CANNIBAL CORPSE Drummer: 'We All Feel Like We're On Top Of Our Game'

Anthony Morgan of Metal Forces recently conducted an interview with drummer Paul Mazurkiewicz of Florida death metallers CANNIBAL CORPSE. A couple of excerpts from the chat follow below.

On the songwriting style of each member:

Paul: "Pat [O'Brien, lead guitar] has his own style… It's a little tougher maybe on the new album, because of songs like 'As Deep As The Knife Will Go' and 'Followed Home Then Killed'. Some of the parts don't sound like Pat, but with the main riffing on 'Followed Home Then Killed', you realize that it was written by him. Three of them have a distinct style of writing, and that's great. You have to have that distinction in the style of writing that separates it where one guy isn't sounding like the other guy, but to me it's apparent. I've been around them long enough and I know how they play, but I would think that the CANNIBAL CORPSE fans would figure those things out too for the most part. Maybe it's not always apparent, but for the most part you can hear who's writing what.

"Pat is very note-y, of course, with very crazy, fast guitar parts. Songs like 'Frantic Disembowelment', 'Dead Human Collection', 'Make Them Suffer' and 'To Decompose', I think it's apparent those are Pat's in the way the riffing works. Alex [Webster, bass] writes note-y stuff as well, but it just seems like it's not as crazy in the playing department and the timings might be a lot more different. Alex really likes to delve into that, where the time signatures are changing or are different than on the last song and doing a lot of mathematics. A song like 'Intestinal Crank' or 'Unnatural' or 'Rabid', those songs I think are Alex's just in the way the riffs are put together. To me, Rob [Barrett, rhythm guitar] just always had more of a thrashy feel to his songs to where his riffs go, a little bit of a more old-school feel."

On "Torture" having the "frenzied attack" of "Butchered At Birth" (1991) or "Tomb Of The Mutilated" (1992):

Paul: "It's just the primal aggression, I think, from the beginning of the band. Songs like 'Demented Aggression', 'Encased In Concrete', 'Rabid', and 'Intestinal Crank' in the speed that we're hitting and the brutality reminds me a lot more of what we did in the old days of CANNIBAL. We seemed to stray away from certain things that we've done a lot. Not always, but it was mostly really the key. A lot of the beats we were doing, they got a little more controlled in the latter years. We really made an effort to pump it up a little bit, and tried to have that fury that we had back in the old days. Songs like that remind me of the old days.”

On "Torture"'s similarities with more recent CANNIBAL CORPSE material:

Paul: "Even though it's got the primal aggression, the timings and so on in 'Intestinal Crank' remind me more of our newer songs. Even though it has a simplistic riff and all that, 'Scourge Of Iron' is very basic and driving. A lot of that with the whole middle part where there's a lot more thought going into the song at that point, that reminds me of the newer CANNIBAL style. Maybe a song like 'The Strangulation Chair' is something a little different than we normally do, and maybe sounds a little bit more like the newer style of CANNIBAL with a lot of craziness happening and the bass guitar from Alex. Those songs in particular I think are the newer style of songs that we have on 'Torture'."

On whether CANNIBAL CORPSE will exist for another 10-20 years:

Paul: "It's hard to say. We're older now, of course — we've been around for 20-plus years. We're all in our mid-to-low 40s, and we still feel healthy. It would be great to go that long, to go another 20 years. Are we able to? Are we physically able to? That's gonna be the question. You gotta take it all day by day at this point. We all feel good and we all feel like we're on top of our game, better than we ever have. We write better than we ever have. Only time will tell; if we're mentally okay and we feel we're still able to put out quality music and physically we can hold up, there's no reason why we can't go another ten to 20 years. Really, it's just hard to predict that, though, because being the age we are now it's really hard to predict what's gonna happen tomorrow. We'll see what happens.”

Read the entire interview from Metal Forces.

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