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GWAR: “Your common gorilla is a much more graceful and enlightened creature than your average human.”

The Berserker Blóthar opens up about plagues, the human race, the band’s new album ‘The New Dark Ages,’ and ‘This is Gwar’ documentary.
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In August everyone’s favourite scumdogs, Gwar, return to the UK and mainland Europe, a visit which will see the group lay waste to Bloodstock Festival as part of that trip. Ahead of their marauding visit, V13 spoke to longtime leader of the Gwar army, The Berserker Blóthar, about their imminent return to the UK.

“I remember the last time we came to Europe, it was already like something out of a zombie movie back then,” recalls Gwar’s leader adding, “it was very much like something out of Dawn of the Dead, so I’m expecting it to have got a lot worse since then.”

The last time the group terrorized the UK, they had plenty of targets, including our own beloved Queen, who The Berserker Blóthar remembers with a dash of respect in his voice.

“Yes, your Queen is quite resilient but, this time, I think we’re probably going to be having a wrestling match with rootin’ tootin’ Vladamir Putin…”

In terms of other targets, though, there is surely a long list of enemies the legions expect Gwar to destroy in August. “Well, if you’re looking for the headlines, it’s a safe bet that we’re going to be smacking around Putin and maybe even the President of China, but we’ll see how it shapes up.”

Surprisingly, one man who looks to have escaped the wraith of the band in August is the UK’s former Prime Minister Boris Johnson, as The Berserker Blóthar explains. “It just feels like that has kind of run its course. If you’re looking at a place like London, over time, it has coalesced into this massive city whereas it feels like it should have burned to the ground a long time ago.”

The Berserker Blóthar continues, “It’s like New York City. I’m constantly amazed. This place is still here? You’ve got to be kidding me. Hopefully, it will all just melt into the pavement like it was supposed to do?”

Ahead of their visit to Europe, the marauding army is currently terrorizing their way across North America with The Berserker Blóthar revealing, “we’re riding from place to place, we smell terrible, but we’re happy…”

There is pause, then a big, booming laugh as The Berserker Blóthar adds, “there is plenty of junk food to eat and lots of fat people to chase around. It is America, after all.”

V13 Cover Story 001 – GWAR – Aug 1, 2022

A lot has happened since Gwar visited Planet Earth last; however, it would seem that, from afar, they have had a lot of fun watching the world unravel. “It’s coming apart at the seams. I mean, it’s fun to watch, but definitely, things have changed. You know, the pandemic made everything more expensive and less pleasant. What I do love is the atmosphere of suspicion that humans have. They all think that just being around one another is going to kill them, which, you know, it really makes for a good time.”

The Berserker Blóthar continues, “As the originators of the pandemic, it has been fun to watch it ripple through the entire world and take out a bunch of human life, but there were all sorts of bonuses along the way that we didn’t really expect when we were cooking this up in our pangolin stew.”

“That’s why we call that record The New Dark Ages; it certainly looks like the human race has handled this pandemic in the same way that they did during, you know, the 13th/14th century or whatever it was, right? The advice is the same. Tie a rag around your face and create an island of people who already have the disease and float them over some food and then forget about them.”

So, it would seem that The Berserker Blóthar feels the human race has learned nothing from the last two years…

“Humans don’t seem to learn. I mean, they did learn how to use their opposable thumbs. But really, I mean, ultimately, your common gorilla is a much more graceful and enlightened creature than your average human. Right? They’re certainly much happier.”

Giving further insight into his thoughts on the human race, The Berserker Blóthar explains, “I’ve noticed that the arrogant humanity seems to think that they’re the ones who have made the right choice. I don’t know. If you ask a gorilla if he’s happy sitting around or chasing female gorillas with swollen butts and eating fistfuls of bananas, who has the better day-to-day? A gorilla or the person that’s hopping on the tube to go to some shitty job where nobody appreciates what they do?”

Far from just sitting back and watching Earth implode, the last two years have seen the various members of the Gwar family becoming more creative than ever as talk turns to the imminent Gwar Comic Book and Documentary, which gathered momentum during the pandemic.

“We did what everyone else did, like stock up on toilet paper and hand sanitizer,” reveals The Berserker Blóthar adding, “we also stayed away from each other, which, trust me, wasn’t a burden.”

“One of the other many wonderful things about the pandemic was that it gave us chance to work on other aspects of our expression. We were able to work on a graphic novel. We were able to think more about video and about the idea of making another Gwar film. We worked on the documentary that we have. It was a chance for us to regroup and work on stuff that was outside of our normal cycle.”

Cover artwork for ‘The New Dark Ages’ by GWAR

On the subject of the documentary entitled This is Gwar, The Berserker Blóthar explains, “One of the things about Gwar is that the true story of the band has always been very compelling, and we’ve always known that it’s a story that would be fun to tell and that people would would would get a lot out of it.”

He continues, “Gwar is an unusual organization, so being able to tell the story was a lot of fun. We always wondered about our European audiences, like the Brits and the Irish and the other English-speaking countries, and what they thought. We just wanted to show that Gwar wasn’t silly black metal or anything like that. It is a fun, entertaining art project created by a group of artists and musicians working together, and we are hoping that people grasp onto that.”

“Then, if there was nothing else, we just explored our own bodies,” states Blóthar, “and each others’ after the pandemic…”

“If you ask a gorilla if he’s happy sitting around or chasing female gorillas with swollen butts and eating fistfuls of bananas, who has the better day to day? A gorilla or the person that’s hopping on the tube to go to some shitty job where nobody appreciates what they do?”

This brings the conversation nicely back around to their imminent post-pandemic return to Europe and The Berserker Blóthar’s thoughts on our chances against the mighty Gwar army.

“Luckily, Europeans, and especially people of the British Isles, like your Queen, have always been remarkably resilient. They have survived I don’t know how many plagues? World War Two. They managed to make it through that, and they even survived Brexit. I’m just not sure they will survive this.”

Wrapping up the conversation, The Berserker Blóthar offers Brits a somewhat surprising word of advice ahead of their August visit. “Keep in touch with your loved ones. Isn’t that a surprising message for Gwar? Realize what’s important in life as we do. Try not to stick your elderly people in homes all alone, surrounded by strangers left to die. Bring them into the home.”

“We’d really like to see things go back to Victorian ages when they would roll the casket right into the house, and everybody would really feel that death experience. Babies hardly ever made it out of infancy. Those were the good old days. We like to think of ourselves as restorers of a former time. Bringing it all back so that you can really experience the world as we did in the Dark Ages.”

Artwork for ‘This is Gwar’ by Shudder

Tour Dates:

07/29 – Tilburg – 013
07/31 – Berlin – SO 26
08/02 – Munich – Free and Easy Festival
08/03 – Essen – Turock
08/04 – Wacken – Wacken Open Air
08/05 – Makowice – Pol’and’Rok Festival
08/08 – Dover – The Booking Hall
08/09 – Brighton – Chalk
08/10 – Bristol – Fleece
08/12 – Catton Park – Bloodstock Open Air
08/13 – Norwich – Waterfront
08/14 – Leeds – Key Club
08/16 – Glasgow – Garage
08/17 – Manchester – Club Academy
08/18 – London – The Dome

Author

I have an unhealthy obsession with bad horror movies, the song Wanted Dead Or Alive and crap British game shows. I do this not because of the sex, drugs and rock 'n' roll lifestyle it affords me but more because it gives me an excuse to listen to bands that sound like hippos mating.