Cow Talk
Speed Of Sound, Spring, 1989
By John Gatta
Transcribed by Robert Ferent
90 Cover Image


The Holy Cows (Elvis Buck Wilde, B.D. McPaul, K.J. Holstein & Angus Black) traveled southeast from Cleveland to play their power pop meets chaos gig at Cedars Lounge.

With little inducement, the members offered their maniacal thoughts on many a thing as we huddles around McPaul's two-toned Caprice. The talk was nowhere near serious, the weather was frigid, but the beer remained cold. All of this is true. If you don't believe me, see them for yourself at Cedars Lounge on May 27.

SOS: How did you get together?

Wilde: When the band first got together, Keith and I had known each other for a long time. We grew up and went through adolescence together.

Holstein: We grew up hating each other.

Wilde: Not really, but he just says that.

McPaul: Still hate each other.

Wilde: Through the years I was in a band called The Wild Giraffes, K.J. was in a band called Vaguely Familiar and B.D. was in a band called The Hearing Aids and we used to all periodically play with each other. (Laughs) I mean metaphorically. The the Giraffes broke up, the Vaguelies broke up and Hearing Aids broke up, and one day we kind of ended up together through various circumstances we don't need to get into so it's a really long story.

Anyway, the three of us ended up together, and we decided to call it The Holy Cows because we were watching "Batman" and Robin said, 'Holy Cow' and it sounded like a good name for a band. We were together for about four weeks before we played our first gig.

SOS: What was that first gig like?

Holstein/Wilde: Our first gig was a blast!

Wilde: It was at the Cleveland Agora. They had a Mardi Gras party and we got to go on and shoot our wad for about 15 minutes. It was like ten thousand bands and they each got to do four songs.

Holstein: And they had free beer.

Wilde: Then we were together for a while. Then we were together for a while. We were always keeping our eyes out for a bass player 'cause Paul was primarily a guitar player but he joined the band as a bass player because we didn't have one. So one day we discovered this really cool bass player, (laughs) that would be Angus over there. He was playing in a band called The Mice, but The Mice broke up and, as fate would have it, he happened to be there seeing us play at a gig and worshiped us for the gods that we truly are.

SOS: Why do you have Cows' names?

Wilde: Why not? We're Holy Cows. What are we going to call ourselves? pork?

SOS: The next record will be called...

Holstein: The next record will be called 'In the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Cows.'

SOS: Now, does a Holy Cow eat meat?

3 Cows: Yeah! White Castle cheeseburgers, chicken fried steak.

McPaul: Sometimes.

SOS: Is there really meat in a White Castle cheeseburger?

Holstein and Wilde: Yes.

McPaul and Black: No.

Wilde: We have two yeses and two nos. There seems to be dissension among the band.

SOS: Does this mean you're going to break up?

Holstein: If anyone asks why the Holy Cows broke up, it was because of White Castle burgers.

SOS: So what do you think is in there?

Black: Nothing found in nature.

SOS: Now everyone has to answer these next questions. Favorite TV show.

McPaul: "Gilligan's Island."

Black: "Max Headroom."

Holstein: "Gidget."

Wilde: "Romper Room."

SOS: Favorite beer.

McPaul: Diet beer.

Black: Milwaukee's Best.

Holstein: Milwaukee's Best.

Wilde: Cold.

SOS: Favorite album.

Wilde: The Holy Cows "We Never Heard Of You Either" (laughs).

McPaul: Mine, ours.

Black: Soul Asylum "Hang Time".

Wilde: He's kicked out of the band. You were here.

Holstein: The Stones.

SOS: Which one?

Holstein: All of 'em.

Black: You kick me out of the band, I'd like to see that.

SOS: Any influences?

Wilde: Assholes, ignorant assholes I guess you kinda...

Holstein: Nice talk guy.

Wilde: They influence me to do something different. The Beatles. Oh everybody says the Beatles, wait a minute.

SOS: Who thinks they can describe Holy Cows music?

Holstein: Gunned-up pop in your face.

Wilde: it's a cross between Sex Pistols and Cheap Trick.

Black: Cows 'n Roses.

McPaul: I think it sounds a lot like Peggy Lee. If Peggy Lee was making records today this is what she'd sound like.

SOS: Would you say your songs have any particular meanings?

McPaul: It's right there in front of you. It's like we're sitting on the trunk of the car. Now I'm saying 'We're sitting on the trunk of the car.' What are we doing? Why are you looking for some other meaning?

SOS: In other words, your lyrics are literal?

McPaul: What I'm saying nine times out of ten is what actually is going on.

Wilde: It's a Nietzchean kind of thing.

Black: Isn't he pompous folks?

Holstein: We're a zen band. Nothing is what we mean.

Wilde: We can become one with the bass drum.

SOS: Why do you want to play rock 'n roll? Why not be accountants?

Black: I've been asking myself that question for the last five years.

Wilde: We're in it for all the right reasons - the fame, the money, the girls.

Holstein: And the free beer.

SOS: Beer plays an important part of your lives?

Holstein: Beer is our lives.

Wilde: If it wasn't for beer there wouldn't be a Holy Cows. Well there would, but we'd be playing in the Brown Derby somewhere playing Barry Manilow songs.

SOS: Why should anyone go out and buy your records?

Wilde: 'Cause it'll make us rich and famous.

Holstein: 'Cause it's full of pop sensibilities.

Black: Only a terminal zoom dweeb wouldn't buy it.

Wilde: Can I take a time out to say something serious? The big thing with all these teenage pseudo-neo-punk trend of the week... Everybody cries 'sell out' when someoen like The Replacements put out a pop records. Everybody says it's too pop, it's a sell out.

Why is it a sell out? What's wrong with wanting to make a little money and be popular? Playing in a band is what I love doing and I want to make money doing. (the others snore loudly) I don't want to be an accountant. I like to be popular. I like to make money.

SOS: So what are you going to do when you become rich?

Holstein: Get liposuctions.

Black: We're gonna rub everybody's nose in it.

Holstein: We're gonna wipe our asses with 100 dollar bills and tack 'em on the front doors of people that didn't believe in it.

Wilde: I'm going to go through intensive psychotherapy.

Holstein: As soon as I make a million bucks I'm going to the Betty Ford clinic.

SOS: When will we see a new album?

McPaul: The first one we said January, and it came out around August or September.

Wilde: We'll probably record at the end of the summer.

SOS: When will you consider yourselves a success?

Holstein: Yesterday. We already are.

Wilde: We're having fun doing what we do and that's all that matters. We don't have to have a million dollars...

Holstein: Get out of this band buddy.

Wilde: We're having fun dammit. That's what it comes down to.

McPaul: I wanna own malls.

SOS: If you could blow up someone or something what would it be?

Black: I'd blow up Doug Clark. He's a sports columnist for the Cleveland Edition. He had the temerity to give a bad review to Major League which is God's own movie about God's own team playing God's own game.

Wilde: I'd blow up anybody who doesn't go out and buy our record.

Hiolstein: I'd blow up the stations that don't corporately agree to play our record.