In the 1990s, I worked on and off with my zine RTFM. In the third and last issue, I did extensive interviews with Dan Oxenberg of the Supreme Dicks as well as the three original members of Pelt (Mike Gangloff, Pat Best, and Jack Rose, who died in 2009).
To commemorate the reboot of Metawyrd, I am re-releasing the Pelt interview under a Creative Commons license. The document is available at:
And to give you a taste of the interview, here is a sample from the document where Mike, Pat, and Jack discuss a less-than-friendly reception at an upstate New York university….
What have Pelt detractors said to you?
Mike: You SUCK!
[Could] anyone try to flesh out that skeleton?
Mike: No one’s really gotten up in our face about it. People have said that, uh….
Pat and Jack: Colgate!
Mike: Seriously, the most in-our-face that anybody’s ever gotten was at that Colgate college show in Hamilton, New York that “Absolution/Almighty” [on Brown Cyclopaedia] was recorded at.
I was gonna actually ask you about that. I really liked the first part and I was sad that the second part got heckled apart. What happened there?
Mike: Well, they did cut us off. The ending of that was kinda cool, because the last 30 seconds or whatever I put down my guitar and let it just feedback on the amp, and I went to one side of the stage with a handheld recorder and taped together a cassette tape loop off of what Pat was doing on one side of the stage, and set that in a little boombox we had set up.
Then I went over to the other side of the stage and taped what was coming off the other side, and [then] set that in another boom box, and then we all just did a nice little choreographed “cut the amps off’ gesture and left the boombox playing the loops of what had been happening on each side. <laugh> The crowd was even less appreciative of that then they had been of the songs themselves!
Jack: The big thing was like ·’Man, they didn’t even bring a drummer!!!”
Pat: The gentlemen who set up the show, Peter D*****, is that it?
Mike: Yeah, let’s smear his name. Peter D*****, he’s probably a big CEO now. That’s a very expensive little prep school up there, is what it seems like.
Pat: He’s the main voice heckling us throughout the whole thing!
Pat: The guy who booked is the one telling us to “stop” and saying “thank God” when we did! When we first did the tape, you could hear even more heckling going on. It’s probably inaudible on the vinyl but on the CD….
The CD seems like the last part is somewhat broken up by the chatter. That’s one thing that disrupted my concentration.
Mike: We could tell as we were playing that it was going over really badly. We could tell that there was hatred radiating back from the stage. In fact, there was so much hatred that later on that night, we were unable to find a place to stay.
Jack: Nor were any people willing to put us up!
Mike: They refused to pay us despite our contract that had caused us to drive from Richmond up into the frozen wastes of New York to do this thing, wouldn’t give us a place to stay, wouldn’t let us sleep on the floor of their student union….
Mike: They finally sent us out of there and told us that we could stay at the little “alumni hotel,” and when we got there we found it was $80 a night for a room….
Mike: So we just bailed and left, got stopped by the cops out of the way out of town and talked our way out of that, and ended up at my sister’s house, which was 2 ½ hours away (she was listening in Ithaca at the time) at about 3 in the morning. Luckily, she was very understanding about that and let us sleep on her floor!
Were you the type of band that said “well, we got a reaction and that was good” or not?
Jack: Well, it’s a good story and let’s leave it at that.