Jed Simon (Guitarist of Strapping Young Lad/Zimmer’s Hole) Interview – 1999
This article was originally published by INK19 in June 1999.
by Ed Furniture
He’s a guitar player from Canada who loves KISS. I met him outside a Strapping Young Lad show, when they opened for Stuck Mojo and Testament. He was a nice guy. He’s got a band called Zimmer’s Hole, which is one of the most hilarious comic-voice metal bands you will ever hear. Loaded with toilet humor and general ridiculousness (and produced by Devin Towsend), they do a wonderful job of blurring the line between comedy and extremely serious metal (and yes, I do believe there IS a definite line). You’d expect a band that writes such stupid, adolescent songs as “Pork Rind Toes” and “Two-Headed Anal Baby” to suck, but the songwriting and overall technical abilities of this band are top notch, demanding hours of reverence from anyone who has a brain and uses it for having fun, or whatever.
Q: What the hell does Zimmer’s Hole mean?
A: The name Zimmer’s Hole actually refers to a friend’s asshole. He recently passed away, so we think it’s fitting that the name should live on in infamy — much like himself…
Q: Who’s toilet was that on the inside of the disc?
A: The toilet is from a studio in Spain that Devin was mixing at. No one was allowed to flush it, and the picture just belongs; don’t you think?
Q: Who did which voices? Who’s the main singer? What kind of vitamins do they take?
A: The guy with the bone in his mouth (Dr. Heathen Hooch) is the lead singer. We all provide back-ups and various other “voices,” and I do the lead vocal during the KISS part in “Bred.” The only vitamins we take are green…
Q: What’s with the three songs on the last track?
A: Everyone needs a bonus track, so we give ya three! You’ll also notice that the space between the last song and the first bonus song is 3:33… exactly halfway to hell. Are you scared yet?
Q: How did Zimmer’s Hole meet?
A: A local club needed a band, and we said sure… except we had no band! We all knew each other already, so we just got together and wrote a set’s worth of songs in five days. Those songs are long gone, but it began us on the trail that’s led us here.
Q: What does Zimmer’s Hole eat?
A: We eat meat — preferably Cajun blackened New York steak. No veggies here, my friend..
Q: When was the first time Jed met DT, and what was that like?
A: The first time I met Dev, he pulled my pants down and made me feel super un-cool in front of my friends. I especially like it when he humps peoples’ legs…guaranteed laughs!
Q: Who did those awesome vocals on the very last song? What is that person saying / screaming? That is the heaviest song I’ve heard in a long time!
A: Do you mean “Prick-Pipe?” That’s the Dr. singin’… he can do it all! That song didn’t come out the way we wanted, so we thought “bonus track” all the way…
Q: Where do you get your ideas to do these songs? How do you go about writing the songs?
A: We get ideas from everywhere, man. The simplest thing can turn into inspiration. We also rehearse a hell of a lot — good things come from jamming. Mostly the songs are about friends of ours who have bumbled or floundered in some way.
Q: How long did it take you to record that stuff?
A: It took about three days of recording, about a month of mixing and editing. That was a lot of work.
Q: What’s the funniest thing that happened during the recording?
A: The funniest thing was watching my wife do the “you know honey..” part. Pure hilarity!
Q: Aren’t you from Vancouver? What’s Vancouver like these days?
A: Yes. We are all from Vancouver and Vancouver is fine these days and thanks you for asking!
Q: Who is doing that barbarian belch on the third song on the last track? Hilarious!
A: Once again, Dr. Heathen Hooch on vocals. You can also hear his vocals on almost every Devin recording (backgrounds). He is an amazing singer for such a FREAK!!!
Q: What’s that like touring with SYL?
A: It is something you have to experience. It’s not too often you get chemistry between guys in a group. We have it in spades, and it is a genuine pleasure touring with these guys, who I consider my best friends.
Q: How many practice days do you usually put in before the SYL tours?
A: Usually we put in about a month of solid daily practice before any tour, big or small.
Q: Bullet Trains?
A: Hell yes! The only way to go in Japan. It’s like being in a plane that never takes off!
A: I hate the stuff but everyone else loves it. Fortunately for me, Japan also has the best steaks around; so I don’t mind watching them eat sushi!
Q: Ever gotten in a fight at a SYL show?
A: New Jersey, 1997. The Testament tour. Bad club, idiot promoter, we weren’t even two songs in when a bouncer tackled one of the Testament crew. We dropped our instruments and pretty soon there were punches being thrown all over the place. Nasty, nasty show.
Q: What do you think of the United States vs. Canada? Who’s gonna win?
A: Canada — because we have more room to hide!