Tag Results: at the drive in
Rolling Stone Interview with Omar Rodriguez Lopez
Omar Rodriguez-Lopez is a restless creative force, with endless musical projects as guitarist and producer, his own label and an accelerating sideline as an experimental filmmaker. In the past, he’s walked away from popular bands just to follow his muse into some unexpected directions, but says a brief reunion tour last year with At the Drive-In mattered more to him than many of us will ever know.
The raging, hard-rock quintet grew up together in El Paso, Texas, recorded for Beastie Boys’ Grand Royal label, traveled the world and had a frenzied radio hit with “One Armed Scissor” before breaking up in 2001. Their reunion tour was short, but the band is active in other ways. This week came the wide release of reissues of ATDI’s 1996 album debut, Acrobatic Tenement, and the career-defining (and final release) Relationship of Command on their brand new label, Twenty-First Chapter.
At the Drive-In – which also includes singer Cedric Bixler-Zavala, guitarist Jim Ward, bassist Paul Hinojos and drummer Tony Hajjar – have scattered to other projects, leaving the future unknown. The Mars Volta, the post-ATDI post-punk/prog act led by Rodriguez-Lopez and Bixler-Zavala, is officially broken up, too, but the guitarist is already deep into Bosnian Rainbows, his band with singer Teri Gender Bender of Le Butcherettes. Next week, Bosnian Rainbows begin a European tour with the Yeah Yeah Yeahs (plus a few dates in Texas and California) and release a self-titled debut album on June 25th.
Rodriguez-Lopez spoke with Rolling Stone about his new band, making music and movies and his eternal attachment to At the Drive-In.
A year ago, you were in the middle of a short reunion tour with At the Drive-In, starting with Coachella. How was that for you?
It’s the best thing that could have happened at that moment. For me personally, it was the most trying time in my life, the hardest obstacle to overcome in my life. In terms of being around loving people I grew up with, I couldn’t have asked for a better situation.
What were you going through?
A week before having to get onstage, my mother passed away. I barely even talk about it now, a year later. At the time, just to get onstage was a chore. So I was around these guys, practicing in my friend’s garage. It couldn’t have been a better group of people to be with.
Is there something special about playing with guys you grew up with?
The level of trust and the feeling that a group of people truly know you can never be replaced. We spent seven years in that band. We grew up together, so it’s that feeling that these people truly love you. Right at the end of the band, we played our last show in L.A. at the Palace, and Wayne Kramer [of the MC5] said, “Man, you love these guys. You’ll go on to do many things in your life, but cherish these moments because it’s never like this again.” That sums it all up for me.
Rolling Stone: Interviews Omar Rodriguez Lopez On Pulling Double Duty in Le Butcherettes & At The Drive In
Omar Rodriguez-Lopez and Teri Gender Bender & Lia Braswell of Le Butcherettes in their trailer at Coachella.
Inside a small trailer backstage at Coachella yesterday, Omar Rodriguez-Lopez was trying to cool down after his first performance of the day, and the dressing room wasn’t much cooler than the triple-digit heat outside. Rodriguez-Lopez pulled double duty on both festival weekends in Indio, California, playing lead guitar with the reunited At the Drive-In on the main stage just hours after a full set on bass with Le Butcherettes, the fiery garage-punk band whose next album he is currently producing in Los Angeles.
Rodriguez-Lopez is a full permanent member of Le Butcherettes, and during the trio’s raging 45-minute set, he stood back with a smile as Guadalajaran singer-guitarist Teri Gender Bender roared through anxious pop hooks with sharp edges, at one point tossing a big Casio keyboard into the moshing crowd. New drummer Lia Braswell slammed a heavy beat from stage left and fans waved Mexican flags, as they would again later for At the Drive-In. Soon after, Rodriguez-Lopez sat with Le Butcherettes for several rounds of bottled water and talked with Rolling Stone about their busy Coachella week.
Is playing two sets a day a challenge?
Rodriguez-Lopez: No, it’s a blessing. Go play music all day? I should be so lucky. Last weekend we played, then we cooled off, we ate, and then just when you really feel like you’re winding down, “Oh, it’s time to play.” It’s perfect.
Omar Rodriguez Lopez Video Interview With Details Magazine at SXSW about Los Chidos & At The Drive In
New Zealand Herald: Interview
In a short period The Mars Volta mastermind relays more wisdom than many artists struggle to achieve in far longer exchanges.
Clearly Rodriguez Lopez is a musician who through struggle and an inexhaustible drive has achieved an acute insight into what he does and precisely why he does it.
It’s a wisdom that has been won over the course of the guitarist and his vocalist song-writing partner Cedric Bixler-Zavala’s long, productive collaboration - first in defining Texan post-hardcore act At The Drive-In, and subsequently over six albums with The Mars Volta.
“Self analysis is what’s happening all through the process,” Rodríguez-López says of creating music, with reference to The Mars Volta’s new album Noctourniquet. “Because you do things instinctually, just by nature. Then through the process you start examining what it is that you’re doing. I don’t mean it to be cold or clinical or intellectual, I’m talking about that instinct that says ‘why exactly this and why not something else?’”
That process has led to certain re-evaluations by the duo. It’s impacted on how they work in The Mars Volta, and also in the form of a reunion of At The Drive-In for this year’s Coachella Festival in California.