Straight outta Collingwood and a force to be reckoned with, punk rock trio BATPISS have just released their sludgy new LPBiomass, an album which was recorded in just five days at Melbourne’s Cellar Sessions studios with producer Max Ducker.
Because we can, we asked frontman Paul Portal to take us back through some of his favourite albums and artwork that have influenced the sounds of Batpiss as we know them…
What is some of your favourite album/EP cover artwork?
Really love the art on the Grong Grong self-titled album. Drawn by Andrew De Caux. Really cool sketchy evil drawing, full 1985 style.
What was the first album you bought with your own money?
The first tape was Blood Sugar Sex Magic. first CD was transistor by 311. first LP was Monkey Puzzle by The Saints. Heaps of other 311 in there, though.
What was playing on your family stereo growing up?
Pretty diverse stuff, I remember watching dad cooking dinner one night when I was young with some crazy fast record playing, that I later learned was Fresh fruit for rotting vegetables. Tonnes of The Clash and The Cure (they named me after Paul Simonon apparently), and a lot of English new wave stuff from the 80s. Talk Talk, Gang of Four, XTC. Mostly The Pogues, though.
Which album did you play to death as a teenager?
Duh by Lagwagon. Everything by Frenzal Rhomb. a 4ZZZ radio compilation cd out of Brisbane that had heaps of punk shit on it. Sandinista by The Clash. how to clean everything by Propagandhi. aaaaand, more Frenzal.
What albums are you currently listening to?
All of the above. the AD SKINNER 7 inch. Cut Sleeves by the BOSMC is one of the greatest. ‘Peel Me Like An Egg’ by the Hard-Ons.
What has been your favourite EP or album release of 2015 so far?
Wicked Citys new one will be the best release of the year.
Flyblown 7” by Mutton rules.
What record stores can you not live without visiting regularly and why?
I find myself in Polyester pretty regularly. then they ask me (very politely) to leave cos I have no money. I work over in Brunswick so I go into Round and Round on pay day after work. they’ve got great stuff. Paradise Records over that way are great too. They’re all good, though, all the independent ones. anyone that supports the local stuff is allllllright.
Did you dream of putting out your own album as a child?
Yeah, of course, once you decide sucking at an instrument is what you wanna do with your time, you pretty quickly decide that putting out a record would be super mad.
Where did your album title of Biomass come to fruition?
We had a few ideas floating around. Rats Eggs was one, Sexual Aggression was another. one was deemed too lame and one just didn’t have enough aggression. so we went back to the drawing board. We decided that BIOMASS followed on pretty well from Nuclear Winter, like pulverised decomposing natural matter, covering a dead planet after a nuclear holocaust. It also looks vaguely like the band name, and Thomy sings it in one of the songs, so bingo bango, and the album named.
What was the inspiration behind the album artwork for Biomass and who designed it?
I did the picture for the album, and it pretty much is just the visual representation of what the band tries to sound like. I’d tried a couple of options that I was happy with, or the other dudes weren’t happy with, then we found this one sitting in my room, and we realised it fit. Weird looking tumultuous alien landscape, with two humanoid alien priests practising ritual homogenisation with a giant bionic quartz egg.
What is your most memorable moment from recording Biomass?
Probably just hanging out with Max’s huge malamute called Squid. even when shit was getting hard, or someone was fucking up their bit, Squid would give you a little nuzzle and you’d stop worrying about it and just get on with it. Sitting in the control room at Max’s studio and watching him work his magic was pretty memorable too. He’s fucking good at his job.
BIOMASS is out now via Poison City Records
Batpiss Tour Dates Sat August 1
The Eastern, Ballarat
Sun Sept 6
The Reverence Hotel, Melbourne (Poison City Weekender)