Interviews

Interview with J.R. Preston (part III.)

You and the wrestling…how did you came to like it?

When I was young our household only had 3 channels on the T.V. Most of the stuff I didn’t watch because it wasn’t aimed at kids. One day I saw wrestling. Of course, I became a fan. Every Sunday after Church I would watch wrestling. I’m still a fan of the art of professional wrestling. It’s pure entertainment – for people who enjoy being entertained. I understand why some wouldn’t enjoy it. These are people that are annoyed by things which are entertaining. It has a “white trash” stigma attached to it, which makes it even better for me.

Yeah, I was about 13 when I saw WWF for the first time…Amazing days, end of 1990, I guess it was…

The Ultimate Warrior era probably, then?

Basically the end of it. Road Warriors, Natural Disasters, Berserk, Kamala, Mr.Perfect in his prime, also Brett Hitman Hart. And just before Yokozuna came to the spotlight.

That was a good time for wrestling. WWF was on top. I’m a big Road Warriors fan.

Me too.

Did you continue to watch wrestling, or was it just a children’s thing for you?

I was forced to stop due it being on PPV channels, but I started to watch again when I come to the UK. Not everything, but still keeping an eye on it lol. My stepson and I watch sporadically..he loves it.

I heard it’s big in the UK right now. That is good because in America wrestling is kind of at a low point. World Wrestling Entertainment has bought everything. There are a couple companies making decent money but nothing that is competition for the big corporate entity of WWE. As wrestling is an art on par with music, it is fun for me to go to independent wrestling shows – in fact I enjoy them much more than watching bands.

Yeah, but I kinda dislike the urban orientation of WWE…it was better, when it was a white trash entertainment.

And that’s why I enjoy independent shows more. What is on the major television channels today is shit.

Except Becky Lynch and Alexa Bliss lol

Exactly, man. The women’s wrestling on both Impact and McMahon’s Garbage Can is the best thing going. I enjoy the women’s matches. They are better at telling stories nowadays. Maybe I’m wrong about that, but it seems to be that way.

But you not only watch wrestling, you actually produce a wrestling related cartoons, right?

Yes I used to do cartoons for Iron Sheik and New Jack, the series “Little New Jack” and “Little Iron Sheik.” To make a long story short: I made cartoons using the voices of both men, from various interviews they did. I sped the voices up, and made them midgets in the cartoons. It was a gimmick. And it worked good. My work has appeared on a few dvds. These are in the “YouShoot” series released by Kayfabe Commentaries. You can see my cartoons on the Kevin Nash, Iron Sheik, and Vince Russo discs. I also helped with the documentary movie on the Iron Sheik’s life entitled “Sheik.” You can check the credit roll at the end, as I’m listed among some interesting names. What a fun ride that was.

How did u come up with the idea of doing cartoons? I’ve seen only one, but it was pretty funny.

Dude, I have no idea. I love cartoons and do them. The idea wasn’t something I really thought about, you know? I have been doing cartoons since I was a kid. From flip books to old 80s computers. Moving images delight me. I’ve done a few videos for my bands too. Haven’t made one in a while because it is very time-consuming to a point where you almost lose your composure, doing the same shit a thousand times. I do mine frame by frame, there is no bullshit new kind of stuff used to make it easier, I do everything the same way people would expect. It’s a job that pays nothing. Who wants to dedicate their lives to that? I already have music for “a job that pays nothing.” People are so fucking pushy when you do cartoons. Do this, do that. Fuck you! I’m not doing shit!

Exactly! Anyway, as for world of wrestling, what are your thoughts about:

John Cena 🙂

He’s alright. Maybe he bores me but I understand that kids like him. He’s like the Hulkster for white hip-hop rappers. His movies are really bad. Just like Hogan.

Haha…I think u nailed it. Randy Orton?

I find him boring. I liked when he was in Evolution with Ric Flair and Batista. He’s just horribly lame. But his dad was cool. That’s more my speed.

Heath Slater?

He’s the One-Man-Band baby! Remember when he did that? That was funny and I found him pretty cool. He doesn’t bore me. My personal favorite Slater moment was when he got his ass handed to him by Vader.

Havent seen that one! Well, I, for one, am glad he actually got some title finally.

Is he still tag team champ?

Have no idea. Need to check. But we should continue with our intie…so, before going to the most important musical vehicle of yours…why did you feel the need to create Xexyz?

The Nintendo Entertainment System had been doing nothing for years, and this was before the 8-bit boom when people became nostalgic for it… it cried out to be used again. So I used it again. It’s possessed. I’m pretty sure it thought it was going be the keyboard player in a slick Dimmu Borgir type band. Instead it came to the master of lo-fi. How was it going to get to Norway anyhow? It doesn’t have legs. What followed was the “Primeval Mountain” album which many people found disgusting. This album got me more shitty reviews than anything I ever did, so we knew it would be loved by 90% of people that heard it. Online music reviewers usually aren’t the audience for special music. As you know most of them are just collectors of mp3s trying to sound cool on Metal Archives or other places where no one cares that a reviewer can’t write for shit / has no ears / is 12. The first 2 CDR prints sold out. Suffering Jesus Productions put it out on CD and it sold out. On the 10 year anniversary I did another Xexyz album “Death Mountain” dedicated to Ganon. It has got bad reviews too and that’s good. It was reissued, with “Primeval Mountain” on a single CD with a very innovative title: PRIMEVAL DEATH MOUNTAIN. Super Sargasso Records (Peru) released it and it contains brand new (and good) artwork. The albums have been digitally remastered as well. I can’t say enough good things about Super Sargasso, they have really helped me. Will I do another Xexyz album in the future? Maybe, if the NES wants me to.

Shitty reviews? I love those albums, except the latest release by Sagrasso I have all those past releases! How people couldnt love them? But how did you get the idea of using NES, and not, say, ZX Spectrum or Commodore, or Amiga?

People look at music instead of listening to music. Music has become a film class at a dork-filled university. You look at the album art. You talk about the imagery and act like it means something to the general public. Your professor tells you which films to like. The professor in this case the “metal press” which is all just PR company arms, a thousand heads of contrived boredom like the fucking lamest hydra ever. This professor tells you what music to like. If the cool people in your class like it, then you have to like it. So you act like you like it to fit in. You become a huge nerd, licking the little bits of milk dripping out of the corporate cows teats. In 20 years you have a whole world full of shitty art. I think if an idiot writes a shitty review, that’s pretty cool because I didn’t want idiots in my life, and I would like for idiots to ignore my music. It isn’t like most of them buy music anyway. They just download it, look at the thumbnail art, go oooooh and search the Vegan Metal Forum for other old loser dorks who never accomplished shit’s playlists, to see if they can be in the same Dummy Club. I used an NES because I owned one.

Is there any common theme between these two albums, say, in sense of message in lyrics, or its just a homage to Zelda?

Primeval Mountain had songs about Rygar, Trojan, and Metroid. Death Mountain is only about The Legend of Zelda and the Adventure of Link. They do have one thing in common: The NES is utilized as a keyboard and bass player. Various video game cartridges are used for these parts. There aren’t any tricks or anything, you start with the game, and you build the tracks around it. Adding guitar, vocal and drum parts.

You have mentioned many hostile reviews..but which one u remember was the best? If any? I mean, most positive…

To tell the truth, I don’t remember much about reviews. Some people get what I’m doing – I really appreciate that. The best thing written recently was a 2017 #1 album of the year for Tjolgtjar – “Vruguun.” Although the physical release didn’t come out until this year, I released it digitally on bandcamp in late 2017. So it was really cool to read that. I was happy to read some in-depth listening notes by a guy who has followed my music for many years. I think of that, and I don’t think of the negative reviews. All the bad write-ups I have taken time to read have been funny. You can just fucking hear the steam coming out of their poor, uncultured, virgin, mentally ill ears. Bunch of people who helped me sell records.

As for specifics, I have nothing that I can recall. There are too many reviewers who don’t understand how to write – and don’t have old enough ears to know… I mean to have fucking actually learned, anything about the god damn art form of music. The fuck do they know, man? Half of them just wish someone had released their music on a record label and the other half sit there wishing they could record some god damn music.

Bunch of people who have failed or are currently failing. At everything. The best reviewers are people that have nothing to prove. Those who are really sitting down with what they are reviewing. Someone who bought the cd! Don’t get me started on people who think they know what “Tjolgtjar” is… people who think I’m into some fucking role playing dragon bullshit or elves and orcs and wizards. Nope. I’m into Tjolgtjar. I’m into nature. I’m into time. I’m into all. I am all, and was all. What else can I say except that? It’s sad someone would think that I care if they hate my art. It’s not like I sold you a shoddy copper pot. It’s not like I told you I could fix your plumbing, demanded you pay in cash, took your money, laid in your crawlspace doing nothing for an hour, left and never came back. It’s not like I sold you a cappucino when you asked for a Coke. Get off my fucking case. Fucking nerds. I would have beaten them up in high school and that’s all it comes down to. They know. They know I would’ve beaten them up. That is what I think anytime I read any personal attacks. I do remember some personal attacks but they weren’t reviews. Those aren’t worth talking about, though. Just like the people who typed them or spoke them. Completely not worth talking about.

Yeah, I know what u mean. U also have mentioned, or hinted, a possible third album with Xexyz?

I will only do it if a label wants to release an album. I am not going to record one for no reason. Music that only exists in digital form doesn’t really turn me on at all, so there would have to be some real interest in doing it from someone else. I would love to do another four thousand albums for Super Sargasso, but that may not be in the cards, you know. We have to consider that the label signs other bands and there is always limited money to do things! I’m not exactly making money here. Money goes in the air. Everything goes to the air…the future of Xexyz is up in the air.

Yeah, I know…you are absolutely right, Im afraid.

Oh! That gives me an idea. An album of just air. Air noises. Different kinds of FUCKING AIR. That would probably sell. I’m in the wrong business. I chose the wrong thing: Music. I should’ve done the wind noise business.

Now, little diversion before we will talk about Tjolgtjar itself, …any chance of re-releasing, at least digitally, an OOP material of Tjolgtjar?

Yes. There will be physical copies of some albums – and demos – which have been remastered. I don’t know about digital. If people want a digital release of unreleased and rare stuff, buy “War Songs” at Tjolgtjar’s bandcamp. Otherwise, leave me alone and fuck off because I don’t care that you’re even on Earth. If you don’t support me or other underground artists who are struggling, go fuck yourselves. If you download all of my music for free, I curse you forever, die in Hell.

I hope I havent pissed u off at this moment…

I am very happy right now. Are you trying to tell me something? Did you steal my car? That would piss me off.

Haha..no, no stealing here. But you also invoked an interesting question..original vs. remastered…whats your thoughts on this?

Depends on the band, dude. Have you heard the KISS remasters? They are absolute garbage. Now, the Van Halen remasters were absolutely beautiful. Similar bands with a similar sound. It really has more to do with WHO remasters it, and not the source material of the original.

No, Never heard those…but as for Tjol…arent u afraid the original feeling can be lost in process?

No. Tjolgtjar is timeless. Everyone knows that. It can be remastered 32,003 times by 322 different people with 452 different ways of doing it. I want to answer that seriously, though – … Tjolgtjar wasn’t just music. It was my entire life’s work and the entirety of my spirit was poured into the lyrics and the rites that took place to even introduce Tjolgtjar into my life in the first place. Remastering can not remove them from the recordings. It can only help them reach more ears. And the same time, I reach more ears with my guitar playing, and maybe one day someone says “He was a good guitar player” instead of tip-toeing around who Tjolgtjar was, is, and always will be. They are still here, and have been for longer than men can count. Not only would I find a bit of satisfaction in being known as a decent guitarist, they would have the satisfaction of being reborn into those certain faithful believers lives, those out there who look for true adventure, anyone who is not afraid of the dark, any human being that can handle answers to questions they’d never think to ask.

Many thanks for your answers, bro!!

Thanks for asking questions. You should interview me 50 more times.

Be careful..I can do it! 🙂 And I just fuckin’ realized that I have lost mp3s of 1998 demo with the harddrive crash!!!

It’s better that they are lost, ha ha ha ha. I hate that demo. But I am glad you like it. Maybe I will send it again. One day in the future.

(to be continued)

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Rudolf Schütz

A father to two little perpetuum mobiles called kids, Rudolf is a main force behind The Rubber Axe webzine, a bookworm, musick lover and a movie fan - not to mention his virgin forays into the comics and board/card games.

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