Archive for Suffocation

God Dethroned announces European tour this spring

Posted in Metal, Misc., News with tags , , , , on 12th March 2019 by izaforestspirit

Dutch death metal outfit God Dethroned are coming to Europe this April in support of Suffocation. The ‘Europe Under Black Death Metal Fire’ tour also include Belphegor, Nordjevel and Dakrise and it starts on 4th April 2019 at Rockfabrik in Ludwigsburg, Germany.

You can see the full schedule below:

04.04 – “Rockfabrik”, Ludwigsburg (GER)
05.04 -“Turock”, Essen (GER)
06.04 – “Royale Metalfest” *, Aalborg (DEN)
07.04 – “Kulturpalast”, Hamburg (GER)
09.04 – “Bastard Club”, Osnabrück (GER)
10.04 – “Baroeg”, Rotterdam (NLD)
11.04 – “Victorie”, Alkmaar (NLD)
13.04 – “Metropool”,  Enschede (NLD)
16.04 – “Kulturfabrik” ***, Esch/Alzette (LUX)
17.04 – “l’Usine”, Geneve (SUI)
18.04 – “Schuur”, Luzern (SUI)
19.04 – “MS Connexion”, Mannheim (GER)
20.04 – “Seilerstrasse”, Zwickau (GER)
21.04 – “Melodka”, Brno (CZE)
23.04 – “Quantic Club”, Bucharest (ROM)
24.04 – “Form Space”, Cluj Napoca (ROM)
25.05 – “Barrack Club”, Ostrava (CZE)
26.04 – B”Durer Kert” **, Budapest (HUN)
28.04 – “Xplosiv”, Graz (AUT)

* – no Belphegor
** – no God Dethroned
*** – no Nordjevel

For more details visit:

https://www.facebook.com/goddethronedofficial

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Suffocation – Pinnacle of Bedlam

Posted in CD, Metal with tags , , , , , , , on 24th December 2013 by Nico Solheim-Davidson

Suffocation
Pinnacle of Bedlam

Released 15th February
Death Metal
Released via Nuclear Blast

Hailing from Long Island, New York, Suffocation is a band that should be familiar to all death metal fans. If not then this album needs to be put into your CD player and cranked up! Formed in 1990, they have gone on to be one of the most recognised bands in Extreme Metal today, with their superior fire-power of brutal vocals, technical riffs, catchy hooks; psych’s, slams, bombs and blasts. A truly innovative band that takes you to the edge of reason, and then cuts you deeply with their infectious groove.

The band has had many line-up changes, whilst Terrence Hobbs has kept the ship afloat with Frank Mullen screaming orders to the ever growing audience. The line up for Pinnacle of Bedlam features the solid unit of the returning Dave Culross on drums, providing the intense blasts, stabs and beat-downs fans of Suffocation have come to expect. Derek Boyer holds down the intense bass playing, grinding with the best of them and finally Guy Marchais playing second but equal fiddle to Hobbs. There is no doubt about the bands insane tightness, and this album is a perfect accompaniment to their back-catalogue, but it also makes a damn good introduction to the band if you are just getting into Suffocation.

The opening track is a hammer blow to split you cranium, cause momentary loss of motor functions and give you un-ending pain. The aptly named Cycles of Suffering bursts into your ears and keeps punishing you throughout. The relentless riffs are the cycles to your suffering and complement the drums with inch perfect precision. Frank’s vocals rumble away, shattering your dreams and crushing your aspirations. The masterpiece to this song is the solo, which shrieks and wails, whilst sitting so comfortably over the fast rhythm. We are then put back in our place by the continuing barrage of riffs.

As Purgatorial Punishment opens, you could be mistaken for actually being in purgatory, especially with the way the songs sound to flow together even with the short reprieve. A well thought out groove of triplets from the guitars, and off-kilter drum beat keep you on your toes for the entire opening section. The odd rhythm to the accompanying section confuses but works to add a major contrast. Back in more familiar territory with the straight death metal feel is the only blessing you will receive before being subject to Terrence Hobbs’ shred chops.

Another small pause before Mr Hobbs scares the daylights out of you with a face melting lead, and then proceeds to show the Eminent Wrath. This song fires on all cylinders and showcases every element of Suffocation’s song-writing prowess. Dave Culross pounds his way through numerous blast beats and fast double bass work. The riffs are infectious, and every beat-down feels like it will break your bones. Certain elements have a distinctly punk feeling to them, which breaks up the full on death of the song and makes you want more.

As Grace Descends is the most well-known song on the album, as it was released as a video single. The video depicts the last party to end all parties before a giant asteroid wipes us all off the face of this wretched cesspit that we call our planet, with Suffocation providing the evening’s entertainment. It could well be a sign of things to come for all you conspiracy theorists out there. The songs unrepentant speed shows off incredible endurance from the band, even the slow section leading up to the solo feels fast thanks to Culross’ drumming. This track just screams end of the world as we know it.

We now come to a rare item on an extreme metal album, a veritable ballad if I may be so bold. I say ballad in term so loose, it makes a wizards sleeve look like a skinny fit jumper. Suffocation have taken their inspiration from the Tibetan Book of the Dead, and offer up a song soaked in melancholy, with frozen lyrics, and soul shuddering feeling. This song has a Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde moment, with its faster side making a break for it, only to be pulled back to its morbid centre clawing at the fabric of its lyrics.

The title track does what it says on the tin. Pinnacle of Bedlam features many chaotic rhythms, all fighting for supremacy, which reaches its focal point of the lead guitar trade-off between Marchais and Hobbs. It is an excellent outing for Marchais showing that he can hold his own on the shred stage. The lyrics reflect the idea of bedlam, that it is all over the shop and can tip the scales from crazy to psychotic at any time. It also weaves the ideas that we will all meet some catastrophic ending of life, and we are helpless to this purge.

My Demise comes in full force with a battering rhythm right from the off, and is quite possibly the most groove laden track on the album. From the half-time riffs running alongside the drum barrage. Again Marchais shows his chops, and plays one of the most brutally beautiful solos on the album, with a true sense of harmony to match the music. The half-time feel of the song is one of those nice rests within a fast album and takes the pace down a peg or two.

In contrast, Inversion is totally the opposite of My Demise. The first riff opens with Frank growling his way along with the guitars. The fast riffs contained within are uber technical and precise. Hobbs lead takes cues from Marchais’ playing but adding his own flavour to the mix and building on-top of an already strong format. The large, tormenting breakdown adds what i like to call bollocks to an already ballsey song.

Rapture of Revocation starts like a breakdown, and then takes you down a dark lyrical path that questions ones beliefs. The fast pace in later parts is accented with a heavy chug, and keeps drawing you in with harsh speed and pain in your ears. It also serves up a nice amount of religious questioning without being so straightforward. As with the rest of the album, the bass guitar and drums lock in, and harmonise with the guitars in perfect timing and note choice. The end fades on a well chosen breakdown with last lyrics being fed to you one last time before fading into oblivion.

Beginning of Sorrow closes the album with an unbridled brutality. The groove sections have a massive impact and add a good sense of space to the torture. The song acts as more than just an album closer, as it was written as a collaborative effort. It shows what each individual member can bring to the table. The sickening ending twists your innards into submission and should carry a health warning of its own. As a friend of mine once commented on a similar idea, it is a vomitous piece of work.

And so in closing, this album needs to be in your expanding collection of extreme metal. Whether it is your first look at Suffocation, or just one to add to the back catalogue, you need this album to rip out your soul, feed it to the demons in your psyche and give you nightmares of the end of the world. There will come a time where we all reach the Pinnacle of Bedlam.

4/5

Dan Eastwood

Rivers Of Nihil stream Rain Eater from new album

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , , , on 20th August 2013 by Nico Solheim-Davidson

Rivers Of Nihil have released their first single from their forthcoming album The Conscious Seed of Light, which is due foe release via Metal Blade on 14th October in the UK. Rain Eater is now now available for streaming at this location.

The was recorded in March, earlier this year at Mana Recording Studio in Florida with famed metal producer and musician Erik Rutan. Guitarist Brody Uttley commented:

Working with Erik was a true privilege. Coming from the DIY circuit and immediately recording with one of greatest death metal producers of all time pushed us all more than we ever could have expected, both as musicians and as people. We have grown tremendously as a band in all aspects because of our experience with Erik.

As mentioned above, the debut single from the album, Rain Eater, is now streaming at this location. The artwork for the album was handled by Dan Seagrave, whose illustrious portifolio includes artwork for Morbid AngelEmtombedSuffocation and Decrepit BirthRivers Of Nihil ended up sendign a brief treatment of the album to a number of artists that they admire and though the artists seemed interested, it was Dan Seagrave who seemed to understand and appreciate it to a degree. Speaking of Seagrave, guitarist Brody said:

He really tore into it! What we see on the cover is a landscape of a world that doesn’t need mankind, we are relics here, and the sun is the only true master.

The Conscious Seed of Light tracklisting:

1. Terrestria I: Thaw
2. Rain Eater
3. Birth of the Omnisavior
4. Soil & Seed
5. Central Antheneum
6. Mechanical Trees
7. Place of Serpents
8. Human Adaptation
9. A Fertile Altar
10. Airless

Rivers Of Nihil online:

http://www.facebook.com/riversofnihil
http://twitter.com/riversofnihil
http://www.riversofnihilpa.bandcamp.com
http://soundcloud.com/rivers-of-nihil

 

Kataklysm announce UK & Eire tour

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , , on 19th August 2013 by Nico Solheim-Davidson

Following up from their intense main stage performance at this year’s Bloodstock Festival, Montreal-based metal powerhouse Kataklysm have announced a headline tour of the UK and Ireland for January 2014. The quartet are also set to release their brand new album, Waiting For The End To Come, on 28th October, later this year via Nuclear Blast. The album was recording by the band’s guitarist Jean Francois Dagenais and mixed by the renowned Zeuss (SuffocationHatebreedArsis). Vocalist Maurizio comments:

It´s been almost three years since our last club tour in Europe and we are so excited to come back and blow off the roof of every club next January & February. We’ve built an album that will stand the test of time and will need many headbangers, body surfers and mosh pits to give it justice and we are building a special show that you will never forget. This time, after almost a decade we have decided to tour the UK as well, after seeing the reactions at this years Bloodstock Open Air. There´s no doubt it´s time to come destroy. Raise your pints!

The full list of dates is as follows;
13.01.2014 UK London, Underworld
14.01.2014 UK Manchester, Sound Control
15.01.2014 UK Glasgow, Classic Grand
16.01.2014 IE Belfast, TBA
17.01.2014 IE Dublin, Button Factory
18.01.2014 UK Bristol, Bierkeller

Support comes from Italy’s death metal tyrants and label-mates Fleshgod Apocalypse, who are releasing their new album Labyrinth this week. The bill is completed by Brazilian death metal trio Krisiun.

Kataklysm online:

http://facebook.com/kataklysm 
http://twitter.com/kataklysmband 

 

Scordatura announce 2014 English tour

Posted in News with tags , , , on 10th June 2013 by Nico Solheim-Davidson

Scottish death metal band Scordatura have announced dates for their Vile Existence English Mini Tour, with support from Oxfordshire death-grind outfit Black Skies Burn. Tour dates are as follow:

Fri 10th Jan – The Hatchet – Bristol
Sat 11th Jan – Wheatsheaf – Oxford
Sun 12th Jan – Scruffy Murphy’s – Birmingham

Scordatura are also aiming to enter the studio in January or February to begin recording their next release.

Scordatura online:

https://www.facebook.com/Scordaturaofficial/

 

Malevolent Creation replace Suffocation at Brutal Assault Festival 2013

Posted in News with tags , , , , , on 4th June 2013 by Nico Solheim-Davidson

Malevolent Creation have replaced death metal legends Suffocation at this year’s Brutal Assault in the Czech Republic. The replacement came about after, according to an update of Brutal Assault’s official website, that Suffocation had cancelled their summer tour, including their performance at the festival. Suffocation have not made an announcement surrounding the news.

Suffocation online:

http://www.facebook.com/suffocation
http://www.twitter.com/suffocation
http://www.twitter.com/GMarchais
http://www.youtube.com/suffocation
http://www.myspace.com/suffocation

 

Interview with Derek Boyer [Suffocation]

Posted in Interview with tags , , , , , , , on 21st May 2013 by Contra Mundi

Suffocation are pioneers of extreme metal and are still going strong after 25 years; bringing their fierce brand of metal to generation after generation. We sat down with their Bass player Derek Boyer to talk to him about their new album Pinnacle of Bedlam and how he has become one of the most influential musicians in extreme metal’s history.

Alex: What does the album title Pinnacle of Bedlam mean to you?

Derek: Pinnacle of Bedlam is one of Terrence’s (Hobbs – Guitar) concepts, and you know we all kind of bat the ideas around until one of us really comes up with something solid. And basically you know for Terrence what we had all kind of gathered was bedlam being chaos and a pinnacle being like the highest moment, you know when it’s at its finest little tip and it has nowhere else to go but down. So it’s like the turning point when chaos is going to explode and there’s no escaping it.

Alex: So, what are the main themes of the album ?

Derek: It’s a lot of like transfer of energy. Like when you die, we don’t think that you go to Heaven or Hell; we think that your energy goes into other living entities and stuff like that or creates some new life. So, it’s kind of taken from some of the Tibetan book of the dead stuff to where we believe that life is just about preparing for death. Being that we play Death metal we’re not just going to talk about broken bones and the Devil and all that stuff. So, we wanted to try to do something a little more original and try to be intelligent and try to learn and try to portray something that we learned to the rest of the world.

Alex: Is it difficult to get fresh inspiration for subject matter?

Derek: Yeah, I mean that’s why you kind of have to go to some books and you know, what with the use of the internet now it’s like you would think people would have more knowledge but they’re actually getting stupider because they just want to be on Facebook or something stupid.  So, you know, looking into books and looking back at your own life and trying to take inspiration from yourself and others around you and books and knowledge that we have access to and the internet. If you’re using it for the right reasons it’s great. So yeah, it’s hard, but somehow with all the creative minds we’re very fortunate. If it’s just one guy, he’d run out of steam unless he’s really driven, but with all of us, we like to bounce the ideas and one of us will go ‘whoa, that’s great’ and it inspires us to do something else. So, I think the group effort is one of the biggest inspirations.

Alex: The album is really impressive, with musicianship and everything, it’s very technical. Is it a challenge for you to write and record that sort of material?

Derek: I hate to say it, like at the position in our careers that we’re at, but you just do it.  You know, we’ve worked our abilities up to a certain level and not to say that you should ever get comfortable and plateau with your abilities, but we’re at a point with our abilities so we know that Dave (Culcross – Drums) is going to grind his face off and be comfortable doing it. And we’ve got the same thing of being pretty comfortable under pretty difficult circumstances, but not to say if the wind doesn’t blow, we could all just fall over like real easily too. So it is a challenge, but again having worked as long as we have with our instruments, it’s kind of comfortable in the difficult zone.

Alex: Where do you think the new album ranks in terms of Suffocation’s previous releases?

Derek: In my opinion it’s the best album since the band reformed. We had the five year hiatus from 1998 to 2003, you know the whole industry liked Suffocation and was trying to carry the torch. So when Suffocation reformed, that’s when I joined and every album in my opinion was kind of getting better and it’s definitely at the pinnacle right now of the four that we’ve written. I believe this is my favourite and the best.

Alex: Why do you think Suffocation have lasted so long and become such an influential band to people all over the world?

Derek: I think it’s just perseverance. At the end of the day, you can say, ‘well you know what? We can hang this up any time, we had a really good run, it was fun, blah blah blah, respect and pride.’ but having that perseverance and wanting to continue it and wanting to continue to write good records and to wanting to continue to bring the show to the people, it’s kind of a big deal to us. We get a lot of pride out of it, so it’s just a personal thing I think.

Alex: It does get quite difficult doesn’t it to want to carry on when things are going a bit wrong for you?

Derek: It certainly does, and a lot of the time you just get so undermined. You know, they put you in these clubs and you’re like ‘Wow, twenty years ago I was playing more professional venues than this, what the fuck? And now we’re getting undermined’. And sometimes it’s disheartening, and you go ‘well, fuck it, the people love it. The fucking asshole that put us in this club needs a fucking talking to.’ But, at the same time there’s a lot of kids doing the jobs now, a lot of kid promoters and you can’t really tell them that you want to come and strangle them, but it’s really disrespectful to us to like work your way up and then just some kid goes ‘oh yeah, I can book Suffocation.’ And the next thing you know you’re playing some little fucking closet, I’m sorry, I get upset. I mean the last two shows, I couldn’t believe it, I was like ‘let’s cancel’ and then we can’t though because of the people. We’re kind of caught in the middle like ‘this guy needs to be taught a lesson’, but the bands, they shouldn’t suffer, so we end up eating shit. So it’s a little disheartening, and yeah, it happens, but you know. Certain territories, I guess we have to say ‘wait, we have contracts, we want all the details before we accept these terms.’ Then they’re like ‘Oh yeah, we’ve got everything you need.’ And you get there and half the shit is broken, and you know, enough about that stuff! Sorry.

Alex: No, that’s fair enough. I completely agree with you. It’s unusual for a band to have such a vast spectrum of ages in their fan base. Do you think different generations take different things from your music?

Derek: I think so; the older fans like it for the thrash aspect of it, the newer fans like it for the slam aspect of it. So yeah, definitely. I think every generation is going to look at Suffocation from a different perspective, you know because the old fans were surrounded by thrash metal bands, so they like the thrashy elements of it. The newer kids, I don’t even know what their music is. It’s really complex and it’s really heavy and it’s got a lot of new stuff, so I’m not sure if their fans understand what we’re doing, but there’s definitely some similarities between the new bands and what we’re doing because they took certain elements from Suffocation, but they’re adding new stuff to it and the new fans don’t know that they took their heavy sound. It’s tricky. Definitely all the different generations are viewing it from a different perspective.

Alex:  Most young musicians now are drawn to the guitar or vocals when starting out. Bass is almost seen as an instrument that’s a bit boring, or in the background. What made you pick up a bass and learn to play?

Derek: For that very reason. There were no good bass players and I was like ‘I’m going to fucking do it!’ I want to play really good and you know try to have fun and be an element in the band that’s not just the thing that’s hiding. I always want to be heard and if I ever turn down, that would just be because I was too loud for the most part. I’m always trying to stay in the mix. I’m trying to make a connection between the drummer and the guitar players and create that foundation. Whereas with  a lot of young bands the bass player just ends up being the friend of the band that wasn’t playing drums or guitar: ‘Oh hey! Let’s put him on the bass.’ Unless he really takes inspiration from some of the guys who care about bass, then their career would be short unfortunately and it would be boring. I would be bored too, but you know, they kept telling me to turn down. I didn’t take the pride to learn how to get a good sound and to maintain my instrument and stuff like that. Like a lot of these bass players never change their strings once, you know, I change my strings every night.

Alex: I think bass makes all the difference though. You miss it if it isn’t there.

Derek: Yeah, if it’s not there or it’s just dumdumdum. I’m trying to be a staccato player and have the bottom be felt but also have the connection with the punchy bass drum, you know, the punchy bass guitar. There are two sides to it, you get the bottom of the bass drum and the attack of the bass drum and a lot of bass players are forgetting that they should be the same. If your bass drum just goes ‘poof’ but it doesn’t go ‘snap’, you know, there has to be the combination. So a lot of these bass players they don’t put a lot of the snap into their sound and they get swept into the mix. It’s just a rumble, so you’ve got to have both.

Alex: Is it really hard then to get a sound?

Derek: A lot of years of experimenting with different equipment. You know what electronic s are going to work, what scales and what woods have different tonal qualities and then, there’s so many different amplifier companies out there, and it’s really just a learning experience.

Alex: You never really think there’s so much involved in getting a sound, do you?

Derek: No, there’s a lot going on. You’re supposed to forget about it once you’ve figured it out, you go ‘Oh, ok. That’s just my sound.’ There’s a lot that goes into it and it wasn’t like the first time that you plugged in, you’re like ‘Wow, I have my sound!’ You had to experiment and you learn what works and what doesn’t work and you just get it as close as you can. Then it’s up to you.

Alex: How would you sell the bass guitar to people that are considering learning to play?

Derek: Look at the band. You know, if you’ve got a really good drummer, a good guitar player and a good frontman and all the bass players suck, you know, and you kind of just want to make that band complete. It is a special feeling because there aren’t a lot of good bass players around, so it gives you more opportunity to shine, whereas like every drummer is so good right now, so that’s a hard race. How are you going to outdo these guys? They’re amazing! With the bass player, I don’t know there are only a couple of handfuls of guys that are like ‘Whoa!’ you know? So, there’s a lot of room to get in there and prove yourself. If you’re doing it right, bass can be really fun and challenging and rewarding, but then again if you’re just hiding out as friend of the band, just the low rumble, have fun, but you know, if you really want to go somewhere with it, there’s a lot more room to be the best. I mean, there are a billion good guitar players, and a billion good drummers and there’s only a few good bass players so get out there and add to it! Bass players union!

Alex: Was it difficult to develop a technique for playing your music? I imagine there weren’t many people you could learn from when you were growing up.

Derek: Exactly. My father was a classically trained pianist and he had a metronome and when you’d be working on your chops, this little thing would just be in the background keeping time for you. When I first switched to the bass, I would sit with the metronome and just work out all of the values, you know quarter notes, eighth notes, eighth note triplets, sixteenth notes, sixteenth note triplets and really build the muscle memory and bend on the right knuckles and try to keep a good ergonomic position. If you sit wrong, your wrists and your elbows are going to hate you! But if you can sit in a position, it’s like martial arts you want to have explosive energy with little effort. So if you’re sitting there with your wrists up and everything is like ‘Yikes!’ and there’s a lot of tension, it’s going to be difficult. It’s all about sitting with good form and standing with good form and just building the muscle memory and getting it to where it’s like second nature and then you can start to see the improvement.

Dan: So, who did you look up to when you were learning?

Derek: There weren’t a lot of guys. There was Alex Webster from Cannibal Corpse who was doing it really well and Steve DiGiorgio (Death, Autopsy) is an animal. I mean some of the same guys that we’re talking about today were the ONLY few back then, now there’s a few more, but for the most part it was just a couple of guys. Also, taking inspiration from other instruments and saying ‘Wow! That guy is really effortless and really comfortable on his guitar, piano or drums.’ So using other individuals, not necessarily bass players, but looking and thinking ‘Wow, that guy’s really smooth, or that guy’s really explosive and looks like he’s not putting any effort into it.’ So, it wasn’t necessarily a bass player thing to inspire me as much as musicians. It helped because there weren’t a lot of bass players to be inspired by.

Alex: Do you think metal musicians are given the recognition they deserve for their skills?

Derek: Not really, but what can you say? We’re singing about pretty crazy stuff and so, it’s not very common. If you took the vocals away, I think a lot of industry people might accept it and push it a little bit further, but nowadays tattoos and long hair are more acceptable, so hey, maybe we’re singing about some pretty crazy stuff, but maybe that’s a bit more acceptable these days. Like right now, there are bass playing magazines doing features on me and we don’t talk about the lyrical content, we just talk about techniques and they’re like ‘wow, that’s fun. We didn’t know Death Metal guys actually gave a shit.’ It’s fun to get a little bit of recognition and then you wonder if it’s going to continue, you know, the companies are supporting us; the endorsements, the string companies, the electronic companies, instrument companies and amplifiers. They’re all really on board. Suffocation is a twenty five year operation, and the companies do believe in us individually. We maybe can’t go out and advertise Suffocation because it’s kind of evil, not that we’re an evil band, but it’s not happy love songs.

Alex: It’s more to do with showcasing talent then?

Derek: Exactly, the showcase the individual’s talent more so than the whole thing, which is fine.

Alex: How does it feel having John Gallagher from Dying Fetus doing vocals for Suffocation on tour?

Derek: John is a dear friend of ours. I used to play in Dying Fetus, which was twelve years ago. So, John and I have worked together in the past and he’s just been a really good friend. He knows the deal and he loves Brutal Death Metal. Take his guitar away from him, it’s a little awkward but you know, he’s a good friend and when we said ‘Hey John, do you want to go out and have some fun and would you consider helping us out?’ he was like ‘Fuck yeah!’ So, he came and stayed with me and we did a lot of figuring out, kind of like under-lining the syllable that’s on the downbeat and looking at the lyrics and trying to figure out what the fuck was going on! So, as I wrote a lot of the lyrical stuff that was on the new album it was easy for me to explain to a musician, because he understood down beats and lead-ins and stuff like that. If you’re just a vocalist, you may not understand all the technical talk, but being that John is a guitar player, it was super easy to convey the information to him and a pleasure working with him as far as getting him up to speed. It’s been a pleasure having him onstage. He did a week’s worth of shows in America on our last tour last month and then this one will be thirty shows or whatever. And yeah, he’s doing great and we’re happy to have him and he seems to be having fun too.

Alex: I know a lot of people were really happy that it was him as it made you like a super-group.

Derek: Yeah, well that’s fun too because we’d have people come up to us in the states and they’d go ‘Is Gallagher singing?’ and we’re like ‘No, it’s Frank.’ And they’re disappointed, you know, because it would be fun and something unique for them to see. It would be like your favourite baseball team or football team and this guy was really good from this other team and you saw him with your team. It’s a fun thing. If you like Suffocation, you probably like Dying Fetus, so to see the combination of it is great. We’re fucking with him and calling him Frank Gallagher and John Mullen, which is just funny. We’re having fun with it.

Alex: How has the UK tour gone for you so far?

Derek: So far, it’s on strike two. The venues have just been really poor. This (NQ Live, Manchester) is professional. It’s a little bit low, but at least it’s nice whereas the last two have just been like ‘You’ve got to be kidding me!’ The people are great. The people deserve to see the band and the people react great, but you’ve really got to dig deep to get past the disrespect. If you’re fourteen years old, you would probably be like ‘Wow! This venue is great!’ but you know, being that we’ve done thousands of shows, you think ‘Wow, this guy really just said fuck Suffocation, we’re going to put them in a fucking dungeon!’ And it’s so disrespectful, but what can you do? Do you want to cancel? Well, you’ve still got to pay your crew, still got to pay for your bus, so now, it’s pay out of your pocket all of a sudden, so you don’t want to cancel; primarily for the fans, but also on a financial level. If you pull a show, the whole budget changes, so you just get kicked in the shin and get on with it and hope that the next day is better.

Alex: If you could play anywhere is the world where would it be?

Derek: I don’t know what’s left! I mean, there are some territories I know we haven’t gone to. I feel like everywhere that we’ve wanted to go to we’ve gone to a few times. I guess it would be to do some interesting part of Asia. We’ve done a lot of that, but Asia is such a large continent there are a lot of people we haven’t been able to reach over there. Not that I really want to be there as much as maybe Australia or somewhere really nice to be, but making sure we touch base with all the fans.

Alex: Are there any bands that you’re particularly interested in at the moment?

Derek: There’s a couple of really talented bands out there that I’ve been getting into, like the Spawn of Possession stuff that’s really impressive; Surruption is really impressive also. I love my Decrepit Birth stuff; those guys are really talented as well. There are so many bands. I love the brutal bands like Severe Torture and Disgorge and Archaic. There are so many heavy and up and coming bands, it’s a tough game. It’s hard not to mention the older stuff like Gore Guts and Morbid Angel. A lot of the young kids don’t really think about early Deicide, or Obituary or Malevolent Creation and all the bands that were around back then. You know, some of them are still doing it, but you get a lot of the younger bands like Black Dahlia Murder that are really hitting the pavement hard. It’s a tough game and you know, you like what you like from the old school, but they’re not out actually hitting as hard as the new bands. So I think the fans are sort of losing sight of what we liked, because there’s an influx of so many new bands, so it’s tricky. It’s a hard one. Probably if I got to my CD collection, I could name a lot, but off the top of my head, it’s the Spawn of Possession stuff and Surruption and Decrepit Birth and Archaic. There are so many good ones, it’s so hard.

Alex: It’s interesting what you say that about the new bands not listening to older stuff.

Derek: I think, say like The Black Dahlia Murder scene for example, they definitely know Suffocation but the fans of Black Dahlia Murder that are making their own bands, they look at Black Dahlia Murder as the one that has the inspiration. Black Dahlia Murder took their inspiration from let’s say early Suffocation and this is all awesome, you’re really excited when you see the generations take what they like from a particular band and recycle it, but I think actually if you go a couple of times down the line, they don’t know where the thing came from. Not that we made up heavy music, but I mean without Black Sabbath and without some of those early thrash bands, you know Metallica, Megadeth, Slayer and all that stuff, you wouldn’t have even had anything to draw inspiration from. It’s always going down a line.

Alex: Do you have any advice for bands just starting out?

Derek: Definitely the perseverance and making sure that you’re doing it because you love it. A lot of people that we’ve crossed paths with over the years have said ‘how’s the money?’ and we say, if you love what you’re doing, the money is great. If you’re doing it for the money, you’re definitely not making enough money because there’s so many hardships and you’re risking your life travelling all over the world and leaving loved ones behind. Again, if you love it, it’s worth every minute of it. If you’re doing it for the wrong reasons, don’t quit your day job. Keep a level head, do it for fun and have fun doing it because as soon as it’s not fun anymore, it’s not worth it. It’s really not worth it. There’s disrespect and the money won’t always be there; there’ll be a cancellation and it will ruin everything. We’ve seen bands cancel tours because a show or two got cancelled and they couldn’t literally make it to the next show, and it’s so hard and it happens. It’s a tough game, but again if you love it, it’s not that hard.

Alex: Finally, do you have anything to say to your fans?

Derek: We’re really happy that people continue to support Suffocation and we’re really proud of the new record Pinnacle of Bedlam. We want to thank the record label, the management team and all of the booking agencies and the promoters who get involved and believe in Suffocation. Without that belief, we’re just another band stuck in New York. So, yeah, we just want to thank everybody for being involved and people like you who want to promote us as well.

Suffocation’s new album Pinnacle of Bedlam is out now via Nuclear Blast Records. You can order the album at this location.

Suffocation online:

http://www.facebook.com/suffocation
http://www.twitter.com/suffocation
http://www.twitter.com/GMarchais
http://www.youtube.com/suffocation
http://www.myspace.com/suffocation
http://www.mocospace.com/suffocation
http://jsrdirect.com/bands/suffocation