Fountain of Bile might just be the most metal band in Santa Cruz—and not only because of their name. The band has been brutal, uncompromising and always down for a good time—kind of like the day bassist Juan “Boomer” Peralta met singer Kevin “Smitty” Smith.
“We’re at this party, and Smitty and I decide to play ‘Punch in the Face,’ where we punch each other in the face,” says Peralta. “And we’d only known each other for about 20 minutes.”
Fountain of Bile, which released its debut E.P. Barf Bag earlier this year, combines all the best aspects of heavy metal into a whirlwind of melodic destruction.
“The way this band works is way different than other bands I’ve played in,” explains Smith, who writes the intense lyrics. “But the majority of what we play, Moksha comes up with the riffs and everyone else builds on it.”
The Moksha in question is guitar player and co-founding member Moksha Hartshauser. He and drummer Ian Thornburgh founded Fountain of Bile two years ago, and recruited Peralta. But where to find a singer?
“We were all living at the Walty house,” explains Hartshauser. “Smitty was the loudest motherfucker that we knew … [at one point] he was banging his face against a table.”
“But at practice, I was too nervous to even stand,” Smith says. “For the first three sessions I sang sitting down.”
Barf Bag was released through a Kickstarter.com fund—which earned double its goal—that promised fans t-shirts, stickers, and CDs, each complete with its own hand-stenciled Fountain of Bile air sickness bag.
The E.P. captures the band’s live-show energy and gruesome humor with songs like “Xerostomic Regurgitation”—about dry-heaving bile after having “cotton mouth,”—and “Trapped in a Septic Tank.”
Hartshauser sums it up nicely. “Fountain of Bile: fun for the whole family!”
INFO: 9 p.m. Friday, June 17. Blue Lagoon, 923 Pacific Ave., Santa Cruz. $5/door. 423-7117.