Off! Hopes to Churn Out More 'Great Music' After Tour
As far as its members are concerned, Off! is on -- hopefully for the long term.
The all-star punk group -- frontman Keith Morris (Black Flag, Circle Jerks), guitarist Dimitri Coats (Burning Brides), bassist Steven Shane McDonald (Red Kross) and drummer Mario Rubalcaba (Rocket From the Crypt, Hot Snakes) -- is currently touring to support its debut album, 2010's "First Four EPs." And Coats, who produced the album, tells Billboard.com that there should be more where that came from.
"Somebody's just gonna tell us, 'Hey guys, you need to make another record,' and it's probably going to take about a month to write and record it," Coats says. "It depends on how pissed off Keith and I get with each other. It's not an easy process, even though we're dearest friends. It's me pushing him and him pushing back at me. There are heavy... opinions and egos in this band, but there's a trusting that we collaborate really well together and make great music.
"We do want to be taken seriously as a new band and have been very calculated in how we've marketed ourselves. We don't view this as a one-off."
Video: Off! performs at Coachella 2011
Coats -- who formed Off! with Morris after he was hired to produce an aborted Circle Jerks album -- says it's certainly possible that Mcdonald and Rubalcaba could contribute to the writing of the next Off! album. But he adds the band's geography presents something of a challenge.
"It's just that we rarely have those moments where we're just kind of hanging out," Coats explains. "Mario lives down in San Diego. Steven has a real job working for Warner Bros. as an A&R guy. There's times we don't even get to rehearse before the show; Steven and I will be in the corner going, 'OK, let's go through these songs...' But Keith and I live close by, so we can just get together, take an evening and bang out a couple of songs if we have to. So it really just depends, but it's not like we can't work together as a band, either."
Coats is hesitant to predict where Off! might head musically on its next album, but he notes that the band has recently been listening to Iggy & the Stooges' seminal "Raw Power" and to Alice Cooper albums, which he expects to have some sort of impact on new material. "We're all just classic rock heads when it comes down to it," he says. "The next record...who knows what it's gonna be. You can never say it's going to be our version of this or that, but that's the kind of stuff we've been rocking on when we have a chance to dream of being great. I mean, 'Raw Power,' it doesn't get much better than that."
Off! is in the midst of a North American tour that included an April 17 performance at the Coachella Valley Music & Arts Festival and wraps up April 25 in Vancouver. Coats says more touring should follow in short order.