Interview by Victoria Llewelyn
US rock rebels Kickin Valentina are planning a return to the UK this 12 months – guitarist Heber Pampillon chats concerning the band, bringing the enjoyable again to rock and roll and their love of their followers.
Kickin Valentina have been tearing up the rock scene with their electrifying performances of ‘loud, unapologetic rock and roll’ since 2013. Having generated an enormous worldwide fan base and being famend for his or her gritty, onerous edged sound and outrageous stage reveals, proper now, they’re some of the entertaining and vociferous bands round. The UK prepares to welcome them again this summer time on the Name of the Wild pageant. With guarantees of additional dates, and a brand new album underway there’s a lot to get enthusiastic about.
MGM: Kickin Valentina – that’s an attention-grabbing title for a band. How did you provide you with that?
HP: Jimmy and I, we had been placing the band collectively and throwing names round, however nothing appeared to stay, till we discovered there was this porn star named Valentina, a fetish star that kicked guys within the balls. We went, ‘take a look at that. Kickin Valentina.’ After which we checked out one another and went, that sounds type of cool. The humorous half is that should you would Google Kickin Valentina when the band first began, all that got here up can be her and we might simply chortle! Because the band began getting recognised, her stuff step by step acquired buried by ours and now we will’t discover her. We’d love to search out her, as a result of we’d like to put her on a video!
MGM: For these which are new to the band, how do you describe yourselves and the place do your influences come from?
HP: We’re only a enjoyable rock and roll band, proper? Simply straight rock and roll. We plug and we play, and we simply wish to have time and entertain, to play good music that individuals can sing alongside to, hopefully begin making out within the viewers and assembly one another, having infants, every kind of fine stuff, proper? We’re nearly having enjoyable.
One of many issues we observed when the band was being put collectively was that loads of the rock n roll round was very gloomy. For us it was all the time about being rebellious and having enjoyable; it was intercourse, medicine, and rock and roll, proper? Now that we’re older, it’s not concerning the medicine anymore, however we wished to get again to having enjoyable and having fun with the trip.
So far as influences go, all of us have totally different ones and I believe that’s what provides us our sound. I like Motown and I’m a giant Elvis fan. There are punk influences, 80s influences, every kind of various issues.
HP: Jimmy (Berdine) and I put the band collectively. I used to personal a pure holistic pet retailer, and Jimmy used to come back in and purchase meals for his canines. In the future, we began speaking about music and he remembered that I used to play in bands. He talked about that he performs drums. We generated this concept for a band, and we stated, if we’re going to do it, we don’t wish to be only a common native band. We’re going to go on tour and go to Europe, South America, wherever and simply do it.
We began auditioning folks, went by way of a couple of, and finally Chris (Taylor) joined the band. DK was the primary singer we determined we wished, however he lived in California on the time, and we had been in Atlanta. He’s lastly with us after the earlier two didn’t work out; once we known as him and stated ‘do you wish to be part of the band’ he stated ‘are you kidding me? I ought to have stated sure proper from the start!’. It was meant to be.
At the moment, I used to be out of music fully as a result of to me it had simply change into boring, it was miserable. I had even shaved my head. All of the hair that you simply see right here, it was like a army crew reduce. Then impulsively, we grew to become a factor and all of it acquired thrilling once more.
MGM: And the way lengthy have you ever been going?
HP: This is happening ten years; it was 2013 once we began out.
MGM: After the 2 earlier singers, what made you resolve that DK was going to be the one? What does he deliver to the band that wasn’t there earlier than?
HP: DK is just an excellent frontman. He likes to entertain similar to the remainder of us. He’s acquired an excellent voice; that raunchy, gritty voice that we like. And he’s only a good entertainer, he’s particular person. He’s enjoyable to be with, he has the identical targets and aspirations as we do. A band is a wedding, so that you’ve acquired to have the ability to get alongside and need the identical issues. Now all people has the identical drive and the identical aspirations for the band, and I believe that’s what’s making it occur.
MGM: What number of releases have you ever put out up to now?
HP: There’s an entire bunch of EPs and three full size albums, we simply began recording album quantity 4.
MGM: You’re again with us within the UK very quickly, again at HRH and a few dates of your personal?
HP: We’re so excited to be coming again over. We find it irresistible within the UK! We’re doing Name Of The Wild pageant, there are a couple of reveals that haven’t been introduced but, we have now a present at Hangar 18 in Swansea, The Tivoli in Buckley and we have now a present with Tigertailz in Camden Underworld in June. There’s gonna be about 9 reveals in complete we expect.
Click on HERE for information – June third present
MGM: How do your UK reveals examine to taking part in reveals within the US?
HP: It’s totally different. There are specific elements of the US which are cool, and we do very properly, and there’s different elements the place I don’t even suppose they trouble with rock n roll anymore. One factor we discover in Europe is that rock n roll remains to be a life-style. Over right here it simply looks as if it’s extra underground. One of many issues that we love about taking part in in Europe is that individuals will come and keep from the primary band all through to the final band. You don’t see that right here. You get loads of ‘what time are you happening? We go on at 10:00, however there’s two different bands in entrance of us, why don’t you are available in and verify them out? No, we’re simply going to come back and watch you.’ Chances are you’ll discover the following Metallica, you by no means know!
MGM: Everyone began out as a assist band for someone, proper?
HP: That’s proper, so it’s a disgrace there’s loads of that over right here. However we have now some superior followers out her within the US additionally. Our followers are one thing else.
MGM: So I hear! Inform me concerning the KV Mob!
HP: It’s the right title as a result of they’re a mob! God forbid someone says one thing dangerous about us, boy, they simply leap on them good. They’re brutal! They observe us. We simply performed a present right here in Atlanta. It was December, and we had folks from North Carolina, California, they flew in from Switzerland, they simply come from in every single place. New York, New Jersey, Ohio, Detroit, they arrive from throughout to go to our reveals. We thought of taking part in a residence for an entire weekend, the proprietor of the place the place we performed was eager for us to do it, herald different bands to open for us on totally different nights, simply because we have now folks travelling from throughout that can come each evening.
MGM: One of many belongings you’re identified for is your engagement together with your followers, after reveals you guys are all the time to be discovered chatting to folks within the crowd, sharing a beer, smiling for images.
HP: Top-of-the-line issues about taking part in a present is hanging out with the followers! Lots of people say, you guys are so right down to earth, and also you hang around with us, and also you speak with us, and we love that. We don’t go and conceal in our dressing rooms, and once we get requested to do a paid for meet and greet, we are saying no. We by no means try this. We simply go backstage to get modified, then we’re proper out with the followers speaking, having a drink, assembly folks. The way in which we see it, you purchased your ticket to come back and see us play. You’re shopping for our T shirt. You’re shopping for our album. So, take an image with us. We’ll take an image. We’ll make you are taking an image with us. We’ll steal your drink. We’ll butt into your dialog. We don’t conceal. We simply hang around with all people. I actually can’t say sufficient how a lot we love our followers. They’re household.
MGM: You’ve opened for some legends of the sleaze glam rock scene – Skid Row, Quicker Pussycat, LA Weapons to call a couple of. What have these experiences been like for you?
HP: Everybody we performed with has been superior, we had some actually good conversations with the bands we supported and we discovered from them what works and what doesn’t work so properly – like going out and assembly the followers; some bands gained’t try this and it’s so necessary to interact together with your viewers. Ted Poley was nice, and the Killer Dwarves, they had been good enjoyable to hold with. We had been taking part in a pageant in Italy and Dave Meniketti from Y&T and his spouse got here to see us. We sat with them by Lake Como all evening simply ingesting wine and telling tales. What Y&T did is unimaginable, they’re an outstanding band. You do get the assholes as properly, people who suppose they’re nonetheless related, if that occurs, we simply go and discover a bunch of followers to hold with as a substitute and have a good time anyway!
MGM: Your final album ‘Revenge Of Rock’ – would you say that was your breakthrough album, the place the band actually hit their stride? Or is there a bit of labor you want higher?
HP: Individuals ask us quite a bit ‘what’s the perfect tune you’ve written?’ and I all the time reply, ‘we haven’t written it but!’ We’re all the time attempting to do higher with each album, and we hope the following one can be even higher once more. I believe ‘Revenge Of Rock’ is extra various than the others, we’re pleased with it, it did properly commercially, however we will all the time do higher. We’ll see how this subsequent album seems, after which I’ll most likely have the ability to reply that query just a little extra precisely. So far as hitting our stride, I hope we by no means do, I hope that we’re all the time attempting to lift our recreation. The sound and the essence of what we’re going for is all the time going to be there. To me, fairly actually, should you can’t fuck to a tune, it’s not tune. That’s simply my angle.
HP: We simply begin taking part in! We don’t say, okay, we’re going to write down a tune like this, we simply begin taking part in. We write songs, after which we put it collectively, hear again to it. If we expect it’s tune, it’s tune. If we don’t, then it’s a not tune. I don’t suppose there’s a basic formulation for it. Jimmy, Chris and I write music collectively, after which we ship it to DK, as a result of he lives in California nonetheless, and the three of us are right here in Atlanta, so we simply ship stuff forwards and backwards and put it collectively. When he comes down, we work on them collectively, we cease once we’re proud of it. My formulation for an excellent tune – it has to make you wish to make a child! I used to be on the merch stand one time and a man wished to purchase a tshirt for his spouse. I stated – you get her that shirt, what’s she providing you with in return? What’s she providing you with should you purchase her a patch as properly, and this hat over right here, and should you purchase the CD additionally possibly she’ll provide you with every thing! They had been each laughing, and he purchased her the whole thing, and went out of there with a giant smile on his face. Nice technique to promote merch! By the best way, if anybody has the truth is made a child to certainly one of our songs, good for you. I’m not paying for it!
MGM: How do you spend your time if you’re not making music?
HP: I’ve a daily job, so once I’m not working or taking part in music, I prefer to play golf, I prefer to have loads of intercourse with my spouse – you’ll want to put that in! I do stuff with my children, my household. Jimmy, Chris and I are buddies, we hang around collectively quite a bit. We acquired one another’s backs and that’s why we have now that chemistry up on stage, we get pleasure from spending time with one another. We’re like brothers. We get into our little disputes, get on one another’s nerves, that’s a part of it, however nobody will get to name them an asshole – I get to do it, however I’ll beat your ass should you do it! You realize?
MGM: The very best factor about being in Kickin Valentina is…?
HP: The followers. I can’t emphasise sufficient how a lot we love our followers. The rationale why we’re in a position to do what we do is due to them. They’re a very powerful issues to us. We wish to hang around with them on a regular basis and listen to tales about their cats and canines and youngsters and all that stuff. They’re all the time on our minds; we’re writing our albums and our songs, engaged on them, and generally I can see this explicit particular person simply leaping up and down like loopy, due to that tune, it conjures up us. Subsequent time we’re writing I’ll be pondering ‘would Victoria like this tune? Can I see her stage diving to it?’ If the reply is sure, we go for it!
Kickin Valentina are:
DK Revelle ,Vocals ,
Heber Pampillon ,Guitar ,
Chris Taylor , Bass ,
Jimmy Berdine ,Drums ,
Discover out extra:
Name Of The Wild Pageant 2023 – Data and Tickets