The email problems were somehow resolved, and I was finally able to receive Alex Shumway's (i.e., Alex Vincent's) responses to some questions I asked him about the demos. These have been combined and edited from a few different emails. Enjoy!
On "Leech" and the demos:
"Leech" was part of the first demo session we did in the summer of 1984, in a studio run by Chris Hanzek (which was sweltering). It was in the same session of songs that you can find on the green 7” bootleg of “33 RPMs” and “10,000 Things.” The only reason we didn’t record it for Come On Down was because we were probably just so tired of it by that time–-and we had so many more songs. (You can always check out the differences of “10,000 Things” on the bootleg and on the Deep Six comp. They sound like two completely different songs–-so I’m pretty sure that "Leech" got tossed by the wayside like that one did.)
The Melvins had a copy of the first demo tape and I know they liked it, so they did a cover of it. (Better than we did it…)
Also, not on the demo that you have is the song "Take Me," which was
part of the same session.
Oh, and - I don't know if it is marked on the 1984 demos but it's all pre-Stone.
[He also pointed out that the .zip file contains a track called "New God II," which is actually an early demo version "Alive" by Pearl Jam. "God knows that wasn't us," he said of it.]
On touring with Big Black:
As for the Big Black shows, we only did a few with them on the first tour. It actually turned out to be the majority of shows thanks to the major screw up of Homestead Records (from around 16 shows to about 7 or 8 at most). Steve Albini, from what I remember, is a really nice guy. We did a show with them in Cincinnati where hardly anybody showed up–-the Red Hot Chili Peppers stole away the whole crowd from across town. While we played to almost nobody, the power went out. We thought they cut the power off on us and Mark got pissed! He unplugged all the mics and chucked them into the crowd (or what there was of a crowd). It turned out to be a blown fuse, so we gathered up all the mics and put them all in place–-except one was missing, and it turned out to be the $500 mic. Needless to say, we didn’t get paid, but Steve was nice enough to help us out with a few bucks from their payout. (As a side note, the guy who ran the club was gunning around town trying to find us. There were some girls who were at the show who knew that he was not a good fellow. So they hid us out of town in one of their father’s cabins until we could get to our next show. Nothing happened, except that Jeff learned to properly tease his hair.)
Other tour stuff:
Other disastrous things that happened on that tour… The record didn’t come out until about a month after the tour; we were almost killed in Detroit playing at a Danzig show; the best show was playing last at CBGBs on a Monday night to six Japanese business men and the staff. (It actually was a great show. The staff liked us enough to give us anything we wanted – aside from cash because there was no one there.)
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So there it is. Alex recently played the skins for The Repeat Offenders and now pounds the drums for a terrific garage-ish band called the Zack Static Sect. While neither sounds like Green River, both are definitely worth your time.