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The Butchie's Kaia Wilson

Creative Loafing: What is the state of queercore, circa 2004?

Kaia Wilson: I don't know what the hell is going on with queercore, but I have seen a lot of people distancing themselves from identity politics, which I have to say both bothers me and I understand. I personally think that as long as people out there hate queer people, and as long as one in three teen suicides is gay-related and kids have nowhere to look to see positive queer models, then I am going to be as gay and out about it as I can. I'm so gay that the phrase "that's so gay" was made in my image.

This album has the most consistently faithful reproduction of your live sound. You have bypassed the Green Day fake pop-punk trap and gone right to the source. How do you react to the whole pop-punk overkill in general?

We all love the pop-punk but hate the plastic-dead sounds that come with it so often. I can't stand vocals soaring over the top of the music and I think this record came out so you can hear all the instruments and vocals clearly without the muddy or overly slick sound. I really can't stand most music I hear today, with the odd exception of Celine Dion, who I think is sorta pop-punk.

For a while, you were turning out albums almost every year, but this is the first one since 3 in 2001. Why the long break?

You know how sometimes it's time for a cool change? That's what happened; life happened. I was having certain blocks in my writing and I was going through some serious times of self-discovery and incredible fears that I was facing and trying to make real changes in myself and in my life. That took a little time and as those personal stories in my living unfolded, the songs started finally pouring out.

The world has changed considerably since 3. How have the Butchies reacted to that change? How has the band changed?

Yeah, I guess the world has changed a lot. I forget that we were quite literally recording that record when the election was busy being rigged. I think that all of us have reacted in our own personal lives to this change, which of course affects the coming together and collaboration we do as a band. I am continually disappointed, hopeful, discouraged, rejuvenated and inspired by the world around me and in my own little private life, too.

Some people have called this your least political album yet, and some call it the most political. How do you see it?

I think this record is just as political as any of the other records I've made. I think that singing love songs explicitly to girls is what I've always done and it's always been "political" in that way. We're out and we are really, really gay and that sure hasn't changed a bit. There was no decision made to make a "less political" record, but rather we just didn't feel the need to repeat our past and to keep moving forward. The record is called Make Yr Life and it's three butch dykes singing about facing your fears and living with passion, and we don't get more political than that!

-- Lee Valentine Smith
The Butchies play the Echo Lounge, Sat., Sept. 25, 9 p.m. $8.