- Hello,Gene. I am happy to have a chance to talk to a dedicated veteran musician like you again after Perdition Temple’s soulcrusher new album which was just released. How are you nowadays?
As best as possible during all this lockdown time with the virus epidemic/etc… Trying to make the most of it and use the extra home time to be as productive as possible and generate new material for PERDITION TEMPLE band, which almost half into a new album of material and the current album only came out 2 months ago, and also even some additional stuff for an as yet unannounced new project which could develop into something exciting.
- How did you start to work on the new album called Sacrament of Descension?
For this latest album it has been the same process as all previous albums. I’ve let influence come at it’s own natural pace, nothing forced I try to craft what I feel are the best songs, and not overly concern myself whether the material I write is reinventing the wheel for this genre of death metal music.
- What things were you focusing on while you were writing the compositions of Sacrament of Descension?
I was trying to be as current in my writing, or next level/etc and at the same time wanted to reference things that were as old as the very beginning of my entrance into the pursuit of creating this sort of death metal music. A sort of mixing of far past and very near present combination of influences. And that applies to the lyrics on this one also. Subjects ranging from the oldest staples of topics for death metal to things that are very current to subjects i research/etc…
- Sacrament of Descension is the strongest album of Perdition Temple as recording,sound and mixing in my perspective.How did you record it? Can you tell us the story of recording of Sacrament?
All three of us in the band have our own home studio setups of sorts… I know Ronnie and Alex have a relatively elaborate setup. Mine is probably the most meager. I have an essentially outdated digital recorder 8 track that work perfectly for my purposes but has surely been replaced by much simpler methods now… I like using the device that I have to record because it functions in the same way old 4 track cassette recorders worked. We each recorded our parts individually and once complete we then went to mix with Jarrett Pritchard at his studio in Orlando, FL. And the mixing was a quite smooth experience as Jarrett is the same age as us and comes from the same musical background as all of us so communication was very easy, and I feel the end result of the finished album reflects this.
- Where were you born? What kind of a familiy did you have while you were growing up?
I was born and lived for the most part of my life until around 23 years old in a southeastern city in the state of Minnesota, here in USA. Not much of any sort of metal music community there. But some people were into it and we all sort of learned about this music without any outside input. No one to tell us who the or bad bands were/etc… So I benefited from not having any set of rules as to what the right or wrong/etc was to this genre of music. I did not come from any sort of musically inclined family, so aside from some gracious early purchases my parents helped me with to get 1st guitars/etc, there was not so much other support related to music stuff.
- When did you start to listen metal music and what is the story of your musical career? How did you end up as an underground metal music artist and composer?
It was around the age of 13 that i started to notice metal bands stuff.. some 1st buys were maybe IRON MAIDEN and MEGADETH/etc… Then onto most of the known history of thrash metal/etc going through the 80’s from there… real standouts for then to this day are CELTIC FROST, POSSESSED, MERCYFUL FATE, SLAYER/etc… in late 80’s into 90’s some of the new bands coming around like CARCASS or MORBID ANGEL/etc… All through that time too though, I also kept up with traditional heavy metal things like JUDAS PRIEST, DIO, or even WASP. Maybe even some of that guitar shred stuff like CACOPHONY, or other stuff like that… Thing that I never liked so much about most of the shred stuff was that most all the bands for that stuff really didnt have so much for memorable songs… just arrangements to put solos over. So I guess that is a part of why I gravitated towards very riff/song involved stuff and I think that was a big inluence in my own writings.
- How was the life when you grew up as life and music scene?
As I mentioned, No real metal community were I grew up into my late teens even. The nearest metal shows at all were always over 100 miles from where I lived, and with no internet then and no local adverts/flyers, it was rare that I even saw many concerts. There were some though, enough to be an additional inspiration to pursue a band a live act also.
- Let’s go back to the formation days of Perdition Temple. How did you start it up? What were your thoughts behind Perdition Temple ?
The former band I’d been doing up to that point, ANGELCORPSE, was a combined creative process, for better or worse maybe. Hence there were things I may have wanted to include in the music of that band that never materialized. With the end of that band in 2009, I immediately reforged my work into what is PERDITION TEMPLE and the debut album was released in 2010(on OSMOSE PRODUCTIONS). With PERDITION TEMPLE I only am limited by whatever imagination and musical ability that I possess. I chose the band name because I feel it is a fair moniker to express the celebration of chaos, ruin, and abomination themes that resonate through the lyrics and the energy of the music itself.
- I think you have been asked by the same question for a lot of times about the disband of Angelcropse through years.So this one is a little boring. You came together with Pete to play for a couple of times but it wasn’t ended up new albums. What was the history of these formations? Do we have any possibility to see AngelCorpse with a new full-lenght as alive as a full time band?
There is zero possibility of any future ANGELCORPSE material from me. Music wise I am now 3 albums of material in with PERDITION TEMPLE and effectively have more songs now with this band than that dead band. It was lightning in a bottle while it worked… but when it was NOT working it was not so great. Those live reunion shows a few years back were a way of supporting the LP re-releases that came out around same time. It gave us an opportunity to do some big fest shows/etc… and that was it. There was never any intention to create new ANGELCORPSE music… why would I bother? I have so much more complete liberty with writing my songs/lyrics for PERDITION TEMPLE that it would surely be a backwards move for me to step backwards with something dead now like ANGELCORPSE. Some great material resides there and some songs I still cherish highly, but dead and part of the past now.
- Can you give some info about Blasphemic Cruelty which is your other active project? When will it come back with a record again?
Both the other previous projects of BLASPHEMIC CRUELTY and APOCALYPSE COMMAND are non active at this point. Material and performances from all involved that I am and always will be proud of, but realistically no future stuff is planned under those monikers.
- Can you tell us the musicians who influenced and inspired you ?
In no real order, ULI JOHN ROTH, TIPTON/DOWNING, KING/HANNEMANN, DENNER/SHERMAN, BLACKMORE, TG WARRIOR, I guess those being a lot of the science into what I study/etc… fuse that with the whole of the thrash/death/speed metal movement and that sums me up for the most part.
- What things are you inspired from while you write songs?
Musically, the whole swirl of everything I’ve mentioned already.. but also weird true crime, especially those done under occult intentions… things I read about. Films, usually either fantastical or horror or true crime/etc…
- What is the strangest thing to inspire a song which you composed?
There was a song on the 2nd PERDITION TEMPLE album, “The Tempter’s Victorious” that had a song called “Diluvium Ignis” that was heavily based on and inspired by post apocalyptic sci-books I’d read. I guess not so strange, but to me seemed more like something lyrically that old 70’s bands might have done/etc…
- What do you listen nowadays? What are your favorites from metal and other genres?
New bands in recent years I like are ASCENDED DEAD, VITRIOL, MAGNANIMVS, BEYOND(RIP), OMEGA VORTEX, those bunch really stick out to me as delivering death metal the way I like to know it! And maybe some not death metal stuff like LUCIFER or UNCLE ACID.
- Do you have any guilty pleasure bands or songs when you hang out at home or car?
Maybe the SHANGRI-LAS?
- What genre of music would you like to play except extreme metal music if you have time?
Probably some sort of 70’s heavy rock worshiping CAPTAIN BEYOND, BUFFALO, HORSE, with an evil twist of THE SWEET… or some other
- Why did you give up Apocalyptic Command after two releases? What is the story of this project?
APOCALYPSE COMMAND was just me doing some material heavily influenced by BESTIAL WARLUST, BLASPHEMY, SARCOFAGO/etc… was surely a project for recordings only and I don’t expect there will ever be a live show or future music from this.
- As far as I know, you hanged out with Anal Blast for some time in the end of 90’s. How was it happened if I am correct?
I was never part of that band. It happened that I was visiting the city(Minneapolis, MN) in 1999 where some of the members were located and they had me sit in and play along on some cover tunes of KREATOR, MORBID ANGEL, and VENOM… I think the only one that ever saw a release on some compilation was the VENOM track..
- One of your first bands was Impiety with Aantar from Diabolic. I listened your demo years ago and I am listening it right now. I can clearly say that it is one of the underrated projects and demos back in time. Would you like to reactivate Impiety again?
No, I don’t think that one will ever return as a band… bits of songs from that have found their way into other projects we have both been involved with, and maybe some parts might even bleed into some new PERDITION TEMPLE song! The bringing up old shit never gets old! haha! There was a recent cd collection of the 2 demos done under that moniker, released by VOMIT RECORDS(MEX).
- You are an actor apart from your musical career and you are an horror movie fan as well. How did you start to act in movies? What is the background of your acting career?
I’d known the owner of the company, UNEARTHED FILMS since the early 2000’s. A few years ago they began doing their own film productions which I was asked to participate as actor and soundtrack contributor. The 1st was the 2015 film, BLOODSHOCK and the 2017 film, SONG OF SOLOMON. Both are graphic horror/gore type films. it was a great experience to see the production of a film from all ends of it from acting, editing, soundtrack/etc… much more complex than simply recording a music album!
- What does Death Metal mean to you? You are one of the composers who invented death/black metal as genre.How did you go on this path as a musician?
As best as possible everything the death metal music means to me I’ve tried to convey in the music I’ve created for any of the associated bands I’ve written and recorded for. It is something defined in action for me, and actual creation. It is not something that has meaning if just put into words.
- We are unfortunately in a reality of lockdowns with a goddamn pandemic and it slayed live shows and tours and some possible releases in music business . What do you think about this Covid-19 pandemic? How will it be ended up?
Trying to be as productive as possible with new material for PERDITION TEMPLE and also even some other new wickedness boiling up that will reveal itself in time here soon! It has been harder financially for myself and so many other people worldwide with lost hours from jobs/etc… but on the up side the extra time at home has enabled me to be that much more rapidly productive in creativity for music. I know I am not alone in this thinking. I’m sure end of this year and next year there will a mass amount of new music arriving from artists way ahead of expectations. For sure I can guarantee that is will NOT be 5 years until the next PERDITION TEMPLE album!
- What are the lyrical themes and stories with concepts in Sacrament of Descension album?
Similar as always, Apocalyptic or post-Apocalyptic, occult murder and mayhem, insane messianic cults, and even some well aged subject like Elizabeth Bathory and Gilles De Rais get some space in this collection of songs.
- What are your musical plans for Perdition Temple after this pandemic?
Likely a 4 song mcd/mlp to expect to be finished maybe by this years end, and I am already half way into material for a future PERDITION TEMPLE full length to maybe have by the end of 2021… so things on the music side are quite good!
- We came to the final stage.What would you like to tell to your fans and metal music maniacs who read this interview out there?Thanks to any/all for the support of works
I’ve done over the last few decades!