It was a hot, sunny day in Dayton, Ohio, when I met up with Mushroomhead’s vocalist, Waylon Reavis. The heavy metal band played a near capacity show at Oddbody’s (formerly McGuffy’s) with support from the bands The Agonist and Righteous Vendetta. We sat down in front of the tour bus to chat before their epic performance.
Shockwave: Are you going to do a solo album?
Waylon Reavis: I have a side project, Tenafly Viper, which I’m most likely going to start when I get back home. It’s pretty much Mushroomhead doing Southern rock. I will probably start working on it when I get back. I guess that’s as close to a solo album as I’m getting to get to. Maybe one day I will do something completely by myself. Who knows, the future is unknown.
You’ve been in two movies, the 13th Sign and Tonight Goes As Follows, correct? Why has Tonight Goes As Follows not been released and when can we expect it released to the fans and public?
It has not been released yet. It’s the same guys that have been doing our videos, Monobloc Studios. We’ve been keeping them really busy. They keep telling me they are almost finished with it. It’s something that is going to end up as a Sundance or a film festival type deal. It’s not going to be anything that will ever be released majorly. I play a mentally handicap guy, so I’m really dreading watching it. It should be interesting. It will be interesting.
Are you going to do more movies?
Yes, I’ve had a couple offers been made to me, but nothing has really stuck out. When I find something I like, I pretty much hop right on it. I haven’t had anything in a while, so I’m kind of picky on what I’m doing. Mushroomhead has been really busy here lately.
I know Jonathan Davis from Korn is a big influence on you. How does it feel to go up on stage with him and sing with him?
Yes, that was awesome. That was kind of like the 16-year-old Korn kid sitting on the bus stop, you know, finally you got to do it. Words will not express how that meant to me. It wasn’t for the fans or anything. It was nice, but deep down, I was just like a kid in the candy store. I got the biggest toy in the store, and I’m happy.
You know, I talk to Brian and I talk to Fieldy a lot; I keep in touch with Korn. Great guys, just really good, great guys. It’s awesome, too, the childhood guys you looked up to coming up and learning what you’re doing and now they are friends of yours. [Laughs.] How often do you get to hang with your idols? That’s kind of one of them deals.
How was it to tour with ICP? I feel like I should have brought Faygo for you today.
No! You can keep your Faygo!
It was good; it was a tour. It was different for me. I like the more metal scene. I like to tour with metal bands, and to be thrown on a hip-hop tour and be the only metal band was kind of strange. I think we were the only band with equipment. But, I got to meet Jelly Roll and Mafia 6, which was awesome! And to hang with ICP was really cool.
I mean it was a great tour, but you know it definitely took me out of my element. They are really, really good guys. I enjoy playing a show if the people are there, then I’m willing to do the show. It’s just that one threw me off. I’ve done the gathering a few times and it’s always fun, that’s a whole different world. They talk about the metal world, and then you have the Juggalo world. It’s its own thing.
If you could be in any band for a day, which band would you choose?
Tool! Tool! I would love to see that band – just so good. I would love to actually be a part of that. Yeah, Tool. I don’t even have to explain that one. Just Tool. Huge fan of those guys.
What is your favorite city to play?
New York. It’s just a special place. I’m thinking about it right now. There is a couple I like: Sydney, Australia. I love Sydney. Moscow was really cool. I mean, it was really different. It’s a toss-up between Sydney and New York City. I really can’t choose between those two. Moscow is just different. It’s beautiful, a beautiful city.
What essentials do you take on the road with you?
Just my Wii U, that’s the essential. That’s the first thing I pack up, my video games. Gotta have my Zelda. Or as J. [(J-Mann, vocalist] puts it, think tink. [Laughs.] He’s just over there grinning about that. He says he hears me playing it and he hears tink, tink, tink, tink, like I’m hitting a rock or something. [Laughs.] My Wii U is definitely, like, the essential that I have to have with me. Crawl up in there, put my headphones on, and I ain’t paying attention to anything.
(The interview was interrupted by an excited fan.)
I bet you get a lot of random things on the road.
Yes, you do. It’s the little things that keep you entertained out here. You’re out away from your family. You’re traveling, and you’re at different a city every day. You have to do things to keep yourself sane. There’s one of them.
(A St. Bernard puppy walks by.)
Yeah, buddy. I love dogs. He’s a big boy. We got a mini yorkie, “Mneme,” on the bus. It’s Skinny’s [Steve “Skinny” Felton, drummer] dog. She lives in the back lounge. She’s wonderful. I love having her around. If a new smell comes on that bus, she comes running and freaking out. [Waylon starts barking.] I had my kids out yesterday. Boy, she flipped, she flipped. Who are these little things?
How often do you change masks?
Once an album. Sometimes you might get too big for the mask, or the mold gets too small or gets broken, and you have to come out and make another one. I’m already on my second one for this album and I am probably gonna go home and make a third because it’s a little tight on me now. So, I will probably make a third mask. It just depends, it’s art.
Do you get to design it yourself?
We put our input in what we want. We have Jason Kisner back in Cleveland. He does all the molding and designing and we do a lot of the painting. It’s a group effort.
Will there be a new Mushroomhead album any time soon?
Last album was released a year from this month, May 19 last year. Or May 13?
Who knows. I’ve been so busy I don’t know where I’ve been. But, um, there is talk of this winter/fall starting to get the clock going again and start writing again. It just depends. Mushroomhead, It’s one of those things that takes time.
Do you have a message for your fans or anything they should anticipate in the future?
We’ve been working on videos. We are getting ready to start production and we’ve been filming for Volume 3, our new DVD. So, there is a little insight for everybody. There is a little tidbit. We went home for a week between the last two tours, and we shot another video. I think we are planning to, pretty much, try shooting for every song from this last album. I hope we get to do it. But, I mean, it’s un-telling.
I hate videos. I hate shooting videos, especially the way we do it. We get there at noon and then you won’t film until midnight. You will be in make-up and mask all day. They are fun to watch and everything, and I’m glad everyone enjoys them so much, but man, I hate shooting them. [Laughs.]