Semi Precious Weapons

Semi Precious Weapons

BandRock

VOTED NYC's BEST BAND BY THE VILLAGE VOICE READERS POLL 2007! "I have been waiting for this band for 20 years!" - Tony Visconti "The Next Big Thing!" - Perez Hilton "Semi Precious Weapons are the most important band in America!" - Alan McGee The Gaurdian UK

Biography

Justin Tranter's not like everybody else. "Why would you want to be like everybody else?" demands the Semi Precious Weapons frontman. "Rock'n'roll is supposed to be rebellious, shocking, ridiculous." The Brooklyn quartet's debut album, WE LOVE YOU is all that and more: Ten soulful, sleazy, celebratory tunes that rock as hard and stylishly as Justin swaggers. It's not my fault that I look better in her party dress, he shrugs and taunts at the beginning of "Magnetic Baby," a song that nails the band's garage-glam to your ears with hooks the likes of which have not been heard since Axl Rose was pretty. "Musically, there's a little more cock rock than what people think of when they think of glam," says Justin. "It's raucous, hypersexual, easy-to-sing-along-to rock'n'roll, with my self-indulgent self-empowered lyrics."

The band's not-so-dirty secret, and the reason why the songs are as accomplished and concise as they are bloody and bombastic, is that all four members are whip-sharp musicians. Tranter, guitarist Aaron Lee Tasjan, bassist Cole Whittle and drummer Dan Crean met when studying music at school in Boston. Introduced through a producer friend, the foursome joined up for good after a Tasjan solo gig in Greenpoint, Brooklyn. "There's a bar right down the street from my loft called Tommy's Tavern," says Justin. "We heard him play and were blown away."

A classic rock obsessive whose own solo work remains firmly rootsy, Tasjan encouraged Justin to make SPW more grandiose. "We wanted to make filthy party hits; bring the party back to rock'n'roll and back to New York City." Tasjan says. "The songs Justin had already written were great songs, but they didn't have super-catchy choruses. I kind of thought, let's write songs that should be on the radio." Aaron's new riffs allowed the band to play as hard as they wanted and the lyrics to be as over-the-top as Justin wanted. Ten minutes into their first rehearsal, the whole band bashed out its eponymous raison d'etre, a raucous mashing up of Iggy, Angus Young and Courtney Love, "Semi Precious Weapons." Tasjan recalls, "We played it at our gig a couple of days after we wrote it. When Justin sang, I can't pay my rent but I'm fucking gorgeous, every face in the crowd lit up."

Live, Semi Precious Weapons are in a class of their own. The band is known for their energy filled, circus-like live shows. LA Weekly describes "Gun-blazing bitch-rock. Weapons are a hybrid of Bowie-esque stage seduction and Sex Pistols-style insolence." Bass player Cole Whittle thrashes about stage with his ultimate fighting moves, while drummer Dan Crean fiercely pummels the drums.

Part hedonist and part satirist, Justin's lyrics are both tongue-in-cheek and a sincere expression of his core philosophy. Sometimes I bleed because red is a good color for me, he sings in "Rock'N'Roll Never Looked So Beautiful," a slow-burn epic on the order of "November Rain" or "Champagne Supernova." "If you decide you look amazing, than you are," he says. "If you say you're the most beautiful, you are." Don't let the clothes or make-up fool you -- Justin is neither goth nor emo (nor a drag queen), just a guy who gets along well with his inner glamazon. "People get so upset that we like ourselves," he says. "They want bands to talk about how tortured they are, and how much fun they're not having."

"The cool thing about this band is that everybody is themselves," says Tasjan. "Justin wears his high heels every day. It's not a stage performance choice. It's what makes him feel good when he gets up in the morning." Says Justin, "A man in heels and make-up is still quite a shock to most of the world. I think it looks fantastic, some people get angry. Which for rock'n'roll is kind of a perfect combination." And it turns out Justin is willing to admit that Semi Precious Weapons are like everybody else in one respect. "We're playing rock'n'roll as good as anybody that's ever played rock'n'roll," he says. "We just look better doing it."

Lyrics

Magnetic Baby

Written By: Justin Tranter

It's not my fault I look better in her party dress
It's not my fault that you left her slutty girlfriend
It's not my fault this is how my mamma made me
I've been magnetic since I was a baby

It's not my fault I look cuter in his boxing gloves
It's not my fault that she left you for my shiny tounge
It's not my fault this is how my daddy made me
I've been magnetic since I was a baby

In my fist there's a song do you wanna sing along
Yeah Yeah Yeah Yeah
In my fist there's a song do you wanna sing along
Yeah Yeah Yeah Yeah

It's not my fault I would never hurt anyone
It's not my fault the damage was already done
It's not my fault this is how I-I-I made me
I've been magnetic since I was a baby

In my fist there's a song do you wanna sing along
Yeah Yeah Yeah Yeah
In my fist there's a song do you wanna sing along
Yeah Yeah Yeah Yeah
In my fist there's a song
yeah Yeah yeah Yeah
In my fist there's a song do you wanna sing along
Yeah Yeah Yeah Yeah

As I crossed the city on my feet
A helicopter shot a search light down the street
And as the Empire State turned the sky green
All that I could say was "Shine the light on me"

It's not my fault some people wish I was dead
It's not my fault my precious little hands are red
It's not my fault they push so hard they made me
I've been magnetic since I was a baby

In my fist there's a song do you wanna sing along
Yeah Yeah Yeah Yeah
In my fist there's a song do you wanna sing along
Yeah Yeah Yeah Yeah
In my fist there's a song
yeah Yeah yeah Yeah
In my fist there's a song do you wanna sing along
Yeah Yeah Yeah Yeah

Semi Precious Weapons

Written By: Justin Tranter

I can't pay my rent, but I'm fucking gorgeous!
I got big lungs that could kill your chorus
If you want to try, you better come inside
Can't pay my rent but I'm fucking gorgeous!

Tell me something I don't know
Tell me something I don't know
Tell me something I don't know
Tell me something I don't know
You c-c-c-can't, cause you don't!

I don't drink booze cause my hearts explosive
I gave up food cause the shits expensive
I know you want to be me, but baby it ain't easy
Don't drink booze cause my hearts explosive

Tell me something I don't know
Tell me something I don't know
Tell me something I don't know
Tell me something I don't know
You c-c-c-can't, cause you don't!

Tell me something I don't know
Tell me something I don't know
I got a diamond in my pocket and a gun in my purse scream Semi Precious Weapons or you might get hurt!
Tell me something I don't know
Tell me something I don't know
Tell me something I don't know
Tell me something I don't know
You c-c-c-can't, cause you don't!

Discography

We Love You 9/30/08 (Razor And Tie)

Set List

Semi Precious Weapons
Nasty Legs
Dirty Lady
Jesus
Bleed To Heal
Me So Sorry
Time Zones
Her Hair Is On Fire
I Can't Love You Dead
Magnetic Baby
Thats Cunt
Rock and Roll Never Looked So Beautiful
Taste