The Slaughterhouse 5After a period spent in the wilderness, The Slaughterhouse 5 have returned with a new single, Lambert (for real), which they will launch at Bar 459 this Friday, November 14, with help from Circle One, KT Rumble, ST Cartledge and MC Jeffrey Strongo (with face painting). BOB GORDON chats to Luke Farrell.


Whatever happened to The Slaughterhouse 5?

We went on tour a few years back and found out – after arriving in Hobart – that the accommodation we’d been promised didn’t exist. Then the gigs fell through. All the flights were non-refundable and, we’d spent all our money and we now had to pay for hostel rooms as well. This caused some tension within the band. Then, just before coming home, we found out that we’d been approved for a grant to record an album, which was great, but the pressure of having government money hanging over our heads caused even more problems and we ended up fighting more than rehearsing. Two of us survived the process and one didn’t.

We kept on working for a while, but we were just exhausted and sick of it all by that point and we dumped every song that we’d written. For the next few years, we recorded quite a bit, racking up dozens of demos, but without any interest in dealing with the whole music scene thing. Then, a couple of months ago, we played some of the stuff we’d recorded to some friends, who kind of flipped out over it and insisted that we release it. So, we’re releasing it.


It’s volatile sounding music… and a volatile band?

We always joked that collectively we had health, mental and financial problems. Things are much better now, though Andy (Bassett) keeps referring to this single as ‘the angry one we needed to get out of our system’. I guess it’s a cathartic record, or some such wank. At our last gig, we were thanked for being so nice to everyone, but I’m not sure what that means.


Tell us a bit about the single, Lambert (for real)?

Stanley Bing once said, ‘Anger is a fuel. You need fuel to launch a rocket. But if all you have is fuel without any complex internal mechanism directing it, you don’t have a rocket. You have a bomb’. This is literally the first relevant thing I could find, having Googled “anger quotes.” Seems to work.


Is there other material about the place?

Nothing you can hear without stealing my laptop. Our first EP, The Slaughterhouse Five Are Fuck You Love, never made it to a second run, and there are issues around who wrote what on that one, so it’s probably gone forever. Seriously though, don’t steal my laptop.


What are the plans from here?

We’ve already started recording again, so there should be another release soon. Probably an EP. Our last couple of gigs have featured a fairly eclectic mix of acts; experimental electro bands, folk acts, poetry readings, MC Jeff Strong, etc. We’d like to do more of those, because they’re a lot more fun than traditional gigs. We’re even having face painting at our launch.