You are about to enter THE BLACK SCORPIO UNDERGROUND, where the venomous arachnid lives among trash tapes, gore porn, psycho killers and scatological noise. Few live appearances but lots of splits with people like The Haters, Werewolf Jerusalem, RxAxPxE and The Vomit Arsonist. We may think that although TBSU quits tomorrow, like a social club for anonymous fighters in the darkest corner of the american industrial noise, his legend would live on. Be Forewarned.
My first contact with you was through noise / power electronics project The Black Scorpio Underground. Some people began to be aware of your activities during last year, specially since TBSU was featured in Heathen Harvest Periodical. So my first question is, why did you decided to quit TBSU?
JOE– I never really QUIT..since its only myself in this project i put it on hiatus until i could devote more time to recording and playing live. This is a very personal, cathartic project and unless i can do my best and darkest..i dont do it.
MSATC–At the beginning, three people, who played in outfits with members of Swans, Samhain and Damage, were involved in TBSU. But in the end it was all reduced to just one individual, how did that happen?
JOE–Well basically I was in bands with members of all those band PRIOR to TBSU in the ’80’s. These people were NOT in THE BLACK SCORPIO UNDERGROUND.
MSATC–You just announced that a new full length it’s on the making? Will this be the last TBSU release?
JOE– ABSOLUTELY NOT!!! As well as the full length coming out this year on DOMESTIC GENOCIDE RECORDS, I have split releases with–T.O.M.B, DEMONOLOGISTS, STEEL HOOK PROSTHESES, BLACK SHEET SERVITUDE, TORTURING NURSE..and a few others. Also Members of T.O.M.B. will be appearing on my full length entitled-“NECROCHASM”.
|‘Necrochasm’ Front Cover.|
MSATC–You were also the founder of Hate Mail Records (2006) releasing TBSU splits with Werewolf Jerusalem, Endometrium Cuntplow, The Haters, RxAxPxE and The Vomit Arsonist. Was the aim of HM releasing TBSU exclusively? Some label references HM2 and HM4 are unknown to us (we cannot found them at Discogs nor elsewhere)?
JOE— I have no iidea what is on discogs at the moment..some of my releases are very rare..10-20 copies, etc. I created HATE MAIL to release mostly TBSU material but was also planning on having other artists releases on it. Money is always an issue.
MSATC–What was the purpose of creating Black Scorpio Records and what can we expect from it?
JOE– BLACK SCORPIO RECORDS was created to release a compilation entitled–“DARK NEW YORK” which features all the lesser known NEW YORK Gothic and DEATHROCK bands of the early to mid 1980’s..My band- SCARECROW is on there..we were actually the FIRST goth band in NEW YORK CITY-(1982). As well as THE NAKED AND THE DEAD (who’s demo i produced) and OF A MESH.
I am obsessed with military regalia, serial killers, fascist dictators, insanity, death, hatred, misanthropy, witchcraft, demonology, rituals, anything abhorrent to humanity. – Joe Truck
MSATC–I read that you are currently focusing on PUSS (a no wave/experimental project) but since TBSU is no longer active, do you have any other noise / pe project?
JOE— PUSS is no longer active. No, i have a BLACK METAL band–SAHHR and a DEATH METAL band —BEASTHRONE.
MSATC–How many times did you performed live with TBSU?
JOE— At this point 10,15 times???
MSATC–During one of these live performances you were dressed in some sort of “military regalia” (as Boyd Rice would say)? How far it goes your interest for WW2 or the military aesthetics?
MSATC–By the way, did you ever get to know Boyd Rice? If so, how is he like? (Listening to ‘Music, Martinis, And Misanthropy’ one may think he has quite a good sense of humor, hasn’t he?)
JOE– I am obsessed with military regalia, serial killers, fascist dictators, insanity, death, hatred, misanthropy, witchcraft, Demonology, rituals, anything abhorrent to humanity. Yes i have hung out and photographed BOYD..he is, like me very loved and also disliked by many people..he is a provoker and a genius..was a great time, he is VERY funny and intense.
MSATC–You collaborated with Richard Ramirez on the Werewolf Jerusalem / TBSU split. He performed as Black Leather Jesus in Barcelona last year. What do you think his most interesting recordings are?
JOE– I am a fan of everything RICHARD does..and he is one of the sweetest people ive met in this scene. VERY true to his AESTHETIC.
MSATC–Richard Ramirez along with Monte Cazazza, GX Jupitter-Larsen or Boyd Rice are often mentioned as the most influential american noise artists. What do you think about them?
JOE– I would agree..and i have done splits , and/or spent time with all of them.
MSATC–Besides producing severe noise levels you are also a renowned tattoo artist. Last weekend Watain played in L.A and they payed a visit to your studio. What did they ask you to get inked?
JOE– Ive always been a fan of Eric and his band…we have a mutual friend and he took me out on tour with them for a few days..we all hit it off and i ended up tattooing them..very natural..I believe ERIC likes TBSU very much.
MSATC–What do you think about Watain and other black metal bands that are primarily focused on the ritualistic and esoteric aspects of their artistic conception, basically to portray themselves as vessel for their satanic message. Don’t you feel that it pushes music into the background?
JOE– I LOVE it..its an experience AND a show..ERIC especially is VERY dedicated to the ritualistic aspect of his being and WATAIN’s music, to me it goes hand in hand. I dont think the music suffers at all ..its ENHANCED.
MSATC–Did you tattoo some other bands in the past, may I ask the names?
JOE–many many bands…..too many…ZEKE, NASHVILLE PUSSY, HOOKERS, MURDER JUNKIES..too many to mention.
MSATC–Next question is kinda obvious (sorry about it) but since you are an LA-based tattoo artist, what do you think about L.A. Ink?
JOE–SHITE…pure SHITE. (MSATC– Joe’s answer comes as no surprise)
Highlights?? Sharing the bill with bands like PSYCHIC TV, NEUBAUTEN, SWANS… – Joe Truck
MSATC–You moved from New York to Los Angeles. While living in NY you played in bands like Scarecrow and Braineaters. What is your best memory from those days?
JOE–when DAMIEN from SAMHAIN joined BRAINEATERS. Also as i said-SCARECROW was the very FIRST GOTHIC/DEATHROCK band in NEW YORK.. we did not know this until many years later, when a journalist pointed out that we formed MONTHS before OF A MESH in 1982, who were the 2nd.
MSATC–As far as underground music scene is concerned, NY has a long and illustrious tradition of punk, new wave and hardcore bands (CBGB’s and so on) while LA is well-known for 80’s hard rock and metal bands. Tell us a bit of what the underground industrial / noise scene in L.A. is like?
JOE–Small, intimate and reclusive…
MSATC–Which city do you prefer to live in?
MSATC–You’ve been active member of underground community since the mid 80’s switching from punk, early goth and new romantics to black metal and harsh noise later on, that it seems to me a pretty coherent evolution. What were your turning points in your music career?
JOE–Yes ive been playing in clubs since 1979..i played MAXS KANSAS CITY that year. I love ALL Alternative/fringe styles of music. Luckily for me , It seems ive always been on the vanguard of new fresh scenes..In the early 80’s i was obsessed with labels like 4AD and ROUGH TRADE, FACTORY..and the like. The early NNO WAVE scene..early INDUSTRIAL..(Cabaret Voltaire..etc.) Joy Division…Everytime i was enamored of a genre, i formed a band in that genre..some i would rather forget..hahaha but still a part of how i do things..its all in my being. Highlights?? Sharing the bill with bands Like PSYCHIC TV, NEUBAUTEN..SWANS…sooo many great bands..Finding out people i admire like my music.
MSATC–Any records or live gigs worth to mention?
MSATC–You also play in black metal acts Beasthrone and Sahhr, doom band Dowager and d-beat crust punks Aggrastat. Tell us a bit about your other projects?
JOE–Active now is just SAHHR and BEASTHRONE.
MSATC–Is there any other form of noise that you enjoy? (e.g. bands name)
JOE–answered that earlier..i love most generes of music..if its TRUE to itself..with the exception of current pop.
MSATC–Getting back to TBSU, I see that your logo features a six point start with a scorpio inside with numbers 23 and 69. What is the meaning?
JOE– 23 is a sacred and mystical number..ALIESTER CROWLEY was obsessed with its meaning…69 has many meanings including sexuality..look into it.
MSATC–Is it religion or any spiritual practice something appealing to you?
JOE–NO..but the ritualistic aspect of ancient religions,, cults and secret societies fascinates me.
MSATC–TSBU deals with explicit images related to gore, porn and other pathological stuff. You use samplers from trash films that provide a distinctive american flavor to TSBU noise framework. What are your favorite films or production companies?
JOE—Any films that relate to anti establishment ideas..exploitation, grindhouse, cult, black humor, gothic horror, snuff, documentaries are a favorite.
MSATC–What is you favorite subgenre? gore, explotation, bikers…?
JOE– YES!!! And ALL OF THE ABOVE
MSATC–Any last words? (forthcoming releases, projects, wishes…)
JOE– TBSU full length and SPLIT 12″ with T.O.M.B , SAHHR 2 song 12″, BEASTHRONE 7″ split with WARGOATCULT-(SPAIN) Plus alll the TBSU splits on different formats i listed above.
MSATC–Thanks for your time Joe!
JOE–You are welcome..Thank you
Interview by KamaKorpse
Check Joe’s active projects on these links.
THE BLACK SCORPIO UNDERGROUND