Population Control rocks out.
Population Control rocks out.

Q&A with Population Control

I’d like to start off by mentioning that I don’t think I’ve ever been to a metal show. When a friend of mine asked if I’d like to check out a few metal bands at Frank’s Power Plant, I committed to it without really giving it another thought. I checked out the bands online, listened to a few songs and figured I could get down to this show.

Upon arriving at Frank’s, I honestly wasn’t sure what to expect. Five bucks got you in the door to see four different bands: Midwives, Galactic Cannibal, Rad Payoff and Population Control. The show started at 10 p.m., but I arrived early, which resulted in my being able to sit down with the closing band, Population Control, to talk making music, old people candy, alcohol and, of course, metal.

This is the remnants of that conversation. Who knew you could have such a good time at Frank’s, watching a metal show, surrounded by a sea of incredibly smelly people?

OnMilwaukee.com: How did Population Control first get started?

Mike Gamm: Jesse and I pretty much started jamming once, basically because we were bored and hungover. Ricky was drunk once and we were trying out singers. He was in the Hide House with some of our friends and just hopped on the mic. I play with John (our bassist) in Architects of the Aftermath. So it was an easy option to ask him. To be consistent with the theme, he was probably drunk too.

OMC: It sounds like there’s a strong alcohol correlation; do you guys ever play sober?

Jesse Zuniga: Always, except for right now I’m having a beer.

Rick Ramirez: I usually need like 9 shots to calm me down.

OMC: How did you come up with the name Population Control?

MG: My old band Hammered had a song called "Population Control," and it felt right, I guess. We didn’t spend too much time on it. All the other suggested band names were bad, they were really bad.

OMC: What was the first song you guys ever played together? Was it your own music or covers?

JZ: We pretty much started jammi…

The view from a box suite at Lambeau Field ain't too shabby.
The view from a box suite at Lambeau Field ain't too shabby.

Losing my Lambeau virginity: A first-timer attends Packers' home opener

There are few things I'm embarrassed to admit. I'll freely tell anyone almost anything about my life; however, there's always been one thing I've had a hard time owning up to.

I've never been to a Packers game.

I know, it's not uncommon, but it all feels a little un-American to me. Recently I was offered the opportunity to change all that when a coworker invited me to a game.

Not only was Sept. 15 the Packers' home opener, but it was also my first trip to Titletown. I wasn't sure what, exactly, to expect. In fact, every single person I discussed the game with told me a different reason why I was going to fall absolutely in love with Lambeau Field and what I should expect upon arrival. One thing was certain: I knew my experience at the game would be a bit warped because our seats were located in one of the box suites.

My plan had been to start the morning around 7 a.m. with bloodies before the designated driver picked us up around 8 a.m. The plan immediately went astray – first when I overslept and second when my coworker locked himself out of his apartment. Luck was somewhat on our side as our other coworkers were running a bit late. We finally got on the road around 9 a.m. for the noon game.

As you may already be thinking, that didn't leave time to tailgate. Driving into Green Bay wasn't nearly as bad as I expected. I had heard horror stories about traffic for miles and miles, but it sounds like that typically happens during the special Milwaukee season ticket holder games. We found parking on someone's lawn and headed directly inside the stadium.

The morning rain didn't seem to stop anyone else on a mission to tailgate. Walking toward the game reminded me a lot of a Gopher or Badger football game with parking lots and house parties surround the field (of course, on a much grander scale). Rain gear was in full effect, whether it was ponchos or a torn-open garbage bag. I even spotted a few people donning fishing boots.

Once up to the su…