you for taking time for this interview any last words to the fans? Thank you, Tom, and we hope to see you all on tour! We love seeing our fans and meeting new ones – thank you for supporting what we do!