When people talk about the group Weerd Science, it usually goes a little something like this: “Hey, have you heard of that rap group with the drummer for Coheed and Cambria in it?” In actuality it should go a little something like this, “Hey, have you heard of that rock band with that guy from Weerd Science as the drummer?” If you knew anything about the mastermind of Weerd Science, you would know that Joshua Eppard has tooled around for more than a decade on this hip hop project, longer than he has been in Coheed. This was a way for him and some friends to vent, and stand up against the people that liked to point their fingers and laugh at the outcasts, the underdogs, and the nerds. It’s more than a musical project, it’s a blow to the head of everyone who has ever doubted him, and it is in fact something quite amazing.
One listen to “Friends and Nervous Breakdowns” and you’re hooked. Amazing beats and samples, layered with Joshua’s vocals and an amazing lyrical style leads you through a world of life, pain and greed. This is definitely an outcry for the little guy, and something that can make us all want to stand up and rise against “the cool guy”. One single conversation can lead you through the mind of a lyrical genius. I recently had the opportunity to talk to Joshua, and now I’d like to share it with all of you.
Racket: What are your thoughts are on the Michael Jackson Criminal Case? Do you think that the prosecution has proved beyond a shadow of a doubt that MJ touched the boys ding-dong?
Josh: You see… (Laughs) Um, at first I was a non-believer. I didn’t think he did it. I thought they were just picking on the poor guy. I think they have definitely proved something. Something is definitely going on, something is a little fishy. I’m not actually there, but I have seen the news… I think he did it, I think he’s a ding-dong toucher for real.
Racket: So you do think he is a ding-dong toucher? (Laughs)
Josh: I think he’s a ding-dong toucher, I do. Michael Jackson is a fucked up dude. I don’t think he even has a foot in reality. The motherfucker lives in an amusement park for Christ’s sake, he is just so out of touch with reality. That’s a scary thing. I don’t know if everybody who is out of touch with reality is going to fuck kids, but I think he did it. Yeah, I think he did it dude.
Racket: You’ve actually been working on this project, Weerd Science, for over a decade, right?
Josh: Oh yes, for about eleven to twelve years. Since I was like eleven or twelve years old, or something close to that timeframe.
Racket: What prompted you to finally branch off and release a record under Weerd Science?
Josh: Well, every time we would come home from tour with Coheed, I would always spend a couple days in the studio putting songs together. We probably have about fifty songs recorded. A lot of them I like better than the songs on the record. The record was just the songs that were closest to being done at that time, so we pretty much just finished them. I like the songs on the record though, don’t get me wrong. It was kinda cool. The time was right, and Equal Vision (Records) seemed interested. We actually received a lot of interest from a bunch of different indie rock labels. I had a great relationship with E.V.R. because of Coheed, so they gave me my own label, which I don’t know if any of the other indie labels that were interested were willing to give me my own label. My own label is something I’ve always wanted, and I hope it’s successful; we’re working hard at it. Things just kind of came together and it seemed like the right time to release the record.
Racket: So Equal Vision approached you about releasing the record, or was it something you had to present to them? How have they been towards this project being their first rap release?
Josh: They had heard it; a lot of people had heard it. There were a lot of demos floating around. A lot of the songs were tracks that were going towards the record without being mixed, mastered or anything like that. People were downloading the songs off of the internet. They [EVR] kinda bullshitted with us and eventually said we should put a record out with them. We laughed and thought it would be funny. That was like a year and a half ago. Somewhere along the line we thought we may just be able to pull this off. So it pretty much just kinda worked itself out.
Racket: How much shit have you gotten for being a white rapper? I mean a decade is a long time, and well before the Eminems, Atmospheres, Beastie Boys and other white rappers were really accepted.
Josh: Well… a lot. (Chuckles) That’s where you get songs like, “Joshua, They’re All Laughing At You.” I got a ton of shit from people. I got laughed at a lot! That’s why this record deals with well, not just being out of place, but being a goofball. Even with my friends I remember being embarrassed at parties when my friends would be like, “Yeah, that’s Josh, he’s a rapper.” People would just tend to laugh at me, and they would just assume that I would suck and not be any good. I mean, I’m not saying I’m good, I mean I don’t know if I’m any good. I hope I am.
Racket: Is “Girl, Your Baby is Wormfood” directed towards someone in particular, or was it more just a song that was written for fun?
Josh: Well, it was…. Um can you hold on a sec. (noise in background) Get me a uhhhhh, a plain cheeseburger and a coke, diet coke… um ok, sorry about that. No, that song is definitely a bash. It’s a true story about a friend of mine. This guy is with a girl who has three kids already by three different dads. We told him, and he was just like, “Dude, I hope she doesn’t get pregnant”. I told him if you look at this girl’s pussy she’s gonna get pregnant (laughter). And then he went and got her pregnant! I showed the song to him, and he loved it, he thought it was great. You know, I’m actually one of her kid’s uncles, the girl in the song, she knows it’s a joke. I mean its very tongue and cheek. I guess some people got upset about it, but it’s definitely, obviously a joke… and it’s fucking funny. Yeah, it’s a true story though. I wrote that song in like twenty minutes, it’s definitely bashing on her. We have actually made amends. The song was meant to be so shockingly mean, and that’s the joke. She gets it, but some people don’t. I’d never punch a pregnant chick in the stomach (laughter). Yeah, well maybe I will one day… but I doubt it.
Racket: Well you know, sometimes shit happens.
Josh: (laughter) Sometimes shit happens is right!
Racket: You spit rhymes like a mad mofo. Is it something you always had a knack for, or was it something that took practice?
Josh: It seriously just started out with me and my buddies just messing around. A couple of us took it to the next level and wanted to really do it. It became more of an outlet for creativity and what we were feeling inside. I think I always did have a knack for doing it and like anything else you get better with time, so I definitely think I’m still getting better. Every time we do a show; I really feel that when I walk off I’m a little bit better than I was before. I definitely want to get better…
Racket: Would you “do” the girl from that movie “Weird Science”?
Josh: Would I? YEAH! (Laughs)
Racket: Which group is more fun to tour with, Coheed and Cambria or Weerd Science?
Josh: You know, it’s so different. Right now I’m on tour with Weerd Science, so I’m going to say Weerd Science. If I was on tour with Coheed and Cambria, I would say them. They are both so different. Weerd Science is just about having fun. I mean we definitely always go up and give it our all and try to give the best show we can. Same thing with Coheed. Coheed’s a little more serious. Weerd Science is like five best friends in a van getting drunk, acting stupid and having fun. Coheed’s more like we want to put on a great show for the 4,000+ people who come to see us. They are definitely different, but right now I think its more fun with Weerd Science.
Racket: Who would you like to see run for office in the ’08 elections?
Josh: Ummm, jeez Louise, I don’t know man. Uhhh… Joshua Eppard! (Laughs) I don’t fucking know… Uhh, Jesse Jackson, let’s get him to run. You know, I don’t even pay attention to the candidates anymore. I kinda lost all faith in our electoral system after George W. Bush won again. Actually, I wanna see George Bush’s daughter run!
Racket: George Bush’s daughter?
Josh: I wanna see George Bush’s daughter run because she’d probably win. I don’t have enough faith in the Midwest and in the American people to put somebody who is capable of running the country in office. So fuck it! Why not get George Bush’s drunk-ass fucking daughter to run? She’ll probably win too! That sounds like a good fucking idea to me! And it will give me more shit to rap about too! (Laughs)
Racket: Does Kris Kross in fact make you wanna “Jump, Jump”?
Josh: You know, at the time they did. They made me want to jump for sure!
Racket: Did you wear your clothes backwards?
Josh: I didn’t wear my clothes backwards, but I had some friends that did. I wasn’t cool enough. My friends who did were kinda cool (laughs). I wasn’t very cool, so I never wore my clothes backwards
Racket: So tell me, which project brings the hotter groupies; Coheed and Cambria or Weerd Science?
Josh: Definitely Weerd science dude. I mean with Coheed, I’m not gonna Michael Jackson it up. Coheed has like fourteen-year-old girls. With Weerd Science there are all kinds of hookers. All sorts of chicks and stuff, so it’s fun.
Racket: What is your worst fear?
Josh: Um… dragons. I’m really afraid of dragons; that they might be real and one is frozen. Imagine if that thing would thaw out and still be alive, it would fuck us all up. I’m also afraid of failure, that’s like a real answer. I have nightmares about it all the time. So yeah, failure and dragons. [Laughs]
Racket: Would you consider yourself a “Legomaniac”, or a “Hulkamaniac”?
Josh: Definitely a Legomaniac dude. If it’s between that and being a Hulkamaniac, then I am definitely a Legomaniac.
Racket: Is Tupac Still alive?
Josh: I think so… I think so. Yes.
Racket: Ok, say you’re in the rap Olympics, your opponent is Eminem. He just dissed your momma… your rebuttal?
Josh: I’d dis his last three records because they fucking sucked, that’s what I would do. I don’t know man, he’d be pretty hard to dis. In every interview he acts like some kid that would pick on me or some shit. If you remember back when, he was a nerd and shit, not some tough guy. But let me tell you something. If I was in the rap Olympics against Eminem, I’d pretty much bet on him winning. I think I’d just curl up in a ball and start crying. That’s what I would do. [Laughs]
Racket: Any final thoughts or notions you have been reflecting on?
Josh: Well, yeah. We’re doing a video right now. The new Coheed Record is out in September, which we are all stoked on. I cannot wait for that, it’s gonna be a great record. Other than that, I’ve been juggling things. Weerd Science is going on a full blown US tour within the next two months. We’re also going to be on some of the Warped [Tour] dates on the east Coast. As of right now, that’s it.
Racket: Well Josh, thank you so much for taking time out of your tour to chat with me, good luck on the rest of the tour.
Josh: No problem man, I’ll see you at one of the West Coast dates.
Racket: You’re assuming I would go to one of your shows… (Laughs)
Josh: Oh C’mon man, it would be fun… remember… hookers dude.
Racket: I’ll be there!
Josh: (laughs) Alright then…. PEACE!
If you haven’t yet, give Weerd Science a listen. You just might like it… or you may not. Either way I doubt Josh could give a shit.
Be sure to check www.weerdscience.com , or www.myspace.com/weerdscience for all upcoming shows, tour dates and random goodness.
By Jeff Curtis