No Second Guesses; An interview with Mark Adkins of Guttermouth

Southern California punk rock veterans Guttermouth have released their Got It Made EP through Rude Records and Bird Attack Records, their first release in ten years. Formed in Huntington Beach, California in 1988, Guttermouth was heavily influenced by the Southern California punk rock scenes of the 1980s, which spawned bands such as the Adolescents, The Vandals, Social Distortion, Fear, Descendents, Angry Samoans, Bad Religion and Black Flag.
The band took these influences and developed their own style of fast, punk tempos with humorously sarcastic and offensive lyrics coupled with equally outrageous and offensive behavior, developing a reputation for chaotic live shows.
The EP ushers in a new chapter for one of punk rock’s seminal acts. It offers short, fast and loud songs, outrageous antics and offensive lyrics, Guttermouth are punk rock as it’s meant to be.
It has been ten years since your last release. Why so long?
Well, as most of you know we have had some member changes over the years. It takes time to mesh with new people and become that cohesive unit it needs to be. A band has to have the perfect DNA to write and record music and that does not come overnight. A lot of bands I know give it six months and if tours and record deals are not on the table they give up. It takes years for a band to become a team. Guttermouth took its time and waited for the right time to strike. Plus I’m lazy.
What are the predominant lessons that have stuck with you over the course of decades of playing music and nine studio albums?
Number one is that at a certain point it had turned into a business for us. Let me tell you that is a piss poor turn of events when it comes to being creative, making proper decisions, and most important having fun. These factors are hard to see when you are living this way. I finally took a step back and realized the error of my ways. The band pretty much said fuck it all if fun is not the most important factor. We started drinking more at practice, fucking off and not really caring if what we wrote is what the people would like. We did it all for us. On that note, the key to success in this band is no schedules, no second guessing, just ignore the critics, don’t pay attention to other bands and do what ever we feel like.
Guttermouth is pretty technical for a punk rock band. Has your goal always been to push the envelope in that way?
I don’t know about technical, hell I don’t even know the notes on a guitar. As far as the second part of your question, if shows or recordings are not from the heart and a part of who you are people will see through you in two seconds.  Being authentic is what counts.
We don’t even write song lists when we play.
Is it sort of impossible to add old songs to the set willy nilly without a lot of practice?
Yes for sure. We have so many songs that we can’t just pull one out of our ass. Granted we have tried and it usually comes off pretty funny, but I try not to make a habit out of it.
Did I see that you recorded part of the EP in Australia?
We did some demo work there, but ended up recording in Florida. That also gave us so free time to look for a time-share and retirement community.
I recently spoke with one of the Juggalo rappers who said he went to Australia, but wouldn’t hold a koala cause they had the clap?  Did you hold one?
The Clap eh? Well that’s news to me. I have yet to do my research on STDs shared by marsupials and humans. But I’ll hand it to those juggling rap fellows who have.
And, no I have never held a koala.
Do you think the EP will speak to fans of the back catalog?
For sure! I have gotten several comments comparing the new and old as well as a fresh sound.
With everything going on in the world and the political landscape getting, well scary, do you get the feeling that punk rock music and ethics are more important than ever?
I hate that people feel it is my obligation as a band member to engage in politics. I look at it like this…if I were to record a political  tirade album and sell it, I would be selling the same information that everybody else has access to. I don’t have level 4 clearance to white house info because I’m in Guttermouth. Who am I to tell the world what is right and wrong or who to vote for. Think about it, studded jackets and Mohawks don’t get the attention they once did.
I feel like a breath of fresh air with what I write. Take your mind on a vacation with our new music not to the polling station.
What tour cycle plans do you have in support of the EP?
Will you wait another 10 years before recording again?
As a matter of fact we are finishing another bunch of new songs for another release.
What are you still hoping to accomplish with the band as you move forward?
I just go day by day and am not trying to accomplish anything with my music. Like I said before, fun first, business second or third.
(Catch the band live here:
July 24 – Santa Ana, CA at The Observatory Tickets
Visit them here: