"I'd like to see Breaking Orbit and Jerrico in a cage fight" - Twelve Foot Ninja's Ro takes us through his 2012...

Twelve Foot Ninja - they ain't here to fuck spiders...


Good day to you, Ro, and thanks for stepping up to the plate and being our first 'inquisitee' for 2012! Let's ease you in with a simple one...What was the best new album you heard in 2012? "Going off the most played in my 2012 library of heavy shit, Meshuggah - Koloss and Periphery II- This Time It's Personal, I'd say that's pretty accurate. Others worth mentioning were Devin Townsend - Epicloud, Trevor Rabin (of Yes) - Jacaranda, Pat Metheny - Unity Band, Breaking Orbit - The Time Traveller, and, anticipating Deftones - Koi No Yokan & Tomahawk - Oddfellows

An exhaustive list. Just what we like! And what about old stuff – did any reissues grab your attention this year? "Kin (12FN vocalist) got me onto Primus - Pork Soda and Queen - Sheer Heart Attack".

Well done Kin. Now, MaF is obviously a music site, but we're not uninterested in other areas of human existence. What was your non-musical highlight of the last twelve months? "Wish I could say I base-jumped or karate kicked a robber and saved people, but this year's been about all the small things: Moved into a new house in Melbourne with a bunch of legends, Batman: Dark Knight Rises, week off in Queensland during BIGSOUND & Steve's birthday on South Bank and Halo". 

We all need to recharge our batteries it's true. But back to the tunes.  Do you think the music scene – and our sort of music in particular – is in good shape at the minute? "Musically speaking, I think it's all rapidly improving, in every style. There are so many resources today opening doors for artist discovery, creating a stylistically broader influence in new music. There are amazing musicians out there. Technology is making ideas so attainable too. It's exciting! The best of us struggle to convey music from the bedroom to the radio and we still live in a world where too many punters are lead to believe that Nicki Minaj is the epitome of talent. Propaganda preachity preach face aside, music is better than ever!"

A nice positive outlook. We'll make our resident curmudgeon Mick 'misery' Strong have a look at that. On the down side, did anything disappoint you musically in 2012? "I missed out on catching Tortoise at The Corner Hotel  on the weekend just gone. As for releases, honestly, not really. All met my expectation or higher really!"

On a personal level, which practitioners of your own musical role impressed you most this year? "I've been inspired by guitarists of so many different styles. The phases are sporadic. My current guitarist phase is (jazz guitarist) Doug de Vries. I mostly admire his clarity on the nylon and the guy can do anything! Great guy too. Other guitarists I've been influenced by this year: Charlie Hunter (another jazzman), Animals as Leaders' Tosin Abasi and (jazz fusion player) Wayne Krantz."

What about the best live act you’ve seen this year? "Meshuggah, Karnivool, Doug de Vries with Ken Murray. All gigs that make you want to quit, but at the same time make you actually go home and practice."

And now to the future -  What does the next twelve months hold in prospect for you? "A whole lot of touring the new album (Silent Machine), fingers crossed Twelve Foot Ninja head overseas. I have a bit of 'someday syndrome' towards learning martial arts and running a marathon, maybe I could bring those visions to life.. There's a dodgy looking Martial Arts sign around the corner from where I live. I'm kind of terrified the dude running it is like Uma Thurman's Master PaiMei from Kill Bill." 

Don't worry, it's just a film it's not real. Which band, if any, do you think is primed to break out into the wider consciousness in 2013? "Melbourne band Circles. They'll crush shit Ghostbusters Marshmellow man style. I'd like to see Jerrico and Breaking Orbit smash it too..  And in a cage fight." 

Maybe we could broadcast it on Metal as Fuck TV! We’re fast approaching the festive season - best night for a party – Christmas Eve or New Year’s Eve? "Christmas Eve. You do it remembering you've got New Years Eve to go (which is usually typically a flop)."

Ha ha yes! Total agreement there! Anything else you like the readers of Metal as Fuck to know? 

Small facts about Twelve Foot Ninja:

All current band members joined the band or met through the Internet, except for RussStevic initially found out about Russ through TV (Recovery on ABC).

 There is usually always a bucket of hummus on the van when touring. Good looking sleepers get their picture taken.

 The Twelve Foot Ninja slogan / inspiring mission statement is "We're Not Here to Fuck Spiders". It's also the huddle chant ritual before hitting the stage. 

At the end of our tour with Dead Letter Circus and Fair To Midland, Stevic chipped his front tooth by trying to open a bottle of Carlsberg. Pretty sure it was an attempt to upstage Stew's (DLC) bottle opening chops.

If you jumble the acronym of that last question it can spell 'Talk to Fat Marty Le'.. Is this a subliminal message? Is this you Fat Marty Le? What are you trying to say? Rejumbled it's 'Mate, Tell Ro AK'.. At Kingstown? Fat Marty Le wants to meet me at Kingstown!? I understand now... Thanks metal as fuck.



12 Foot Ninja's debut album, Silent Machine, is out tomorrow.