Industry Eleven 
Cornerstone Farm
Bushnell, Illinois
July 6, 1997

They travel from all over the world to play at Cornerstone Festival, making it a great place to expand your musical horizons and check out the bands with an Internet buzz. Industry Eleven is such a band, one I first heard mentioned on the Flaming Fish electronic mailing list. I don't know much about their style of music, "industrial death grind you can dance to," but Industry Eleven beat out a field of 250 bands to win a place in the New Band Showcase. So in a quiet corner of the exhibition tent, Geoffrey Grimstad and Brent Otey gave me a clue.

Shari - I read on the Flaming Fish list that you started out with a different name.

Geoffrey - We transitioned from Fear of Faith to Industry Eleven about the time we both graduated from college. We didn't like being just death metal and we wanted to incorporate a lot of different styles. We're still considered pretty hard, but we have a lot of influences, and we just started incorporating them. We got a keyboard, started doing a lot more melodic kind of stuff, shorter songs, and stuff like that. 

Brent - We're sticking with the ambiguous name as it gives us a lot more freedom artistically. With certain names, you just get labeled as a type, and we wanted to be able to be whatever type we wanted. 

Shari - How do you describe your music?

Geoffrey - Describing music has gotten to be so ambiguous. We could say alternative, and that could mean anything from the Beastie Boys to Marilyn Manson. I don't really consider us industrial because I've been a fan of Skinny Puppy, and a lot of the old style industrial which I don't think we really fall into. It's more like a Ministry kind of thing. Real heavy guitars and keyboards, basically. 

Brent - Quiet Zombie, Marilyn Manson, a lot of that kind of genre, but I would say that we have a bit of a groove. We have a little bit of grunge-alternative, some rock 'n roll.

Geoffrey - We've been working on the dance thing. We were death metal before, so some of that carries over.

Brent - Yeah, it's all blended together. It's not like one song is one type and the other song is the next type, it's all pretty well blended in. Oh! Do you know what we are? We're pioneering the Schnorge-core movement! We invented a word, "schnorge." 

Geoffrey - Yeah, since we don't fit into any category, we'll just make up our own!

Shari - Do you get to perform much in California?

Geoffrey - Not a whole lot. A lot of the industrial clubs out there don't have live bands very much, so it's been hard.

Shari - So how do you get the word out? 

Geoffrey - Since we've had the web page up, it's really helped our exposure with people who would never have had a chance to hear about us. We've put ourselves into search engines, linking to guys like Carson Pierce and Blacklight who are doing a lot for the underground scene.

Shari - Somebody living in a small town where nobody else likes that kind of music can go on the Internet, and all of a sudden, he's got hundreds of people he can talk to about it.

Geoffrey- That's the beauty of it. It really does give you a wider audience. We have people internationally that have seen our site. Carson of the Flaming Fish Records has been really instrumental in all of that because of the Flaming Fish website.

Shari - Previous to this, you had released a tape. Is the CD the same as the tape, or are there new cuts on the CD? What can your fans expect?

Geoffrey - The tape was a six-song demo, and three of those songs are on the CD. There are eleven altogether, so the rest of them are new. It's about the same kind of style. It's going even further away from the death metal in some respects. Basically, if you like Frustration, you'll like the CD. We worked with a friend of ours, Jon Sonnenberg from Pivot Clow. He did a really good job with the mix so it's a better quality recording.

Shari - What do you see as the future of Industry Eleven?

Geoffrey - We'd like to get signed, that'd be great. Mostly, what we're really interested in, though, is just being able to play our music. Even if we didn't get signed, if we were able to find a distribution deal and somehow get our music out to the store, and be able to tour, play some shows, stuff like that, that's all we want.

Brent - Yeah, that's the reason you do it. You want people to hear, and you want people to know what you think and feel. Whether that takes us being signed, or just playing more gigs, or producing and selling more CD's. 

Shari - Any advice for new bands?

Geoffrey - Research things well because you can end up in a lot of trouble. Check around, find somebody to print your CD's that at least a couple of bands say is reliable, that they got what they ordered, when they ordered it, for what they said they would. We were going to go with one company, and then they went out of business. We were kind of in a rush, and we just sort of picked one that sounded good, and it didn't work out so hot. 

Shari - Any closing comments?

Brent - Buy our CD's! We're in a lot of debt! (laughs) We're taking a big risk and really just kind of hoping that it works out.

The The Days and Nights Surrounding Change CD is available from Blacklight Records or Flaming Fish Records

By Shari Lloyd 

Copyright© 1997 The Phantom Tollbooth