Otep band PR Brown

Otep — from left, drummer Justin Kier, vocalist Otep Shamaya, guitarist Ari Mihalopoulos and bassist Andrew Barnes — will pay 1933 on Nov. 23.

Otep Shamaya had never been shy about expressing her opinions in songs she wrote for Otep over the course of her band’s previous seven albums.

The previous album, 2016’s “Generation Doom,” for instance, tackled climate change, ISIS and homophobia. But Shamaya, in a recent phone interview, said even her bandmates in Otep were a bit taken aback by the lyrics for the group’s new album, “Kult 45.”

“The guys told me they’re used to me not pulling punches, but they didn’t expect such a body blow on this one,” she said. “I was pretty happy to hear that.”

This time, her target, for the most part, is President Trump, whom she sarcastically refers to as “Resident Chump.”

Bakersfield can expect quite the show Nov. 23 when Otep headlines a Black Friday show at 1933 also featuring The World Over, Psyde Affect, MOYA, Ally of Apathy, BOMBSCARE and Rabid Assault.

The lyrics on “Kult 45” pull no punches. For instance, the song “Molotov” takes on hate groups that Shamaya feels have been emboldened by Trump’s rhetoric, promising that the public will rise up against racism, sexism and prejudice in all of its forms.

“Shelter in Place” — which shouts the question “Hey, hey NRA, how many kids did you kill today?” — was inspired in part by the Parkland, Fla., school shooting in which 17 students and teachers died. Shamaya, who herself is a gun owner and doesn’t support banning all types of guns, said she’s frustrated by the lack of virtually any legislation to reduce gun violence.

So yes, “Kult 45” is sharply critical of Trump, but Shamaya said it’s also her commentary on people that still support the president and his policies.

“All they’re filled with is whatever they’re told to think and told to say by their great leader. So they (Trump supporters) operate exactly like a cult,” she said. “And that’s what I think ‘Chump’ has always wanted. I think he spent 70 years waiting to be cruel. I think he spent 70 years waiting to be worshipped.”

In addition, Shamaya said, “Kult 45” is also directed toward what she sees as a growing majority of Americans who want to make sure Trump becomes a one-term (or less) president.

“I guess when I was writing this record, I just wanted to make sure that people who live in red states and people who live in blue states, but primarily, people that were against Trump, had a soundtrack for that and also knew that they weren’t alone in the feelings they were feeling,” she said.

Shamaya knew going into the album that she was going to court controversy and likely offend Trump’s supporters. It’s a key reason why, after using outside producers on all seven previous albums Otep has released over an 18-year career, she and guitarist Ari Mihalopoulos co-produced “Kult 45.” Shamaya didn’t want any outside people in the studio who could push the group (which also includes drummer Justin Kier and bassist Andrew Barnes) to question or tone down any of the songs.

“It was just me and the musicians," she said. "That was really something that enabled us, I feel like, to not be shy and not have another voice in the room that doesn’t go on the road with us six months out of the year, that doesn’t understand what we see when we see our audiences and their expressions and what we see in their eyes and what we hear from their voices.

“It really, I think, brought us closer to the core of who we are than any other album except for maybe the first one.”

The music on “Kult 45” is nothing if not forceful, and draws from an array of influences. Songs like “Shelter In Place,” “Halt Right” and “Boss” bringing together rap and metal, while “Molotov” and “Said The Snake” lean more toward hardcore, with their roiling guitars, blasting drums.

“We just don’t really fit into a single genre,” Shamaya said. “We pull from hardcore. We pull from metal. We pull from punk. We pull from grunge. We pull from rap. We pull from spoken word. Whatever inspires us is what we write. And that was one of the rules when we wrote this record was just let the music lead you.”

Fans can expect to hear three or four new songs in Otep’s headlining sets.

“We just kind of pick and choose every tour which songs we know the audiences really respond to, which songs are really fun to play live and we have seven other albums to pick from,” Shamaya said. “This time, we brought back some songs we haven’t played in a few years. It’s a really powerful set, for sure, and geared around the album as well.”

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