Ghoti Hook Album Interview
By Doug Kline (dmk).

(This interview was done before Christian left the band to pursue other projects.)

Joel: When we sat with you last time, we were fairly excited about “Bananaman”. Now we realize we had no reason to be. This new record is 300 times better than that record could ever have been.

Doug: Do you have a name for this album?

Joel: “Two Years to Never”.

Mark: Why don’t you tell him what that means, Joel…

Joel: We were on the band “breakdown tour” of 1998. We had just gotten a new van and this moron changing the oil forgot to put the rear differential plug back into the van. We were stuck in Grand Junction, Colorado, for a week. Things hadn’t been going that great to begin with. The turnouts were low. Everybody’s morale was pretty crappy. 1998 got gradually worse as the year wore on. So we were sitting in this Denny’s in Grand Junction, Colorado, thinking that if this is where we are two years from now, then we don’t need to do this anymore. We need to pack it up and go our separate ways. Then Adam piped up and said we should call the next record “Two Years to Never”, which Jamie was opposed to because he thought the next record should be called “The First Thanksgiving Day Ever”.


Joel: Sorry.

Jamie: I wanted us to be in pilgrim and Indian outfits on the front cover, but nobody else thought that was good.

Joel: So this year is two years and this is our first group of original songs in over 2 years.

Doug: I realize this disc is very different from your previous releases. I know you never want to be boxed in to being just a “punk band”, so what direction do you think this record takes you?

Christian: It’s a rock record with pop-punk influences.

Mark: I think the kids who used to like Ghoti Hook and don’t like them anymore have moved onto the emo-rock scene or whatever. I think they’ll like this disc anyway.

Christian: And to all the gutter punks out there… you really don’t have to listen to us. It won’t hurt our feelings. To all of those who liked us before “Sumo Surprise” and thought we sold out because we had a record distributed nation-wide…

Doug: … It’s a true mark of a sell out… to be successful, I mean…

Christian: … Listen to this album and tell us that the music sucks. I dare you. (a long pause)

Joel: (to Christian) You’re trying to help us sell records, right? “C’mon, general public, hate us! We dare you to buy our record and then return it to get your money back.” Why do you have this bring-it-on mentality?

Mark: Yeah… we sell out…

the band: …Every seat in the house!

Joel: No, it’s more like, “We sell out… umm… never have…”

Christian: In the end, everyone’s going to like this record.

Joel: I think the people who call themselves gutter punks or other people who are anal about what they like to listen to make up a very small percentage of people who have listened to us in the past. My feeling is that most of the people who listen to us like us for that happy-go-lucky “Sumo Surprise” and “Bananaman” goofy sound. I think those people might be disappointed that that stuff is not on the new record. But I think those people are also going to be open to the ideas we express on this record.

Doug: So you’re not as goofy anymore?

Mark: There’s still some of it there, just not as much. It’s still there in the live show.

Christian: It’s been 2 ˝ years since that last record came out. A lot of changes have happened in our individual lives. The songs are a reflection of the whole band and what we’ve been living through.

Mark: I think any fan of catchy rock music with an open mind should dig it… If they don’t, they’re stupid.


Joel: Mark would like to make a challenge to the rest of our few remaining fans… I don’t want to say that this is the record we were always meant to do, but it’s a very personal record. It’s not a light look at life anymore.

Doug: Do you think it’s an album you’ll look back at 2 years from now and go “that sucked”?

Joel: No. I don’t think there is any way that could happen this time. I honestly don’t. We’ve heard it and all the little mistakes here and there that hopefully only we can hear. But I don’t think lyrically or musically there will be any regrets. Really, all we regret off the past record is the fact that the songs on “Bananaman” weren’t fully developed. And we knew that going into it. I don’t think we really realized the fullness of it until after it was all done and out there. In the past we were short on time and threw in silly lyrics to fill in space and because we wanted to be silly. We actually took time to write this time. Some of it was done up to the last minute, but it had some girth to it. We didn’t throw in “The Box” four times on this album. But, of course, I still think that’s funny, just because it bothered certain people.

Jamie: Which was the point of putting it on there four times…

Doug: Is there anything that stands out to you on this new album?

Joel: If there’s a hit single on this album, we’re all for it. It’s cool, because there is a variety of stuff on there. There are 2 or 3 pop punk type songs on there, which should make our older fans happy.

Mark: There’s another song on there that’s very reminiscent of some Journey 80’s rock ballads without the cheesy singing. The cool thing about some of these songs is that they could easily be played on the radio, but they weren’t written to be that way. We kind of wrote what came natural. We never said, “let’s go for this sound”.

Joel: And then there’s a couple full-blown rock songs. Those were my favorites on the record. I was sitting there with the producer mixing, saying how we would just love to go into making another record. This record has been inspiring to me to want to keep writing. And Mark has contributed quite a bit to the new songs on the record, including two songs that he wrote all by himself before we even went into the studio. And he has all the rock solos.

Christian: So all you guitarists out there… let’s see you learn them.

Joel: Another challenge!!!

Mark: Now I’ll have people coming up to me going, “Hey, check it out! I learned your solo!”

(Adam suddenly appears for the first time, pretty much signaling the end of the interview.)

Joel: Adam, do you want to say anything?

Adam: Hi. I’m the drummer.

Being that I only ever interview Ghoti Hook during their big transition periods, this is the first and last interview with them as a five-piece. Christian has since gone on to pursue other projects and the band is officially now a four-piece for the foreseeable future. The new record, “Two Years to Never” is available July 18, 2000. Look for it at all major record stores AND BUY IT!!! Check out their new website coming soon at

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