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While reunions have become lucrative ventures for bands of yesteryears, one alt-rock group stands firm in their decision to keep the past in the past. Butthole Surfers, known for their unconventional style and wild performances, have made it clear that despite enticing offers, a reunion tour is off the table.

In a recent interview with The Guardian, original members Gibby Haynes and Paul Leary shed light on their journey from avant-garde art project to notorious rock band. They reminisced about the chaotic energy of their live shows, fueled by excesses that ultimately took a toll on their personal lives.

Haynes, in a moment of reflection, acknowledged the impact of his own struggles with substance abuse on the band’s trajectory: “We’re not as good as we could be today, and that’s because I lost my shit. I did too many drugs. I totally screwed up the deal. It’s my bad. It’s on me.”

Leary echoed this sentiment, describing the band members as individuals who found themselves teetering on the edge of self-destruction: “We were some genuinely fucked up people. We’re good people, but we’re fucked up – we’re damaged.”

Despite the allure of lucrative offers to reunite on stage, Leary remained steadfast in the band’s reluctance: “We’ve been getting six-figure offers to play live, but I just don’t want to do it. We’re really lucky to not be in prison and I don’t want to push that anymore. I don’t want to be sending a bandmate home in a body bag or for a venue to burn down.”

For Haynes, the allure of a different kind of fulfillment has taken precedence. Embracing family life after years on the road, he speaks fondly of his 13-year-old son, emphasizing the joy found in ordinary moments.

“I have a 13-year-old son, who is the fucking light of my life. I’ve got an actual family and it’s awesome. Little league baseball and middle school basketball? Dude, it’s the shit.”

After extensive touring throughout the 2000s, Butthole Surfers‘s live appearances dwindled significantly after 2011. They did manage a couple of one-off shows in 2016 and 2017, and released a coffee table book titled Butthole Surfers: What Does Regret Mean? in 2019.

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