Interviews motormouthmabel1(jucifer)

Published on December 19th, 2012 | by Ballard Lesemann


The Punch List with Tobias Denney of Motormouth Mabel

Metronome Charleston‘s weekly Punch List puts local musicians on the spot with a questionnaire that touches on music, venues, gear, records, vices, and more. This week, guitarist Tobias Denney (a.k.a Motormouth Tobias) of the veteran punk rock band Motormouth Mabel responds point by point.

Motormouth Mabel (provided)

Motormouth Mabel (provided)

1. What is your favorite local hang and why?

Tobias Denney: “Our favorite hangout was the Prok Haus because of the influx of creativity. It’s now whatever spot that all members of the Motormouth Mabel Street Gang haven’t been banned from. Our favorite bar is the Recovery Room because of the pinball machines. Thanks, Boston [the bar owner]! Our favorite venue is the Tin Roof because the place sounds great.”

2. You know you’ve played an excellent show when…

Tobias Denney: “The blood on your guitar isn’t yours, your bassist is attacked by lesbians, the bar has run out of whiskey and cheap beer, your clothes are still on, the bouncer is kicking out a member of your band, your singer and drummer end the show by getting in a fist fight, and even though you sat in back of a police car for 30 minutes the bar doesn’t press charges. And there’s a two-inch puddle of Pabst on the stage.”

3. What was the last show you attended that really got you fired up in a good or bad way?

Tobias Denney: “Good and bad … the Dexter Romweber Duo on Halloween weekend in 2012 in Wilmington, N.C. It was in a giant warehouse, and everyone was dressed up. Dex and Sara [the drummer] tore through their set until the party was shut down by the cops.”

4. Define your musical style in exactly 10 words.

Tobias Denney: “Catch the fury live the chaos fuzz-soaked freedom theory.”

5. What’s your theme song?

Tobias Denney: “Boom Boom” by John Lee Hooker.

6. Gear-wise, what’s is your irreplaceable baby?

Tobias Denney: “Fuzz 2 and Fuzz 3 — my guitars. Fuzz 1 was destroyed in a bar fight that broke out at one of our shows.”

Motormouth Tobias (provided)

Motormouth Tobias (provided)

7. What’s the most overplayed album in your collection?

Tobias Denney: “Currently, it’s Slug Guts’ Playin’ in Time with the Deadbeat. Plus all my Lee ‘Scratch’ Perry LP’s — need I say more? And Japanther’s Rock ‘n’ Roll Ice Cream. Both me and my two-and-a-half year-old son are addicted to this record.”

8. When was the last time you were genuinely star-struck?

Tobias Denney: “Working with Red West, the founding member of the Memphis Mafia. He was Elvis Presely’s bodyguard and a longtime friend. He also played the character ‘Red’ in Road House.”

9. What’s your poison?

Tobias Denney: “The literal definition of the word ‘fascist’ and the inference in the context of the questions. And I.P.A.s and Silver Haze.”

10. In 10 years, I will be…

Tobias Denney: “Owning a pinball bar in Asheville, N.C., and getting ready for the annual ‘Motormouth Mabel 2022 Christmas/Holiday Spectacular.'”

Tobias Denney and his Motormouth Mabel bandmates — Motormouth CJ (vocals), Motormouth Townson (drums), and Motormouth Rush (bass) — formed as a beer ‘n’ booze-fueled punk band in Charleston back 2004. They earned a shaky reputation for an unhealthy obsession with director John Waters and for delivering loud, rowdy, messy shows. They’ve independently released shouty, guitar-noisy recordings on cassette, vinyl, and CD over the years, including split EPs on Tick Tock Records.

Denney recently relocated to Asheville, N.C., after spending a few years in Brooklyn. Townson resides in Atlanta. Rush is situated in Brooklyn where he plays with Beauty Apes and Dirty Spiders. CJ currently lives in Charleston and fronts a punk band called Grand Kids (previously known as Grind Kids).

Motormouth Mabel will share the Royal American stage on Sat. Dec. 22 with Potential Spewers (Charlie McCalister and Cindy Flowers) with Dr. Fuzz in the opening slot. Admission is $5. Visit and for more.



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About the Author

Ballard Lesemann

is a musician and writer. Born and raised in Charleston, S.C., he spent years playing in bands and working for Flagpole Magazine in the bustling music town of Athens, Ga. He returned to his hometown and served more than seven years as the Charleston City Paper's music editor. He's better at drumming than he is at playing guitar.

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