Late last year, New York sleaze rockers Circus of Power dropped Four, their first new record in 25 years. The addition of Kyuss icon Brant Bjork on drums excited fans and now the skinsman has been reunited with his former bandmate, Nick Oliveri (ex-Queens of the Stone Age, Mondo Generator), who swapped his bass for six strings while making his debut as the band’s new guitarist in the video for “Blood at Standing Rock.”
The song is a real burner centered around a deep, bluesy rhythm that builds while the drums swing, affording the bass room to drive the song on tasteful fills. It all builds to a frenzied head over the mid-section with eagle scream solos and a sustained roar from the guitars as lush beds of keyboards take it over the edge. As for the video, which was produced by Billy Baker of Pawnshop Studios, the band performs as transparent scenic clips of Los Angeles are layered over them.
“This song was originally called ‘Rise Of The Witches.’ I saw it on my friend Sean’s Facebook page and I hit him up saying that I’d love to use it. We ended up using two more of his riffs on ‘See The Sun’ and ‘Princess Of Mars.’ Either that or he is a made up person and I am unknowingly writing songs with the Russian government,” comments vocalist Alex Mitchell.
Score your copy of Four here and to see a list of all upcoming tour dates, head to the Circus of Power Facebook page. They’ve got a small East Coast run booked with Junkyard and Warrior Soul and will be playing one show in Los Angeles with Danko Jones.
Interview With Nick Oliveri
How did you come to join Circus of Power? Obviously there’s a connection with Brant Bjork.
I’m friends of Alex through my girlfriend Agatha who has known him for years and years. I heard Circus of Power because Brant Bjork played them for me in 1990 or ’91. So, when Alex was looking for somebody to play drums on the record, I put him in touch with Brant.
Can fans expect to see any Kyuss songs enter the CoP set list?
I don’t think will be playing Kyuss songs in the Circus of Power set. Circus of Power have too many great songs they don’t need to do a Kyuss song! But you would have to ask Alex about that! It’d be up to him!
You’ve spent most of your career playing bass. Has this altered how you approach the guitar in any way?
Well, on The last three Mondo Generator records I play all the rhythm guitar and some leads as well and put all the guitar on a record called The Uncontrollable. I’m better on bass, yes it’s true, but I can play one hell of a rhythm guitar! [laughs] I guess to answer the question, no I still play the same way hard and heavy and that’s what these guys are — hard and heavy rock ‘n’ roll.
Of all the guest work you’ve done, who was your favorite artist to work with and why?
Well being a bass player and part of the rhythm section I’d have to say Josh Freese, Hoss Angeles, Brant Bjork, Jeff Bowman, Dave Grohl… but my favorite is Joey Castillo. I don’t think anybody hits harder than him and makes me play my bass harder, faster, more aggressively and more precise.