Sin Quirin of Ministry chats w/ Hek82
Link to Video interview here!
Hey! I am super lucky that Sin Quirin of the band Ministry has taken the time to speak with me for my online show Hek82. I am going to get some inside information as to the latest album news on Ministry’s AmeriKKKant, and also an update on his side project a band called 3 Headed Snake. So, I can hardly wait to hear some of this music and so those of you especially who are in the LA county area you might get to see the shows next year!
Sin: Thank you for having me on the show. We are now at the Schecter Custom Shop building. We are in the studio today, and I’m working on my side project, my power metal band called 3 Headed Snake. That’s what we’re workin’ on if you hear some noise here in the background, we’re editing.
Hek82: Awesome. Schecter guitars has been so accommodating letting me be here, and they have been endorsing Sin for a number of years. The signature model guitars are amazing, really beautiful instruments.
Sin: Yes, they are amazing. I have been endorsed by them for about ten years now, and I have my own signature series V guitar called a Sin Quirin V-1. It’s been out for, it’s gonna be 3 years now comin’ up in January.
Hek82: The guitars are so cool, and just look super slick on stage when you’re playing one! I know you’ve been playin’ one on tour this past year, isn’t that right? Would it have been the Beer to Eternity album?
Sin: Yes, technically it would be that we’re touring that. As you mentioned we do have a new record coming out and it’s called AmeriKKKant. It was supposed to be out in October but the date was pushed back to March. We got signed to Nuclear Blast records, and so the date changed to the first week in March. Tomorrow the first single and lyric music video will come out. It’s for the first single called AntiFa!
Hek82: Cool. So, the band’s really been working on this new album, and – how’s it sounding?
Sin: Amazing! It’s the proudest record I’ve been on with Ministry. And I’ve been with them for almost 11 years now … so, this is like the fourth album with them but, as far as sounding it’s like a cross between Psalm 69, Filth Pig, Dark Side of the Spoon – so it has elements of all that stuff, it’s very atmospheric and it’s got some great songs, all kinds of new sounds. We’ve brought in some different kinds of instrument son this record that Ministry has never used before, and so- very proud of this album. Wow, excellent!
Hek82: Nice. And the band members all have such great experience now, with playing and recording, and of course you’ve been with them for more than ten years and that is super cool!
Sin: I was twelve when I started.
Hek82: Ha, ha! I’ve been counting years too lately. You’ve sounded so fantastic on past albums that I have to say, it is phenomenal to get to see you play these guitars. There are a lot of these videos online. I’ve been watching a lot of the players that have been in the band, great players like Mike Scaccia.
Sin: Mike Scaccia Rest In Peace. Absolutely, one of the best.
Hek82: He sure could play!
Sin: Amazing. In my opinion he was very underrated. We all miss Mikey very much.
Hek82: Of course we do. His contribution was great as well as all of the players within the band. Naturally. Incredible talent. Can you talk more about the past year, I’ve know you’ve been touring and played some big festivals like Hellfest, the one in the South of France.
Sin: Yeah, in 2017 we played some Southern California dates; we did Blackest of the Black festival with Danzig, and a House of Blues in San Diego, and San Luis Obispo, Ca. We did Riot Fest in Chicago and played with Nine Inch Nails and a bunch of other bands- it was a really great festival, and then we went to Europe this year in June and that’s when we played Hellfest, and the Download festival, all those big festivals out in Europe, and then we just- we’ve been home for about a month now, but we did a tour of the states. Now, we’re off until the New Year, and I believe we go back out on the road in March, the end of March.
Hek82: End of March, huh? Well, is that enough down time for ya’ to get to have the holidays in your hometown?
Sin: Yeah, I’m working on my Metal band and working to get this EP recorded and released hopefully in early 2018. So, when I’m at home and not with Ministry I’m busy with 3 Headed Snake and I just balance the time.
Hek82: Of course, wow. Well, you guys are amazing and I don’t know how you do it; but you are just always pushing for the next projects and the next shows and festivals. And what have you so it’s great to hear from you. I know 3 Headed Snake is definitely going to be well appreciated by your fans.
Sin: I hope so! I’m really excited and looking forward to that. It’s the complete opposite of Ministry. I’ve done things in the past and people have a tendency to associate my name with the Industrial Metal only, which is fine because I’ve been with the band for so long but this is different because it’s like a throwback to early Power Metal influences. We’ve got an amazing vocalist named Johnny Ray from Florida, it’s exciting and I don’t know what people will think. I put a couple teases out there online and the actual EP is still in studio but should be done either this month or January at the latest. So, we’ll have the EP out in the first couple months in 2018 and I’m curious to find out what people will think.
Hek82: I know the vocalist, Ray is awesome!
Sin: Johnny Ray is amazing! He just blows my mind every time I hear him.
Hek82: Absolutely. Did you say the names of the other members of 3 Headed Snake?
Sin: You’re lookin’ at him. For right now, it’s myself and Johnny. I will be assembling a band very soon. So, I’ll want to fill in the spots for when we do performances live. There will be a whole band.
Hek82: It’s so much musical talent that it’s incredible that you can actually just put things together like that and then choose the right pros to come on in and play it, wow!
Sin: Thank you.
Hek82: Is that similar to what Ministry does, I mean- especially lately they’ve been changing drummers often.
Sin: We’ve gone through several drummers lately, Ministry is always Al Jourgensen- he’s the core. The founder and there’ve been many members. I’ve been lucky enough now to be in my 11th year with him. So, he usually has two or three core people that he works with and does the writing with and stuff like that. Members sometimes just come and go because everyone has their busy schedules. So, if a band is only touring a couple months out of the year the players will tend to go into other projects for sure and that’s why sometimes you have to switch members, or have someone fill in for the tours.
Hek82: I’ve talked to some players that get inspiration so strong for their own project that they end up leaving their bands for a while, maybe coming back later. Fans are always watching to see what their favorite players are doing. So, Ministry is definitely Die-Hard for you- you’ll definitely be there probably until the finish line, do you think?
Sin: I hope so! I plan on being with it until there is now more band. Hopefully that is a long ways away. I love the band and was a fan of the band since I was getting out of High School.
Hek82: I was a fan too as a teenager, my friends liked Ministry a lot.
Sin: So, being lucky enough to be in the band I just feel blessed and of course, I want to be with it until it is no more.
Hek82: I met another Ministry guitarist, and it was none other than Monte Pittman who played for just a little while. Excellent very skilled player who has some great work that he’s doing now with Madonna and some other projects. It’s phenomenal. Al Jourgensen we all love him, how is Al doing?
Sin: He’s doing great, he’s amazing. He is in the best health and spirits that I’ve seen him and we’re all very happy with that. So, yeah- he’s just in a good place.
Hek82: His performance was pretty awesome in 2017, I saw a lot of videos online and I was impressed as always by Al. The songs have been good too and I can’t wait to hear the new stuff. Is he the type who is writing notes, like lyrics as you go along …?
Sin: He’ll write notes that say- “FU” and hand them over.
Hek82: Oh, really? Are those his two favorite notes?
Sin: He’s not one that writes notes for like lyrics like that. My experience is that once we get into writing mode for like an album, he usually listens to the ideas that we have and then goes and starts jotting things down and writing. So, he has to listen to where the music is heading the direction; and that’s what inspires him to start writing and stuff like that.
Hek82: Okay, that’s interesting that he gets the inspiration from the guitar riffs and that.
Sin: Yeah, that’s what it’s been like.
Hek82: Wow. I know that these days players are sending each other like digital files on their phone Apps and I’m always amused at that concept that we can actually have Garage Band on our phones. Wow, they can just put together a world famous album in seconds. The other members of the band are going strong- are we going to see them on tour again in 2018?
Sin: Yeah, we’ve got Cesar Soto, John Bechdel, Derek Abrams on drums…
Hek82: Abrams … do you think he’ll tour? Did he both record and tour?
Sin: He came in after the album was done. He’s set to tour with us next year, and DJ Swamp.
Hek82: I guess a lot of new sounds are coming from the swamp!
Sin: Yeah. And um, Tony Campos on bass.
Hek82: Any other things going on you want to share … how about locally?
Sin: Local things, yeah I’ll be in studio. I’m doing an appearance at a Comic Con believe it or not, in Albuquerque.
Hek82: Does Ministry have a comic book series?
Sin: There was one that was worked on, and it kind of got set aside but might come back at some point.
Sin: I’ve got that convention, and that’s January 12- 14th.
Hek82: Awesome! Well, i know it’s gonna be a very wonderful show and the shows are going to be cool with a whole lot of really nice fans there …
Sin: We’re going to do a tour of the states first and then we’ll be off, and then in the summer July and August we’ll go back to Europe to do all the festivals there.
Hek82: There are a lot of large festivals in Europe so- hey, that’s really nice. And the US dates we’ll be watching for, and those festivals are so cool … great to hear. Do you get inspiration from players like Randy Rhoads?
Hek82: Big favorite?
Sin: Yeah, I grew up in Burbank so he was a big hometown hero, and I actually went to the same Junior High that Randy Rhoads attended. He was a guy that was a big influence on me. I’m influenced by a lot of different styles of music and a lot of different players. As far as guitar players, my influences were Ace Frehly, Jimi Hendrix, Randy Rhoads, Robin Trower, Stevie Ray Vaughan, a lot of Blues guys and stuff.
Sin: Of course! This was in the nineties for me, but those early influences were the guys that I mentioned.
Hek82: One more question, what do you think about Classical composers? Any favorites?
Sin: Sure, I used to study Classical guitar when I was a teenager I used to take Classical lessons. So I used to listen to guitar players like Adreas Segovia and composers like Bach, Wagner, guys like that- Beethoven too. They seemed to have used a tone that was slightly darker …
Hek82: Nice to speak with super smart players like you, so I thank you again for joining me!
Sin: Thank you, I appreciate it.