Avant-garde metalcore phenoms iwrest-ledabearonce are one of the most anti-establishment acts in hard music today, and not just because their three-year-old aesthetic is more Ren and Stimpy than skulls ‘n’ bones. Their latest video features dirty underwear, a cast member of Saved By The Bell, and copious amounts of vomit. And it’s not because they have a female singer. It’s because that singer, 26-year-old anti-diva Krysta Cameron, makes the belligerent politics of recent tourmate Otep Shamaya seem as girlie as heavy metal Barbie doll Maria Brink. Cameron was kind enough to step away from the aftermath of a home invasion (the band’s shared Birmingham, Ala., house was ransacked and robbed while they were away on tour) to answer some questions on screaming her XX heart out in an XY world, the sorority of metal, and yes, Mr. Belding.
Have you ever made it through an interview without being asked what it’s like to be a girl in a band?
No. Every time I have an interview that’s the number one question. … I think I’m a little bit different because I could really care less about my appearance. I’m not up there to make my band any bigger because I’m a girl and my A-cup titties are hanging out of my shirt. Or that I’m wearing makeup. I go up on stage wearing clothes I’m comfortable in. I don’t feel like it’s really necessary to dress up. Lots of bands do that because women are easily marketed. I don’t want people to view my band like that, or think that we’re trying to get big because I’m a girl. Granted, maybe that is a reason, but we don’t go out of our way to push me to be something I’m not.
You recently went on tour with OTEP, another female-fronted metal band. How’d that go?
I’ve been on tour for a while now and I’ve never experienced a tour like that in my entire life. Let me just put it this way ... I didn’t know Madonna was metal.
What do you mean?
Well, we never really talked. `Otep Shamaya’s` fans would come up to me crying. She wouldn’t talk to them or anything. They’d ask us if we could get her and we were like, “If we even come near her bus she’ll probably set us on fire or something.” Maybe she’s a cyborg. She’d sit in the back of the bus all day. She wouldn’t leave. Everyday when they got up on stage … she’d say, “Hell yeah, we have two women on this tour! There needs to be more women in metal!” And I was just like, “You don’t even talk to me or my band. You were pushed by the label and by your management to talk to me.”
Maybe I shouldn’t be saying this, but I don’t really care if it causes a fight or anything. I know how she really is and I just don’t really agree with it. I’m all about someone who writes powerful lyrics about women’s rights or being a lesbian, because I’m all about that – my sister and brother are both gay. That’s cool. But she speaks so highly about how fucking evil capitalism is and then she’s doing little doodles every day and selling them for $40. I don’t know… that’s no better than George Bush to me. … We loved the members of her band, they’re awesome, but we don’t really care for her at all. She needs to talk to her fans and actually live up to what she thinks, or at least talks about.
How did you get Mr. Belding `Dennis Haskins` from Saved By The Bell to be in the video for “See You In Shell”? What was it like?
When we were doing the video … the director somehow had some contacts and said, “Hey, for a small sum, we can get somebody in this video.” And we were like, “Fuck yeah, dude.” And then we met Dennis and he’s a real down-to-earth dude. … He actually went to Bennigan’s with us and was signing autographs. It was really busy and he pulled the Mr. Belding card and got us a table. He made the magic work. I felt important. I got to say, “Hey Mr. B, want some nachos?” He’s just a normal guy and people came up to him to tell him how much they loved Saved By The Bell and he was giving them the time of day. In other words, he wasn’t Otep. They didn’t get Otepped. Ha! I’m going to start using that. •
With Sky Eats Airplane and Chelsea Grin
Fri, Oct 22
The White Rabbit
2410 N St Mary’s St