This article appeared originally in the June/July 2013 edition of Absolute Underground
By Alexis Baran

It’s no secret that metalheads and rockers love their animals, and who can blame us? Our cats, dogs, and other pets will cuddle us through the sweatiest hangover and they’ll listen along to back-to-back albums of atmospheric metal first thing in the morning without a single complaint. The new charity organization, Neüterhead: Ace of Spays, is a way for people who love animals and who love heavy music to come together and make a difference.

Neüterhead was spawned from deep within the bleeding hearts of a group of music- and animal-loving friends, including two members of 3 Inches of Blood, along with independent pet store owners, and artists. Their goal is to address the problem of pet overpopulation by raising money to assist local animal rescue groups in spays and neuters. “Everyone who has pets should understand the importance of spaying and neutering animals”, says Justin Hagberg, guitarist for 3 Inches of Blood. “We’ve gotten a very positive response from the rock and roll community because we’re all like-minded people who understand the cause, and are also concerned pet owners who are taking the initiative to help spread the word.”

Rescue groups and shelters across metro Vancouver alone take in thousands of unwanted and abandoned animals every year. “You can think of it this way,” says Shane Clark, 3 Inches Of Blood vocalist, “For every six new puppies a dog has, six other dogs may be killed in a shelter because no one wants them. There are only so many people who want pets, and making even more pets means that more pets will be without homes, and then more pets will be euthanized.”

Far from the cutesy merchandise normally associated with animal lovers, Neüterhead has teamed up with artist Sam Turner who has designed album art for bands like 3 Inches of Blood and Speedwolf, to create rock-infused t-shirts, beer
cozies, and other useful wares. All profits from sales, events, and direct donations go directly to local animal rescue groups to assist with spay and neuter costs, and a different animal rescue group is chosen to receive funds every 6-12 months.

On Saturday July 13th, Neüterhead will be throwing a launch party at the Rickshaw Theatre in Vancouver, supported by Xanadudes (Rush by members of 3 Inches of Blood and Angry,) Pentagord (Pentagram by members of Baptists, Rotting Hills, Anciients, and Cooked and Eaten,) Ain’t Vitus (Saint Vitus by members of Bison BC, 3 Inches of Blood, Haggatha, Goatsblood, and Grass City) and two more bands to be confirmed. The first rescue group to receive donations will be announced at the event.

Throughout their most recent North American tour, 3 Inches of Blood sold Neüterhead merchandise at their booth. “Neüterhead has been so successful on the road,” says Hagberg, “Even the most menacing and barbaric-looking metal heads express their support and share their love for cats and dogs.” Between the two of them, Clark and Hagberg have five adopted pets; Clark has two dogs named Chief and Blade and a cat named Yo-yo; Hagberg has a dog named Ulfi and a cat named Babytrix.