Posted On 10 Aug 2017
Bat$hit!crazy is a band that Chuck Dietrich decided to start with a few key things in mind. He wanted it to be fun but based in the horror genre. He wanted it to be catchy but also edgy. He wanted the color scheme to be bright but with images associated with dark things. That’s why they call it “Pop Punk Hardcore Horror Rock N’Roll.”
After writing almost a 100 songs for his other hardcore project called Bullet Treatment, Chuck wanted to start something with much more of a specific direction and theme. While bands like the Misfits, AFI and Groovie Ghoulies flirt with concepts based on classic Horror & Sci Fi movies, he wanted to bring a more modern take on that and feature songs that could be based on more recent classic horror movies such as “Phantasm”, “They Live”, “Nightmare On Elm Street”, etc while also being creative with darker lyrics and mixing melody with aggression in the direction of the music.
Bat$hit!crazy plans on releasing 4 EP’s digitally before combining them into a cd/vinyl release. The cover art for each EP is actually just a corner of the entire cover art. So it’s like 4 puzzle pieces that when put together make the actual cover for the physical release.
The band is made up of Richy V (vocals), Chuck D (Guitar), Jason V (Bass) and Mike M (Drums).
Learn more about Bat$hit!crazy in the following All Access interview:
Thanks for your time today! How has 2017 been treating you? Musically, did you approach this year any differently then you did last year?
Thank you! So far, 2017 has been a little rough, but we still have a few months to turn that around! haha
Actually yes this year I did approach things a little different musically with this new band than with Bullet Treatment or other projects I’ve been involved with. I wanted to kind of cross pollinate all my influences in punk rock and put them into Bat$hit!crazy. with sort of a theme.
Where does this interview find you today? Is there music playing in the background? If so, what is it? What kind of music do you listen to when you are working? What music gets you instantly out of a bad mood?
I’m sitting in my home studio and actually yes, I am listening to music. I’m listening to a band called CULTURE ABUSE and the album is “Peach”. They are a band my singer turned me onto. Good stuff!!
When I’m working I always listen to music, I think yesterday I had on DANZIG “I”, DESCENDENTS “Hypercaffium Spazzinate”, GHOST “Popestar” & UNCLE ACID “The Night Creeper”. Oh, and METZ “II” another band Richie turned me onto, rad band!
As for the mood, I don’t know, I’m not usually in a bad mood, haha. I always have music going which keeps me in a good mood. Be it in the car, garage, office, studio, etc.
Well when I was little I played clarinet in school band and I took about a weeks worth of piano lessons. But I never really had any big dreams of being a musician. It wasn’t until after I was injured in my sports life that I really wanted to be involved in music. I guess I had that yearning from those clarinet days.
You know it’s funny I have such a vivid memory of music from when I was a kid. My mom was a huge ELVIS fan and my dad a FRANK SINATRA fan. My grandparents were old school country fans. My aunt is the one that got my attention into rock when I first heard VAN HALEN II. She was playing the song “Light Up The Sky” in her car and it immediately grabbed my attention. After hearing that is where I kinda started taking my own path and searching out records.
If you weren’t a musician today, what else could you see yourself doing?
I don’t know, I’m sure I would be involved in the music business somehow. But I’m a people person and it would have to be something with a lot of interaction.
I always like to ask artists about where they came from and how that city or town has influenced them as an artist now. So how do you think your hometown has affected who you are as a musician and the art that you create?
That’s a great question and I was just having a conversation about this the other day with someone. By the time I got to High School I had such a variety of friends and people I associated with that I was subject to a ton of different music. There weren’t a lot of “cliqs” so while I may have been out on the baseball field my buddy was waiting for me to get done at practice would be sitting in the stands blaring OZZY on his radio (this is back when people carried a radio, not headphones). I can recall taking batting practice a number of times and one of the guys would pull his truck up and we’d be listening to RUSH, VANDALS, SUICIDAL, BAD RELIGION, THE JAM, all kinds of stuff because that was the makeup of our team. Then there were the shows at the local churches or music stores where you could see The Tazers and local punk bands. Actually Jamie the drummer from Guttermouth was a pitcher on the baseball team at one point so we’d go watch Guttermouth at a house party after a game. Very skate punk, ska/mod, metal/rock influenced town.
So how did your band Bat$hit!crazy first come to be? What gave you the idea to create a band based in the horror genre? Can you elaborate more on your description “pop punk hardcore horror rock n’roll”?
It’s funny because I had written a lot of music that I didn’t think would be a good fit for Bullet Treatment (BT is more hardcore skate punk) and I was trying to figure out what to do with it. There were elements of Pop Punk in these songs, some more straight Rock N’ Roll but occasionally my style of hardcore playing would pop up into some of the riffs. At the same time I had coincidentally started re-visiting some old horror movies I loved and was actually reading a book titled “333 films to scare you to death” and thought about how the Misfits and a few other bands would sing about say “Night Of The Living Dead” or “We Are 138”. I also knew vocals had to be a very important part of this as some of the songs would have to be very melodic and catchy while others more shouty and aggressive. I had just got done working with Richie and he is one of only a handful of singers I know that can sing just about any style and shares the same love for the genres of both music and film. So I approached him and he was totally down to do it. I think of all the things he has sang on this is his best vocal performance ever. He nails it!
Like I kind of mentioned BT is more hardcore skate punk. Super fast, short blasts of music. BT has a very specific style of playing and of course BT has the always revolving members on records as well. Bat$shit!crazy. is specifically just one band, and the music while at times has similarities is way more poppy and also more thought out and specific. In BT I can write an album in a couple of days, these songs are taking a lot longer and have more a mindset of what the intention is. BT its fly by the seat of your pants kind of stuff, haha.
Can you talk about the 4 EPs you plans on releasing soon?
Yea each ep will have 3 songs, and after we release them all online we will either press a cd or vinyl or something physical. Also each ep’s cover art is a corner of what will be the 12 song release. So what you are seeing now with “ep.1” is just the top left hand corner of the album cover art. And the themes will loosely be based on the aforementioned ideas, the movie PHANTASM has inspired actually a couple of songs. Actually so has HELLRAISER, but you’ll have to really pay attention on some of them.
What are your plans for the rest of the summer? Do you have any tour dates currently lined up?
We plan on finishing up vocals on a few more tracks and then seeing where we want to go from here. No tour dates yet, we actually just were hit up about a string of shows and there is a conflict with some other plans so we’ll just have to wait and see.
Who are some of your very favorite artists or rather, what musicians have continued to inspire you and your music? What musicians would you absolutely love to work with in the future?
The RAMONES are the single biggest influence on me as a musician. Johnny Ramone is the reason I picked up a guitar. I just went and saw the new Spider-Man movie and I had no idea that “Blitzkrieg Bop” was the theme song. But that shows you how important that band is still to this day. Think about how many new kids will love the Ramones because of that. I was really hoping they were going to put their version of the Spider-man theme at the end during credits. Spoiler alert, they didn’t. haha And that actually ties into the one person I have never had a chance to work with and would absolutely love to, CJ Ramone. I am such a fan of his, especially his vocals. As great as Joey was, every time they would release an album it was CJ’s songs that were the instant fav’s. “Strength To Endure”, “Main Man”, “Scattergun”, “The Shape Of Things To Come”, etc. Plus I’m a fan of all his solo stuff, Los Gusanos, & Bad Chopper. CJ…..one day my man!
What do you hope is the message of your music? What do you hope people continue to take away from your songs?
This band is really about having fun, not being too serious, just enjoying everything we do and why we play music. You know I’ve always thought that music has whatever message you want it to, so it’s up to you if you want to look that deep. Otherwise just enjoy it!
What advice would you give to someone just getting started on this music path? Or even to someone young that is thinking of becoming a musician one day?
I tell you what, it’s sooo different than it was when I started. You really have to do it for the love, there is no way you can go into it with the idea of being career. I just sent a text yesterday to a buddy I was having an interaction with and said “punk rock is the greatest hobby ever”. Maybe I should put that on a shirt or something. haha
Is there anything else that you would like to share with our readers about yourself or your music?
We really appreciate anyone taking the few minutes to listen to these songs, it always means a lot to us. While we are not very social media friendly, I can’t stand Facebook and Twitter but we do have a Instagram account so follow us on there if you love our style of music or general horror related stuff.