Sum Like It Hot
If Sum 41 frontman BIZZY D had been drunk, he would've blabbed about teen groupies and interband feuds. Oh wait, he did!
Moving nearly 2 million copies of their snot-nosed 2001 debut, All Killer No Filler, made unlikely stars of Sum 41, four spiky-haired rug-rats from the Toronto suburb of Ajax. But as adept as they are at nailing three-minute bursts of perfect mall-punk, the quartet is just as skilled at starting trouble with other bands. At the group’s recent gig at storied New York punk club CBGB, they bad-mouthed New Found Glory. At the after-party (or so they claim on their website) they gave Avril Lavigne a wedgie. And the video for ”Still Waiting,” the first single from their new CD, Does This Look Infected?, mocks the Strokes. Singer Deryck ”Bizzy D” Whibley, 22, weighs in on the joys of needling rivals, the pain of being pigeonholed, and why hard liquor makes the barely legal Sum 41 rock harder.
LISTEN2THIS You’re obviously going to catch some heat for the video, which parodies the Strokes’ ”Last Nite” clip pretty viciously.
DW When we came out, there was a whole s — -load of pop-punk bands that were all young and all got lumped together as Green Day rip-offs. With all these bands coming out with new albums, we just wanted to be a better band and try to do something different. We’re making fun of a lot of things in the video. First, we’re making fun of the industry and how every record label right now is trying to sign a ”The” band to be cool. Then we’re also making fun of ourselves, saying how we were a whole part of the number-band thing back when that was cool.
L2T But do you like these new ”The” bands?
DW Well, the Strokes and the Hives are two exceptions. We’re friends with the Strokes, and we like the Hives record.
L2T So did you call [Strokes members] Julian and Fabrizio to ask permission?
DW I asked Julian if he would care and he’s like, ”No, I’m flattered you would even think to use us as a reference.” We’re cool with them. I think they’re cool guys. I haven’t talked to them since we’ve done it, though. I hope it’ll be fine.
L2T On stage at your CBGB show, you said, ”F — – New Found Glory,” several times. What was that about?
DW We did our first tour through America with those guys. They’re really nice to our face, but I’ve heard they talk s — – about us. That’s all I know. And they were playing that same night, so it was just cool that people came out to see us.
L2T That’s very gentlemanly of you.
DW Believe me, if there’d been a fight, I’d tell you.
L2T Did you ever get into fights growing up?
DW There was a big skinhead thing in Ajax — full-on racist, hate-rock types — and I’ve had some run-ins with them before. They used to try to kick our asses. There really wasn’t that much music in our school. We weren’t ”cool,” but in reality we were probably the only cool kids there. We just kinda hung out with ourselves.
L2T Much has been made of the Sum 41 drunken stage experience, but is there a Sum 41 drunken studio experience?