The nicest man in metal faces The Monolith’s questions at Tech Fest 2014
Photo credit: Katie Croft, KTcroft Photography
Officially the nicest man in tech metal, Paul Ortiz – better known as Chimp Spanner – played his third UK Tech Fest this year, and is rightly considered a fixture of the event now. Not content with just playing his business and moving on, he always sticks around and gets fully involved in the festival spirit – one that sees the line between punter and performer blurred, and everyone mucking in together. It’s a truly beautiful thing.
Last year we chatted to Paul about some more serious things – writing for the music vs. writing for live shows, future works, and his work outside of Chimp Spanner – but as was our modus operandi this year, we took with us a list of forty or so questions, and asked our
victims interviewees to pick numbers, and we’d ask the corresponding question.
Q: Who the fuck are you, and why should we care?
P: I’m Paul from Chimp Spanner, you shouldn’t necessarily care, but it would be nice if you did.
Q: Who would win in a fight: Thor or Superman?
P: I’m gonna say Thor.
P: He’s just cooler. Superman is a bit arrogant, so Thor would have to outsmart him.
Q: Would you rather be trapped in a swimming pool with a great white shark, or a basement with a bear?
P: Oh man, I am going to say basement with a bear.
Q: Yeah? Chimps and bears, do they get along?
P: They might do, yeah.
Q: Would you rather, have a vagina on your forehead, or a row of penises down your back like a stegosaurus?
P: Oh man, vagina on my forehead man.
P: Yeah, having one dick is more than enough, and plus, having dicks on your back, it’s just not practical man, I’d have to buy new clothes, and, yeah man. It would suck.
Q: You’d get a horrible runny nose once a month though.
P: I’m absolutely fine with that, I’d just stuff a couple of…yeah, you know. (Laughs)
Q: Would you rather, not have sex with a goat, but everyone in the world THINKS you’ve had sex with a goat, or have sex with a goat, but no-one will ever know?
P: Oh, shit. No, you know what? The first one. Because I know I didn’t have sex with a goat, and that’s what matters.
Q: But everyone…
P: I don’t care. I know they’re wrong. (Laughs)
Q: What was the best cartoon when you were a kid?
P: Oh man, that was a long time ago. I used to love…man, I’m having to go back far… shit, what did I watch? Ren & Stimpy.
P: Yeah, Ren & Stimpy.
Q: Seems to be a favourite of a lot of people.
P: Yeah, it was suitably dark.
Q: It has a lot of jokes in it that you didn’t catch as a kid, that when you rewatch it, it’s like watching a completely different show.
P: Absolutely man. Excellent replay value.
Q: What’s your specialist subject on Mastermind?
P: Ohhhhhhhhh, my specialist subject on Mastermind! It could probably be Star Trek: Next Generation.
P: I do know waayy too much about that.
P: Don’t quiz me on it now though, because I’ll probably make an absolute fool of myself.
Q: Damn, I should have come prepared, so that I could just flick the paper over and say “Funny you should say that Paul.”
Q: You’re in charge of the country for an hour, you can make one thing legal, and one thing illegal, what do you do?
P: Can I make money illegal?
Q: You can try!
P: Yeah, I’d make money illegal.
Q: There’d be carnage.
P: Yeah, at first maybe, but then I think people will realise that they can do things for other people in exchange for the things that they want them to do, rather than being a slave to money.
Q: Yeah, makes sense.
P: As for making something legal? I don’t know man. I’m not going to say drugs, because I don’t do drugs, so I really don’t give a shit. But, then I’ll guess I’ll just say drugs because, you know, if it makes everyone else happy, then whatever.
Q: Yeah, everyone just says “weed!”
P: (Rolls eyes, puts on dumb voice) Yeah man, weed! 4/20 blaze it!
Q: Which band on the Tech Fest bill could you comfortably beat in a fight?
P: (Laughs) Which ones are the smallest?
Q: The Algorithm?
P: The Algorithm, yeah.
Q: Jon Gomm?
P: I’m just going to go with The Algorithm, sorry Remi! Everyone else is either too great in number, or too built.
Q: That question has gone down really well with everyone. I keep saying Simon should start a “Tech-en stage for next year, to let everyone fight.
P: Oh yeah, absolutely! Although, there may be a few regulations against that…
Q: Would you rather have legs as long as your fingers or fingers as long as your legs?
P: Oooo, legs as long as your fingers man. Having that many leg length things coming off your hands would just be…
P: Yeah, and I could never play guitar again. And picking things up to eat them would be a nightmare – you’d just be all legs.
Q: But, that means you’d be tiny, because you’d basically have stumps for legs.
P: Would I be the only person that this happened to?
P: Na, I’m still going with that. Just get me some wheels or something and I’ll roll around everywhere.
Q: If you could time travel to any gig in history, who would you see?
P: Oh man, that’s a strange one. Tell you what, I’d time travel back to one of my mum & dad’s gigs, and freak my dad out, because he’d think he was in the audience, because we look exactly the same.
Q: What incident from your childhood do your parents still talk about to this day?
P: There are a few. There was the time that I vomited on the kitchen floor, slipped on the vomit and put my foot through a kitchen cupboard door. That was cool.
Q: (Laughs) How old were you?
P: I was quite young man… like fifteen or sixteen…Na, haha. I was about six, maybe. It was quite embarrassing.
Q: Are you sure it wasn’t last week?
P: Yeah, you’ve caught me. (Laughs) I did also shit myself once, but I don’t think anyone else remembers that. But now obviously, everyone knows. Again, I was very young.
Q: Normally, we ask bands questions about having sex with their parents, but your parents are lovely and I don’t want to ask you those kind of questions.
P: Yeah, no, don’t put them through that.
Q: Yeah, no, I’d feel really bad. Your parents are lovely.
P: Yes, they are.
Q: Ok, moving on. It might be chocolate, it might be poo – how do you find out?
P: Give it to someone I don’t like to try first.
Q: What superpower would you most like to have?
P: Is the ability to manifest thoughts into reality a superpower? I mean, that’s kinda just being God isn’t it? Basically, I want to be God.
Q: Ok, that works. What’s your favourite videogame of all time?
P: Oh man, my favourite videogame of all time? It’s got to be Sonic. But not the first one, I quite like 3. Sonic 3 is cool.
Q: So, not the one on the Dreamcast?
P: I never had a Dreamcast, but then again, nobody had a Dreamcast.
Q: I had a Dreamcast.
P: No-one had a Dreamcast.
Q: It certainly didn’t last long!
We believe Paul is currently working on new Chimp Spanner material, but you’d have to ask him or Basick Records how far in he is. Otherwise, things are fairly quiet for him, but expect to see him at next year’s event in some capacity or other.
Tune in tomorrow for our chat with Meta-Stasis!
Previous Tech Fest interviews: