Lords of Acid brings the tail-end of its North American tour to Diamond Ballroom 

click to enlarge Lords of Acid (Photo Lords of Acid / provided)

Strong believers in abstinence-only sex education will probably want to distance themselves from Diamond Ballroom this Friday.

Lords of Acid, the explicit and often irreverently carnal American-Belgian electro-punk rock outfit, is in the heat of its first North American tour since 2011. The band, which released its debut beat single “I Sit on Acid” with Belgian founding musician and producer Praga Khan in 1988, performs with Combichrist, Christian Death, En Esch, Wiccid and God in a Machine 7 p.m. Friday in the south Oklahoma City venue, 8001 S. Eastern Ave.

Aside from Lords of Acid’s eternally danceable grooves, those who attend the show can expect plenty of leather, fishnets and onstage energy from DJ Mea, who was named the group’s lead vocalist in late 2010. Mea, an American who began her music career as a house and electronic DJ, is known by fans for smashing things on stage. Guitars, keyboards, piñatas, glasses of water — nothing is safe. She frequently sports a pair of cat ears while performing and sometimes brandishes a whip. (The whip for this tour was sadly stolen by some overzealous fans.)

Fans still clamor over the band’s first two studio albums: house-centric 1991 debut Lust and 1994’s Voodoo-U, a more industrial breed of electronica released on famed producer Rick Rubin’s American Recordings label. Its last studio album of all-original material was 2012’s Deep Chills.

Earlier this year, Lords of Acid successfully completed its first crowdfunding campaign for an in-progress project titled Pretty in Kink. Supporters from around the world pooled together to raise more than $94,000 for the album and the band’s current tour.

In a recent phone interview with Oklahoma Gazette, Mea talked about her experiences on the American tour and the endearing love of Lords of Acid’s most loyal fans.

Oklahoma Gazette: It has been about seven years since your last North American tour. How has the experience been so far?

DJ Mea: Awesome. It’s going great. I think our first day was the 23rd of September, and we’ve been going every single day since. We haven’t had a day off.

OKG: You all crowdfunded this new album coming up. What was that experience like?

Mea: Well, this way, we can have 100 percent creative control over the whole thing and no label is going to be like, “No, you can’t do that.” That’s why it was suggested, “Well, why don’t we do this?” and we were like, “Oh, that’s a great idea.”

OKG: A lot of money was raised for the album, so it is good to have that fan support, right?

Mea: Yeah, it is. We usually have a couple of people who are backers that come out to the shows. A lot of them get VIP, backstage. We don’t just let anybody backstage. We let our backers backstage and the people who have bought the VIP packages. We treat every single person who’s backed our tour like royalty. They get VIP, behind the scenes, special treatment, plus backstage treatment, all the pictures they want — whatever the hell they want. We totally take care of those people. They’re like our family.

OKG: You posted a video recently talking about gifts and things fans have given you. What are some of the best gifts you’ve ever received from a fan?

Mea: My best gift was from this girl who designs her own jewelry. She gave me this badass cat ear mask because I wear cat ears every night. It’s like a beaded mask that comes down over my face. It’s so badass. I love it so much.

This other fan came with just a box of stuff, just random things that I need and cool stuff. We have this hashtag #MeaSmash — it’s trending right now. I smash things on stage. People bring me things to smash, like piñatas and all sorts of crazy stuff. He brought me this exclusive Hulk picture from Marvel of The Hulk smashing. And it’s not cheap — you know what I mean? It’s a collectible, and I thought that was badass.

People are such big fans, and they care about us. I’ve never gotten stuff like this even on Christmas day. It’s seriously humbling. Sometimes it brings me to tears because I’m a softie. When I get a really good present from a fan, I kind of break down and cry in a good way because it’s such a sweet gesture.

OKG: It’s almost cliché to talk about how fans are like family, but with that kind of gesture, it would be hard not to feel that sort of bond. 

Mea: Yeah, totally. And we do. It was just last week — where were we? I can’t remember because it’s a different city every day. I don’t even know where we are today; I think Baltimore. But last week, this guy came in and he prepared this five-course meal for us that was like prime rib, all this stuff to go with it. It was the best I’ve had on tour. And his friend brought 20 boxes of stuff — like food, candy, laundry detergent, water, drinks, alcohol. I was like, “Oh my God; who does that?” A freakin’ awesome person. It’s appreciated. I also love it when people bring me tea and honey because I drink it. I’m heating honey and tea up right now because I have so much of it.

OKG: Is that to preserve your voice?

Mea: Yeah. When I wake up in the morning, I’m always sore.

OKG: I also saw something on social media about your whip getting stolen. What’s the story behind that?

Mea: Somebody let some of these bad people onto the bus, and they take advantage of it. They see something and they’re like, “Oh, look at that! That’s the whip she used!” and they took it. Someone was supposed to send it to West Palm Beach [Florida], and they never did. They created a fake page to message out to me and say they felt bad and had second thoughts and would like to return it. I gave them the address of where we were going to be at in West Palm Beach and the contact info for my friend, who was coming to the show, and they never sent it. I never got it back, and that was lame. It really sucks; it was a $150 whip.

OKG: You can really tell the difference between the fans who probably backed your album and give you gifts and the people who take it all for granted.

Mea: Yeah. They take advantage of our kindness. You know who’s a good fan and who’s not. The good comes with the bad.

OKG: Do you all have any plans after this tour ends?

Mea: Well, I’m going home and on a long vacation. And then hopefully I’ll get back out on the road, touring again with my own stuff. I also have my #MeaSmash shirts coming out soon. You can find them at my website, djmea.net, or at a show.

Print headline: Tongue in cheek, Lords of Acid brings the tail-end of its North American tour to Diamond Ballroom.

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