Drugs, The Law, Dust Blaster

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Dust Blaster is the new group from Eris and Megan of Cloaca and includes members from Lié and Crumb on guitar and drums. They’ve been gigging around the city for a couple of months now and got down to recording recently for their demo entitled Free Drugs For All. Cloaca focused primarily on the personal horror of being gay and transgender whereas Dust Blaster takes aim at the war on drugs and prohibition in general. Accompanying the demo on bandcamp (physical release is not yet available) is a rant against the brutally archaic and failed war on drugs. Musically Eris still acts as the agitator. Sardonic lyrics woven around venomous accusations and raw life struggle. Musically it’s a tighter unit than Cloaca which is a welcome step forward. We reached out to chat with Eris about Dust Blaster, drugs and the law. Have a read and listen to the new demo here.

Cloaca managed to complete one Western North American tour and released a couple of cassettes. Why did Cloaca break up? Why Dust Blaster?

Eris: I mean, I’d say it was because James quit to go focus on other projects, but really Cloaca broke up because we’re all fucked and couldn’t handle each other, and I doubt people could handle me. Could you imagine having to tour with my dumb naked ass; I’m constantly having diarrhea, I’m annoying, I whine way too much. I think that if you’re around people for too long, the magic disappears, you know? I don’t know how Megan can put up with me... But like, Dust Blaster is just the next hip and cool thing. It’s new. 2000. Baddest MC. I think the themes are still the same… It’s the same shit, different pile. The war on drugs is fucked, being trans is fucked, the government is racist and fucked, everyone’s a self-righteous dickhead, including me… But I’m an opportunist… And I gotta’ play music. It’s like what G.G. said, “if I didn’t play music I’d be a serial killer”, only with me, I’d kill myself. And you know, I have like PTSD from all the stupid fucking death and overdoses and being a huge fag, and I am really fucking fed up with everyone dying and fucking overdosing all the time, so I guess that’s more of a focus now too. After working with a bunch of drug user groups province wide, it’s like more apparent how FUBAR’d the government’s response to the genocidal crisis caused by prohibition is… So yeah, I guess you could say that’s like a huge focus of this project right now.

You run The Fun Is Over Fest which brought La Misma, No Problem and Eteraz to Vancouver last year. Is there a plan to do a second edition?

Eris: Yeah, it’s gonna’ suck and there’s gonna’ be 50,000 bands and 20,000 annoying men. We got new Black Flag, and new Dead Kennedys, Oi Polloi, the Drop Kick Murphees, all those fuckers… Jeff Traders coming out to do an art show, so look out for that… If you like getting harassed by drunk men, make sure you come out….…I guess Morgan is going to kill me if I don’t plug the actual fest. So check it – Sept 5-8, we got the Ire, Bellicose Minds, Flower, Armamento Fatal, Rhythm of Cruelty, Janitor Scum, you know – some other hyphy shit. A bunch of locals, and tickets go on sale soon. Check it out.

Is there a short term goal for Dust Blaster? Touring? More recording?

Eris: Dust Blaster is a cult and we’re going to commit group suicide on January 1 2020, but before that I’d like to tour and release some crappy fagrock for nobody to listen to, obviously… but that’s some like gay shit and who cares. We’re playing a fundraiser for the Black Lab on April 27, and another fundraiser for the Tennant Overdose Response Organizers and the Coalition of Peers Dismantling the Drug War on June 14.

In the first statement from Dust Blaster, you write about the overdose/drug crisis in Vancouver with serious condemnation. You claim that $322 million was spent on the crisis. Not much has abated. In your opinion, what is the solution to this?

I mean, the government is fucking away money into stupid shit like policing and treatment and recovery, when the obvious solution to the current crisis caused by prohibition is an end to the war on drugs and a fucking safe supply of clean drugs for anyone that uses them. This means that absolutely anyone would be allowed to acquire what are currently licit and illicit narcotics in a regulated way from a dependable legalized source. Ideally, instead of criminalizing drug use, drugs would be fully legalized and available in much the same way as alcohol, and obviously, the immediate benefit of such a project would be an end to overdose death from toxic drugs, lower crime rate, increased rates of recovery from problematic use, and a lower overall rate of drug use. It’s like, you don’t need an alcohol use disorder to buy alcohol, which is potentially the most dangerous drug of all, so why should you need an opiate use disorder to buy opiates, or a stimulant use disorder to buy stimulants. Look at someone like Paul Erdős – he did tons of amphetamines and was one of the most prolific publishers of papers in mathematical history. There’s this anecdote from 1971 when one of his friends (Ron Graham) bet him $500 that he could not stop taking the amphetamines for a month. Erdős won the bet, but complained that during his abstinence, mathematics had been set back by a month; he said “before, when I looked at a piece of blank paper my mind was filled with ideas. Now all I see is a blank piece of paper”. And after he won the bet, he promptly resumed his amphetamine use. You know, it’s not the drugs that are bad, it’s our fucking systems of criminalization of the poor that fuck up people’s heads and cause all kinds of problems… We gotta’ fight for this future, and we gotta’ win it, or we can kiss our asses’ goodbye.

See Dust Blaster live on April 27th at Black Lab with Juice, Woolworm and Munifex.
All live photo by Morgan.
Interview by Josh - Please, don’t use drugs alone.