For many fans, Type O Negative‘s Bloody Kisses is the ultimate goth metal record, and arguably the most important metal album of the ’90s. The 1993 release’s unique mixture of doom metal, goth rock, noise, and street-level vulnerability gave music fans a new understanding of what heavy music could be, and for those coming out of the ’80s, the band and their breakthrough album existed in direct contrast to the puffed-up glam metal of the ’80s. And yet what some fans might not know is that Bloody Kisses owes its success to the aid of the ultimate hair metal band: Mötley Crüe.
In an exclusive video interview hosted by The Pit, Code Orange‘s Jami Morgan and Dom Landolina sit down with Type O’s Kenny Hickey and Johnny Kelly to discuss the lasting legacy of Bloody Kisses. Eventually, the topic turns to the tours that the band did for the album, and the Type O dudes reveal that the first important one — the one that changed everything — was opening for Mötley Crüe. Apparently, Nikki Sixx and Co. were huge fans of the record, and wanted Type O to join them on the road…though their management didn’t quite see the appeal.
“What started us was Mötley Crüe,” recalls Kenny. “We had a bus, and we were playing to, like, 50 to 100 people a night with Bloody Kisses. Roadrunner had decided to get behind us, and gave us tour support…[and Mötley] were listening to the record while they were recording the [self-titled John] Corabi record.”
“Mötley wanted us to tour with them because they liked the record,” says Johnny. “They liked the band…so then they were like, ‘Get them.’ And from what they told us, management, booking agents, they didn’t want us on the tour, because we had no value! The band wanted us, but everyone around them didn’t. But they were like, ‘We like the band. We want the band.'”
“So then my manager at the time, Ken Kriete, very smart guy, he was an integral part in breaking Type O — he was like, ‘Mötley Crüe wants you to tour with them!’ And we were like, ‘…WHAT?'” says Kenny. “We were like, ‘We’re gonna get eggs thrown at us!’ And he was like, ‘Shut up and do it. Even if the tour tanks, you’re gonna be playing in front of 5,000 a night you wouldn’t be otherwise.’ And we finally relented, and it’s what started the ball rolling.”
“The record was out for a year before anyone took notice,” adds Johnny.
“We went on tour with them, and suddenly it was selling 2,000 copies a week,” says Kenny.
Check out the full story, as well as some insane discussion about getting drunk with Iron Maiden’s Bruce Dickinson, below:
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Words by Chris Krovatin