Floridan Death Metal-legenda Obituary on yksi genren kunnioitetuimmista nimistä, jonka sitkeä oman tien kulku on nostanut heidät metallimaailman arvostuksessa erityiseen asemaan.
Yhtyeen tuorein bändin mukaan nimetty ”Obituary”-levy on vahva paluu menneiden klassikoiden huipputasolle. Metalliluola otti haastatteluun basisti Terry Butlerin, jolla on Obituaryn lisäksi merkittävä historia Deathissa, Six Feet Underissa sekä Massacressa.
Butler kertoo uuden levyn olleen merkkipaalu ja yhtyeen uran kymmenes, joten albumin nimivalinta oli selkeä. Kappaleet ovat myös edelliseen “Inked In Blood”– pitkäsoittoon verrattuna aggressiivisempia ja tuotanto selkeämpää. Obituaryn ja Death Metallin uusi nousukausi saa Terryltä tukea. Basistin mukaan loppuvuosi on yhtyeelle kiireistä aikaa keikkailun osalta ja mies lupaa myös täyden Euroopan kiertueen toteutuvan syksyllä 2017. Butler kertoo myös kokemuksistaan edes menneen Chuck Schuldinerin kanssa työskentelystä Deathin ”Spiritual Healing”-levyllä.
Lue koko haastattelu alta:
Congratulations, the new album is finished and sounds excellent and brutal! How do you feel about the end result and can you describe the recording process?
Thank you very much. We are very proud of the way the record turned out. We recorded the album at our own Redneck Studios in September/October 2016. Joseph Cincotta produced the record. The songs were written in about a month’s time.
The record is simply called “Obituary”. What is the reason behind this?
Well, basically we couldn’t top ”Inked In Blood” so we decided to strip it down and go the other direction with it. Basically we are saying “here we are!!! “ Its our 10th album and a milestone so we wanted to commemorate it with a self-titled album.
We think ”Obituary” sounds smoother and more balanced than the previous one “Inked In Blood”. How would you compare the two records?
Yes, it is more balanced and cleaner. I loved ”Inked In Blood” but I think this production is a lot better. ”Inked In Blood” is not bad production but ”Obituary” just sounds better. The songs are more aggressive I think. More of an attitude with this record in my opinion.
The new album has a very basic and unpretentious cover presenting only logo of the band which looks close to “The End Complete” era. Was your intention to return to that landscape musically as well? Has there ever been any thought to create Metallica’s “Black Album” and cross over the death metal borders to more commercial style?
Musically it just went that direction on its own. We didn’t consciously do that. We are not comparing it to Metallica’s ”Black Album” although I understand that comparison. We are more easy to digest than say Nile or Immolation because we are in the style of traditional Death Metal, so in the eyes of those kids that love extreme blast we will seem commercial.
Besides Obituary, You have had the honor of playing in Six Feet Under, Death and Massacre to name just few. What kind of working environment and chemistry do you feel Obituary nowadays has and how did you originally get the gig in the band?
It’s the best working environment I’ve been involved with. A great group of guys to jam with. Everyone’s opinion is heard. When Frank (Watkins) was dismissed from the band in 2010 I got a call to help out Obituary. I joined full time in 2011.
Obituary is one of the biggest names in death metal and albums like “Slowly We Rot”, “Cause Of Death” and “The End Complete” are undisputed monuments of the genre. Can the group still 25-30 years after the fact challenge these classics and release the best record of their career?
Sure we can. Obviously when you write something when you are 20 it’s going to have a different vibe than when you are 50. Maybe when you are 20 you go for it and write things as fast as you can because its all about aggression and attitude. So you put together a bunch of riffs and make a cool song. When you get older you understand why you put riffs together and you are looking for more of a riffy kind of writing. The attitude and aggression is still there. It’s just a more mature attitude.
The band has a strong rhythm and groove both on record and playing live. How as a bass player do you approach this, on stage and in studio do you lock in more with drums or guitars and in your opinion what makes the crushing Obituary-sound?
Yes we do and thanks for noticing. My favorite type of bass players are Bob Daisley, Jimmy Bain and Geezer Butler. They lock in but also do some runs and accent a lot of the drum fills etc. To me it’s about being solid and pick your spots. I use Ampeg and have for the last 30 years. I play the bass heavy not timidly. I hit the string pretty hard and consistent. Trevor (Perez)’s tone and my tone blend so well it’s just a wall of tone. We are very riffy and that helps.
You have had a long career, in your opinion how popular is death metal today? Are we even close to the golden years of the early 1990’s?
Yes I’ve been very fortunate. It was new and fresh back then. It was exciting to discover new bands. That excitement is gone now in my opinion or maybe it’s just because I’m older. Probably the latter LOL. Death Metal is definitely more popular now. It’s everywhere. Even in TV and movies.
What kind of touring plans do you have for this year? Any plans to visit Europe and possibly Finland?
We are currently out with Kreator in the US. We are playing some festivals and club dates in June/July & August. We have a tour for Europe & the US for later this year. It’s going to be a busy year.
To wrap it up, we must ask how was it like to work with late Chuck Schuldiner on Death- album “Spiritual Healing” (1990)?
It was great. We had a good working relationship and were great friends as well. He was very open to ideas and suggestions. It was definitely a highlight so far in my career.
Last greetings for readers of Metalliluola?
Thank you for your support. Come see us out on the road. Cheers and Thank You for the interview Metalliluola!
Haastattelu: Juha Karvonen & Ville Krannila
Kuvat: Yhtyeen promokuvat/Ester Segerra
Metalliluolan “Obituary”- levyarvion saa tarkistettua linkistä.