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Worcester’s The Pathetics Combine Music and Good Humor

Saturday, March 16, 2013


Photo: Loopy

For Worcester's veteran punk rock band The Pathetics, playing and recording music is about two things and two things only: Pure, uninterrupted fun and good humor. Their curious name reflects this as does their blunt phrase describing themselves as the "Lennon/McCartney for morons everywhere."

The band was originally formed in 1996 by bass player Rich Lorion and guitarist Dave Strandberg.

"It was an outlet for writing some twisted songs," says fellow guitarist Jim Bain, who joined shortly after the band recorded its first album, Not Quite Right. They soon went back to the recording studio, despite the difficult time they had finding the band's final piece.

"The hilarity continued on the second CD, 'Tastes Like Chicken,' with a couple of drummer changes in between," says Jim.

But this small problem was soon rectified in a rather interesting fashion, or so they say.

"I met our current drummer, Jeff Staletareat, at a famed local recording studio. It took a whole year to convince him to come over. A little whiskey and a wrestling mask and POW! He's stuck with us now," Jim says of the incident.

Their method of writing seems simple and, like with most punk bands, this is reflected in their sound. At the same time, inspiration can come from anywhere.

"I like all kinds of music. Folk, punk, metal, country, rock you name it. The ideas come from everywhere. Most of them you try and if they don't stink, we work with it. My style will morph into whatever fits in the song I'm playing. I find a comfy place and groove," says Bain.

It is important to note though that simple music does not meet "lazy" music or "dumbed-down" music. If that were true, The Pathetics, or punk music generally, would never have gotten off the ground. The type of music, if done right, taps into something that few other genres are able to. In other words, it is more difficult than it sounds to get people to listen. In the music of The Pathetics, you can hear both raw passion and joy, both intensity and aloofness.

"It's the whole package. Some people like the lyrics, some the beat or melody. I like how it all comes together and takes on a life. People use it in their life, like a soundtrack. Sometimes to a bad movie but oh well..." says Bain again.

The energy that emanates from the stage at a punk show makes it almost impossible not to have a good time, which is ultimately all they want from their listeners.

"We just want them to have a good time hanging out with friends," says Jim.

The band has played the east coast from Maine to South Carolina. Local venues you can often see them at include Ralphs Diner, Beatniks, the Lucky Dog, and The Raven.

They have 3 full length CD's, the aforementioned Not Quite Right and Tastes Like Chicken, and Didn't Mean to Offend You. They also, for what it's worth, have a Christmas single, "Mistletoe Beltbuckle", that they like to trot out for the holidays. They are working on some new material now, and plan on perhaps releasing a greatest hits or double live CD after that. They also hope to tour Japan in the Fall.

But more music projects are not the only things they are considering for the near future, says Jim. Another form of entertainment, perhaps? The members of this band seem to possess a wide-range of talents.

"We are currently working on a feature length film called Murder at the Meathouse based on a song off of our last album," he says.

We can only hope the movie is as fun as the song it's based off of and their music in general.

For more information on The Pathetics and listen to some of their music find them on Facebook.


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