Credit: Ben Pobjoy
Mark Sultan has been
playing garage rock well before it was in vogue. For 23 years, the
Canadian has plugged away either as a solo musician (often under the
moniker BBQ) or a member of The Spaceshits, Les Sexareenos, Almighty
Defenders and, most notoriously, The King Khan & BBQ Show.
Through that time, he has seen garage rock go from playing to a select few to the masses, and no one is more surprised.
never foresaw what has happened happening. I never thought we’d ever
get hype,” Sultan said. “I thought of it as fringe type of music that
only certain people would ever really get into.”
Sultan considers himself a relentless songwriter, as if he can’t help it.
constantly driven to do this stuff. It’s somehow pathetic, but somehow
really cathartic and magical and depressing,” he said. “It’s not sitting
down at a piano and Elton John coming over and tickling my toes. For
me, it’s a natural thing. Any seed that’s there, I will transform into a
song, for good or for bad. I like vomiting up ideas, and if it sticks
to the bowl, cool, and if it flushes, that’s fine, too. I’m not afraid
to put crap out. I don’t care.”
That sentiment held true with Sultan’s 2011 double release, Whatever I Want and Whenever I Want.
had recorded so many songs, and was going to just censor myself and cut
it down to a 14-song album, but a lot of the songs meant something,” he
said. “I think I had recorded 30 in a stretch. I had reviews like, ‘He
should have picked 12 songs and released the rest as singles.’ Fuck
Sultan recently released the “stream-of-consciousness” disc War on Rock’n’Roll and plans on recording another following this tour.
want what is popular, and I’m not going to give it to them. The further
I can stay away from the popularity of this music, the better,” Sultan
said. “I will give you a show that is full of heart, soul and ferocious
energy with everything I have. I’ll lay the cards out, and if it makes
you uncomfortable, that’s your problem.”