Tattoo Stories: Luggage’s Luca Cimarusti on First, Next, Most Painful Tattoos

photo by Josh Ford

Late last year, Chicago post-hardcore trio Luggage dropped their gnarly third LP, Shift, which channels both the cold severity of the Windy City and the gritty noise-rock sound of such hometown heroes as Steve Albini’s Shellac. As the band continues to ride high on the critically release, we caught up with drummer Luca Cimarusti to talk tattoos, including his first piece, most painful piece and the “less-than-excellent living-room” tats he’s not at all embarrassed about.

WHAT WAS YOUR MOST PAINFUL TATTOO?
TYLER CARUSO Anything on the elbow or creeping into the armpit. Terrible.

AND YOUR FIRST TATTOO?
I got a Chicago flag tattoo when I was still a teenager. I don’t regret it by any means … I just probably wouldn’t get it done at this point in my life.

HOW ABOUT YOUR MOST EMBARRASSING TATTOO?
I don’t have anything I’m really embarrassed by, but I have amassed a pretty good collection of less-than-excellent living-room tattoos.

DO YOU HAVE ANY BAND TATTOOS?
I have more band tattoos than I can count. Most recently, on a Luggage tour, [our bassist] MJ Grant and I got matching Shellac lyrics tattooed on us in our friend’s living room in Kingston, New York. Pretty on-brand move for us.

WHAT’S GOING TO BE YOUR NEXT TATTOO?
Most likely something else stupid.

DO YOU HAVE A FAVORITE TATTOO ARTIST?
I’ve been getting tattooed by Josh Howard for a decade now. He started his career here in Chicago but is based in Milwaukee these days. He does amazing work, is my favorite letterer on the planet and never judges me for wanting tattoos of, say, the Screeching Weasel logo or a portrait of my cat wearing corpse paint.