Shiver was hitting its stride.
It was 2000, and the four-piece metal band had twice been featured in Kerrang Magazine all the way across the pond in the UK and appeared in Metal Maniacs as well.
“We started to get some notice,” says Shiver frontman and rhythm guitarist Dave Manack, “but the reality was a couple of record labels at the time that heard our music—one of which was Sony—said, ‘You’re a good band, but we can’t ‘sell’ what you are right now.’”
As the 20th century dawned into the 21st, nu metal and rap rock were the genres most enticing to record execs.
“Shiver went its course,” says Manack, pointing out the band broke up as simply a “part of life.”
Alas, the “offshoots of Black Sabbath, Danzig, Metallica, little bit of Slayer, little bit of Kyuss” went dormant, but as Manack says, “the timeless nature of our music, whatever we were playing 20 years ago, still holds up.”
ED Magazine spoke with Manack about the band joining back together, their new single “She Rides” and getting adult film star and feature entertainer Richelle Ryan to lend her curvaceous figure to the single’s cover art.
ED: Do you think it’s easier to get your music out now and be discovered (or stay relevant) or is it easier to get lost in the mix now that everyone has the same means to get found out?
MANACK: I think it’s easier now if you’re savvy, if you’re internet, social media and web-savvy, I think it’s a bit easier because you control your own fate and that’s the reality. In the past, you didn’t really control your own fate, it was up to some A&R person or record label and it was up to their own specific interests, mostly related to what was selling at that time. You really had your hopes and dreams and aspirations in the hands of A&R people. If you’re good enough, people will find you. That just wasn’t the case 20 years ago.
ED: When did Shiver form, and what bands were you/are you influenced by? What is your role in the band?
MANACK: I’m the singer and rhythm guitarist. Shiver actually formed in 1998. It’s the same four guys: myself, Jason LeVine (lead guitar), Bill Lussier (drummer), and Ceci Shaw (bassist). We did OK around the Tampa Bay area, we got a following. We were actually featured in Kerrang Magazine in the UK a couple times, we were in Metal Maniacs. We started to get some notice, but the reality was a couple of record labels at the time that heard our music—one of which was Sony—said, “You’re a good band, but we can’t sell what you are right now.” At the time, it was either nu metal or rap rock or rap metal, that’s what was happening in 1998, ’99, 2000. We just didn’t fit into what they were signing at the time. So Shiver went its course. We were together about four years and then the band broke up. (Lussier) and were in a few other bands together after Shiver, and I jammed with (Shaw) as well. Jay has been my best friend since we were 12, so Shiver breaking up had no impact on our friendship; on any of our friendships, really.
We’re offshoots of Black Sabbath, Danzig, Metallica, little bit of Slayer, little bit of Kyuss, so the timeless nature of our music, whatever we were playing 20 years ago, still holds up.
ED: From what I understand, Shiver was on hiatus for quite some time. What made you decide to get back together (play shows, record new music)?
MANACK: We just missed Shiver. We missed the four of us getting together, we missed the music we created, we missed the vibe. Of all the bands we had been in, Shiver still remained our favorite band. About a year and a half ago, we decided, let’s get together—one guy is in Georgia, the other is across the state in Florida—so let’s get together when we can, let’s play some shows when we can and let’s record some new music. That’s where we’re at today.
ED: What’s been your most memorable performance thus far?
MANACK: We opened up for a band called Crowbar, which is an influence of ours, they’re a fairly well-known band. The singer/guitar player Kirk Windstein, he came up on stage with us to sing Black Sabbath’s “Children of the Grave” and that was really cool that he wanted to do that. He liked the band. So he came up and sang with us, so that was great.
ED: What does Richelle Ryan gracing the single’s cover do for the single’s, and the band’s, exposure?
MANACK: Her audience isn’t necessarily our audience, but she’s a friend. I happen to be a fan of the big booty so it was a no-brainer. The song is a stripper song so I knew for the cover art for the single I wanted to have a girl. And so if I’m able to pick who I want, I’m going to pick a friend. Got a hot chick with a great butt, what better way to sell a sexy song about dancers in strip clubs?
ED: Shiver has the song “She Rides” on the latest edition of StripJointsMusic. Why would “She Rides” be a good choice to play at a gentlemen’s club? Also, this is a ‘cover’ version of the Danzig song of the same name; what made you decide to re-record this song, and how is it different from the original?
MANACK: The main reason we wanted to do our spin on it is that “She Rides,” if you look at the original video from back in 1988, he’s got a dancer in a thong, it’s a very strip-club type of song. It’s got that vibe to it. Even Danny (Meyers of PANDA and “Off the Charts”), when he first heard the song, he noted that it’s got a burlesque beat to it. It’s very sensual. But the fact that it’s five-and-a-half minutes long, means no one club is ever going to play that song. It just doesn’t work at five-and-a-half minutes. So we trimmed the fat, we took it from five-and-a-half minutes to 3:30, perfect for clubs. I changed some of the lyrics so it’s a little bit more about dancers. The first line I say is, “She rides, letting loose upon the stage”; the original lyric was “loose upon the world.” A few other things that related to dancers to make it a little bit more specific for the dancers and clubs. I wanted to make an anthem sort of for the girls. This is for them. If there are girls that like dancing to rock music, they’ll understand the burlesque beat is for them, the lyrics are for them. That’s why we did it, it’s for the girls.
ED: When you’re recording this cover, how conscientious are you to not sound like Danzig? Is it one of those instances where you come to know Danzig’s version so well trying to avoid replicating it?
MANACK: We have done Danzig and The Misfits (Danzig’s punk band, which precedes his other bands Samhain and Danzig) cover songs in our live sets quite a bit over the years including “Twist of Cane” and “Am I Demon,” and we recorded The Misfits’ “Bullet.” It’s a pretty obvious inspiration for us and my vocal range is within his as well so it was always a no-brainer for us to do Danzig cover songs, but with this one I made a conscious effort not to sing like him. He’s got a very iconic type of singing style and I definitely went out of my way to make sure I didn’t sing it like he does. I even changed some of the vocal patterns and notes a little bit so we made it ours and it sounded like me, rather than sounding like me trying to be Glenn Danzig.
(Note: ED Publications’ Associate Publisher Dave Manack is the singer and rhythm guitarist of the band Shiver.)
For more information on Shiver, visit their Bandcamp page where you can listen to and download “She Rides” for free at shiver4.bandcamp.com, follow them on Facebook @ShiverTampa or hear them on Spotify by searching “Shiver Delivering the Fear.” Their new EP, “And They Called Down the Thunder,” will be released in October.