Holy shit. This place is insane. What do you do here?
“This is Revival Cycles [in Austin, Texas]. I work here, building full custom motorcycles. We also do restorations and preservations on old or rare bikes. It’s a badass toy box for guys like me.”
How’d you get into this?
“I’ve fucked around with bikes and cars my whole life – built them and fixed them and all kinds of stuff like that – but I started doing this professionally a couple of years ago. I guess I’ve been destined to work on these as a profession, aside from playing music, that is. I’ve been playing music since I was 13 and I’ve been in bands and touring since I was in my early 20s, so they’ve always both been there.”
Is it difficult to balance this with playing in Scorpion Child?
“To be honest man, it’s really hard. Scorpion Child do a ton of touring and so the band requires a lot of attention, sort of like a girlfriend. Ha ha! But here at Revival, we build a ton of bikes and we’re about a year out on custom orders right now. All of our orders are specially commissioned, so every bike has an owner before we even start building it. These bikes are insanely intricate. Just like music, it’s incredibly involved, but they’re both so exciting to me that it never feels like work. It’s a pretty fucking awesome problem to have.”
Could you personally build us a sweet-ass Metal Hammer bike from scratch?
“Absolutely. It could typically take nine months to a year from start to finish, from rendering and designing to actually getting started to finishing it. Of course, that’s not working on the same bike for 10 or 12 hours a day for nine months straight.”
Describe the most insane bike you’ve ever built.
“I’d say as far as wildness is concerned, we just finished this land speed bike that’s pretty crazy. There’s an old 30s land speed bike called the Henne, and it’s an homage to that bike.”
Wait, did you say “land speed”?
“Yeah, like salt flats, land speed records, all that shit. The engine is a BMW R100 and that’s the only thing that we get from the outside. If you saw the bike you’d understand that it’s pretty wacky. We redesigned the front end but it’s also made after an old springer front end with a whole new take on it.”
What are the similarities between playing bass and building bikes?
“For me they’re both like therapy, or almost forms of meditation – you zone out and you can just be there in that moment. I don’t want to sound too cheesy but playing music and jamming with your homies turns into, like, a zen moment, and it’s the same with building bikes. When you’re building a bike, you’re focused on what you’re doing at that time and nothing else matters. You get to be creative; there are rules within geometry and math but for the most part, there are no rules with building bikes or music.”
On a scale of 1 to 10, how metal is building motorcycles?
“Well, on a scale of going to church to killing someone in their sleep, I’d say it’s about a five. But on a metal scale, I’m not gonna lie, building shit like that is pretty metal, so let’s just go for an even 10 because, shit man, we’re building goddamned custom motorcycles!”
Acid Roulette by Scorpion Child is out on June 10 via Nuclear Blast