KITTIE Drummer: '90% Of The People Out There Don't Realize We're Canadian'

Steven K. of Swigged! recently conducted an interview with KITTIE drummer Mercedes Lander. A couple of excerpts from the chat follow below.

Swigged!: The band recently taped a video with David Brodsky. When should fans be expecting [to see it]?

Mercedes: Actually, it was two videos. I just saw the first cut of the first video we shot called "Cut Throat" yesterday. The other video is for "Sorrow I Know". I believe "Cut Throat" will be coming out first. It should only be a couple of weeks. He was really cool with taking our ideas and running with them. Our fans were able to be extras in it. We had an open casting call — people flew from all over to be in the video, which I thought was really cool.

Swigged!: The new record is going to be called "In the Black". I presume you're not referring to the economy?

Mercedes: Actually, yeah, it's a play on that financial term. Being "in the red" obviously means you're going down the hole. "In the black" doesn't mean you're clear of all your problems, but you're on your way to doing better. That's kind of how we feel right now. We're doing a lot better — we're on our way towards making a full recovery.

Swigged!: Who produced "In The Black"?

Mercedes: A guy named Siegfried Meier. Actually, funny story about him, he was the third in line engineer on the album "Oracle" — he was basically the studio bitch about eight years ago. [Laughs] Now, he has his own studio and a very lucrative business as a music producer. We decided to go with him because he was a real awesome person to work with [while we recorded "Oracle"]. He actually got our jokes! His new studio is amazing — state of the art and in the middle of nowhere in Ontario. We lived in a trailer for three weeks as we recorded ["In The Black"] in the freezing cold. We literally met him at the beginning of his career eight years ago.

Swigged!: So what led you to decide and go with him?

Mercedes: We see each other quite often actually. He told us one day he was building his own studio and a friend of ours actually recorded there as it was being built. After that, we decided to record there too.

Swigged!: Switching gears a bit, the band recently inked a deal with E1 Music – how did that come to be?

Mercedes: The vice president [of metal] there, Scott Givens, we've actually known him for about 10 years now. He used to work from Roadrunner Records, Capitol, RCA — so we've known him for quite awhile. He has always been a really awesome guy — very supportive of the band and always there when we needed it. Once he landed at E1, it was the obvious move. There were other labels that were interested, but they were just "Eh, blah blah." We went with him because he was on the ball.

Swigged!: You mentioned before how the new album in essence represents a new turning point for the band. This may be an obvious answer, but looking back, do you believe you've received more flak for being a Canadian metal band or for being an all-female metal act?

Mercedes: To be honest, 90% of the people out there don't realize we're Canadian. In all honestly that might be because we really don't do a whole lot here in Canada. I think people tend to go towards the obvious, which is that we're an all-girl band. It's too bad, but it's something we have to deal with. There really is no way around it — the only way there would be is if people stopped talking about it. We really hope that they do, because it's very annoying.

Swigged!: Do you think the metal scene is sexist?

Mercedes: I think that any scene [can be] sexist. But really, who cares? We play music — I really don't give a shit if there's a girl or a guy in the bands that I listen to, so why do other people? I don't understand them, I guess. If someone likes my music, it doesn't matter. If you're enjoying the music, you shouldn't get caught up in what they look like or what they do or any of that. Just my personal opinion…

Read the entire interview from Swigged!

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