Recently graduated from CC, once-house-party-band Mad Wallace takes on Denver. This week, The Catalyst sits down with 3/4 of the band as they prepare to return to Colorado Springs for their first performance at The Black Sheep. If you don’t already, get to know the group, their stage and home dynamics, and everything else you weren’t really sure you wanted to hear. But they’ll tell you anyway. If this brief encounter with Mad Wallace wasn’t enough, check them out tonight at 7 p.m. with Perpetual Groove and Charlie Milo at The Black Sheep for a better look at what they’re actually good at. Enjoy.
Interview By SAMANTHA SILVERMAN
Photos Courtesy of Mad Wallace
Jake Lauer – Drums
Jake Sabetta – Guitar/Vocals
Jamie Rushford – Guitar/Vocals
David Becker (not present) – Bass/Vocals
The Catalyst: Why Mad Wallace?
Jake Lauer: Why Mad Wallace? Hmm…Have you ever looked a squirrel directly in the eye and thought to yourself, “Where is this squirrel gonna get his next meal from?” You know, is it the trash can? Is it some nuts that he stashed somewhere? There’s no real way to know. It’ll drive you mad if you think about it too much. “The Wall” by Pink Floyd beautifully illustrates this concept. Also “Donnie Darko.” Love that movie.
TC: Why is this project different than anything you did at CC?
JL: I mean, for me, I think it was the addition of the third J. In most previous bands I had played in, we had that Jake Jake connection, but it was just missing that extra oomph. And that’s where Jamie comes in. He completes the Triforce, if you will. The triple John. The holy trigonometry.
Jake Sabetta: We’re angrier this time.
TC: Who is the superior Jake?
Jamie Rushford: David.
JL: Depends on the metric. If we are basing it on eyebrows, I’m clearly the winner. If we are basing it on quantity of beans and rice consumed in a given week, Sabetta takes the cake.
JS: Yes. I fart the most.
TC: Considering you all live together, who would you kick out of the house without kicking out of the band?
JR: Jake Lauer, unless he starts doing his damn dishes.
JL: I’d kick out David because, you know, he’s the bass player. So no one would really notice if he was gone anyway.
TC: Describe the worst house party you ever played at CC.
JL: All of my house party experiences with Mad Wallace have been glorious. Not glorious. I don’t like glorious. Have been blessed. But I will say, going back further, worst house party I played at CC was sophomore year with Funkdozer. It was at K-Sig. It was a great show, don’t get me wrong. However, my good friend, let’s call him Frederick, got pretty worked up. There was some texting on the stage, some feelings hurt. And Funkdozer lost a member the next day. It was the coldest of tonys.
JS: I’d say any of the parties that got shut down, cause that’s boner jam ’09 if you ask me.
TC: What was your first impression of the Denver music scene?
JL: Well. It took a little bit of digging to find a niche that we could start growing within, but since finding it, things have been great. There are some really cool local venues like Your Mom’s House that have a great vibe and almost the same energy as a house party. The other local bands we have been playing with are super supportive too.
TC: You have to add another instrument to your band. What is it and who plays it?
JL: The pennywhistle. Willie Nelson.
JR: The didgeridoo. The crocodile from Crocodile Dundee.
JS: The Saxophone. Brian Lemuer. Or the Violin, Jesse Sabetta.
TC: Ideally, where is Mad Wallace in five years?
JL: Remember that squirrel? He has found his next meal. It’s a hotdog that has fallen from the tender grasp of Ben Tweedy’s [hands] as he dances to the sweet sweet tunes of Mad Wallace’s Red Rocks premier.
TC: Mad Wallace can’t exist without ___________.
JS: A basement to play in. I don’t know. Can you think of something funnier?
JL: Sexual tension.
JR: Asymmetrical eyebrow distribution.
TC: Give one piece of advice to a group of freshmen who just decided to form a band.
JS: Don’t rely on anyone else to make a show happen, especially to start. You just gotta go out there, grab yourselves a few yellow carts, chuck your gear in them, and make the people dance.
JL: Play fun songs and don’t be afraid to take off some clothes.
JR: Don’t take yourselves too seriously. Don’t take anything too seriously. Nobody exists on purpose, nobody belongs anywhere, everybody’s gonna die. Come watch TV.