Exclusive: Butcher Babies Debut New Song, “Blonde Girls All Look the Same”
Ever since Editor in Chief Brandon Geist stumbled on video of the Butcher Babies covering Pantera’s “Fucking Hostile” live, the staff of Revolver have kept their eyes on this band. And there’s plenty to see: Fronted by Carla Harvey and Heidi Shepherd (former Playboy TV and radio personalities that are rarely seen wearing more than strategically placed electrical tape and a gallon or so of stage blood) and featuring guitarist Henry Flury (Amen), bassist Jason Klein (Azdachao), and drummer Chris Warner (Scars of Tomorrow), the Butcher Babies could be described as the new faces–and boobs–of shock rock. The band will be playing the upcoming 48 Hours Festival, and today they’re unleashing their first single, “Blonde Girls All Look the Same.” Crank the song, read the interview with the band about it, and let us know what you think below.
REVOLVER Carla and Heidi, how did you guys meet? Was it love or hate at first sight?
CARLA HARVEY We met in a punk cover band in 2008, and of course it was love at first sight! I don’t think either of us had ever met a girl like us before: We both have really strong, outspoken personalities so we occasionally butted heads, but we were pretty much instant best friends.
How did the Butcher Babies form?
HEIDI SHEPHERD We were tired of playing covers, so we quit the band that we were in, but we didn’t want to quit each other [laughs]. We both love metal so we decided to make our sound heavier. We started writing together, had to go through some member changes, but finally found musicians that shared the same dream and vision as us.
How would you describe your music?
HARVEY Heavy fucking metal co-fronted by two girls that don’t give a shit, and backed by three guys with writing techniques so different that they complement each other. Between our combined influences of thrash, punk, experimental, death, and nu-metal, we’ve managed to create our own sound that, in a nutshell, is pure sex, blood, and rock and roll.
You guys refer to yourselves as “slut metal.” What the hell is slut metal?
SHEPHERD We can’t go balls out–so we go tits out! When girls are perceived as sexual or outspoken, they get labeled sluts, but we embrace those qualities and bring them to our music as well. Butcher Babies is true slut metal: We’re doing what we want, how we want.
What is your goal with the band?
HARVEY To bring slut metal to the masses–duh! In all seriousness, we feel like we are just touching on what we are capable of, and we want to continue to grow, get our music out there, and get on the road! There are so many repressed people out there that need to see a show like ours. Hopefully they will take home with them the message that they are able to do everything they want to do regardless of who they are told they are supposed to be.
What’s the best reaction you’ve gotten to your band so far?
SHEPHERD We have managed to get a ton of female fans so far and that really touches us, because in general women ostracize each other and can be pretty shitty to each other. We’re all about bringing each other up, not tearing each other down…and getting the message out that it’s OK to be who you want to be. It’s nice when a guy tells you you’re hot and your band rocks…but when a 15-year-old girl from middle America tweets that you are her hero that is fucking cool. We also have gotten great reactions from our parents! It’s not expected for them to be supportive of a band like this, but they have all been very proud.
HENRY FLURY The best reaction I’ve ever gotten is “Wow, after I started watching you guys, I barely remembered there were half-naked girls onstage!” Either he loved the band or he was gay.
What’s the worst?
HARVEY Believe it or not, the worst reaction came from people who were actually in our band at one point and quit because they said we’d never be anything more than a dumb gimmick band. But we turn negatives in to positive. Comments like that are fuel for our fire!!
SHEPHERD I’d say the worst reaction we’ve gotten was from a silly German show we appeared on recently. Das Supertalent flew us over to Germany, and then criticized our performance! They were so shocked that we jumped onstage in nipple tape, spit beer, and shook our bon bons! Again–fuel for our fire!
Tell us about the song “Blonde Girls All Look the Same.”
JASON KLEIN “Blonde Girls All Look the Same” is the first song that we wrote together as a band, so it is special to all of us. It brings five different genres together and all of our influences went in to it.
SHEPHERD We always start our set with it because it’s really aggressive and it sets the mood for the rest of our show. It is about that common statement of “Boyfriend is a goddamn motherfuckin’ cheater!” Lyrically, this song was furiously put together in 30minutes.
HARVEY We generally don’t speak about relationships in our songs, but the feelings of hurt and anger associated with being lied to are so strong and universal that people really connect with this one. Love hard–hate harder!
Carla, you have a degree in Mortuary Science. What made you want to pursue that? And what’s the craziest thing you’ve seen or been part of in the experience of getting your degree?
HARVEY I’ve been fascinated with death since I was a kid. When I heard I could actually make a career out of the thoughts that preoccupied me, I was sold! I had no idea when I enrolled in Mortuary college how graphic embalming really is. I’m not ashamed to admit that I almost fainted at my first autopsy–I’m also qualified to be an autopsy tech–when they showed us how to open up the skull with an oscillating saw. Opening up the chest and abdominal cavities didn’t bother me in the least, but there is something truly creepy about peeling someone’s scalp forward and hearing the whirr of that saw. After awhile you start to become numb to what you see and the bodies become more like science projects: How can I make this drowning victim/burn victim/baby/person torn to shreds in an accident look normal again for their funeral? A little word of advice: Wear your seatbelts and don’t smoke in bed, people!
Who are your biggest musical heroes and why?
HARVEY Slash and Hendrix have always been musical heroes for me simply because as a biracial kid growing up in the Detroit area, I got a lot of shit for loving hard rock and metal, and seeing musicians that were also African American playing the music I loved made me strong enough to say, “Fuck you, I’m going to like what I want.”
SHEPHERD My heroes are Slipknot, Wendy O. Williams, Gwen Stefani, and Joan Jett. Most of them being females that defy the male dominance in music!
CHRIS WARNER If I had to choose a couple, they would be Marilyn Manson and Orgy. Not only is the music great but the entertainment value is there as well. When you are paying $50 or however much for a show, not only are you there for the music but for the entertainment factor! Look, anyone can throw on a CD, but at a Butcher Babies show, not only will you hear heavy music, you will witness self- and accidental mutilation, tape, tits, and blood everywhere. You will be entertained, like my favorite musical heroes did for me.
What is the sexiest hard rock or metal song and why?
SHEPHERD At the moment I’ve been R.A.F.T. ing–”Rolling Around Fun Time–to the Skrillex remix of Korn’s “Get Up.” Rawwwwwrrr!
HARVEY This is such a hard question since music is sex for me! [Laughs] I’d have to say “Love You to Death” by Type O Negative or “Magdalena” by A Perfect Circle. The lyrics and groove of those songs–so perfect for slinking around a stripper pole!
FLURY “If I Close My Eyes Forever” by Lita Ford and Ozzy. Lita in torn jeans with a black Ovation acoustic still gets me hot!
KLEIN The sexiest metal song to me is “Addicted to Vaginal Skin,” Cannibal Corpse!