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20 Questions with Nina C. Alice, 10/21/03



Nina C. Alice

Recently we got an email fron Skew Siskin singer Nina C. Alice that said,

hi metal sludge,

your site is cool.

i read a "retro" review about skew siskin

i am the singer of the band, thought you like to know we never "went away" because of Nirvana or any other "trend", we simply lost our world wide deal back then and started to sign a smaller deal for europe and always played tours and own club shows ect, not only "biker shows".
Check out our link "Live" from the page http://www.skewsiskin.net. Also, check our discography, we recordet more than one album.

oh and, the reason for the album cover of the first cd (this is long time ago, i barely can remember..lol) was our managment then offered us a collection of art from Marshall, which we thought was cool, and the guy on the cover has a metal bird mask on his face, and because
‘skew siskin’ means crazy bird, we choosed it. we also got the rights to print it without spending a
fortune, if you know what i mean. i was always a fan of art too.. whatever, mabye that explained it.

Anyway, i am not here to complain as I am a fan of your site, just thought I drop a note to you and tell you we always rocked wherever we can, wherever they let us, ignored trends and other things, just always been ourselves….

’til then


So since she’s a fan, we decided to hit her up for 20 Questions. If you’re not familiar with Skew Siskin, then pay attention because you might learn something. Enjoy!

1. What are you currently up to? This is your one and only chance to plug whatever it is you have to plug.
We have just started to promote our new album titled: "Album Of The Year". Release date: November 17th. Recorded in Monongo Studio http://www.monongo.de Berlin / Germany.

Track listing for "Album Of The Year":

1. We Hate
2. Girl On A Mission
3. Shake Me
4. All Fired Up
5. Hate Lies
6. Lips
7. White Trash
8. Jesus Of Cool
9. 2 Much 4 U
10. The Goddess
11. Strike Me Blind
12. War & Peace Song
13. Another Good Man
14. Torn Apart

Skew Siskin is currently rehearsing with the new line-up.
We are getting prepared for the tour in Germany/Switzerland (as special guest from Motorhead) in November / December 2003. For latest news you can always visit our official web page: http://www.skewsiskin.net

2. What on Earth does "Skew Siskin" mean and how did you come up with a band name like that?
It means ‘crazy’ or ‘weird bird’. Siskin is the type of a bird which preferably breeds in Great Britain. I lived in London for a long time and in the UK the female lovers are called "birds",
and because I am strange, the name fit very well. When you pronounce the name you should try not to lisp…

3. How did Skew Siskin end up using a painting by acclaimed artist Marshall Arisman for your debut album cover?
His work is usually relegated to use in Time Magazine, The New York Times, etc. It was offered by our manager and we liked it.

4. What hard rock/heavy metal band should give it up and call it a day?
Any band who treats other bands (supportbands) like shit.

5. Rank the following German singers on a scale of 1 to 10. 1 being a 1 being a troll who can’t sing a note, and 10 being the crem?-de-la-crem? of rock vocalists.
Klaus Meine = 10
Udo Dirkschneider = 10
Claus Lessmann = 10
Doro Pesch = 10
Rock ‘n Rolf Krisparek = 10
Andi Deris = 10
Roko Kohlmeyer = 10
Nina Hagen = 10
Nina that 99 Luftballoons chick = 10
David Hasselhoff = he’s not a german citizen anymore and therefore not qualified for the best of the best-vocalist.

Everyone of them is able to touch the feelings of a lot of people. You can’t do that if you’re not talented.

Skew Siskin – 1992

6. If you could go back in time and re-live any one year of your life, which year would it be and why?
I don’t live in the past.

7. It’s been a decade since Skew Siskin last toured in the United States. Any plans to come back over here and do a club tour or open for Pretty Boy Floyd or anything?
Yes, lots of plans. We will tour with anyone who is willing to put us on the same bill. But I don’t think Pretty Boy Floyd would survive one show with us. (Sorry guys, nice lipstick..lol). Are they in a Rock’n’ Roll band?

8. Yes or no, has Nina C. Alice ever done the following:
Chipped off a piece of the Berlin Wall = Yes
Fired a machine gun = Yes
Given change to a homeless person = Yes
Sang along with a Britney Spears song = No, but I heard she sings along all my songs and tries to become a rock singer.
Vomited in a train = No
Milked a cow = Yes, when I was seven and on vacation on a farm, now I usually buy my milk in paper boxes.
Eaten at McDonald’s and Burger King in the same day = I know better ways to make me feel sick. No.
Been photographed nude = Yes
Drove a Trabi = No, do I have to?
Touched another woman’s vagina = Ha! I knew you would ask this. Yes, I am Bi or something..

9. Of all the bands Skew Siskin has toured with, which ones were the biggest pain in the ass to work with?
The ones who felt threatened by us. Bon Jovi once ordered his soundman to turn down all treble and presence in the masterchannels of the PA for us completeley!!! That’s beyond me. He MUST have been scared. Savatage: 5 minutes before the show they shortened our set again. They heard our soundcheck and got scared. Haha…lame!

10. Among the following, which do you prefer and why?

Vienna or Zürich = Both are great! Don’t know why!
Helloween or Krokus = None of them, not my cup of tea..don’t know why..
Berliner Weissbier or Kirschwasser = Both taste terrible.
Teddy Bears or Gummy Bears = Teddy bears of course. They last longer.
Tampons or Maxi Pads = I need more time to think..
Aldi or Pennymarkt = Pennymarkt because it’s round my corner.
Janis Joplin or Grace Slick = Janis Joplin. She was raw and edgy though Grace was prettier.
Milka Bars or Rittersport = Milka Bars. Milka chocolate is the best chocolate beside Lindt.
Die Krupps or Rammstein = Rammstein. Great and mean show.
Baywatch or Knight Rider = Can’t decide, need a lot more time to think about it..

11. What’s the most damage that Skew Siskin has ever done to a hotel room, dressing room, tour bus, or other piece of property?
In LA.. The bill was no fun. Everything needed to be fixed, renewed and re-installed. Shortly after we’ve left L.A. an earthquake gave that appartment house the rest. It was gone last time we drove by… I am innocent..I swear..!

12. Skew Siskin’s home city of Berlin has long been known as a more liberal and "party" type city than most others in the former West Germany. After the reunification of West Germany with the East, do you feel that Berlin is the same all these years later? If not, how is it different?
They will always party ’til they drop. The worse the momentum, the more they go ape. But yes, it changed a lot. Many people became poor. A few people more rich. Remember, West-Berlin was an isle surrounded by a communist country and when the wall came down the people of these countries flooded into the town. It will take at least another 10 years until things "normalise".

13. What do you remember about writing or recording the following songs:
All Day And All Of The Night = It was Jim’s idea to cover this Kinks song. I remember I was unsure about my vocals..but when everyone said
it was a good cover I got convinced. The rec. comp. put it out as a single.
If The Walls Could Talk = Composed in 10 minutes, recorded in 1 day. When my co/writwer for lyrics heard this song, he said: "I guarantee you an american deal with it!" We all went: "yeah, right..! And my uncle is the King of England." But, he was right and we became the first German band signed direct to an american label with a debut. This song opened up all doors.
In Another World = We just had to write a 12 minute song because that’s where we come from.
Rock mixed with Metal mixed with 70’s ‘Hendrix’, ‘Doors’ and ‘Led Zep’. The long jam sessions
from the 70’s bands was a challenge. It’s the opposite from what a company tells you: the chorus must hit off after 40 sec. and to be a single it needs to be less than 3 mins. We did everything the other way with that tune and still play this song live.
Liquid Brain = We love dark guitar riffs. I love early Black Sabbath with Ozzy. After we had composed the riffs and breaks I sat down and wrote a very different vocal concept for this one. It was picked for single from the German label. I love the video, it is very much ‘Liquid Brain’-absolutely psychedelic- and outta space, with eyes flying around the universum…a bit sick and very Skew Siskin.
My Worst Enemy = Really agressive song. Lyrically I collected impressions from LA, mixed them up with what I been through before the band. It has something from a heavy road movie, raw reality with somewhat a "surviver" energy.
Boogey Man = We were asked to record a Motörhead song for a tribute CD. We’ve chosen ‘Boogey Man’ because we KNEW that Lemmy would love that and nobody else would record that. When Lemmy visited us in the studio, he really enjoyed it and joked around "uh uh, Motörhead is real talented writing songs and they maybe should re-record this one" That was fun. He loved the fast high pitched piano in it, it’s what we both have in common: the love for Little Richard and Jerry Lee Lewis rock’n’roll.
Spend The Night With Me = It’s a typical song for my band. 4/4 rythm and straight edgy vocals. It’s what the audience love to hear from us. Especially the headbangers. I laughed a lot about the lyrics, they are hillarious. Whenever we play this one live, ppl start to sweat.
Bend Over = inspired from Jimi Hendrix music. Although the lyrics are not exactly Hendrix-like.
I thought about Steve Marriot and asked myself if he had blackouts too when singing so high.
Girl On A Mission= Finally the song is on our new CD (coming out Nov.17.).Originally made for the "What The Hell" -CD. The arrangement went through many changes (and 4 drummers)
until I finally played the drums myself on that version.
Fuck Too Much = Marilyn Manson heard the demo, so he called us one day to say that he liked the idea of the song a lot. The song is not on the new CD but will be ready for the next one.

14. What rock star deserves a smack in the mouth and why?
Anybody who thinks that a girl like me can’t sing Rock ‘n Roll. What an unpleasant surprise
for them if their band is on the same bill with us.

15. Give us a touring memory of the following cities:
Munich = We had a doctor coming to us in winter to have a shot against colds. He looked at us as if we were aliens from another planet. Think he got lost a bit telling us whiskey mixed with aspirin plus his pennicillin ect.. will do good too. He either halluzinated on his own drugs or he might thought it’s very cool to say this to rock musicians…ever since I have my own nurse dress, because I can give that prescription as well. How to get a doctor’s diploma…lol. Not. Munich audience: maniacs! We played in some complex park full with disco’s left and right, thousands of people walk around, the police had a "check-in" searching for drugs. The security guys told them that the musicians have left the building an hour ago… we were sitting in the backstage, acting like fans.
San Diego = We played there. It’s hot there and I wanna come back.
Phoenix = We played Phoenix during the Black Sabbath tour and everybody kept saying "It never rains in Phoenix". When we got there it WAS raining and it was of course the only outdoor show. THEN everybody said it was our fault that it rains because we europeans brought the "rain-vibes" with us. Someone threw a dime onstage which hit me on the head. I was not happy about the pain, but when I looked at it I figured it was money…I told the audience to do exactly what the person just did, and they did! Weird..
London = In 2000 we played the Kerrang X-mas show in the Astoria in London. It was our first show ever in London. Big audience a.s.o. everything was great, but . . . have you ever tried to get a taxi on a saturday night in London to get back to the hotel?? That’s impossible. We tried to get one for 1 1/2 hours until we gave up and took the last subway (with all of our bags and guitars!). With us in the train were a lot of people from the audience of the show. Everybody thought that this was a clever publicity-idea from the record-company to have us with them taking the subway instead of a limo. People followed us to the hotel and we kept signing autographs.
Milwaukee = I went to a second hand shop and bought a pullover. We have been invited to some after show bar. I had a hard time pronouncing "Milwaukee".
Hamburg = We played there often! We will play there even more. Crazy town that is.
Detroit = Rock City. Very cool, almost like Hamburg.
Glasgow = We played a real theatre with red velvet seats ect.. felt strange, but the audience was really good. We never been there before and the audience never heard of us, but, they wanted an enchore, so, I guess we supplied them with a good dosage of rock!
New York = I had my most extreme case of stagefright in NY(of course NY). I had a cold, my voice was gone, I was exhausted, I smashed the toilet . . . and then I was okay and we had a great show. You see, the solution can be so simple.
Stuttgart = The place was packed right from the beginning. We went on first. Then the official supportband started their set… and was boohd off stage after 10 minutes. I really felt sorry for them, because they were nice guys . . . but they didn’t please the audience because we created such a great Rock ‘n Roll feeling for the fans that they expected this to continue. A guy from the recordcompany saw this and signed us rightaway. >From the next day on we played as the second band on the bill.

16. Which would you rather have happen to you (and you have to pick one):
a) You suddenly develop an extreme case of stagefright and are unable to peform in front of audiences anymore. Any time you try, you get close to having a heart attack and pass out. You can still record in the studio, but you will never be able to play live again.
b) At a busy playground in Düsseldorf, a giant crack opens up in the earth and a big dinosaur climbs out and starts eating children. It swallows at least a dozen kids before it jumps back into the hole and disappears. None of the children are related to you or anyone you know.
Which do you choose?
None of them cause I think both questions suck, lol.

17. The Last of Nina C. Alice:
Last book you read = Ayn Rand "Fountainhead"
Last museum you visited = Andy Warhole’s exhibition
Last concert you watched from the audience = Marilyn Manson
Last song you wrote = It has no title so far and will land on the next album maybe
Last game show you watched = Can’t remember, think I fell asleep
Last time you threw up from drinking = I never drink that much to throw up.
Last time you played at a biker festival = 1996 Berlin Jamboree. Big festival. 20.000 people.
Last time you got in a fight = I studied some Kung Fu and Karate to keep myself in control. I have got a punching ball too.
Last time you visited the USA = 2000 visiting Lemmy, Corey from ex Nashville Pussy & other friends
Last time you hitchhiked = I know better ways to die and I am not a hippie.

18. After all this time, Skew Siskin is still together. Why?
Well, we are almost famous and still crazy, we are comitted to our music and feel that tap on our spine. Everytime we wanted to quit, some record company came and offered a lot of money..
No, really …it’s the music, the touring. We can’t live without it and without each other.

19. Before we end, we must know: What does the "C" in "Nina C. Alice" stand for?
Caroline. It’s all my real name. And while we’re at the name topic: My mother gave me the name Alice because of Lewis Carroll’s book Alice in Wonderland.

20. Time for Metal Sludge’s Word Association. We mention a name, and you give us your thoughts.
Paul Stanley = Kiss, star on the eye, black curly hair, plateou boots
Arnold Schwarzenegger = Governeour for California, Muscels, Austria
Ronnie James Dio = Elf, Black Sabbath, sings in tune more than anybody else
Jogy Rautenberg = Beer, beer, beer
Alice Cooper = Lovely, Snakes, Crazy, Guy with my third name
Michael Schenker = Plays guitar
Udo Lindenberg = Wears a hat
Nikki Sixx = Four strings, Tattoos, Baywatch, Lyrics
Lemmy = Motorhead, great person with a big heart and good taste in whiskey
Jim Voxx = Loud guitar, song writing, producing, his black Chevy Malibu from 1979

Any 20 Questions with half naked photos of a chick is always cool to us! For more info on Skew Siskin, you can visit http://www.skewsiskin.net

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