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The Melvins' frontman isn't that impressed with how prolific his band is, but you should be

click to enlarge Dont look down on The Melvins  even if theyre - looking up to you here.
  • Dont look down on The Melvins even if theyre looking up to you here.

You'll have to excuse Buzz Osborne if he doesn't remember much about the last time his band, the Melvins, played Colorado Springs.

"It was in a bar," he says, "and I remember it being surrounded by mountains. Other than that, it seemed relatively nondescript."

To be fair, that was 12 years ago, as Osborne's band was still riding high from the grunge wave of the early '90s. And it's not like the 43-year-old singer-guitarist has had much time to sit around and reflect on his past. Since 1986, the Melvins have released at least 29 studio albums, seven live albums, six special releases and 56 singles/EPs. And they still find time to keep touring between recording sessions.

It's impressive stuff, though Osborne refuses to acknowledge as much.

"We're prolific if you only go along with the idea that musicians are completely lazy people," he says with a laugh. "Most musicians if I can say, if I can generalize, which I love to do, as well as judge are whore-mongering drug addicts. And they are destroying their lives and their time, and not doing anything at all. And they're certainly not concentrating on what the most important thing would be, which would be music."

Meanwhile, the Melvins have continued to do just that. Osborne's convinced that the 2006 and most-recent release, (a) Senile Animal, is "by far" one of the band's best. He credits that to the crew currently surrounding him. After a slew of failed bass players and 21 years of performing, the Melvins may have finally found the proper counterparts for Osborne and drummer Dale Crover. With (a) Senile Animal, the Melvins welcomed bassist Jared Warren and drummer Coady Willis of the sludge-metal act Big Business into the family.

The additions of Willis and Warren haven't changed the Melvins' sound too much, but they have changed their live performances. The band is now a two-drum outfit, and, given that Crover is right-handed and Willis is left-handed, when the two perform on stage together, it creates a mirror effect that Osborne thinks might be one of the coolest things his band has done even if it has attracted a fair amount of criticism.

"Whenever we do something strange and to me, having two drummers isn't even that strange people tend to question it for reasons that I can't quite fathom," he says. "If they question what we're doing and they don't like it, then I really have no time for them. I don't take constructive criticism very well.

"In fact," he says, laughing, "I don't want to hear criticism at all."

With so many tours and so many albums and a new one to be released "before you know it" the Melvins may have earned as much respect.

"It's the life we lead," Osborne says. "And it's great."

pete@csindy.com

Capsule
The Melvins with Big Business and A Purge of Dissidents (screening)
The Black Sheep, 2106 E. Platte Ave.
Sunday, Sept. 23, 8 p.m.
Tickets: $15, all ages; visit ticketweb.com or call 866/468-7621.

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