Reckless Abandon

11 July 2012 | 7:45 am | Benny Doyle

Rising from the ashes of Zombie Ghost Train, Captain Reckless & The Lost Souls are continuing to blaze down the psychobilly highway at full steam. Benny Doyle gets Captain Reckless on the line to discuss the rebirth.

"Basically, it was just a combination of the stress of being on tour and a few internal problems within the band that needed to be addressed,” Reckless tells, regarding the demise of his former horror-toned vehicle, “and that wasn't going to happen while the band was still touring. A big problem was that you go on tour all the time, and you either break even or come home with a little bit of money, but you never cover all those costs of being away. That has a massive effect on you after a while. And the longer those things go along the worse they get.”

Looking more like part of a Día de los Muertos parade than a rock'n'roll band, Captain Reckless & The Lost Souls are blurring the lines between stage and sound, their performance mixing spooky primal elements with traditional punk, blues and big band finesse thanks to a bottom heavy brass section made up entirely of trombones. But why did Captain Reckless, the 29-year-old frontman and his former drummer Mr (Azzy) T come back to life?

“I just didn't feel like we'd quite finished with Zombie Ghost Train and we just owed it to our fans to do more shows and give better performances,” he answers. “So having The Lost Souls, it's still the Zombie Ghost Train vibe but in a lot bigger context. And the idea for the future is to take it even bigger again and have a sort of marching band thing with a really big brass section.”

Three years in the making, the collective are planning to unleash their debut album towards the tail end of 2012. But how the album comes to life on stage is subjective to how far Reckless and his cohorts can take their visual elements.

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“I've shot some live action short movies to accompany the band; it's a creation story about how this band came about and why we're doing it. It's just dependent because doing smaller venues and pubs, you don't have a big screen that you can really show it on, so at the moment we're just running as a band because all the songs still stand up on their own – it's not like a musical or anything where the songs tell a story. Essentially, these songs can relate to anything, but I've also shot these short live action back story-type things that can just go along with the set.”

When questioned about what storylines are found within the movies, Captain Reckless paints a strange, lucid picture. It's a vision that sees himself and Mr T stuck in limbo with the Grim Reaper. It forces them to deal with the darkness to get a band, trading people they love, things they treasure, all for the greater good of rock.

Previously, Zombie Ghost Train was taking on America and Europe and the Captain is eager to get back to those foreign lands. Currently, though, the focus is simply on distilling these grand ideas into a ground level movement, and doing so without losing any intensity, intent or focus along the way.

“I've always wanted to do big shows,” he admits, “and having all those elements with the costumes and makeup, it's a way to give a big show vibe to a little pub-type venue. That's how we ran it with Ghost Train, giving those theatre elements but doing it in a flexible pub setting. Now I've got the bigger band I really wanted to explore more of the story, just to give people more grounding in the characters – something extra than just the music.”