SCSI is a band with a lot of energy and different moods. Although no longer together, one can still purchase both albums ("Other" and "Watermark"). Either on-line, or in St. Louis, MO. at Vintage Vinyl, baby!! Here's a small chat with the guys and gal behind this mesmerizing voyage of electronic guitar work, keys, and angelic female vocals. Worth looking into folks!! Interview with Sasha, Perry, and Doc. By Mike Coles sometime in 2001
The Outcast: How did the band come together and when did SCSI start?
Doc: Summer of 1997. That's when Sasha and I started working on material together until about February or March of 98. Then we went to Perry whom generously offered us to let us use his studio to record a demo. After he heard us at that point we decided to let Perry in the band.
Perry: (Sarcastically) I had to audition. After the audition I got the call and I was in.
The Outcast: How did everybody meet?
Sasha: Actually, we've known each other for a really long time. I'd say about ten years. We have worked in other bands together but not exactly all at the same time. Before SCSI it was Next Radio. Doc was the founding member of that band and Perry was the bass player. Perry left and I joined as the bass player.
Doc: (laughter) I was also the bass player.
Sasha: We were all basically the bass player for the band.
The Outcast: Who came up with the name? What exactly does it mean?
Perry: (Sarcastically) Not me.
Sasha: (laughter) I'll answer that question, I love telling the story. The letters SCSI is a computer cable. I had purchased a piece of gear that I needed to install the SCSI cable up to my zip drive. I thought this was a funny term and would laugh every time I would mention this term to Doc. Doc and I were beating around the bush trying to come up with a band name and we just couldn't come up with anything. Every time I would say that word I would laugh. So one day he just said; "Do you just want to name the band SCSI?" I was like, "Okay!" We pronounce it both ways, SCSI or "Skuzzy." The letters SCSI stands for Small Computer Systems Interface for the cable, but SCSI stands for something else in the band that has a secret meaning, which we cannot divulge to anybody.
Doc: Unless they decipher it for themselves.
Perry: We're open to submissions to what the public at large thinks it stands for.
Doc: Synthesizers Can Squeal Incisively.
Perry: Sadistic Cannibal Sanction Incest.
Sasha: There are a lot of things that you can come up with but it really does stand for something in the band.
Doc: But only the three of us are allowed to know what it means. We didn't tell Perry until he was officially in the band.
Sasha: What do you think it stands for Mike?
Perry: Please mail your submissions to www.scsiband.com
The Outcast: I'll put what I think it means in the issue you guys are in.
Sasha: Okay, cool.
The Outcast: What I think SCSI stands for: 1) Sasha Can Shake It. 2) Sasha Can Sing Insanely 3) Society Can Suck Immensely 4) Scared Cat Silly Indian 5) Sure Could Smell Isac 6) Soap Can Sometimes Ignite 7) Sorry, Could Someone Interrupt? Was I close at all, guys?
The Outcast: When will you let the public know, if ever, what SCSI stands for in the band?
Doc: Never! The dispensation of answers spoils the fun! It's more of an inkblot test than a riddle with one right answer. SCSI stands for what YOU think it does!
The Outcast: What would you guys classify your music? Obviously you attract the gothic type crowd, but I wouldn't really call your music goth.
Sasha: That's a hard question to answer because we have so many different influences between the three of us. The music we come up with just falls out of us. It's hard to find one specific genre that we fit in and the three of us appreciate that very much. We're not a typical rock band or a typical goth band, etc, etc. Lately when people ask me that question, depending on my mood, I say somewhere between a dark wave band and dark electronic dance music. I really don't know though. What would you call it?
The Outcast: Well, that's why I asked what you guys thought, because in my opinion each song has its own identity and you really can't pinpoint any genre to the band. When I saw you guys with Switchblade S. I automatically assumed you were a goth band, but when I got the CD, that is when I came up with the aforementioned conclusion.
Sasha: We like to let the listener decide for him or herself how the music makes them feel. To me that's very important.
The Outcast: Who came up with the album cover and does it symbolize anything?
Sasha: Perry's wife, Judy Leise, is a fantastic photographer and she has a lovely portfolio and was nice enough to let me use some of her pictures. With the title of the CD, "Other", the cover just had a certain feeling to it and we stuck with that, nothing really big but something that represents the band and the music.
The Outcast: Does the title "Other" stand for something specifically within the band?
Sasha: The title "Other" fell out of my mouth one day after listening to the CD with all the songs mixed down and trying to decide what to call it. I kept wondering what kind of music it was that I was hearing and it was just simply something "other" than anything else. I like that it is evocative of the fact that our songs do not fit into one category of music, and after explaining my thoughts to Doc and Perry, they agreed and so the three of us happily settled on that title.
The Outcast: What has been your guy's favorite show?
Perry: Well, there's a difference between; "What was our favorite band we played with." and "What our best show we've ever played."
Sasha: Every show we've had, we've had a really great time with every band we've played with, either here in St. Louis, or out of town. Everybody has their own style, so it's a lot of fun. Our best show for me was our CD release party, there wasn't another band on the bill, but the reason I say that was our best show was because we had a fashion show that preceded our set, and it was so much fun. The whole night was so colorful and the buzz kept going on the whole night.
Doc: On a personal note, I've always enjoyed playing with My Scarlet Life (R.I.P), just because they were great folks and we always got along. It was fun.
The Outcast: Yeah, the first time I heard them was when the band I performed with played a show with them in Champaign, IL., and I have to agree about them being really nice individuals. On a different note, what do you guys think of Christianity?
Sasha: I'll start this one. My outlook as far as religion is that I believe that there is there are billions of people that exist in the world and I think there is something different for everyone. I don't believe in just one thing. No matter what label you want to put it under, I think people should be able to pursue freely their own spiritual interests, no matter what it is. I think there are different things for different people because of the fact that the world is so diverse. I think that's absolutely exciting! I love talking to people and what they believe in, no matter how crazy it seems.
The Outcast: How about you Perry?
Perry: (silence) Um .
The Outcast: Be blunt!
Perry: I think the Romans had a great idea, throw them to the lions (laughter). I think that the freedom that Sasha was expressing can be a dangerous thing. I agree that everyone has his or her own spiritual goal to attain and you should do that, but pretty much keep it to yourself. Organization can be a treacherous mechanism.
The Outcast: Doc?
Doc: I studied to be a priest, but quit just shy before the major seminary. I still know most of the mass in Latin and it comes in handy for sound check. I've definitely gone through a great reversal about it because I'm very much against organizing religions into groups like church's and such. I'm very weary and suspicious about anything that organizes itself around a spiritual principal. On the other hand, I think that a spiritual principal is essential in order to understand life. I don't think it could be understood without knowledge that there is something genuinely beyond our reach that you have to work towards or try to understand. I think that it should definitely remain individual, and the minute that two or three get together and say they've got the right idea and start thinking that the other two or three have less of the right idea, things turn really, really dangerous.
The Outcast: Doc, if it isn't too personal why did you leave the seminary? What made you change your views/faith?
Doc: The Catholic seminary I attended was, among many other things, an intensively rigorous intellectual environment. Not only did my teachers persuade me that ceaseless learning is good, but they went the extra mile and taught me how to accomplish such habitual learning. They exalted curiosity and despite what many people on the outside think, they hold that a mind that is equally open and disciplined is much more valuable than one that is merely disciplined. So... there was no change of views. In the face of this formidable education I realized (even then!) that I was a callow teen. As such, anything that my shallow experience spawned could hardly be considered a "view". Plato had views. I had opinions. There was no change in "faith" either. I hold faith in the same phenomena now as I did then. So why did I leave? Hormones! I guess I was a late bloomer. I wanted to go to a school that featured two genders. That was ONE thing the seminary couldn't offer.
Sasha: Asking all three of us that question, did you think or do you feel that we're a religious band or that our CD is religious in any way?
The Outcast: Not at all, actually .
Perry: It's an odd question.
Sasha: Yeah, I'm just curious where the question came from.
The Outcast: In my last issue that I did, I interviewed half Christian bands and half satanic bands. I like playing the devils advocate, questioning both sides because I've experienced both sides.
Sasha: I was just curious. We've never been asked those kinds of questions before.
The Outcast: Do you guys do a lot of interviews?
Sasha: We have been actually. We've been getting a lot from Germany.
The Outcast: Before I forget, do you pronounce your last name Feline?
Sasha: Yes you do.
The Outcast: What's your favorite kind of cat?
Sasha: All cats. Big cats, little cats,
Perry: I'm a big dog person and to me cats are one less step from a possum (insane laughter). You can cook possums and eat them but for some reason people won't eat cats.
Sasha: I love all animals actually. I do have three cats of my own.
Perry: And I have two dogs that will take your cats on any time!
Sasha: When I go to Perry's house, his babies become my babies to.
The Outcast: What do you guys want written on your epitaph?
Doc: I want; "See, I told you guys I was sick."
Sasha: "If I cut off my finger, it'll grow back like a starfish."
Perry: I can't think of anything. I know, (in an English accent) "It won't do, I want more."
Sasha: My momma ain't cooking fo you no mo!
Perry: If anyone can guess who said that famous quote (the one he mentioned above), I will send them a free CD.
The Outcast: What do you think would be the worst way to die?
Sasha: Definitely, in my sleep.
The Outcast: Why do you think that would be the worst way to die? I think it would be the best.
Sasha: I think that when I die and I truly experience my death, I want to be ready for it and experience every single moment of it so I can truly know what it is. Be it quick, being eaten by a shark, or a slow tragedy, I'm going to embrace every single moment of it.
Perry: I'll be arrogant and say that I'm willing, ready and able to go. I look back at my own deathbed and have come close to it actually several times.
Sasha: Because Perry is into Moto-Cross, okay.
Perry: And a lot of other stuff. I've been fortunate to have an exceedingly and a blessed kind of life and don't feel like I need anything or missed out on anything, so I'll take it when it comes and how it comes.
Doc: I think accidentally would be the worst. Prematurely accidentally even.
The Outcast: So how did you guys hook up with Diva Nation?
Sasha: I had met Preston K. many years ago and we did a show with My Scarlet Life and that was even before SCSI started. We did a show with them when we were in Next Radio and I hooked up with Preston at that point in time, kept in touch, and we became really close friends ever since.
Doc: We've been talking to Preston since the Big Hat days.
The Outcast: So it's more of a friendship deal than a business deal?
Sasha: Oh definitely, more like a family.
The Outcast: Has he promoted the CD pretty well?
Doc: He's doing what nobody else is doing. We didn't really ask him or expect him to promote the CD heavily, we were just glad to get under an umbrella to get under. Sasha, being a promotion machine like she is, has been doing most of the work. WE don't want to wear out our welcome with Preston. The work he does for us on the website is really helping us out a lot.
The Outcast: Will Diva Nation be releasing the follow up CD? Do you have a title yet?
Sasha: No title yet for the new CD.......I feel that the songs have to be finished and mixed down before trying to come up with a title for it......it will be fun trying to decide what to name this one. It is very different from our first CD "Other", but very much the same in the fact that each song is once again so different from one another. It would be nice to have #2 under the umbrella of DivaNation but we have not talked about it yet.....so we shall see!
The Outcast: Sasha, out of the three of you within the band, I'm assuming you're into the goth genre more than anyone, correct? The thing I'm curious about is this. You know how genres have a certain image and vibe that follows the genre, why do you think that the goth genre is so open about their sexuality? Why is the goth scene so open about it and so sexually oriented you think?
Sasha: As far as goths being "sexually oriented"....well, I think everyone is sexual.....no matter what scene or genre of music you are into! I think that it just gets expressed in different ways depending on your lifestyle. I think that maybe one reason as to why the goth scene is so open is because they are artistic people...and they embrace others that are also artistic. This is one of the fabulous things that I love about the goth subculture. Another reason that it could seem "sexually oriented" is that the clothes lend themselves to fetish and fantasy. Go to a goth dance night or show sometime and just look around! There are some very yummy and creative outfits walking about!
The Outcast: Well, I think that about does it for me. I'll probably do a follow up sooner or later, most likely later (Later never came; R.I.P. ). Any closing words?
Perry: Moto-Cross rules! It's the only sport!
Doc: Oh shut up! There will be another CD soon!
Sasha: Um . meow .