Q&A: Glass Heroes on Phoenix and their new album Liars Cheats & Thieves

Phoenix punk band Glass Heroes has been around for more than 17 years. They performed with Nirvana at the long-lost (but not forgotten) Sun Club, and have played with and become friends with a host of other famous folks, including the Sex Pistols, the MC5, the UK Subs, and Motörhead. The self-proclaimed street rockers deny any type of establishment or compartmentalization. They represent the original alternative to the mainstream, and cry out that rock is not a fashion, but a passion. They've received acclaim from people like Marky Ramone, and have a new album slated for release later this year (produced by Rat Scabies of legendary punk band The Damned). Here we talk with Heroes frontman Keith Jackson.

New Times: Of all the places you could've gone, why did you stay in Phoenix for over 17 years?

Keith Jackson: Everyone asks me that — all the people I've worked with. I don't know. It's a life of mediocrity here. There are no real ups and downs in Phoenix. So when you come from a city like Detroit, it's just kind of on a level keel, 'cause not a lot goes on in this city. You can always get out of here and do your thing. It's a strange, strange music scene here.

Glass Heroes: New tricks from the old school.
Glass Heroes: New tricks from the old school.


Glass Heroes, The Beat Angels, and more are scheduled to perform on Saturday, April 19.
George & Dragon

NT: Tell me about the new album, Liars Cheats & Thieves.

Jackson: It's a great album. It's really depth-y. It's not like the first record. There's a lot more movement to it. It's a little darker than the first album. That's probably cause Rat was here.

NT: How was it working with him?

Jackson: It's great working with the guy, just outside of [his] being a legend. We had some friends in common, like Joe Strummer . . . great stories and great producer. He spent most of the time sleeping on the couch in the studio — literally. But it's amazing, 'cause he'd be snoring, and we'd be doing playbacks, and he'd be, like, [in British accent] "That part. Do that part again." And I'm, like, "You were just snoring!" And he was right! It was uncanny.

NT: Your former band, The Beat Angels, is reuniting after several years to play at the 14th annual George's Day Celebration.

Jackson: Yeah, it's gonna be the Beat Angels and the Heroes. And we played together a couple years ago, so it's gonna be a lot of fun.

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Martin Tanco
Martin Tanco

I had the opportunity to live in Phoenix for almost six great years due to College. Being from South America old school punkrock (ramones, clash) is a huge part of my life. Hanging out in the Phoenix scene I became a huge Glass Heroes fan and I believe them to be the last old school punkrock band remaining. It is my favorite band, their live performances are just amazing, the energy is great, these guys are just straight up punkrockers. Its the best band I have ever seen and the fact that they remain kinda doing their own thing makes them even better.

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