Bobby Calabrese talks new album, video and tour
Calabrese is a Phoenix-based horror punk band composed of three brothers: Jimmy, Bobby and Davey. Guitarist and vocalist Bobby discussed the band’s new single, video and album with The State Press. The band is launching its tour in Tempe on March 7.
State Press: You have a new album coming out, “Born With a Scorpion’s Touch.” How long did it take you to record that?
Bobby Calabrese: We recorded that one in about two weeks. It was at Flying Blanket studios in Mesa, and the dude that recorded it is Bob Hoag, and he’s pretty awesome. We worked with him last time on our last record. We probably should have booked more time or foreseen the future because, of course, you get so wound up and intricate with everything you’re doing in the studio, you run out of time just like that out of nowhere. So, we spent countless nights drinking pot after pot of coffee trying to nail down everything before it was too late, because we already set up the date of the album coming out. We had to finish it during late nights. We probably should have done it in three weeks, but that’s punk rock.
SP: Your tour kicks off in Tempe, and you have 23 shows in less than a month. How do you prepare for such heavy touring?
BC: You definitely get all worked up thinking about everything you need. You’re just doing shows, and I don’t think we even really get a break, so we just gotta make sure to bring enough clean underwear and enough guitar strings. And you have to practice. If you’re going to be playing for a whole month, you better be pretty darn good. So we’ve been practicing the last couple of weeks just nonstop. So that’s about it — practice and underwear.
SP: “I Wanna Be a Vigilante,” aside from being a great song, is also the name of your tour. Does that song hold special meaning to you?
BC: Yes, because we wrote it and it’s really cool so I like it. No weird, special meaning; unfortunately, I never went out into the streets as a vigilante myself. But if anyone wants to, that’d be pretty cool unless it’s bad or something. I think it’s more about being a lone wolf kind of person, and you know how you always want to get revenger on someone or something. You feel like you just want to go nuts in the streets, and so we tried to write a song about that kind of feeling.
SP: The whole album is like that in the sense that it feels very original and authentic. Did you go into it wanting to create something like that or was it an organic process?
BC: I’d say it was organic. You gotta go half and half — you want to try new things and you do that 10 percent of the time and 90 percent of the time you go with what you know and go with your gut instead of trying to experiment all crazy. I’d say 90 percent organic, 10 percent predetermined. We just wanted to it to be really cool sounding and fresh and we just went into the studio and laid it out.
SP: You just released the video to “I Wanna Be a Vigilante,” which is very rock ’n’ roll and fun. How was the recording process?
BC: It was really fun, it was cool. The dude who directed it and put it all together — the mastermind, if you will — is Brian Pulido and he lives right here. He did our first video, “Voice of the Dead,” so we kind of knew what he was up to. He was bringing the big guns and we at least knew he knew what he was doing so that was fun. We pretty much showed up at an abandoned warehouse that they spent days converting into a music studio lot. It was pretty intense and legit, it was shocking …and it came out looking like a million bucks.
Calabrese will be performing at Red Owl on March 7. Ticket prices range from $10 to $12, and the all-ages show begins at 6:30 p.m. with opening acts The Spider Hole, Sons Of Providence, Black Mountain Moonshine and Dirt Moon.
"Born With a Scorpion's Touch" will be released March 11.
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