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Originally published Friday, October 27, 2006 at 12:00 AM

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Night Watch

Seattle's KMFDM is a clown-free zone

KMFDM on Halloween night? That's heaven on earth for many industrial-rock fans. Two years after releasing the furious "World War III," KMFDM...

Seattle Times staff reporter

KMFDM on Halloween night? That's heaven on earth for many industrial-rock fans.

Two years after releasing the furious "World War III," KMFDM is back. In typical, over-the-top fashion, the band has released not one but two recordings: the full-length "Hau Ruck" and EP "Ruck Zuck."

The band started in Germany, came to the U.S. and eventually landed in Seattle, where singer-leader Sascha Konietzko (also known as Kapt'n K) has lived for the past decade.

He'll be back in his Queen Anne home, shortly after a show Halloween night at Neumos closes a KMFDM tour.

Eager to get his tour bus headed north and west, Konietzko did a phone interview from Phoenix on Monday night:

Q: You were raised in Germany — what was Halloween like there?

A: There was no such thing ... except Catholics would gather in prayer to ward off evil spirits. But I was brought up atheist, I was never involved in a church. I was told, "You can grow your hair out and take drugs but never go to church."

Q: Now that you've been in the U.S. for so long (16 years), is it always Halloween, being in KMFDM?

A: I don't know, I'm not too fond of it. I hate when they paint their faces and dress up as clowns.

I never dress up, just my combat boots and fatigues ... It started in my childhood, I really hated clowns. Then it transgressed and I hate all costumes. I was never into bands like KISS.

Q: What's the scariest thing about living in Seattle?

A: The drivers.


Q: Who or what is haunting you?

A: My former bandmates. (I say that with a large smile.) ... They're looking at me for handouts. That's what haunts me.

Q: Which would you rather be and why: Frankenstein, Wolfman, Count Dracula or Donald Rumsfeld?

A: I think Donald Rumsfeld. He gets the women.

Q: What do "Hau Ruck" and "Ruck Zuck" mean?

A: "Heave Ho" and "Right Now." Both were recorded in Seattle home studios in Capitol Hill, Queen Anne and Fremont.

Q: On a typical tour, how many "undead" people do you meet?

A: We turn into zombies at a rate of about three a week on this tour bus. I think the driver is the only one not dead. I think I was probably one of the first to go. On a tour bus with 12 people and a driver, the first one gets a cold then everyone gets it, then it mutates and it's everywhere ...

Elsewhere in club land

You'll find some clubs are celebrating the freaky holiday on Halloween proper, others on Saturday night. Other tricksters and their highly promising treats:

The Crystal Method, hometown DJ monster Donald Glaude and a gang of other spinners join forces for USC's annual "Freaknight" at Fremont Studios (155 N. 35th St.) tonight. Doors open at 9, tickets are $40-$50, open to 18 and older. More info at

Wizzard Of Wor, the Kept and the Hacks play a rowdy Halloween party at 9:30 p.m. Tuesday at the Funhouse ($5).

A Gun That Shoots Knives, Wallpaper and other local bands jam Devo songs 9 p.m. Tuesday at Chop Suey ($5).

Goodness, the Rockfords and other bands play Queen songs for a "HalloQueen" show 9 p.m. Tuesday at the Sunset Tavern ($10).

• The master speed-metal-punksters Zeke and Old Man Smithers rock out Halloween at 9 p.m. Tuesday at Fremont's High Dive ($6).

Tom Scanlon:

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