STOLEN BABIES: And the Circus Leaves Town

Los Angeles’ STOLEN BABIES are as twisted and imaginative as they come, both musically and visually. But the eclectic band’s natural talent shines in their ability to incorporate such creativity into crafting great songs. Each and every song is like a ride through a twisted carnival madhouse wonderland. STOLEN BABIES are not a band to be categorized, but their influences from the spectrum of rock are very apparent. Drummer Gil Sharone, who’s lent his talents to various musical entities including DILLINGER ESCAPE PLAN and PUSCIFIER, provided some insight into the band that somehow manages to make an accordion part of a kick ass band.

APESHIT: STOLEN BABIES recently did a nice intimate gig at Bar Sinister in Hollywood. How did that gig come about? Can we expect some more small intimate shows in the near future?

Gil: It was great! Yes? They are quite pretty, those Sinister folks. It was a very nice change of pace from our recent arena tour of Zimbabwe. We’ll try to keep the shows intimate as long as we can.

APESHIT: Besides all the recent touring activity, update us with the band’s recent activity.

Gil: We’ll be working on new material, a new layout for our website and shooting some more music videos.

APESHIT: Now about the Hottest Chicks in Metal Tour this summer, how did it go? How was the response from the crowds? Did the band gain a lot of new fans as a result? What did you think of the tour’s name?

Gil: Everything about the tour kicked ass except the name! The name was lame as hell! Every band on the bill thought so.

APESHIT: Tell us a little about the band and how you guys came to be in 2002.

Gil: We all met at a dog park. [Singer] Dominique Persi sadly doesn’t own a dog. She just hangs out and pets other people’s dogs.

APESHIT: Congratulations on the album, There Be Squabbles Ahead. It turned out really well. How has the press reaction been?

Gil: Thank you! Nicey-nice. Most press have responded really well to it… we don’t really keep up with reviews or what the press thinks. We don’t get all excited when a good review comes and the bad ones don’t shatter our lives. Thanks to therapy!!!

APESHIT: Your sound is incredibly tight likely from the fact that you and bassist, Rani, are brothers. Have you been in bands and playing music together since you were kids?

Gil: Yes, Rani and I started our instruments at the exact same time and all we did was jam.

APESHIT: STOLEN BABIES doesn’t have an official full-time guitarist (at least at the time There Be Squabbles Ahead was recorded). While Rani recorded the guitar parts, it seemed that him being a bass player really influenced the way songs were written. Do you in fact write songs without guitars at first? Do you plan on bringing on a full-time guitarist in the future?

Gil: Guitar, bass…whatever Rani picks up is fine, for “Gathering FingersDominique picked up the guitar. There is a freakhead that will be occasionally darling to us… he’ll be joining us on the road.

APESHIT: Your sound is such a unique amalgam of different musical genres. Additionally, the visual aspect of the band is equally diverse and just as important. How did you guys come to bring the STOLEN BABIES sound and image to fruition? What influences does the STOLEN BABIES derive their sound and imagery from, both musical and otherwise?

Gil: Watching a lot of BET!! It’s really inspiring to us. [Artist] Crab Scrambly helps a lot too! Rani, Dominique and Crab come up with all the visual stuff… they all have the same influences.

APESHIT: Speaking of Crab, how did you hook up with him originally? How closely do you work with him with creating visuals or do you pretty much give him free reign? Do you plan to continue working with him in the future?

Gil: He happened to be at the same dog park!! He has the cutest rottweiler/chihuahua! Crab will always be working with STOLEN BABIES.

APESHIT: Your sound and imagery definitely appeal to a diverse audience. Has it been a challenge to grow your fan base? How have you guys worked to get people from various scenes into your music?

Gil: We haven’t gone out of our way to jump on any “scenes.” We’ve always just played on random bills and luckily won a lot of people over that are into different kinds of music. There have been times where we’ve been judged by certain people before we even play and as soon as we start the first song, they get into it.

APESHIT: Who are the cute cuddly characters that you have come onstage during your shows? Where did that idea come from? Do they represent anything in particular?

Gil: If you are referring to RayRay, they aren’t cuddly in any way, shape or form. They are bitter slave-drivers that have a vendetta against us.

APESHIT: The End Records is a relatively diverse record label. They seem to be a great fit for STOLEN BABIES…their roster is comprised of bands whose sound is hard to classify. How did STOLEN BABIES hook up with The End Records?

Gil: Our friends in SLEEPYTIME GORILLA MUSEUM introduced The End to us… it kind of fell into place after that. We had our album done and ready to go on our own label No Comment Records… after talking with The End, it felt right to work with them.

APESHIT: You guys recently did a new song, “Grubbery,” for a film called Cannibal Flesh Riot! Was the song recorded specifically for the film or was it something that was already in the works? Will the track appear on the forthcoming STOLEN BABIES album?

Gil:Grubbery” was written for his film but we will be re-recording the song for our next album.

APESHIT: Speaking of forthcoming album, how is the progress on the new album going? What can fans expect to hear?

Gil: Rani and Dominique are just starting to present new songs at rehearsals… The fans can expect some more cool shit!

APESHIT: You are a talented drummer who has played with a handful of bands/artists not limited to metal. Most recently you joined the DILLINGER ESCAPE PLAN? How did that union come about? What other bands/projects does you have going on at the moment?

Gil: I’ve done a lot of session work and toured with other acts on a temporary basis. The DILLINGER ESCAPE PLAN came when the band wrote to me and asked if I was interested in working with them. Im taking that day by day. Between STOLEN BABIES and DILLINGER, I have plenty going on. Also, Rani and I played on the PUSCIFER album which is Maynard James Keenan from TOOL’s new project.

APESHIT: Your recent European tour with DILLINGER ESCAPE PLAN canceled so you’ve passed the time playing some shows throughout the U.S. What are the band’s plans after this round of touring?

Gil: We’ll see… more touring in the States and writing the new record. We’ll also try to get back to Zimbabwe!!

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