It is true that quite a lot people, and most importantly Metal fans, are not that open to receiving new ideas. That’s why Wilson, the bassist of the UK-based outfit Gorerotted, decided to put things straight about the band’s direction and future plans music-wise in this interview.
Thanks to the wonders of technology, I managed to send him a few questions concerning his band’s latest release “A New Dawn For The Dead”, which he was kind enough to answer.
By the way, Wilson, I don’t know where you got the idea that I didn’t like your new album!
So guys, you have quite recently released your third full-length album "A New Dawn For the Dead". Which are the main activities of the members of Gorerotted these days?
Wilson: Well now the work is done, we spend our time drinking ourselves silly, talking to girls who don’t want to be talked to, falling over, drinking our own piss, and that’s before the show! Were concentrating on getting the album out there, doing as many festivals and shows as possible, and getting ready for tour!
Thinking about album titles for this new release, I would expect you to look for another English series title for inspiration- instead, you chose a famous horror movie to "work with". Wouldn't you agree that "Fawlty Towers" or "Red Dwarf" would be good candidates for abuse as the main titles of a Gorerotted release?
Wilson: Yeah, it could be “Baldy Towers”, or “Dead Dwarf”, damn, let’s turn back the clock and re-name the album! Nah, we loved all that stuff, but you can’t overdo something until it becomes boring, this way seemed like the natural way to move forward!
Since the release of "Only Tools and Corpses", there have been quite a few changes in the band, with Mr.Gore no longer handling the vocal duties. Which are the reasons that led to his departure? Is there still a good relationship between him and the members of the band?
Wilson: He stopped working for the band, so he stopped being in the band! He didn’t write any music anyway, and wasn’t as dedicated as he had been in previous years, so it was holding us back! He wanted to leave after the summer festivals, but we felt if he wanted to go, he had to go right away, so I suppose it was a bit of an agreement! Sadly, I haven’t heard from him since the whole sorry affair, but I wish him all the best!
Apart from horror movies, were there any other places that you guys looked in order to draw inspiration for the lyrics of the new album?
Wilson: I find this one a difficult one to answer –personally, I don’t draw inspiration from bands, movies, or books etc When I write my lyrics, it’s what’s going on in my brain, you know, questions that I want answered. Take Pain as a Prelude to Death for example, it’s gory and violent in the verse, but the chorus goes into the feelings and thoughts of murder, what’s the point? So I looked at the whole god like power thing, and what would that feel like? What would it feel like to watch someone die?
Many of the band's older fans are concerned about the quality of the lyrics, which are considered to be Gorerotted's trademark. I have already read a few reviews complaining that the lyrical context of the new album is not as exciting as that of your previous efforts. Who is writing the lyrics for the band nowadays, and what do you/he have to say in your ‘defence’?
Wilson: I write the bulk of the lyrics now. I can’t make people like it, so that’s cool, people have to have mixed opinions. I’ll answer from myself as a fan’s point of view! I like the lyrics of old, but that has been done, and I’m not satisfied with bands offering “more of the same” attitude, I want to see development and progression. But if these fans wanna have the same old shit, I’ll ask them to read the lyrics again, like Adding Insult to Injury for example – that was written about Ben and his drug crazed whores from London, taking it in the naughty place for a fix – “I gave her white, and she offered me the brown!” – if that’s not classic Gorerotted, I don’t know what is!
Did Mr.Gore have an active role in the song-writing process, and if yes, how much did his departure influence the way that you prepared your material for the new album?
Wilson: Like I said earlier, he couldn’t play an instrument, so as far as the music is concerned, nothing had changed there! As far as the lyrics were concerned, Ben and Tim still contributed to this album the same way they did in the past, so I can answer that question honestly by saying, it had no influence whatsoever – we were writing this shit while he was still in the band, only thing was he was too lazy to come to rehearsals!
Which, would you say, are the main differences between "A New Dawn For the Dead" and your previous efforts? It seems to me that you are more into creating straight-forward Death Metal composition these days. Are there any past elements present on this new album?
Wilson: Look where “To Catch a Killer” left off on “Only Tools and Corpses”…that in my eyes, is straight forward sing along death metal, “And Then Everything Went Black”. I think this album is a natural progression for us, no big changes or a new image or something! The thing is about Gorerotted, is that we are a very honest band, and present ourselves exactly the way we are! If we were to do another “Only Tools” album just to keep certain people happy, then it would defeat the whole point of making metal!
Would you agree with me that "Dead Drunk" and "Horrorday in Haiti" are the two songs that link the band's past and current musical directions? Which are the compositions of this new album that will become more appealing to Gorerotted's older fans?
Wilson: Yes and no! I think all of the songs should appeal to fans of old, and new fans too! I can’t live in the past my friend, and that’s all there is to it! I get the impression you are one of these people???
When I received the promo from Metal Blade, it took me a while to realise that what I was holding in my hands was the new Gorerotted album. The cover looks totally different from the "gory" themes that you used in "Mutilated In Minutes" and "Her Gash I Did Slash". Who is the person that you've employed? Is the outcome their "visual" representation of your music, or did they work under your instructions?
Wilson: There is a bio on there which tells you this shit you know! The artist was Mick Kenney, you know the dude from Anaal Nathrakh, who also does art for Napalm Death and other extreme metal acts! He worked under our instruction, so much so that he probably wanted to kill us!!! But look at the art, it looks like the cover for the “Evil Dead” on the original cassette – if that’s not Gorerotted, then what is?
When did you start preparing the songs for "A New Dawn For the Dead". I know that you had a very busy touring schedule supporting bands like Pungent Stench and Cannibal Corpse this past year. Did hanging around with them influence the way that you perceive extreme music?
Wilson: Every touring experience has some influence on us, and it’s a little bit closer to liver failure too! We’ve been lucky enough to have some great tours over the last years, and have met some really cool people! If I put it in perspective, from when I was a kid I looked at Cannibal Corpse and Pungent Stench as metal gods, now I’m on the phone to Martin or whatever, it shows you these guys are human too! We were always sharing ideas in between shows and tours, and we’re doing the same right now for the next album!!!
Tell us a few things about the recordings of "A New Dawn For the Dead". Why did you decide to record the album in the Aexxys-Art studio in Germany?
Wilson: We wanted to get away to do the record, you know close yourself away from normal life, and girlfriends and other distractions. We had been working with a German sound guy, Markus Roedl, and he had really come to know our sound, what we wanted, and what we needed! As the Gorerotted live sound is a very big part of what we are, we wanted to capture some of that on this record. I think too many bands sound so mechanical and over produced, so I wanted an organic feel this time round, and we got it! Aexxys-Art is an awesome studio, and it’s got a sauna, where I cracked on off!
You had a team of three people working on your sound. Did you enjoy working with them, and would you describe the whole process to have been successful?
Wilson: We had some problems with some of it, but nothing too major, just hassles that you could do without! Stephan from Necrophagist who helped us in the mix was awesome, I mean he’s only known as an (awesome) musician, but he really knows his stuff, is really passionate about it, and has the ear for it! I didn’t work with Christophe personally, but I think all the parts of the process have come together I the end!
Do you still enjoy being part of the Metal Blade roster? How supportive are they towards the band's musical vision?
Wilson: I love being part of Metal Blade! I know so many band’s say this, but they really are a to class label, and are 100% behind their bands! Metal Blade don’t influence us in any way where we want to go, and they are honest, down to earth metal heads, who love music as well as the business – that’s the winning formula!
Have you been offered the chance to work on a video for the new album? I would love to know what the subject will be, even though I have a slight idea.
Wilson: Ha! You will be right on that one! To be honest we haven’t decided on a video, it was just not a priority coming up to release time, and now tour is the main priority! I’m not saying it won’t happen, but it’s just not something we’ve thought about at this stage!
I know that the limited version of the album will have a bonus DVD, which is a well-known Metal Blade strategy. What sort of "goodies" have you prepared for us?
Wilson: Yeah, it’s a really good package! On the CD, you get a cover version of Emperor’s “I Am The Black Wizard’s”, which I still love! On the DVD, you have 2 live shows, one from Summer Breeze 04, and one from a club show on tour with Vomitory! It shows the 2 sides to our live show, and we love both of them! We also have the video for “Only Tools and Corpses” on there, just in case the ladies wanna check me out!
Seeing as there are many big festivals going on during the summer period, is the band going to participate in any of them? Any plans for a potential European headline tour?
Wilson: Yeah, we love festivals, and we’ve done about 9 so far! We tend to stick to the more Underground fests, like FTC, and Mountains of Death, but I love that shit! Then in September we’re touring Europe for 1 month with Decapitated, so we should be pretty much everywhere on that one – keep checking the website!
You have many times mentioned that you love performing live. How does it feel when you see a large group of people responding positively to your music? This must be a huge ego boost.
Wilson: Believe me, we don’t need any more ego, but yeah, it’s a killer feeling! I mean that’s the whole reason you start playing metal in the first place, and if people can enjoy our music with us, then that makes it all worthwhile!
You are well aware that there is a metal revival going on in the United Kingdom and especially in London, where there are quite a lot of extreme metal gigs taking place. Since some of you are Londoners, how would you explain this change in attitude of the English crowd?
Wilson: I’m not too sure what revival you’re on about, but I take your word for it! I’m a Glasgow boy originally, but I’ve been here for 3 years now! I keep in touch with the scene here, but it seems much the same to me, maybe I’m just too drunk at shows or something!
Have you listened to any good music lately? Name the best and the worst album that you bought in the recent past.
Wilson: Oh man, that a hard one, there’s so much music coming out all the time! The best death metal album in a long time is Prostitute Disfigurement (Left in Grisly Fashion) – that band just impress on every level, and it’s just a pleasure to listen to! Worst album, that’s a hard one too, there’s also so many! I suppose anything that Jon our drummer listens to, you know all these bands with unreadable logo’s pictures from the internet, and names like Severed Vagina of Doom or something! ZZZZ zzzz ….
Would you say that your thirst studio effort signals a "new dawn" for the band? What should we expect from Gorerotted in the future?
Wilson: It is a New Dawn for us, but people seem to be taking that the wrong way, like we’ve started over or something – it’s a new chapter for us, and we have a new set of goals, and we’re geared up for the challenge! Expect more of the same in the future – we’re always gonna make extreme metal, but don’t be alarmed if things develop a little, and we don’t stagnate in a pool of our won piss – it’s still good old Gorerotted behind it all!
Thank you for doing this interview. A message to your fans.
Wilson: Yeah, thanks to you, hopefully you’ll like the new album soon too! Our fans, just thank you for your support, that’s what makes it all worthwhile! If your at a show, come and say hey, and join the party, get hideously drunk, and fall over in a pool of your own filth! Or mine!!!
Interview © 2005