LAS VEGAS — There are bands that revel in the excesses of this town and love wallowing in the special brew of sin that is only possible when a group of debauched rockers roll into possibly the most decadent city on earth. It's a seemingly endless parade of women, booze, gambling and destruction mixed with the occasional side trip to the pokey. Yes, most bands absolutely, positively love Las Vegas.
Incubus are not one of those bands, something they made abundantly clear when we caught up with them in their oppressively opulent suite at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino (think bowling alley, in-room Jacuzzi, eagle's-eye view of the pools and mirrors on every ceiling). Turns out, there are about a million places they'd rather be.
"I am not a fan of Las Vegas, for a number of reasons," frontman Brandon Boyd laughed. "The desert heat and the air conditioning mix together like a peanut-butter-and-urine sandwich. ... I get off the plane or the tour bus and it's like, 'Anything can happen!' But it never does, because I'm not high or drunk enough to let 'anything' happen."
"You never know what time it is, you're always losing your money, and when you leave, you don't remember anything," turntablist/ keyboard player Chris Kilmore added. "It's like 150 degrees, there's no ocean around, and it's all deserts. You've seen it once, you've seen it all."
Oh, come on, dudes. Surely, it can't all be bad. There has to be at least one thing you dig about Las Vegas, right?
"Well, I enjoy having conversations with drunk little old ladies at the slot machines. Most people have a story, and they're willing to tell it if you buy them a drink," Boyd said. "And I like that people seem to get dressed up for nice occasions here ... like the guys will throw on a suit and the girls will get all dolled up for a dinner and some gambling. The idea is nice, but the actuality is vomit on the suit [and] 'Where's my bathing suit? Oh my God, I'm pregnant.' "
Well, at least Boyd and company can revel in the fact that they'll soon be leaving Vegas ... on to Phoenix and the U.K. and Europe and South America and finally Guadalajara, Mexico, when, at last, they'll cease touring in support of last year's Light Grenades album (see "Incubus Celebrate #1 Album Debut By Re-Enacting 'Riverdance' "). And time off the road must mean that Incubus fans can start getting excited about the prospect of a new record, right?
Not really. Though Boyd said the band has been working on new songs, the plan for the immediate future mostly involves taking a well-deserved break. Which doesn't sound like the most rock-star thing to do, but then again, why would you be surprised? It's Incubus.
"We've done some incredibly extensive touring in support of this album, and it's been probably the most successful tour of our career. And since we've been on the road for so long, we've been writing some stuff, trying to break the routine, because routine is the enemy," he said. "But, no, we're not going to come off the road and head right into another album. In fact, we'll probably hibernate for a while. We've been able to establish ourselves, and we can take our time now."