Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Slipfist interview with guitarist: Todd Jansen. August, 25th. 2010.

Vista: Hey Todd. Just te basic stuff....Who's in the band & who does what? 

Mike Rizzotto - vocals
Todd Jansen - guitar
Scott Grower - guitar
Tom Rimington - bass
Darren Kline - drums 

Vista: Can you give us a brief history of Slipfist, year started, ex-members, what has been released so far & what's still available, etc.?

Todd: We started as a 4 piece in the spring of 1997. We made a demo as a 4 piece in our practice spot. Shortly after we added Scott on second guitar and that remained the lineup until we broke up 1999 and that is also the current line up. We released 2 separate demo tapes which has been compiled on to CD now and it's called The Truth Is In Our Strength. You can get it at one of our shows and it is available online at 

Vista: "Slipfist"....Where did this band name come from, which member came up with it & does it have any meaning to you {the band}?

Todd: We have no clue what it means. We were looking at other bands cd's to try and come up with a name. When we came across Snapcase we were trying to figure out what that meant. After awhile we just figured they put 2 words together so we decided to do the same.
Vista:  I know you guys were around in the late 90's. Why did you guys break-up & how did it come about that you guys re-formed?

Todd: We broke up for the same reason that most bands breaks up. We were bickering about stupid shit, this one didn't like that one, shit talking. Stupid stuff. We got back together just through me burning a cd for the other guitar player Scott. It sparked something in me, and the other guys were into doing it and it felt like a good time to try and make it work again.

Vista: You guys have done a couple of shows since coming back. How were those shows & even though it is not fair to compare these days to the days of the 90's, but go ahead anyways! Ha! Have a lot of older people come out to check you guys out again or has it been mainly newer kids? From your perspective, what are some of the differences to nowadays to say, many years ago? 

Todd: The shows have been awesome for the most part. The local shows in Kingston were absolutely amazing. We tried playing a show in Goshen figuring that the Orange County dudes from back in the day would come out, but that wasn't the case. hahaha.. We played for the other bands and hung at a lot.
Vista: As a band, who are some of your main influences as a band? When starting out, what bands were influences to Slipfist?  
Todd: We were really influenced by V.O.D., Strife, & One King Down

Vista: What was your first introduction to Hardcore? How old were you & what bands really grabbed your attention? Aslo, what was the first Hardcore show that you attended & where was that? 

Todd: I got introduced to hardcore in junior high by Jason Kollath, who was the singer in Blindside. Not the big band Blindside but the local band from the scene in the late 90's. He introduced me and and a bunch of my friends to Murphy's Law, Minor Threat and 7 Seconds.

Vista: Speak a little bit on behalf of the other guys in the band...What/who are their favorite bands, singers? I mean, the drummer HAS to be influenced by some overblown cheesy Dream Theater type cornball band?! Ha! 

Todd: Or the bassist HAS to love Getty Lee from Rush or some shit!? Honestly, we all listen to a lot of everything. Maybe i'm just a bad friend/bandmate but i don't really know their influences. I SUCK!!!!!!

Vista: Did Slipfist ever do any cover song live? If so, what cover tunes did you guys do through the years?  

Todd: We've played a few over the years. We've played "Injustice System" by Sick Of It All, we've played "I Know Why" by H2O, and we've played "Bro-Hym" by Pennywise. We've played the Pennywise tune a few times at the reunion shows too. I vaguely remember playing "can't wait one minute more" by CIV and "sittin' round at home" by Gorilla Biscuits too, but we never played those out.

Vista: Did you guys ever do any type of tours or long weekends out of the area or were you guys mainly in the tri-state area? Looking back on it after all these years, what have been some stand-out shows that you guys played? 

Todd:  We only played locally in the Hudson Valley. We played all the usual spots, The Chance, The Avalon, The Planetarium, that place in Middletown in the strip mall where that dude Marco booked the shows. It had that wall of mirrors and he always said "you break my glass, i break your ass". Hahaha that dude was really cool to us. One of my favorite shows we played was there. It was Slipfist, Implicate, and One King Down. Good Times.

Vista: What are your thoughts on the current local scene here in Up-State New York? I know when kids find out we're all from "New York", they automatically assume everyone is from NEW YORK CITY, but contrary, we're all from the damn back-woods/apple orchards! Ha! Anyways, are you at all connected to the local scene or are you involved just when you guys are playing out?

Todd: Well as far as the Hardcore scene goes, i don't really know whats going on. Not to sound bitter and old or anything, but the stuff that is labeled as "hardcore" these days isn't the hardcore from our day, ya know. Not that i think it's bad, it just doesn't hit me the same way as the hardcore i grew up on.

Vista: Pretend there are no crappy computers/internet...Pick 5 words that would best describe Slipfist?  
Todd: Heavy/Unique/Fun/Old/1998.

Vista: As a guitarist, who are your influences? How old were you when you first started playing guitar? Also, what was the first song that you learned on guitar? 

Todd: My influences today are a lot different then when i first started playing. I've been playing for almost 25 years. When i first started i was wanting to be the next shredder, ya know. Yngwie, Eddie Van Halen, Randy Rhodes. But once i heard The Descenedents, everything changed. Stephen Egerton (Descendents/ALL) is still one of my favorite guitar players. Dave Grohl is another one, his song writing is insane. Mike Palm from Agent Orange, and Mike Campbell from Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers are also on the list. Not very "Hardcore" i guess.

Vista: Outside of band stuff, what are your interests & hobbies? 
Todd: I enjoy what most "old" dudes enjoy. Hanging with the family, I have a 2 year old daughter that i can't get enough of. Her and my wife absolutely rule, so I'm content with hanging home most of the time. I also recently started skateboarding again after about 20 years. I suck really bad, but it's super fun.

Vista: Give me your top 5 bands/albums of all-time? It doesn't matter when genre, just your top 5? 


Descendents - Liveage.
Foo Fighters - There Is Nothing Left To Lose.
Tom Petty - Anthology: Through The Years.

H2O - Faster Than The World.
 Kid Dynamite - Self Titled.

Vista: What are some future plans for Slipfist? Are there any plans to write/record new material? Any plans on releasing some type of discography?

Todd: We put out a CD of our 2 demos from the 90's earlier in the year. We have a few tunes we're probably gonna record at some point. Trying to get us all together and in the mood to do it is a task in itself. We're not trying to "make it" anymore so, if it ain't fun we won't do it. We are doing a Halloween show though, on October 30 at The Basement in Kingston. I don't wanna reveal who we're dressing up as, but it'll be a cold "November Rain" if you don't make it out to this show. I know i'd "Slash" my wrist's if i missed it. LOL!!!!!!  

Vista: Thanks a lot for your time Todd. Is there anything else you's like to say? Also, what's the best way to get in touch with you & Slipfist?  
Todd: Thanks to everyone that's been coming out to the shows, it's a blast seeing all the old faces as well as meeting some new peeps. Check us out at Thanks John.

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