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Image for Smashing Pumpkins: "I'll have the last laugh"

Smashing Pumpkins: "I'll havethe last laugh"

When he isn’t writing demonic riffs for the Veronicas, launching pro-wrestling companies or slagging off Pavement, Billy Corgan continues to make music with The Smashing Pumpkins. This July the Twitter-loving frontman will lead his Pumpkins back to our shores to headline day three of Splendour In The Grass and play alongside the likes of Jack White, At The Drive-In and Bloc Party.

During the week FasterLouder gave Billy a call to ask one ‘dumb question’ and talk about new albums, spiritual biographies, girlfriends, Courtney Love, Twitter and much more.

So you finished touring in December, what have you been up to the last few months?
Writing my book.

I heard it’s a ‘spiritual biography’?
Yeah that’s just sort of my pop way of trying to put it across, it’s still a memoir, just maybe a different way of trying to write it.

Does it span your whole life; what sort of stuff does it deal with?
It deals with everything, there’s plenty of stuff about the band, and my childhood and all that. All the typical stuff people write about when they write those types of books. I think it’s just what I’m saying and why I’m saying it is probably different to if I was just writing your typical biography.

Is there anything left unturned?
It’s pretty honest. The only catch in it is that everybody’s under pseudonyms. I don’t name names. I mean some people obviously there’s no way to not figure out who it is. But there’s a lot of people that have played an important role in my life who I just don’t name.

Tell me about the stuff you’ve been working on with the Veronicas, you’ve said that one track in particular has rapping and ‘Black Sabbath riffs’, is the rest of the album going to be in that same vein?
No, it’s pop, and for people who are fans of the Veronicas it’s not going to be some insane different departure. I just think probably the songwriting is a lot more mature, and the subject matter is deeper, but it’s still pop in my book. They’re not trying to be wacky all of a sudden, but that song comes to mind because it sends out a different vibe. But some people, including me, think it would be a great first single, not because I’m on it, I just think it’s a cool song. But some of the other songs are more what you would call mainstream pop.

“I remain somebody who believes in what Courtney Love was trying to do musically.”

Are you tempted to make The Veronicas something heavier, more in the vein of your own music?
Well I’m not producing them, so it’s not my thing. I’ve been involved more on a suggestion level, an encouragement level, that kinda thing. But I don’t have anything to do with production.

Are you more cautious or weary to make music with your love interest after all the Courtney Love stuff happened?
No, I don’t think it has anything to do with it. Making music is part of what we do as musicians. I remain somebody who believes in what Courtney was trying to do musically, and when I was involved I believed in it, I think what happened personally, those are different subjects. That has more to do with character, or lack thereof. I don’t know, I don’t think like that, so I feel like I’m answering a question that doesn’t cross my mind. I do what I do and making music is part of what I do and if I make it, great. You could ask the same question like, ‘well, with the amount of problems you had with your old band, does that not make you want to make music with other people .’ It’s relevant but it doesn’t really come into play.

In terms of those Courtney Love songs do you still have any ownership of them in a songwriting sense? Did you feel like they were your songs?
Yeah. I just don’t really want to talk about that, her, that subject anymore. I think it’s played out, I really don’t have anything else to say about it. As we say in America, water under the bridge, you know.

Comments

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oldgregg

oldgregg said on the 26th Apr, 2012

i thought that was a fair question, should have been like 'STFU CUNT'.

did you recover alright?

berlinchair101

berlinchair101 said on the 26th Apr, 2012

Yeah I don't think it was an unreasonable question either.

I always find Billy interviews interesting, I think he reads a lot of his own press so he's always wary of how he's coming across when he gives his answers.

Braveheart81

Braveheart81 said on the 26th Apr, 2012

I hear he reads every high school newspaper across the country just looking for a mention.

http://www.planet-familyguy.com/pfg/images/characters/lukeperry.jpg

davidswan

davidswan said on the 27th Apr, 2012

i thought that was a fair question, should have been like 'stfu ****'.

did you recover alright?

yeah i think if you dish it out you should be able to take it. he could have defended it in a million different ways, by saying it's for the fans, by mentioning all the bonus tracks, etc. etc.

i recovered fine, mostly through jumping to my most 'suck up' question, haha. ;)

lukey26

lukey26 said on the 27th Apr, 2012

Hahaha, what a jerkwad. I was thinking of going to his sideshow if it was announced, but fuck that. He won't get a cent from me until I get a re-released album remixed by Optimus Prime and Silverchair.

SeniourButtkiss

SeniourButtkiss said on the 27th Apr, 2012

i wish billy would bring the pumpkins to perth for there own shows instead of doing all these fucking festivals. i refuse to pay $200 in order to get 45 minutes of pumpkins!

berlinchair101

berlinchair101 said on the 27th Apr, 2012



What if you could get VIP tickets?




I don't want to break this to you but while Perth is still stuck in the 90's The Smashing Pumpkins are not... so you probably should be glad.

BenCheshire

BenCheshire said on the 27th Apr, 2012

david, there's about a million proofreading errors here. looks unprofesh.

berlinchair101

berlinchair101 said on the 27th Apr, 2012



http://gifsoup.com/webroot/animatedgifs5/2084696_o.gif

Stefan Beck

Stefan Beck said on the 27th Apr, 2012



They were here like eighteen months ago.
Should gone to that.

back_to_you

back_to_you said on the 27th Apr, 2012

well handled interview.
here is a new song, that will be on the new album

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0Yn7ka1SNsc

sarahanne

sarahanne said on the 27th Apr, 2012



Or the way Billy speaks? I can not see a million subbing errors.

grattan

grattan said on the 27th Apr, 2012

Anyway...

The Smashing Pumpkins Australian Tour dates to be announced Thursday!

davidswan

davidswan said on the 27th Apr, 2012



the only ones i can see are 'cuckles' and the second last question isn't in bold. i think cuckles is my bad, though.

Captain Smashed

Captain Smashed said on the 27th Apr, 2012

To me, Billy has always been one of those people who, despite the fact I like the Pumpkins (well, most of their stuff), I have always thought he was a giant twat. I don't think I will bother with them this time around - last time was bad enough seeing him wank into the microphone. That said, cool interview David. Nice work.

oldgregg

oldgregg said on the 27th Apr, 2012



not sure if I see what you did there..

berlinchair101

berlinchair101 said on the 27th Apr, 2012



Just being a twat.

http://i0.kym-cdn.com/entries/icons/original/000/006/199/x-all-the-y.png

oldgregg

oldgregg said on the 27th Apr, 2012

i thought you put all caps for an editing mistakes joke... awkward.

berlinchair101

berlinchair101 said on the 27th Apr, 2012



No I wrote it all in capitals and it edited it down itself and I couldn't be fucked changing it.

judgelord

judgelord said on the 27th Apr, 2012

he is a fair twat, but still a musical legend!

retrovertigo

retrovertigo said on the 27th Apr, 2012

what do you think? post your comment...

retrovertigo

retrovertigo said on the 27th Apr, 2012

whoops sorry about that up there!!

great interview!
re the "sellout" question though, c'mon that was completely loaded!!
& why not stick up for what you were asking? what's the worst that could happen? billy storms out of interview proving himself a twat? you missed your chance man!!

retrovertigo

retrovertigo said on the 27th Apr, 2012

whoops sorry about that up there!!

great interview!
re the "sellout" question though, c'mon that was completely loaded!!
& why not stick up for what you were asking? what's the worst that could happen? billy storms out of interview proving himself a twat? you missed your chance man!!

Blasted

Blasted said on the 27th Apr, 2012

You seem to have this posting thing down Pat.

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/thumb/0/0b/Postman-Pat.jpg/250px-Postman-Pat.jpg

oldgregg

oldgregg said on the 27th Apr, 2012

can I just ask, what happens if you offend an artist at the end of an interview? or get in an argument with them or something?

bigval

bigval said on the 27th Apr, 2012

I'm old enough to remember the Smashing Pumpkins they were a good band.

A few years ago I heard the Billy Corgan Quartet were going to release a 40 song album, not unsurprisingly it never happened.

Just another brain fart from this clown like Zwan & his disastrous solo album 'The Past Embraced' or something.

Keep trying to cash in Axl but just make sure you don't forget to play those Pumpkins covers.

back_to_you

back_to_you said on the 28th Apr, 2012

i think the new album Oceania is part of the 40 song, teargarden by kaliediscope, release.

davidswan

davidswan said on the 28th Apr, 2012

whoops sorry about that up there!!

great interview!
re the "sellout" question though, c'mon that was completely loaded!!
& why not stick up for what you were asking? what's the worst that could happen? billy storms out of interview proving himself a twat? you missed your chance man!!

of course it was loaded but i wanted to either get an interesting reaction or for him to defend himself. anyone can ask questions like 'your career's been amazing what's your inspiration for writing music' blah blah, but i think to get the most out of an interview you have to challenge the person at least a little bit. especially someone like billy who dishes it out to other bands himself.
in terms of 'what's the worst that could happen', it was a phone interview, so he could have easily just hung up. i could have stuck with the question and pursued it further, sure, but i think if you've only got 15 or 20 minutes with someone it's a better use of time to move onto something else where you'll get something out of them, as opposed to arguing over something and either wasting time or having them just end the interview over it.

davidswan

davidswan said on the 28th Apr, 2012



from what billy was saying the teargarden by kaleidyscope idea is over and he's not sure what will happen after oceania's release. from other interviews i think he's hinted that he'll just go back to making 'normal albums'.

retrovertigo

retrovertigo said on the 28th Apr, 2012

of course it was loaded but i wanted to either get an interesting reaction or for him to defend himself. anyone can ask questions like 'your career's been amazing what's your inspiration for writing music' blah blah, but i think to get the most out of an interview you have to challenge the person at least a little bit. especially someone like billy who dishes it out to other bands himself.
in terms of 'what's the worst that could happen', it was a phone interview, so he could have easily just hung up. i could have stuck with the question and pursued it further, sure, but i think if you've only got 15 or 20 minutes with someone it's a better use of time to move onto something else where you'll get something out of them, as opposed to arguing over something and either wasting time or having them just end the interview over it.

well said, & fair point ;)
you've actually spoken to the guy directly so your words hold merit, unlike the countless hipsters who'll bag out billy just cause that's the cool thing to do.

judgelord

judgelord said on the 29th Apr, 2012

excellent interview, love how billy is just so honest. one of the geatest

lateleigh

lateleigh said on the 30th Apr, 2012

I'm pleased that he's scrapped the Tiergarden By Kaleidoscope idea. What a disaster that was! I enjoyed this interview, but mostly in a "what's that idiot on about this time" way. Well done working with such a knob and still pulling together a decent article.

daveyac8881

daveyac8881 said on the 1st May, 2012

He seems like an interesting guy, I'd have tried the tougher questions towards the end and more relentlessly so at least if he hangs up you've got the goods already.

I might have worded that question a bit differently but I guess he's used to being taken out of context and made to sound like a knob