October is Metal Month at Radio.com. What exactly does that mean? Well, throughout the month, we’ll have artist interviews as well as mini-documentaries about metal, metal fans and the birthplace of the genre. And book reports: reading is fundamental, even for headbangers, and we’ll have reviews of some of the best recent books about metal. First up, our interview with Rob Zombie.
Google “Rob Zombie” and you’ll notice that the word “Halloween” is not far from the top of suggested search terms. It could be because of his amazing 1998 compilation Halloween Hootenanny, but more likely, it’s because he directed the reboot of the Halloween film franchise (both the 2007 film and 2009’s Halloween II). These days, it’s also because of his Great American Nightmare Festival, taking place from October 10 through November 2 in Los Angeles. While Halloween isn’t in the event name, what other festival features three different haunted houses? There are, of course, nightly live bands, including 3OH!3, Blood On The Dance Floor, Andrew W.K., Powerman 5000, the Butcher Babies and Rob himself. Zombie has made it his job to celebrate Halloween, professionally speaking.
“I’ve wanted to do this for a long time,” Zombie tells Radio.com. “It’s really a two-week-long Halloween extravaganza. There’s haunted mazes, but every night there’s bands playing metal, punk, alternative, dance–every night’s different. Then, there’s car shows and wrestling. You can go to everything or to one thing, but I wanted to do one sort of all-encompassing Halloween carnival craziness.”
Of course, for Rob Zombie, nearly every day is Halloween. Whenever he takes the stage–including in blazing temperatures on this summer’s Mayhem festival–he’s wearing full-on monster gear. From his stage get-ups to album art to music videos, Rob’s music (both as a member of White Zombie and in his subsequent solo career) has always had a huge visual element.
“I never had a moment where I thought the visuals are important–it never even crossed my mind that they weren’t important,” he said. “I was more shocked when people would act like they weren’t. Visuals have always been incredibly important to rock music. Would anyone have cared if Jimi Hendrix was fat and bald, or if Jim Morrison was ugly? Rock has always had a lot of style.”