THE ATOM AGE guitarist/vocalist Ryan Perras talks about the band’s new album The Hottest Thing That’s Cool, out today via Asian Man.

“Dig The Future”

This song covers two different aspects of my take on the current state of rock and roll. I ask why the roots of punk and rock and roll are forgotten, but I also think we still have the future to bring them back again. I think it’s really important to be proud of your influences and appreciate the history of the music you love and play. The main riff is our little homage to “Kick Out The Jams” by MC5...it don’t get more wild than that.

“Cut, Paste, Kill”

I came across the title of this song on a mystery book and thought it sounded cool. It’s a reference to those old ransom notes where you cut each letter out of a magazine and glue them to a piece of paper. If you don’t get your dough, you gotta kill your hostage.

“I Hypnotize”

I had my own crappy idea for a ‘60s horror B-movie when writing the lyrics to this song. I thought it would be cool to have a song about a hypnotist who uses his power to drive girls crazy, using the old swinging pocket watch and everything. Genius.

“Bad Girls Go To Hell”

Stole this title from a 1965 Doris Wishman movie of the same name—I think it’s the best song title we have. It worked out to have a cool caveman-stomp groove. It’s always hard for me writing lyrics, so I usually need to have some character or story I can work from and this one was a no-brainer.

“I’ve Been Thinking”

This is actually a cover song from a ‘60s garage band called Paul Bearer And The Hearsemen. We originally did the song for a 7-inch last year and decided to rerecord it for this album, because we were in need of one more song and it won out against the originals we had left. It was easy to make it fit within our sound, and we had our other singer, Petey Niven, sing it wildly.

“Nothing Ever Changes”

This is about how some things will never change, and how that can be a good and bad thing depending on what you want. It has a lot of cool guitar stuff going on. The crazy noises in the bridge are an Echoplex with all the knobs being spun randomly while it feedbacks into itself—sounds like outer space, dude.

“Kiss The Ring”

This song is about Elvis Presley and how he ruled. I first got the idea while watching Bubba Ho Tep, when Bruce Campbell (who plays Elvis in the film) makes a guy kiss his ring, like the Pope would. While I have not seen a video of Elvis doing this, I am sure he did because we was the King. It covers the usual Elvis theme of him being a badass.

“Eaten Alive”

A grooving, mid-tempo rocker about shark attacks.

“Better Unknown”

This song has a cool evil surf riff and is about a lot of great, unknown bands that are criminally forgotten. Why does that always happen?

“Dead Wrong”

This song is supposed to make you feel like you are in a deep south bayou surrounded by voodoo cannibals. We wanted it to have a chunky, dissonant riff. The bridge has Middle Eastern flavor, which is always tasty. Our slowest song to date.

“The Hottest Thing That’s Cool”

A nice album finisher that combines a lot of juicy sounds into one package. It’s about trends in music and how they bug me. It’s easy to see a lot of people playing “the game” these days and doing what they think will make them popular, even in supposedly highly individualistic forms of music. You gotta be who you are, man...fuck the rest of ‘em! alt