Who choose the name Stone 588 and why? What´s the significance of the band name?
Terri: Dave and I took the name Stone 588 for the band after we played one show under another name and weren't happy with it. Stone 588 has many origins, one is of the legend of a druid's altar in County Cork, Southern Ireland where under a stone circle, the cremated body of an infant human sacrifice was found in a large urn, whose burial dates back to c588 B.C. This is of particular interest to me as I am of Irish descent.
What´s your current line-up?
Terri: Dave Rhine (guitar) and myself, Terri Kennedy (vocals/keyboards) are co-founders of the band, and Eileen Bowe (also of Dichroic Mirror) plays bass and engineers our recordings and now we have drummer Phil Hanson, a former member of Dave's old band, Guts on the Floor, and the punk band Gameface.
What has been the band´s output up to now?
Terri: We have our full length 1995 cd, Door in the Dragon's Throat, several cassette releases before that (Eyes of a Statue-1993; Eden Lost-1994; Catharsis -1995). We have appeared on numerous compilations: Disease of Lady Madeline (Anubis); What Sweet Music they Make 2 (Vampire Guild); TV Terror (ReConstriction); Children of the Damned (Apollyon); Dracula King of Vampires (Cleopatra); Reflections in the Looking Glass, A Tribute to Siouxsie (Cleopatra); Songs from the Vault; Songs from the Wasteland (ReConstriction); Subnation 2; Storm the Palace (Medeival comp on Palace of Worms); Instants Sacres/Damnes (Les Variations Ludiqes); A Cat Shaped Hole in My Heart (Projekt); Forevermore (Mission tribute on Equinox); The Unquiet Grave (Cleopatra); Witchcraft (Cleopatra) , 15 Imaginary Songs (Cure tribute on Equinoxe); The Challenge From Beyond (just-released HP Lovecraft Tribute on Dion Fortune).
When can we expect another release? (In your mail dated 7th November 99 you mentioned that your second CD will be out soon).
Terri:Yes, I hope so. I still have a couple of vocal tracks to finish on our second full length cd, but I've had a breathing condition for a year that affected my voice and I am still recovering. Meanwhile we lost our drummer (but only just found our new drummer!) and Dave was busy working for awhile, so we played with Romeo Pestanas, but when he went back to his former band, Dave returned. We recorded it the disc almost 2 years ago, but being a self released band, we still have to dredge up the money to press.
What sort of feedback have you had so far?
Terri: In retrospect, the first cd was probably too long (with 21 tracks) for most listeners, but we wanted everything from our cassette releases to be on that first disc. (Well not everything, but nearly!) It sold pretty well (we're almost sold out of the first pressing)while we were distributed through Tess/Etherhaus because they specialized in our genre of music, but they went out of business. Unfortunately, we're not well distributed now, and we were ripped off by now-defunct distributors like Mere Mortal. We have had a great response from the compilations we have appeared on, though we have yet to be paid for most of them (PHD are you listening?) The Unquiet Grave and all of the Cleopatra comps have been very good for us. I hope the new comps on Dion Fortune and Equinoxe open some doors for us in Europe as we had a great initial response to the Door in the Dragon's Throat cd in the U.K. and Germany when we had distribution there. When we finish the second disc we'll arrange distribution for both in Europe.
What are your songs about? Can you tell me your lyrical subjects? Do dreams play any part in your songwriting process?
Terri: No, but I have a great passion for earthbound spiritual systems, history, and supernatural topics, all of which find their way into my lyrics, which also are inspired by memories and personal experiences, with a distinctly feminine perspective.
Some songs on the new disc and their subject matter: "Red Earth" is about the magickal properties of menstrual blood, "Leaf and Head" is about old growth trees, "L'Envoi Morts" delves into voodoo.
History inspired the songs "Decay of Tempest" (about the wife of a sailor lost at sea..endlessly waiting for his return..news traveling slowly), and "Night Behind the Mind" (about the persecution of women under the guise of exterminating witches.) There are a number of literature-influenced pieces such as "For Madmen Only, " inspired by Hesse's "Steppenwolf. "
Other lyrics rise from painful personal relationships ("Panacea", "Westering Moon").
As for supernatural topics, Edgar Allen Poe has intruigued me since I began writing at age five, when I inherited my grandfather's rhyming dictionary, noticeable in songs such as the vampiric "Tumulus". I am heavily influenced by my experiences with phenomena, including a nocturnal visit from a deceased coworker and other unexplainable visions and sensations.
Do you believe in reincarnation / an afterlife?
Terri: No. I generally don't believe in things unless I have direct experience. But it could be, if there is merit to the concept of reincarnation, that I am a new soul and therefore don't have that experience. I relate more to the concrete present than an abstract future, though there are many things yet to be explained in the physical universe. The string theory has opened much possibility about the redefinition of time and space, which may unravel some previously unexplainable phenomena.
Apart from your musical talents, do you have any other artistic talent such as writing or design? Terri: I design apparel (mostly costumes for myself ) and own a fashion/ music shop dedicated to the gothic and industrial scene here in California. I do visual art such as drawing and occasionally write erotica and short stories. Most of the writing I do on a day to day basis is for example, copy for radio commercials, so it is hard to get into the right brain mode to write creatively.
Do your surroundings affect your music?
Terri:Yes, having just been divorced recently, I can say I hope to re-enter a more creative phase of my life. I have a large amount of books which I use to research topics I choose to write about and my space has to have a positive vibe to write in.
What are you aiming at with the band?
Terri: When we began, we just played for fun, but when we received such a positive response from the first cd, it gave us the impetus to be more serious. We've already gotten more press and airplay worldwide than we ever would have imagined, but would really like to tour and have the support of a label at some point in the future.
What do you want to derive the audience from your music?
Terri:I don't use the sledgehammer approach in my lyrics, so it isn't about the listeners really understanding my vision, but more of an abstract appreciation of our creativity as a band. If the music speaks to them personally or helps them get through a difiicult phase of their life, all the better.
What bands would you like to support?
Terri: If we get over to Europe, I would love to play a festival with a variety of bands. I think playing with This Burning Effigy, Die Laughing, Blooding Mask, and The Creatures, would be fun.
What bands did you already play together with?
Terri: The Last Dance, The Prophetess, Shadow Project, Eva O, Premature Ejaculation, Dave Vanian, The Deep Eynde, Human Drama, and others.
Did you already have any gigs abroad?
Terri: No, I have personally traveled a great deal in Europe, and in the U.S. and have made a few contacts who would like us to play in support of the new disc when it is released.
When can we expect to see your band in Germany?
Terri: I hope in 2000 after we release the new cd.
What´s the 'Goth Scene' like where you live?
Terri: We are close to Los Angeles so there are a fair amount of places to play, though our experience is that most people would rather dance to records than hear new live music. On a grand scale, ebm and metal influences are shaping change in new goth-industrial music. And, thanks to the influence of new people in the scene, more new music is being played in clubs. We just have to get them to play Stone 588!
Have you ever been hassled because of your appearance?
Terri: Back in the early 80's when I was a punk it was fun scaring people with giant pentagrams and hairstyles, but now, sadly, it is pretty difficult.
How important is the 'Goth Image' to you?
Terri: I make my living marketing gothic apparel and I use fashion as a way to express my creativity, but I don't judge others on their ability or inability to dress a certain way. Not everyone can afford fancy dress and I notice a fair amount of well-dressed goths in the scene who have closed minds and conceited attitudes. I think people tend to forget that the scene is about the music and conceptual and literary creativity and not just velvet and pvc!
What´s next on the band´s agenda?
Terri: Finishing the bloody album.
What´s the biggest problem you face as a band?
Terri: Unjust and unprofessional treatment from club owners/staff and not getting paid by distributors are major problems. It is difficult to be creative and business oriented at the same time.
Do you prefer to play live or work in the studio?
Terri: There was a time long ago that playing live was fun, but now there are a lot of people promoting just for the money who are not passionate about music. So the studio is the one place we can control what happens. But the most fun is in creating the music.
What´s the strangest place you´ve been to?
Terri: You know, we have a section our our website where people can answer questions and two of them are "what is the strangest thing you've ever had in your bed? " and "detail any supernatural experiences you may have had". People write about seeing spirits and finding cereal bits in their beds. But as far as strange places, I would have to say the strangest is in my imagination, especially right before I drop off to sleep. I suppose if I were to tell the average person I meet that Stone 588 has played places where the entertainment is people being tied up and whipped, or that my friends and I like to socialize nocturnally in cemeteries and tell ghost tales, they would think that strange, but your readers, I'm sure, have better stories than that.
Are there any bands that influenced you?
Terri: I have been influenced a lot by early jazz, big band, liturgical music and show tunes. Judy Garland, Yma Sumac and Billie Holiday come to mind. Also early 80's Birthday Party,Lene Lovich, Ultravox and Siouxsie, and later Cocteau Twins and Dead Can Dance.
What bands do you recommend?
Terri: Of California bands, I'd say the Shroud, Last Dance and Dichroic Mirror (with whom I perform as a backing vocalist)..other bands I have been listening a lot lately are Blooding Mask, Hocico, XVII Vie, The Changlings, Whispers in the Shadow, Mors Syphilitica.
What´s in your CD player at the moment?
Terri: Die Form's Ad Infinitum , Cocteau Twins and Best Loved Music of the Catholic Church on the lp player (my boyfriend, a harpist, was learning the Ave Maria!)
What´s the last gig you went to as an audience member?
Terri: VNV Nation with Pulse Legion, though we had to leave before VNV went on as the show ran extremely late!
Any final comments?
Terri: Thanks for this opportunity to promote Stone 588. Interested parties can contact us at
or write us c/o Ipso Facto at 517 N. Harbor Blvd Fullerton CA 92832.
The Door in the Dragon's Throat is available for $14.99 plus $3 frt from the address above as well as t-shirts, cassettes and most of the compilations mentioned in this interview. Thanks again and I wish everyone a very productive and illuminating year 2000!
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