They call themselves “the greatest rock n’ roll band in the world,” have been described by others as “literally a human cartoon,” and they’re playing the Astor Theatre next Wednesday, June 25. They are The Supersuckers, and singer/bassist Eddie Spaghetti tells SHANE PINNEGAR to “wear clean underwear because we’re definitely going to rock your pants off.”
Formed in Arizona in 1988, The Supersuckers relocated to Seattle just as grunge broke.
Despite sounding closer to a grittier Cheap Trick, with songs heavy on melody and a sense of fun, they managed to get signed by seminal grunge label, SubPop, releasing four studio albums and a best of through them, including 1995’s The Sacrilicious Sounds Of The Supersuckers flirting with cross-over success with the minor alternative hit, Born With A Tail.
As Spaghetti kicks back in his “luxurious hotel in beautiful Raleigh, North Carolina,” he is at a loss to pinpoint what the band could have done to better capitalise on the success of that song at the time.
“I’m sure there was, although I have no idea,” he says wryly. “Even hindsight doesn’t provide me with any real glowing missed opportunity or anything like that. I just feel like we were not the right band for that time. I don’t know what else to chalk it up to because the material was great. The songs were really good. I guess the production, maybe, could have been a little bit different. But other than that I feel like we did everything right.”
Four albums followed over the next decade before The Supersuckers took a hiatus in 2009, during which Spaghetti continued to record and tour solo.
Had the band cracked the big time while with SubPop, Spaghetti’s not sure whether they would have flourished, or possibly burnt out in a blaze of glory.
“That’s a good question!” he laughs deeply. “I think we still had a few more good years in us, but then we probably would have started tapering off and we would have been disillusioned and given it up. To go so high, it’s hard to come back down to where you really are.”
Coming down to Australia in support of their first new release in five years, Spaghetti says the band had something to prove with the album, Get The Hell.
“Oh yeah, for sure,” he insists, “because Get It Together (2008) was poorly received, it’s kind’ve considered to be a weak record. I listen to it and I’m still really happy with it, but I see the point. It was a lighter record, I guess, and that’s not what people have come to expect from The Supersuckers. So this time we knew we needed to do it right, and we sure did!
“We’ve been busy and we’ve made a really great record so people should notice. We feel like we have no business putting out a record this good, this late in the game.”
These words he speaks are true – Get The Hell is a rollicking, bollocking, kick-arse rock’n’roll record full of riffs and hooks and underdog lyrics that will have you humming along for days. Many critics are calling it The Supersuckers’ best album yet.
So, on the eve of their Australian tour, which Spaghetti says is “exciting indeed – we are looking forward to it,” one question remains unanswered: are The Supersuckers the greatest rock’n’roll band in the world?
Spaghetti doesn’t hesitate: “That is true,” he shoots back. Though the quandary is, why more people don’t realise it?
“Now that’s a good question!” he says, laughing now. “I think they’re waiting for us to die or something before we get anointed as the greatest rock’n’roll band in the world!”
The Supersuckers play the Astor Theatre next Wednesday, June 25.
Get your tickets here.