An Interview with Stone 588 conducted by Dark Heart - Germany - February 16, 1998 A review of Stone 588's "Door in the Dragon's Throat" CD will be published in the April printed and e-zine issues of Deark Heart.
Terri Kennedy - voice, keyboards ; Dave Rhine - guitar ; Eileen Bowe - bass, keyboards, engineering Dark Heart: What does "Stone 588" means? Terri: The name is derived from the archeological discovery of an urn containing an infant child sacrifice buried beneath a stone circle in County Cork, Ireland dating back to 588 BC. The story was particularly interesting to me as I am of Irish descent. Dark Heart: How long you are playing together? Tell us something about the days when "Stone 588" was founded. Terri: All three of us separately started making music in the late seventies in the punk/ wave scene. I had met Dave once back in the early 80's but actually came to know him in 1992 when the drummer in his band, "Guts on the Floor," happened to come into the shop I own, and after talking awhile, asked me to audition as a vocalist. That collaboration never came into being, but Dave and I decided to form our own band with the bassist from "Guts." Jon, the bassist eventually went away to school out of state and we played with Tony and succession of drummers as well. (Both memberships of the band are featured on the our cd.) I also met Eileen in my store, we became friends, and she engineered half the tracks on the "Door in the Dragon's Throat" cd. Later she joined as a bassist. She has also played mandolin for our acoustic shows, keyboards and a host of other instruments besides utilizing her sound engineering expertise on our recordings. Dark Heart: Your music seems to be inspired by bands like Siouxsie & the Banshees or Killing Joke of the early 80`s. Is that right? Terri: Dave cites John McGeogh of the Banshees as a musical influence as well as Killing Joke, Joy Division, Throbbing Gristle and Black Sabbath. Eileen's influences are more atmospheric with everything around her finding its way into her creativity. My first musical experience that made a huge impression was in the Catholic church singing in Latin. In the early 80's, I discovered old movies and while in high school musical theatre I nurtured an appreciation for Judy Garland and Mae West, as well as punk/new wave performers Lene Lovich, Lydia Lunch, The Birthday Party, Ultravox. Dark Heart: I was very impressed by hearing the song "Lightning Rails" from your CD "DOOR IN THE DRAGON`S THROAT". What is the meaning of the song? Terri: It pertains to a time of great expansion in America when our country's railroads were being built, creating the first link between the east and west. The workers, consisting of primarily of Irish and Chinese immigrants were willing to do the hard work involved, sometimes sacrificing their lives. The ghost trains devised in the story are their spirits riding the tracks that they constructed, and pays tribute to these hardy characters and their accomplishment, which helped erode the initial prejudice against them. Dark Heart: In your booklet I read you recorded a lot of the songs on Walpurgisnacht, 1995. Was it a special atmosphere to record the songs on such a day? Were you in a special mood? Terri: It was a coincidence, but I believe it had some effect on the outcome. The atmosphere was anything but serene on that day having to do most of the instrumental parts for 8 songs in 6 hours..the lament of the self-financed band! I prefer doing one song at a time. Dark Heart: If you are writing a new song - there is first a melody or words? Terri: We jam in a practice setting with mostly spontaneous, but sometimes writing around one person's pre-conceived part. Then, at home, I sculpt the melody lines and write the lyrics to fit the music, expounding on my initial ideas from the jam session. Sometimes I have an already written idea that meshes with someone else's music coincidentally. Writing at home sometimes I feel as if someone else is writing through me, when I seek assistance from an old rhyming dictionary of a long ago deceased grandfather. Both Dave and I have had phenomena experiences, and the band even recorded in a reputedly haunted studio, hence the frequent references to ghosts, vampires and other supernatural horror in my writing. One night after recording a practice, we listened back to the tape and a low demonic voice appeared on the tape saying "Yahweh is not the one you love." It may have been bleed through-from the opposite side of the cassette or garbled from age or was it? Dark Heart: Are you planning for the next time to go on tour through Europe or Germany? Terri: We have never toured at all, but only play locally. As a self-produced band without a label, we have never been able to afford to do so. Stone 588 would be very interested in touring Europe after our new release is complete. We have discussed the prospect with promoters in the U.K. but would need dates on the continent to make it feasible financially. I personally have enjoyed visiting many parts of Europe and there met my Belgian husband who eventually emigrated to the U.S. Eileen, my husband Johan, and a DJ friend of ours made a driving tour this summer of Germany, UK, Belgium, Czech Republic, Austria, France. Dark Heart: How are your concerts? Is a there a certain atmosphere you create when playing live? Terri: When I sing live I concentrate on the meaning of each song and convey that to the listener with expressions, body language and movement. Stone 588 isn't always physically active onstage, but more intense in personal and emotional communication with the audience in the live situation. Dark Heart: Do you believe that there is a devil? Terri: That would preclude a belief in the christian deity. I'm not a follower of any religion, and am unconvinced of any "one truth," but I realize I do not have the kind of knowledge to be certain about the intangible. I am more attracted to goddess belief systems that explore the self and nature and lean towards polytheism, but borrow segments of christianity that suit me. (Currently, I am studying the "green man," a pagan symbol that flourished in christian art.) When we have theological discussions at practice, Dave expounds on his idea that there is a higher design to nature and not just randomness. I don't think anyone can "know" for certain… only believe that they know. Dark Heart: What are your plans for the future? Are you planning to release a new CD? Terri: Yes we have been recording a new full length in a top-rate 24 track studio since October 1997. We have 8 songs nearly completed and have a lot of new ones we want to record. The problem is getting the funds to finish recording, mixing, mastering and complete actual production of the cd. Meanwhile in Eileen's digital home studio we have been very busy doing compilation tracks. Recently released are the PHD Darkend vol. 2 (UK), "Subnation vol. 2, (USA)" ReConstriction's (USA) "TV Terror" and "Songs from the Wasteland." We are currently completing a piece for a French atmospheric collection, a feline leukemia benefit Projekt Records (USA) compilation and did a cover of "Hanging Garden" for Gothic Grimoire' s Cure tribute (Germany). 12.Something to say at last? For anyone who is interested in purchasing our cd, Door in the Dragon's Throat, our early cassettes or t-shirts, my store has a mail order catalog with these and over 300 other items for $4 to Europe from Ipso Facto 517 N. Harbor Blvd, Fullerton, CA 92832 USA. Thank you for this opportunity to discuss Stone 588. Back to the homepage