Feature Friday: Liferuiner

Posted: November 26, 2010 by Is This Revolutionary? in To Be Sorted

Happy Black Friday, folks. To celebrate the corporate world’s  favorite manufactured holiday (besides from Christmas), we’re bringing you Liferuiner: now hype and controversy free. We spoke to Jonathan O’Callaghan, also known as Jonny O’Cal, the vocalist of Liferuiner, last week. He told us about the band, the break up, the bad times and the bastards who tarnished their name.

Ben: How and when did Liferuiner begin?
Jonny: Liferuiner started in late 2004. Andrew and I were driving our friends to their show. When we got there, they realized that their band members weren’t showing up, so we decided it’d be a good idea to for us to start a band at that very moment. We played and it was seriously hilarious and fun. Later that night, we discussed how there were not any straight edge bands that consisted of just brutal music. At the time, we called most things that bummed us out, “life ruiners,” and figured that was the most suiting name for the band.

B:Who were your original members?
J: A lot of people would argue this, but I think as far as commitment and time put into the band goes, the original members are:
Me (Jonny), Andrew McColl, Dan Steinbok, Gates Pompizzi

B: What’s it been like being a straight edge band?
J: I think being in a straight edge band is just like being in any band, except at the end of the day you know your band actually serves purpose. Not saying other bands aren’t entirely sincere to their bands and music, but how many bands now-a-days actually sing about real shit? We are driven by the sole reason to educate and promote for the greater good of the world. So, actually, I would say it feels great being in a straight edge band.

B: How is the hardcore/straight edge scene different in Canada than it is in America?
J: The difference is actually incredible. The scene here in Canada is almost non-existent. Everyone I knew that was edge at one point, aside from the older dudes, have all sold out. Back in 2006/07,  when we were still together, the edge scene was boomin’. However, the one huge difference that I noticed about the states is that the edge scene is very segregating and cliquey; they don’t want anyone around who isn’t edge and they don’t mind telling people that. My goal in this band was never to divide people; that’s the easiest way to push people away from the message you’re trying to send. I feel as though people have been waiting for something new from a band, something to bring change. Hopefully, us being back will spread like a forest fire and give life back to this scene that most hardcore kids would call dead.

B: I know everyone’s heard the rumors about you and the little girl, the edge-breaking, and about almost every other bullshit story under the sun. Can you give the readers the truth about what happened with the break-up (the last one) and what little truth actually exists in these stories?
J: Rumors are just something people in bands are going to have to accept, and either you live with it and overcome it, or you be a baby and fuck-off. Words are just words. I’ve been straight edge for 13 years and no one can ever take that away from me, through rumors or any other bullshit. Do you know how many rumors I’ve heard about bands and just turned to people and really said, “Do you actually believe that?”. It’s astonishing the shit people will believe without actually knowing someone. The easiest way I can explain it is, there is a ton of people out there who think they deserve the type of love we have gotten and they never did. Whenever someone can’t accomplish the things you have, they will do whatever it takes to discredit you. You just gotta’ man-up and tell the world that hates, “FUCK YOU!” I quit the band because my mom was incredibly sick and family always comes first. 

B: People always comment that it seemed like No Saints was more light-hearted and Taking Back the Night Life was a more serious album. Can you give any explanation for the switch in seriousness?
J: When we were writing No Saints, I was incredibly young, naive and angry;  I was really pissed-off and didn’t care about much, including myself. Not that those songs don’t have any meaning to me now, because they always will, but I was just a different person then. When we were writing Tacking Back The Night Life, I was more mature, I had toured the world, seen a lot more and had more life experience. I wanted to make something that really showed the band’s progression, and my own progression as a person. It’s still just as pissed-off, but pissed-off as an adult.

B: Your song, “Amaranthine,” rocked me to the core. It’s played more relevance to my life than any song I’ve ever heard in my entire life. Can you explain what this song is about and what it means to you?
J: That song is about my my uncle Mark, who passed away from A.I.D.S. 16 years ago, and my mother. It was more or less my thank-yous to both of them for raising me the way they did, even through illness and tribulations. They made me the man I am today, and they will be more important than anything else in my life and heart until the day I die.

B: “Doug Burns To Death” “Fuck you Doug!” at the end of xSuck My Dickx, who the hell is Doug?
J: Doug is our old tour manager who’s balls we’d busted more than anyone. I don’t want to give him any more credit though, so this answer ends now. 

B: Now that the “Americants”  [a failed Liferuiner American imitation] are gone for good, how hard has it been to show the world that the real Liferuiner is back, and having to build back up your fanbase (essentially start from square one)?
J: It’s been pretty hard, to be honest, but it’s a challenge I’m willing to take because I worked too hard to let a bunch of losers ruin it. They really left a dent in the band, but we’re working really hard to get these back in place. We just need more kids to know the actual story.

B: A lot of our American readers are wanting to know, when can we expect a U.S. Tour?
J: We’ve had a few offers, and we’re super excited to get back into the states. We have a full European tour in December and looking at offers for the new year. So, to all the Americans, we will be there in the new year….trust me, we’ve missed you.
B:All over, what has been your favorite place to play/bands to play with?
J: We haven’t gone to Europe yet, so I can’t really say, BUT I love playing music no matter where I am, and we’ve met some amazing people and bands doing that. I have never toured with a band I don’t like, and I will say that all the tours we’ve done this year have been with incredible bands: Woe Is Me, Structures, Doom Cannon, and Abandon All Ships; I can’t wait to meet Heights and Fallacies in Europe.

B: When is the new album going to drop?
J: The new record will be out in the spring; expect a revolution.

LIFERUINER

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Jonny O’Cal’s Twitter

OUR LIFERUINER ARTICLE

-B.

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