heavy metal

Bobaflex Bio

Band members
Thomas Johnson - drums Mike Steele - guitar Shaun McCoy - lead vocals and guitar Martin McCoy - vocals and guitar Jerod Mankin - bass


Bobaflex knows a thing or three about struggle.

Featuring the tandem of brothers Shaun and Marty McCoy, who are descended from the legendary McCoy family from the legendary Hatfield-McCoy feud, on vocals and guitar, Bobaflex are representatives of the life in this country’s heartland.

Rather than wallow in the doldrums of where they are from – that’d be Mason County, WV- or lament the uphill battle they fought during the 2005 release of Apologize For Nothing, their TVT Records debut, Bobaflex chose to turn the negatives into positives, and to be a mouthpiece for kids in landlocked, heartland towns across the US on their quirkily melodic new rawk ‘n roll album, Tales From Dirt Town.

First, a few things about the struggles, and how Bobaflex got to where they are today. “Bands on major labels who have been through what we’ve been through have either been dropped or quit,” recalls Shaun McCoy.

Bobaflex hit the road to support Apologize For Nothing, touring with Mudvayne and as part of Megadeth’s Gigantour. “We were on the road, and of course, the van broke down several times. We got robbed in Dallas, TX, and the thieves took between 20,000 worth of gear, gear that took years to build up, like sentimental stuff like the guitars my brother and I got when we were 15. There were definitely points where we thought, ‘Why don’t we just quit? It’s over.’” But rather than give up and give in, Bobaflex played benefit shows to raise money for replacement equipment and hit the road with Twiztid, facing hostile crowds who threw water bottles and cursed them out! “We played our whole set dodging quarters,” laughs Shaun McCoy. “I felt like we were the bad guy wrestler!” The band’s van broke down –again- and things certainly looked bleak.

But once again, Bobaflex decided to be proactive, rather than reactive, and to dictate their destiny, rather than have it dictated to them. The only choice was to keep moving forward. “We put everything into new demos,” McCoy admits. “We knew we had to make the label believe in us, and we spent a lot of money that we earned from playing shows to make these demos.” The band paid for 2 songs out of pocket, and McCoy says, “It was the last shot. We were touring on our dime, eating dollar menu so we could survive.” The songs got the label excited to hear more, and in turn, paid for the rest of the demo sessions. McCoy continues, “That was the hardest we ever worked. We worked harder than we worked on our first record, which was recorded in 1 week. We demoed songs several times. It was a tough year for us, and we learned a lot of hard lessons. Hard work kept us in the ballgame.”

Bobaflex’s struggles and dilemmas –showing that life in a band is not all glitz and glamour and is full of right hooks to the chin- mirror those of the youth that grows up in similar geographical locales that Bobaflex themselves were reared in. Most people think of West Virginia state full of toothless inbreds with sub intelligent IQs, thanks to the lack of surrounding metropolises. While these places may inspire boredom, they also breed intense creativity.

“It definitely does fuel creativity,” McCoy admits. “To combat boredom, when I was younger, I’d read comic books and look at art, and in my teens and pre-teens, I realized I didn’t fit in, and that I was not a hunting or fishing type, and I escaped through art and guitar.” Poppa McCoy plays bluegrass guitar, and taught his sons his craft. “That helped separate us from the redneck culture, and I hated it when I was young, but I am more at peace with it now. Back then, there was nothing cool about pick up trucks and fishing. Now I don’t mind as much,” McCoy says.

Tales From Dirt Town is like a bittersweet love letter to working class culture and blue collar yet redneck upbringing. Filled with crunchy guitars that’ll rattle your teeth loose from your gums and the triple vocal attack by Jerod Mankin, Marty and Shaun McCoy, Tales From Dirt Town will course blood and adrenaline through the veins of all who listen to it, especially the kids who hail from dirt towns. “Any kid in a Podunk town that listens to rock music will enjoy this,” says McCoy. “It’s for all the small towns in America that are full of working class families that do not have much to do. People don’t realize that small towns have same problems as cities, being populated by drugs and dirtbags. The strains that a city kids feels is now the same in small towns, and since it’s so desolate, you can get drawn down wrong paths, and feel like your future is one of two choices: to work in a mill plant or to be a drug addict.”

Bobaflex surely relates to the struggles in a two-fold way. As people from a desolate town and as a national touring act trying to navigate the rough, murky music business waters, Bobaflex and Tales From Dirt Town are like signposts for struggling and overcoming. Comparing both worlds, McCoy says, “The desperation of the band trying to make it is the same as someone who comes from our town. We knew we had to put in a serious effort to make this album and that is was truly the last shot. So we had to make it as real as possible: real feelings, no bullshit, no lying.”

Musically, Bobaflex decided to take things back to their roots. “We’re not a screamy band, and we’re not all ‘argh’ all the time,” McCoy says. “As we get older, me and my brother regress to what we liked in junior high” McCoy admits to listening to loads of WASP on his iPod when on the road, and that when writing Tales From Dirt Town, they wanted to keep their metal edge and imbue it with more harmonies, melody, and singing, along the lines of Guns N’ Roses and Motley Crue.

The slow boiling “Home” is a key cut on Tales From Dirt Town, which is about the band’s last headline tour. “Some nights were ok,” recalls McCoy. “Some nights, we played in front of bands and staff. The tour beat us down, spiritually. And that was when we chose to take the red pill, go back to work, get on stage, and do it again.” The song is a true testament and celebration of this band’s unkillable resolve. “Satisfied” is another tune that’ll take up real estate in your cranium with its layered vocals and unforgettable chorus. “Savior” features Bobaflex’s definitive, quirky songwriting style, as well.

At the end of the day, Bobaflex cannot be killed, stopped, halted, or pushed down the ladder of success. They bite, fight, claw, and rip until there is no fight left in them, a fight which unquestionably comes from their upbringing.

“Being from West Virginia, people say we’re just rednecks wasting our time,” says McCoy. “We get told we’re never going to do anything, but we’ll keep going. It’s like going into a cave, and you get so deep, looking for treasure, and there is no way out, and it’s just too late to turn back. You get to the point of no return where continuing is the only option.”

With that kind of determination and resolve, only good things can come to Bobaflex, who shine a spotlight on the people of dirt towns with Tales From Dirt Town.

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