By Angelo Ruggiero
Here's the original Prostitutes from Harrisburg, PA, now relocated in Long Beach, CA.
In the Get Sick! GetSicker! post, I covered the band’s early original recordings. You got the most detailed and precise information about the Prostitutes. With this new article and interview, you are getting the real deal: the ultimate interview with Kevin Patrick McGovern, and his most extreme answers and thoughts on his exceptional life.
"...I was insane and our guitar player totally destroyed his amp during the end of the set. Probably the drunkest and highest I (we) ever performed."
The Unreleased LP.
During the Mid-West tour, the Prostitutes broke up, and Kevin stayed living in Ohio. Afterward, Kevin started the mind-blowing band the Inversions using the McKean brothers of Cleveland’s GC5 as backing band.
"I moved in with the door girl the next day. We got married a few months later but it was loose, unconventional, and based on a mutual love of frenzied self-destruction with good rock n roll always on the stereo."
Kevin and the Prostitutes came back in 2008 with their essential second album Kill Them Before They Eat. The 2008 incarnation of the band included drummer Noel Brown, bassist P Mo, guitarist/ keyboardist Issac James, and Kevin on vocals and guitar.
Kill Them Before They Eat was recorded and mastered at Altered Thoughts Studio, in Long Beach, CA, in the Winter of 2008. The album has a more mature sound, but with the same magical talented touch of Kevin McGovern. The ten new tracks on the album are "The New Cure," "Fashion Bitch," "Lolita," "Wanna Go To Hell," "Whatever," "Hollywood Murder Scene," "Electrocution," "Living Is Boring," "Nightmare Parasite," and "Black Eyed And Cut." The CD version of this album was released in August 2008 on May Cause Dizziness Records, containing six bonus tracks (11-16) taken from the two Inversions E.P.s.
A limited vinyl edition of the album was planned to be released on Sonic
Jett Records. The May Cause Dizziness/Erratic labels issued in 2009 the Let's Get Killed compilation album, which features the Prostitutes' track "Nightmare Parasite."
"...my intention was to show that I could write tighter and more sophisticated songs without the trappings of street-punk or hardcore."
In September 2009, the exciting 4-track E.P. Belle Ringer, came out on Finland's Hell's Tone Records, including the superb punk tunes "Psychward California," "Backstab," "Annihilate From The Start," and "Poison Me." All tracks are by Kevin McGovern, except "Poison Me" by McGovern/James. The line-up that recorded the Belle Ringer E.P. was comprised of Kevin on vocals and guitar, Bryan Rivas on drums, and 'Sexy Boy' Mike Damus on bass. This terrific E.P. was recorded at Anvil Studios, L.A., in February 2009. The front cover photo was shot by Luna. My copy is on orange vinyl from a limited edition of only 100 copies. The total pressing was 500 copies (100 Black, 100 Green, 100 Blue, 100 Orange, and 100 Red.)
Besides composing music, Kevin is currently the editor and main writer for the online magazine Fear & Loathing in Long Beach. Below is a crucial interview with Kevin Patrick McGovern, a true punk poet of our times.
ANGELO: Following the splitting up of the Prostitutes' original line-up, you went to record a 6-song E.P. in 2000. What's the story behind these recordings?
KEVIN: The original line-up was falling apart and we had two different bass players take over for some bigger shows we were doing in the Baltimore/D.C. area. I was trying to have a relationship with two females at the same time, who happened to be best friends and developed bad addictions along with me. I was holding back on contributing songs to that line-up because the band was beyond disjointed and I hated the new material they were writing. I announced to the audience and to the band’s surprise, during a show we did with Nashville Pussy, that it was the last show we would ever play. Corey Parks thought I was insane and our guitar player totally destroyed his amp during the end of the set. Probably the drunkest and highest I (we) ever performed. This final show of the original line-up was video recorded and I have yet to locate it.
Pat Grindstaff (Pelado Records) noticed the playing was off quite a bit so we sobered up and went back into 213 studios to re-record a few months later. The new 6 song EP was “Obscene”, “Living is Boring”, “SDMF”, “I’m Not Like you”, “No Sound”, “Nighttime Parasite”, and “FYF”. Some from before, some left out, and some that were newer. It was set to come out on a split LP with the Dimestore Halos along with the CD release of our 25-song discography.
We played 6 or 7 shows with the new song set list while including covers of “Cherry Bomb” and “You Keep Knocking’” as show closers. Also during these shows, we were performing the rough drafts of “Lolita” and “They’re All Dead”. I wanted to save these for a future recording date with a different approach. Close to the summer of 99, I had stopped using long distance calling and PO Boxes. It was easy to book a ton of shows with e-mails in that year, as many bands were still using the old methods. I booked a mid-west tour and we made it two shows in before I broke up the band on stage. I started making out with the door girl right in front of the stage after Mike threw his guitar at me during our 3-song set. This would lead to my stay in Columbus, OH. I moved in with the door girl the next day. We got married a few months later but it was loose, unconventional, and based on a mutual love of frenzied self-destruction with good rock n roll always on the stereo. We’re still friends but our parting of ways wasn’t very pretty, we were young and didn’t care too much about anything. I had a ton of credit cards available to me when we first met and blew it all drinking and binging for about 6 months before cleaning up my act just enough to land a decent job and prepare the songs for the Inversions. A friend of mine suggested I use the GC5 as a backing band. They were on break from tour, talented musicians, and fast learners. This would turn into the “Inversions”.
I was unfocused but beginning to write for the “Kill Them” album. I wasn’t crazy about doing old material. My ex-wife had hit major financial trouble in a freezing cold mid-west winter so I took the Amtrak back to help her with rent, stay in the basement, and make sure her health was okay. I took a warehouse job while doing telemarketing. My plan was to get my head straight after excessive indulgence in New England and figure out a new a plan. I placed an ad in Craigslist as a singer looking to front a band that sounded like the Pagans. The Popkie brothers responded and Grown Up Wrong was born. Within two months, we wrote 8 songs, did 5 shows and made a lot of live and rehearsal recordings. I hope the recordings are still out there, some of it was really good Thunders style rock n roll. We even did a Teengenerate cover in our group of songs. They changed their name to the Cheap Dates after I quit the band. Within 2 weeks I was offered a one-way trip to California by a girl that was huge fan of the song “Twenty-Two”. I was miserable in the mid-west so I took the flight, and never looked back. I liked the people that I hung out with and do not have any ill will towards them. It was just time for me to go and see something new. Live for the moment, right? When it’s time to leave, it’s time to go…
ANGELO: As a refreshed band, the Prostitutes came back to the studio in 2008 to record the Kill Them Before They Eat album. Do you consider this album was an outgrowth of the Prostitutes early sound. Did the band reach their most representative effort with these recordings?
ANGELO: Did it finally get release the vinyl version of Kill Them Before They Eat on Sonic Jett Records?
ANGELO: In 2009, another radical production, the Belle Ringer EP, came out. Please describe us how this E.P. was achieved. Why did you decide to release it on Finland's Hell's Tone Records?
the flight to arrive and during my reluctant trip back to the living hell I had just left. Can you say hopeless suicidal romantic? Most of my song themes revolve around relationships, euphoria, anger, and deep periods of depression. The concept of Belle Ringer is that beautiful beginnings have ugly endings. Mike Damus responded to an ad I placed after returning to LB. He was in Van Nuys and said he had a drummer. New Years of 2009 we played the songs and met for the first time in my apartment living room. I told them I wanted to get a 7” out quickly and they agreed. I
messaged Vesku of Hells Tone Records, he liked the band and said he would do a release. I always wanted an overseas release. “Annihilate from the Start” and “Poison Me” were songs that I didn’t have time to record for the “Kill Them Before They Eat” album. The EP was recorded in Huntington Park in an old factory near a meat packing plant. Don Bolles of the Germs was living upstairs. We had a tiny room to record in called Anvil Studios. The whole thing was done in two back-to-back days. We could only use the studio from 9 am to 5 pm so we were limited. Jeff Harris the engineer got a pretty decent raw sound that we liked. I wanted it to sound like one of those old Killed By Death record productions.
ANGELO: What's your favourite era of the Prostitutes, including Mainliner and the Inversions?
ANGELO: What's your main goal as editor and writer for your online magazine Fear & Loathing in Long Beach?
KEVIN: Writing is a true love of mine and I like to share my thoughts and opinions in hopes of connecting with others who feel the same. We have between 10 to 20,000 readers per issue and I like to interview artists I admire and turn people on to music that I like. I’m always trying to grow it bigger but funds and time are limited. Mike Spent is a big contributor to the digital zine as well. It’s a one man show as I do the editing, formatting, and design.
ANGELO: I have been listening to some of your latest acoustic tracks. These really are rad punk rock songs! Do you have plans to release a new record soon?
ANGELO: Thank you so much for the time, Kevin!