Entire article written by Alyson
Thanks to Alyson for the article & pictures.
Band Info - Contact - Gigs
Parasite exploded onto the KISS scene with their first live show on February 8th 1997, at Harleys in Cleethorpes, and have been delighting KISS fans with their powerful, authentic, re-creations of all that is best about KISS ever since. They may not be the UKs longest running KISS tribute band, but their enthusiasm, dedication and attention to detail makes them stand out amongst the ever growing numbers of tribute bands and acts dominating the rock scene nowadays.
I was lucky to be invited to join the Parasite guys at a private party at Harleys in Cleethorpes, joining them, their crew and friends in saying farewell to Kath, who manages Harleys and gave Parasite unlimited support and a great venue for their gigs time and time again. (Due to Brewery shortsightedness Harleys is closing to make way for yet another faceless theme pub for the masses!). Arranging to interview the band during the evening gave me a great opportunity to meet these guys behind the scenes and find out what they were really like underneath the make-up!
Without costumes and make-up I might be forgiven for not recognising Parasite members Mark, Darren, Danny and Carl at first, however, it was rapidly clear and uncanny the way their personalities matched up with their KISS alta egos. Mark stands tall with long black hair and the same slyly, smiling look on his face like Gene, that makes you have a good idea what he is thinking! He says he has a long tongue too (so he has been told!) and playing Gene came quite naturally. Darren has always related well to Paul and seeing him perform on stage shows you why. He is one of the driving forces behind Parasite and has unlimited reserves of energy. Danny readily admits that he has no sense of balance (just like Ace!) and readily falls into peals of laughter. At first Carl doesnt strike you as a typical Catman but very soon his sense of humour, practical joking and hyperactivity reminds you of Eric Carr, as does his style of playing drums. In fact, Parasite offer KISS fans the chance to see a show with Carl taking on the role of Peter Criss or Eric Carr, depending on the choice of songs that evening or how Carl wishes to play the drums. Carl is quick to admit his drum style suits that of Eric Carr .
One of the strengths of Parasite as a tribute band is this ability to offer fans music and songs from all KISS eras. The costumes and style may have been taken from the Love Gun period but Parasite can offer fans the chance to hear any KISS song they wish for, even to providing a Vinnie Vincent (in the guise of friend and fellow KISS fan Danny Egholme) when required. Parasite believes they are there to give the fans what they want and if that is songs from other line-ups and post make-up days then that is what they will do. It is this same dedication to fans wishes (like KISS themselves) which puts Parasite amongst the best of the tribute bands around today.
During the evening spent with these guys their energy, enthusiasm and passion for what they do is very apparent. They take being Parasite very seriously but are definitely not serious guys to be in company with. Their good humour and practical joking is infectious and they quickly made me very welcome and part of their group for the evening. Danny talked to me about being in Parasite, saying it was an expensive and time-consuming business, which eats into much of their social and work lives. Despite this, the appreciation of the fans makes it all worthwhile for them. Mark says he would quite happily give up the day job and do Parasite full time if it were possible. Carl tells me that having a good time and being one of your heroes for the night is reward enough. Making friends with the fans from all over the UK and Europe is an added bonus. At this point Mark gives another of his grins and admits he likes meeting the girls in the audience! Carl laughs and mildly complains that the girls always go for Mark and that it wasnt fair! (from where I am sitting I can see why Mark does have more than a superficial resemblance to Gene and is one seriously sexy guy!).
Parasite has played numerous gigs around the UK and happily recounts to me some of the colourful stories of life on the road. Danny smiles when he tells me of the problems he can have in getting the guitar to smoke and that it can be painful on a particular part of his anatomy! Although he is quick to assure me there is no lasting damage! In fact, the pyros and smoking guitars have caused one or two incidents at gigs, setting off smoke and fire alarms in one instance during a show. Carl recounts another time when Danny went on stage with a twisted ankle and smashed finger, whilst Carl did another show with broken fingers taped to the drumstick so he could play. Once again their professionalism and unwillingness to let down the fans keeps the show on the road. All four of them enjoy being on stage and quickly relax into their roles, music and songs once the first pyros go off and all is well.
So what is the future for Parasite? All quickly agree that more gigs and touring in the UK is guaranteed into the foreseeable future. KISS fans want to experience the KISS phenomena and getting to a live KISS show is not possible on a regular basis for UK based fans. Parasite offers KISS fans a good opportunity to experience the KISS phenomena and having seen them perform, a Parasite show is definitely worth going to. Mark would like to see Parasite do more gigs abroad, possibly Japan and the US. Carl would love to get a hydraulic drum riser to add to the show. Danny wants to meet KISS in person and obtain one of Aces guitars. They all want to carry on playing as Parasite, get bigger and better and spread the word KISS!
Parasite are four very talented guys who turned their dream into reality and pay their tribute to KISS with energy and enthusiasm and true style. For me, the magic, the fantasy, the experience that is KISS is created again when these guys get up on stage and perform. Parasite believes wholeheartedly in what they do and put on a good show with the philosophy that both they and the fans are there to have fun. As Carl aptly puts it "We will carry on doing it for as long as everyone has fun, and that goes for both us and the fans". Having seen them on stage I have to keep reminding myself they are not the real thing their performances are that authentic. Mark stomps, gyrates, gestures and gives a good rendition of what we have come to expect from the Demon himself. Danny is dynamic on the guitar and plays with all the style and panache of the real Space Ace. Carl sits behind the drums playing strong supporting rhythms doing justice to Peters more jazzy style and the memory of Erics heavier, double bass pedal approach. Lastly, but by no means least, Darren struts, cajoles and makes love to the audience throughout the show.
So everyone reading this interview, do yourselves a favour go and see Parasite perform. I guarantee you will not be disappointed.
Contact Parasite via
191 Corporation Road
N.E Lincs. DN31 2PY
Parasite gig dates
|Fri August 25th 2000||Spiders Web pub in Carr Lane (how appropriate!), Cleethorpes|
<<Click Here for a review of a
previous gig by Martin Clay>>
<<Parasite played an unplugged gig at the Expo 99 Click Here for details>>
News Letter Info
There is a PARASITE newsletter being produced, which will keep KISS and PARASITE fans up to date on what PARASITE are doing, where and when - so you can re-arrange your lives accordingly :-). We aim to publish this on a quarterly basis to begin with. If you want to subscribe please contact The Allycat on email@example.com and leave your e-mail or snail mail address. The newsletter will be in electronic and paper format.
<<Click here to download issue 1 (in Word format)>>
Look forward to seeing you at a future PARASITE gig.
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