For three decades now, no group has sprayed their fans with gallons of fake bodily fluids better than Gwar. The self-proclaimed “scumdogs of the universe” — a band of hideous, grotesque aliens hell-bent on wreaking terror upon Earth — have channeled their ire into riotous comedy-metal performances in which they “kill” celebrities and vomit any number of homemade expectorants (blood, urine, snot, cum) onto their audience. The ultimate Gwar experience, though, is their annual “Gwar B-Q.”
Rolling Stone traveled to Richmond, Virginia, this week for the group’s sixth annual Gwar B-Q, to find out what fans thought of the spectacle and to feel the splatter ourselves. Bob Gorman, who plays the group’s “Bonesnapper” and provides backing vocals, offered us a backstage tour of the event, where he showed off the band’s bloodthirsty giant monster and makeshift trolls that spew throughout a show on their various victims. We also met with fans, or “Bohabs,” who showed their love for late Gwar founder Dave Brockie (a.k.a. Oderus Urungus) by drinking “Oderus Ale” (“beer that Oderus has transferred his soul into”). And some of the other bands on the bill even got in on the action; Clutch frontman Neil Fallon gave us a particularly florid description of the event’s namesake food. “It’s like a tangy soylent green,” he said. “It’s a mixture of beer, pond scum, latex.”
The band members also gave Rolling Stone an inside look at the trials and tribulations of playing in the galaxy’s most terrifying band. “Gwar is hard,” singer-bassist Blothar said. “Most rock bands, they show up, they snort cocaine, they play their stupid music, then they get on their tour bus and drive to the next town. Gwar, you’ve got to come out, you’ve got to be attacked onstage by various enemies, you have to put on a bunch of stupid shit. It’s a nightmare.”
While at the event, Rolling Stone also checked out the Gwar B-Q’s “Spew Olympics.” Watch the video above to see hairy men in speedos compete in giant hamster balls floating in the water.
In other Gwar news, the group is readying a comprehensive coffee-table book, Let There Be Gwar, which will chronicle its entire disgusting history. It’s due out next month.
More imminently, the band will kick off a lengthy “30 Years of World Domination Tour” next week. Dates for the trek can be seen here. If the videos above are any indication, fans planning on attending should not wear their favorite shirts.
Videos by Nick Hughes.