For that impending Cop Shoot Cop book I’ve been periodically bleating about here, I had the pleasure of sitting down with Jack Natz this past weekend. For those among you that are possibly not quite as versed or devout as I, beyond his former membership in Cop Shoot Cop, Natz is a veteran of the downtown scene, having played in numerous notable bands, appeared in several avant garde films of a certain stripe and is currently a legitimately acclaimed painter. That's him on the right, as photographed back in the late 80s by Michael Lavine. When he served in the ranks of Cop Shoot Cop, Natz cut a somewhat imposing profile, seemingly the loosest in a squad of loose cannons. When I interviewed the band back in the distant 90’s, Natz could be gruff, terse and intimidating. As such, I was slightly concerned going into this interview.
Stories of the band’s acrimonious dissolution in 1995 only heightened that trepidation, as I feared Natz might still harbor some bad feelings about how everything went down, even two decades later. But, as a central character in the story, I couldn’t not talk to him. I was informed by his former bandmates that he was amenable to the idea, so I reached out, and he suggested meeting up at the Housing Works Book Shop and Café on Crosby Street in SoHo. That would never have been a spot I’d have expected a former member of Cop Shoot Cop to hang out, but hey … it’s 2016. People surprise you.
As it turned out, Jack Natz is not a bitter man, or at least not anymore. We sat and talked for a little over an hour about his days in the band and some of their more colorful exploits and a bit about his extracurricular activities in bands like The Undead, Virus, the Black Snakes and Lubricated Goat. I found him to be affable and generous with the anecdotes.
Coincidentally, it seems a venture called Robellion Films is releasing a series of DVDs featuring bands from the New York noise-rock scene, among them being an edition solely devoted to Cop Shoot Cop. Natz was unaware of this, but here’s the trailer for same below. Cop Shoot Cop are sandwiched between two vastly inferior bands, and only given a snippet wherein they are depicted hammering their way through the noisier bits of “Lo.Com.Denom” from Consumer Revolt, with Natz getting the lion’s share of the screen time (that’s him the vest).
Anyway, hats off to the great man for giving me some time and great fodder for the book. And please enjoy this fleeting taste of the live Cop Shoot Cop experience.