by Josh Seech. Photography by Shannon Corr.

Red Fang is an up and coming band from Portland, and although they are not originally from the city, they have called the Pacific Northwest their home for over 20 years. They have been together since 2005, and their most recent record could be just what they need to boost their career to the next level. One thing is for sure though: these dudes got talent. Their sound is so diverse, you could spend an afternoon making comparisons and trying to pin point their influences. When listening to an album for the first time, I generally like to turn the album on, and listen to it in its entirety–seeing if anything jumps out at me. The song that got me to really pay attention was “Wires” from their latest record, “Murder the Mountains”.

I went to YouTube and was blown away by the incredible video they had made for the song. Go watch it and tell me that these don’t seem like some guys you would want to party with. It isn’t just the video, Brian Posehn or the fact they ran a bunch of stuff over with a station wagon that had me wanting more. It was at 2:56 into their video/song, when the music shuts down as they deconstruct the entire song as you know it. The sinister sounding riff, combined with the slow, yet pulsating drums; that’s where they had me right in their hands. Then, just as you feel like the song is about to end, they bring it back with the musical breakdown, and give you a nice guitar solo while the music continues swirling around you. The music literally creates its own atmosphere. Listen to the song without the video if you don’t believe me. Interested? You should be.

Lucky for you, the boys of Red Fang will be playing on November 5th in Portland at the Roseland, and November 6th in Seattle at the Showbox. Both shows are part of a month long tour they are going on with the Dilinger Escape Plan and Mastodon, who are also Relapse Records label mates. Mastodon has been around for over a decade and released some of the most complex hard rock music to date. This unfortunately doesn’t typically describe a highly successful band these days; music is usually all about the single and the video.

I was lucky enough to catch up with John Sherman, the drummer for Red Fang, and talk about their upcoming tour and the work that comes along with it.

Thank you so very much for taking the time to talk with us! You guys have a tour coming up in November with Mastodon, how stoked are you guys for that?!

Well, we’re super stoked, playing and opening for Mastodon, every band wants that opportunity, were fucking stoked.

I can imagine. What have you guys been doing to get prepared?

We’ve been getting ready for a few months now. We have been touring all summer and now we have been practicing as much as we can to get ready, as well as trying to write some new shit!

Awesome, and when can we expect the next record to drop?

Good question, we are just now starting on our new stuff, so who knows… before we start touring, we to see if we can get together and write some shit. There is no schedule on paper yet or anything; Actually, I’m going to call it, we will be in the studio by spring.

That’s good to hear and I will be looking forward to hearing it. The first two albums were phenomenal and I am now a fan.

Hey thanks man, we really appreciate it.

No problem man, you guys currently have two videos up: Prehistoric Dog and Wires. Both are awesome and crazy; which one was more fun to make?

Oh man, they were super fun to make! Kind of a dream come true; kid in candy store. They were so fun… Prehistoric Dog was our first video that we were able to make.

How hard is it to balance life on and off of the road, as far having a “day” job and being a touring musician?

Super tough, none of us have regular 9-5 jobs, I’ve been a bartender for a while, so if I’m going to be gone for a month or so; I’ll just have someone cover my shifts or something. Our last tour stretch was for 3 months, so I had to quit – on good terms of course, and when we got back, I was able to get my job back.

It can be hard to find the balance at times, having to work a job to support your passion.

It takes a level of commitment, many don’t have it or many people lose it. Luckily, I play with a group guys who have that fire.

What are some of your favorite venues in the NW?

Let’s see, 3b tavern in Bellingham, WA–sadly it is no longer there. In Portland; we used to love playing Berbati’s Pan, Dante’s. Seattle, we’re partial to the Sunset Tavern, not a huge place – you can fit 200 or so people – The funhouse and some other Seattle clubs. There are a lot of great places to see some bands, and there are few that aren’t so great, but no need to name em.

How long are you guys going to be out on tour?

The Mastodon tour ends in Dec. on the East Coast; then we’re tour back with ourselves headlining and make our way back to Portland.

I’ve always liked asking bands, “What would you say to someone to get them interested in your band?”… so what would you say?

Fuck. It’s hard to describe your band to someone without using comparisons. We’ll see people who compare us to other bands and sometimes it makes sense, and sometimes it makes no sense at all. We hear Queens of the Stone Age and Mastodon a lot. And then sometimes we get bands like Soundgarden and the Melvins .

Which is weird, because I can totally see the Queens/Mastodon thing, but nothing reminded me of Soundgarden when I was listening to you guys for the first time.

Yeah, it’s strange.

It’s an open floor now, what would like to finish off with?

Come and see us… check us out, have fun and grab a beer with us; that goes for EVERYBODY.

For more info about Red Fang, their awesome videos and a free stream of their albums; go to or follow them on their twitter acct: @redfangband

As always, this has been a Joshua Seechless production.