Clip: Tenacious D's Gass switches tracks with Trainwreck
Tenacious D's Gass switches tracks with Trainwreck
By Michael Deeds
Published August 10, 2006
If he's recognized at all, most people know guitarist Kyle Gass as
"the other guy" in Tenacious D, a comedic rock duo fronted by actor
Jack Black. But in Trainwreck, a band Gass formed in 2002, he's the
man. Well, sort of.
"You would think I would be the total frontman, but even in this band,
I'm not," Gass, 45, laments. "It must be something in my psychological
makeup. ... The main thing is I get to talk a lot more onstage."
Trainwreck hasn't signed a record deal yet but sells a five-song CD
while touring. That all stops Nov. 17, when "Tenacious D in the Pick
of Destiny" opens in movie theaters and Gass and Black reunite for a
supporting concert trek. Until then, Gass and Trainwreck will keep
Q. Why did you form Trainwreck?
A. I just wanted to play more music live. I like playing live a lot,
and Tenacious D is just kind of a -- it's just kind of a huge
juggernaut. It takes a while to get it going, and Jack's busy a lot.
Jack doesn't like to play live that much, so I needed an outlet!
Q. When your partner is out "Nacho Libre"-ing his life away, it's
probably hard to get gigs lined up.
A. Exactly. So I'm like, "What are my choices?" Also, I like playing
in a full band lineup. It's a lot of fun and different. I like it.
Q. Trainwreck has opened for "real" rock bands such as The
Supersuckers and Reverend Horton Heat. Do those fans "get" Trainwreck?
A. Oh, yes. Yes. It's not hard to get Trainwreck. It's a pretty simple
concept: Five s--- kickers out there playing some classic rock 'n'
Q. You taught Jack Black to play guitar. What has Jack Black taught you?
A. What has Jack Black taught me? Uhhh. What did he teach me. Um.
(Jokingly) How to be greedy! No. How to go for the dollar. Well, when
you hang out with someone long enough, you just kind of take on each
other's comic bits and stuff. So I think we have exchanged and shared
comedy over the years.
Q. Have music and comedy always been connected for you?
A. Yeah, they have, actually. It wasn't really thought out that much,
but I always think that way. It's a funny world I live in. I don't
know. I guess it's as much, like, I don't really feel in touch with
the sensitive singer-songwriter guy. I like kind of a more fun
approach to it. It's not really too conscious, but it always seems to
come out funny. It's just more interesting to me.
Q. Who would win a battle of the bands between Trainwreck and Tenacious D?
A. I'm afraid probably Tenacious D would win. If only because people
would vote for us.
Q. But what if it was more of a street-gang style battle, like "The
Warriors": "Trainwreck, come out and play-ayyy!"
A. (Laughs.) That's right. Trainwreck would win hands down.