Sixteen years after the release of their last EP, BOIL(ing), the stunning prospect of new music from Houston thrash gods deadhorse is now tantalizingly close. Last week, the band unveiled a Kickstarter page set up to fund the recording of the third deadhorse album.
When the band reunited two years ago (without singer/guitarist Mike Haaga, it's been noted), fans were slightly flabbergasted. New music seemed almost like too much to ask. And now Kickstarter! We are truly through the looking glass here. The crowdfunding site is still looked down upon by some artists and fans as plain old begging, but longtime 'horse bassist Allen "Alpo" Price says that the idea made too much sense not to try.
"To be honest with you, I had it mentioned to me by a couple fans," Price says. "To use it for what we're doing is kind of odd, I think, in general. It was a different avenue, but I'd seen it work well for other people and other projects. I really kind of wanted to see how well we could do, and it took off really fast."
The band is looking to raise $7,666 (natch) to record the new album, with the goal of having it out by the end of the year. That ain't chump change, but fans will be getting something for their money. In addition to scoring exclusive new merch like T-shirts and patches, backers will also be among the first to receive copies of the forthcoming deadhorse EP, Let Them Eat Horse, scheduled to be released this summer.
Limited to 1,000 copies, the EP will be the first new deadhorse material to see the light of day in a hell of a long time. Excited? The band is. Price says that after corralling the horsemen into the studio earlier this year to cut a demo, they were shocked at what they heard.
"We were very surprised at how good it came out, and we started thinking, 'What are we going to do with this stuff?'" the bassist says. "'Are we going to wait and put out an album later, and make our fans wait even longer to hear songs that they've been waiting forever to hear?'"
"We got it to a point where we agreed that it's good enough to release as an EP, and really kind of a teaser, in a way," he added. "It's almost a prequel to the full record."
Unless you pitch in on Kickstarter, you'll have to wait until July 4 to get your hands on Let Them Eat Horse. Don't be surprised, though, if you hear a preview of some new tunes this weekend when deadhorse headlines the Welcome to Hell Fest at Fitzgerald's on Saturday, featuring some of the band's favorite out-of-town acts like Austin's the Blood Royale and Beaumont's Etyma alongside local faves H.R.A. and Legion.
Price says that the new material is a bit of a throwback, sure to please diehard fans of the band's earliest, gnarliest days.
Story continues on the next page.
"Myself, I wanted to get back to the two-minute song format," he says. "I'm not working on getting out commercial product that's long enough to get on radio. I'm not interested in that. I'm interested in getting great songs that blast people's heads off.
"That's what Horsecore was kind of all about: It was raw," he continued. "That's really why I kind of want to put out Horsecore II, to bring people back to that roots kind of thing."
Price says that he has big plans for the end of the year that he's not quite ready to discuss yet, but it's clear that he's more than ready to get the 'horse back up to a full gallop. Getting their first new album out in over 20 years would certainly go a long way toward achieving that goal, and the band is working hard to get it happening. At Saturday's show, Price will be auctioning off a bass used during the band's performance to help fund the record.
Whether the Kickstarter succeeds or not, though, the bassist is adamant that fans will receive the goodies they paid for -- and that the 'horse will be heard from again.
"With deadhorse, we've promised our fans things in the past, and it didn't happen," he says. "Since we got back together, that's been my goal: to never, ever do that again."
deadhorse headlines the Welcome to Hell Fest on Saturday featuring U.Y.U.S., the Blood Royale and more at Fitzgerald's, 2706 White Oak. Doors open at 8 p.m.
ROCKS OFF'S GREATEST HITS