Melbourne’s heavy fusion kings Twelve Foot Ninja are set to have a very busy year. You could even go as far as to say they might be as busy as a cat burying shit on concrete. With their Upload Tour kicking off in March which includes Download Festival in Sydney and Melbourne as well as side shows in Perth, Canberra, Brisbane, Gold Coast and Adelaide. After the dust settles from that busy time it all kicks off again in June as they announced today that they are expanding the Upload tour to Europe including playing Download Donnington. Ahead of all this epic touring and fun times I spoke to guitarist and producer for Twelve Foot Ninja, Stevic Mackay, the man responsible for all the extremely clever and amusing film clips we all know and love that come with Twelve Foot Ninja’s magical musical masterpieces.
“I probably need to thank the band for allowing me to do things to them in film clips *laughs* they just go along with it. I am like ‘right, you’re going to be in a dress! I am going to be an old man, I am going to cut your arm off with a chainsaw!’ and they are like ‘OK!’ So, it is pretty awesome. They accept it now, they don’t even ask questions so it’s good. It is a lot of fun.”
Download is getting close now and with all the hype going around because of the epic and absolutely top shelf line up, Mackay enthused about the bands feelings around being a part of such a huge festival. We touched on what bands he is keen to see and play alongside. He also talked about how snake dealing is a fruitful business to move onto after retiring from playing in a band as big as Slayer.
“I think it is the perfect festival for a band like us to play; that is where we want to play, places like that; so, we are very honoured and stoked to be a part of it. I will probably check out Judas Priest, I think they will be interesting to see. I mean you won’t always be able to see these kinds of legacy bands after a while. You know it is already happening with Slayer sort of wrapping it up and you know, I think I am going to seize the opportunity to you know suss out the veterans before they decide to move onto the next phase of their lives. I believe Kerry King is a massive snake dealer, I think he makes just as much money out of selling snakes as he does out of playing in Slayer. So maybe he will focus more on the snake thing post slayer perhaps.”
With a busy time ahead in 2019, Mackay talked about looking forward to the Australian tour. “Yes, it is going to be quite busy. It will be good. We have been busy recording and writing stuff for ages, so it is going to be nice to get out and have some fun and play some shows again in Australia, it is always killer to play in your own country, there is nothing else like it.”
Being based in Brisbane and keen to see the upcoming Brisbane show, I mentioned my research suggested the last time Twelve Foot Ninja would have played here would have been in 2017 for the Sick Tour.
“Yeah that sounds about right, it is weird that time has just flown by so quick but yes, that sounds good. It is probably more accurate than my memory, so I would say yes, I am nodding, that’s what happened; what you said. I am nodding like crazy, you know those people that nod and it is happening so fast it is just a blur? I have been doing it the whole time I have been talking. I am a ferocious nodder.”
After the dust settles from the Australian tour and Australian Download festivals, there is only more to come for the Ninja guys, including new music on the way. There will even be one new track being played on the upcoming tour.
“We have been working on new tracks, have got probably three mixed and mastered and another three in the pipeline. We have got about 30 songs or something sitting there. So just recording and getting all that done. We are going to be doing some overseas shows, we are doing Download UK which is going to be pretty sick as well. So yeah, we are just going to keep on rolling; this year is going to be quite an interesting year for us I think. We are going to play one new track, we are just going to chuck it in there and see if anyone notices. It is a bit of a different one for us. We have been doing a bunch of recordings with like a 16-piece orchestra. So, this is going to be a little bit of a trippy sort of amalgamation of different genres again. I just hope it results in something people like to listen to, that’s the primary objective.”
Twelve Foot Ninja fans are in for a treat with the upcoming tours and Download appearances as well as new music on the way! To add to the excitement, the guys did a call out on their Facebook page today asking local Australian bands to apply to support them on their Australian tour. It’s all happening for the guys and their fans in 2019. Make sure you grab your tickets for their shows as soon as you can!
Tickets for all shows in Australia and Europe are on sale now at twelvefootninja.com/shows.