DISCLAIMER - the answers to this
interview reflect only the views of MY stupid ass (Matt
Hoffman). My bandmembers may feel completely
different.........and they'd be wrong.
Shooting Blanks DVD review
Shooting Blanks show review
Official Shooting Blanks Website
1. Can you describe your music for
someone that has never heard it?
DrunkPunk madness. High-energy SlutRock.
2. You have been floating around the
Chicago scene for a while now. What has made Shooting Blanks
stand out amongst all of the other bands out there?
Mostly Deech's good looks. Other than
that, we're fun guys. When we have a show we don't show up
10-minutes before it's time to play, play music, and then pack
up and leave (like many primadonna local bands do). We hang
out, drink, socialize, and try to befriend as many other bands
and audience members as possible. We totally appreciate anyone
that comes out to see us, and I think that shows - we're
extremely grateful. Also, we have an assload of energy on
stage, whether we're playing to one person or one hundred
people.... ....I think another thing that makes us stand out
is all that we've accomplished with literally NO help at all.
I mean, how many local bands (running completely
self-sufficiently) can say that they have 3 studio-recorded
albums, a DVD, 7 music videos, 5 video games, have been on a
few local TV shows, had music on a national television show,
toured the US a few times, and opened for a number of national
acts? That's a nice resume for being totally D.I.Y.
3. You have recently released a DVD
titled "Exposed." Can you tell people about the DVD and why do
you think they should add it to their collection?
Okay, as much as I'd like to whore out
all of our merchandise with exaggerated claims of its
awesomeness, in this case I truly mean it - this DVD is
badass. It's DEFINITELY worth the cost. I think the most
common misconception of our band is that we're just a bunch of
jackasses that don't take anything seriously. This DVD shows
that we put a lot into what we do, and exhibits a great deal
of professionalism as a band. We're more than just four
super-hot guys that get drunk and joke about masturbating on
each others' faces on stage....
4. Your latest album "The Sticky Album"
came out in 2004 and features some of your best work to date.
Do you feel that it is your best album so far and why?
I dunno - it's a weird situation. It's
totally different than our past works, and I guess it depends
what mood you're in. Like, The Sticky Album is clearly better
from a "songwriting" standpoint, but Wasted Time is a much
more "fun" album. If you like good music, listen to The Sticky
Album; if you wanna get drunk and need background music for
your party, throw on Wasted Time. (oh, and if you want to
torture someone, put on Nuclear Family)....
5. How can people check out some of the
music from this album or others in the past?
You can listen to both albums online in
the "media" section of our website
6. Of all the songs in your entire
catalog which one do you feel best describes Shooting Blanks?
Best "describes" us would be any
booze-related song (Knock Me Dead, Simple Song, Another
Chance, etc). But I think if you had to listen to one Shooting
Blanks song to "get us", One Last Thing pretty much
encompasses the lighthearted, snotty, cynical, fun nature of
the band's music....
7. Do you have any label interest at this
Nothing. We'd definitely be interested
though, since we're totally fucking broke, and have a lot of
stuff we'd like to do (but are not financially able to)....
8. What is the most important thing that
a label could offer you to make you sign with them?
Promotion would be number one. I'd want a
label that really works their ass off to get us out to the
largest audience possible. I feel it's the band's job to make
the product, and it's the label's job to get that product out
to the masses....
9. You have done some touring in the
past. Do you have any tours planned for the near future and if
so where are you heading?
I'm pretty sure we're heading out East
(the New England states) this Spring. We've had some requests
from fans out in Maryland, Virginia, and Washington DC to come
out there, so we may do that....
10. In your past tours what was the best
parts and how beneficial do you feel that touring is for a
I think our most recent tour down South
this past year was the best. I'd highly recommend reading
about all of our drunken antics on the TOUR DIARIES linked off
the homepage of our website... ...As far as being beneficial,
not only do I think that touring is beneficial, but I think it
is ESSENTIAL. Go talk to ANY halfway-legitimate record label,
and they'll tell you that they won't even talk to a band that
hasn't gone out on the road. But it's not like touring is a
chore - it's definitely hard work (from a planning
standpoint), but it's one of the best parts about being in a
11. What do you hope a kid gets out of
seeing you live?
12. Which show stands out as the most
beneficial for Shooting Blanks so far?
That's hard to answer. It's not like any
major opportunity has come from someone noticing us at just
one single show. I think the most "fun" shows are the outdoor
festivals, though. I always like playing The Abbey and The
Double Door too - those are probably my favorite Chicago
stages (next to The Mutiny, of course!)....
13. If you could open up for any band
alive or dead who would it be?
Me personally? - Nirvana. The rest of the
guys are big George Michael fans, though, I know...
14. Having seen other areas on tour, what
makes Chicago better then those scenes?
I think that the opportunity for
musicians is what sets Chicago apart from the rest. No matter
what genre you're playing, you can find a million clubs in
Chicago to showcase your original music at. You can't say that
about most other US cities.... ...even big places like LA have
a ton of venues, but they're so inundated with punk-type bands
that if you were, say, a solo piano artist or a jazz band,
you'd be shit out of luck. Chicago is a great place for ANY
15. Other then yourselves, what band do
you feel is the next to break out of Chicago?
The music industry makes no fucking
sense. You get a band like Fallout Boy who (in my own personal
opinion) is fucking obnoxious. They sound like every other
goddamned band in their field, but with a more annoying voice.
Why are they so big? - cuz some execs with HUGE wallets are
dumping millions into them.... ...now, take a band like Split
Habit. Great guys. GREAT musicians. Their pop-sensibility is
fucking UNCANNY. Why are THEY not monsterously huge? Who the
fuck knows. It's all so random that it pisses me off to even
think about it, so I don't. That's why I don't think I'd ever
be like "wow, I REAAAAALY hope I Shooting Blanks gets big
someday", because it's a total crapshoot. If you're in the
right place at the right time, it'll happen. If not - you're
fucked (regardless of your talent). So, my advice to all
up-and-coming local artists.... ....shove a horseshoe up your
ass, carry a rabbit's foot in your pocket, and go out there
& have fun. Don't stress over "getting signed" - it's a
waste of time. Just keep drinking and loving what you're