Any hard rock fan who remembers the 80s will know this heavyweight talent for his drumming days in the classic band, Heavy Pettin'. Now the front man of Mother's Ruin, Gary Moat is setting stages alight once again.
Best known for their classic NWOBHM LPs, 'Lettin' Loose' and 'Rock Ain't Dead', Heavy Pettin' were a phenomenally great live band, as those who were there will testify. They toured with the likes of Metal giants Ozzy Osbourne and Kiss no less and after narrowly escaping the opportunity of Eurovision glory, (yes really!) this fondly remembered group split up in 1988. So what happened?
Phoenix like, Mothers Ruin rose from the ashes of Heavy Pettin' and after a few years hiatus they are back, loud and proud, making new waves in the rock and Metal circuit around the UK. We caught up with Gary to get the lowdown on Mother's Ruin, talk over his illustrious rock career and find out why it's the old rockers who are the greatest. So with a tale or two from the old days, and some news on Mother's Ruin, it's over to Mr Moat.
Article continues below...
Hi Gary, thanks for taking the time out to chat. Back in Heavy Pettin' you toured with Kiss and Ozzy. That must have been an experience! Do you have a particular story you can tell our readers about working with them?
"To be honest most of that period is a blur, there was so much happening to HP at the time and we were drunk for most of it, but both Ozzy and Kiss were very kind to us and just talking to them was amazing, never mind opening the shows."
The music business has changed a lot since you first started out, with the rise of the internet and instant fame via the likes of the X-Factor. How do you these changes affecting the hard rock scene, and the future of music in general?
"Yes, buy a four pack from the supermarket, go home, sit on your computer, download all your favourite bands' songs then wonder why they don't play gigs anymore? There's always going to be music/bands but money, well I dont see it!"
Heavy Pettin' split up before the third album was released. Do you think we will will ever see a reunion gig?
In what ways is being an older rock front man different to the old days? Is it still partying 'til dawn, or a bit mellower now?
"I go on stage sober these days. Back in the 80s we were drunk all day, played the gig drunk then out all night. Now the drinking is after the gig. I'm not ready for mellow yet!"
For those younger readers, how did you get into music, and start with drumming?
"Well I started drumming at about nine-years-old, mostly on the back of the sofa/pot's and pan's. Then my parents made the big mistake and bought me a drum kit when I was 12. I went for one lesson and the guy said to my Dad 'Don't waste your money, he knows more than I do', lol. I started watching my friends playing guitar and picked that up and started writing my own tunes. I play rhythm guitar and scream/sing for Mother's Ruin."
It's great to have Mother's Ruin back again. There have been a few changes, and you are now up at the front singing. That's quite a change of role, from being a drummer, so how do they compare?
"I love drums - I have four kits at home, but I also love singing this type of rock; I'm cool with both."
You have a great hard rock voice. Are you influenced by any vocalists, or have you developed your style naturally?
"AC/DC's Bon Scott being my favourite singer of all time, there's too many to mention."
You've a few gigs lined up with WAS, and at The Bulldog Bash. How are the live shows going down, and what kind of a crowd are you getting?
"The shows so far have been very good; it's a new band and people don't know the tunes, but we play a party style of rock so we have made a lot of new friends both young and old."
I guess touring is a different experience to performing at a festival. What's the difference in atmosphere, and which do you prefer?
"I love it all! Festivals are great, but thumping this out in a good sized club, well that's what it's all about; up real close, everyone feels a part of it then."
The tracks on Mother's Ruin Reverbnation page sound great. Are there any plans for some more recordings, or an album? I for one would like to hear more.
"In negotiations now about recording the album. The two tracks out there are only demos so cant wait to record them on album."
The band has a very tight sound. What particular qualities to you think each member brings to make Mother's Ruin sound the way they do?
"I think we are all focused on the one sound, we are not all trying to pull it one way or the other, the tight sound you mention comes with age. LOL!"
What future plans are there for Mother's Ruin?
"Well we need to get recording the album, then get out and play. The world needs to Rock."
Do you have any message for your fans, and what advice would you give any aspiring musicians?
"Thanks to all who have been at the shows and listened on the internet, we can't play without you! To anyone thinking of starting to play, just do it, don't talk about it for the next 10 years, just get on with it, and good luck!"
And finally, what's your favourite joke?
"I could get myself into trouble with that question, so I shall decline!"
Thanks for taking the time out to chat, Gary. Here's to a great future for Mother's Ruin.
"Cheers Mike, I hope we can meet up soon."
Thanks to Gary for taking the time out to chat, what a gent! Thanks also to Claire Moat and Kate Thompson for organising the interview.
You can hear Mother's Ruin on Reverbnation, and do check them out on Facebook too.