[published]: 1984 November/December
[in]: Northern Metal, No. 8, p. 6-7
[article]: Interview with Kick Axe
[by]: Stace Stewart

This little band from Regina has come a long, long way in the world of Heavy Metal. It's hard to believe that the KICK AXE who opened up a tour for JUDAS PRIEST this last summer is the same KICK AXE I saw in a night club in Vernon, British Columbia in April 1982.The KICK AXE who played cover tunes of BILLY SQUIER and PINK FLOYD.

Formed in Regina in 1976, KICK AXE has risen from a top notch bar band to a top notch touring band. Since the release of their debut album "Vices" in May 1984, the band has seen nothing but success, and well earned success at that.

On October 31 KICK AXE blessed the city of Edmonton with their presence on their Western Canadian tour. After a great set, I had a chance to sit down with VIC LANGEN and talk about how the tour has gone, and who they have been able to tour with.

VIC: "We started with JUDAS PRIEST, and about the third week in June we started in North Carolina and went all through the South, we went all through Florida, the Carolinas, Georgia, we went through Tennessee, Kentucky, Ohio, Illinois, Indiana. We went everywhere except a few places. And then that one ended and then we did some clubs on our own through Ohio again. We went back through Ohio cause we like Ohio. Like Cincinnati, Columbus, Dayton, Cleveland, and then we went back to Canada with SCORPIONS through Toronto, Montreal, Quebec City...

CHMA: That was for the Festivals?

VIC: Well, the CNE actually was an outdoors one, 21,000 people there, then the Coliseum in Quebec and the Forum in Montreal. Then after that, where did we go?

CHMA: Well, you were just touring with...

VIC: QUIET RIOT and WHITESNAKE. Okay, we did QUIET RIOT date in Charlevois, Michigan, outdoors with QUIET RIOT, HELIX and KICK AXE, and then we went for a while with just QUIET RIOT and us through around the Mid-West and Great Lakes area, Michigan, Wisconsin, like Green Bay, Milwaukee and Pennsylvania, Chicago, I dunno. We played around the Great Lakes anyway.

CHMA: Have you been headlining any?

VIC: We've always been filling in empty dates on our own in clubs. Okay, and after that, right, we played another festival in Ohio, in Columbus Ohio, with SCORPIONS, QUIET RIOT, FASTWAY and KICK AXE, uh, then where'd we go? Right from there we drove straight to Texas, to Brownsville, right on the Mexico border, the Rio Grande and we played down there with KROKUS. And in clubs, so it was just bang, bang, bang. Then we went from Texas, whoa, it is hard to remember, from Texas, oh yeah, from Texas we went to do some shows of our own in Colorado, we did Colorado Springs and Casper, Wyoming, and then we went from there to joining up with QUIET RIOT and WHITESNAKE in Sacramento, California, and did all of California. Sacramento, Oakland, Fresno, San Bernardino, San Diego, Los Angeles, Vancouver and Victoria, we ended up, up there, and then we actually had six and a half days off where we did nothing. So I went and seen my apartment in Vancouver that I knew I had but didn't know where it was or anything. And then we went out here. Now here we are! After the HELIX tour we're back with QUIET RIOT and WHITESNAKE, a week from tonight, November 7 in the Winnipeg Arena and back with them we'll go to Winnipeg, Mineapolis, Chicago, Detroit, Cleveland, Columbus Ohio again. Ohio is really good for us actually, I'd like to say that. If anyone reads this in Ohio they will say "Yeah". Cause we're always there.

All those readers who get MuchMusic and MTV have had a chance to see KICK AXE's first video "On the Road to Rock". A comedic piece of work, "On the Road to Rock" has its share of violence and sex, but with some history in it as well through the characters of the four classical composers at the beginning of the video. "Vices" is sure to spawn some more singles, but what about more videos? Nowadays, it seems to be standard fare to make four or five videos per album, whether the video is based on a single or not.

VIC: "They're (the record company) putting out a new single so maybe they'll let us do a new video. If we do it, it'll be done in Canada I'm sure, because we're not going anywhere near Los Angeles so, until we go back to do the next album.

CHMA: Do you know what the next single is going to be?

VIC: "Dreaming About You". That's what they picked. I'd like to do a video for that, sure, they'd do a good story on that one.

But you can't have a video without an album. KICK AXE are hoping that their second album will be in the stores in April, but aren't too optimistic about promised release dates. This one will also be produced by Spencer Proffer and recorded in the city of Angels, Los Angeles, and until then, they are staying clear of that place.

Last year, KICK AXE had penned five songs for BLACK SABBATH, but since SABBATH is no longer in existence, what's going to happen to all the time and effort put into those songs?

VIC: That got blown out cause they're, uh, first, when we wrote them, IAN GILLAN was still with them and then he left to go to DEEP PURPLE and Spencer was going to produce their next record but that didn't happen right?! Okay, so those songs are still ours. Um, but CARMINE APPICE, he's got a new band together and they're recording in Pasha right now and they want to do some of the songs. And we haven't heard which ones yet, but they have been recording them, but we don't know which ones yet.

CHMA: Those are the only ones you've written for other performers?

VIC: Yeah, but if they don't get used, we'll definitely use them on the next album.

CHMA: Do you think you might want to write for some other bands?

VIC: Well, we write so many songs, it's just, if someone else can use them, it's just another step up the ladder. You know, you get someone else to cover your songs."

If these events are going to be any indication of what amount of success KICK AXE are going to receive, it's certain that they will be major league stars. Whether it be touring, recording, or through other bands as songwriters, KICK AXE has got ALL the right moves!!