Nekrogoblikon aren’t your run of the mill parody band, and musically it’s a little unfair to say that they’re just making music for comedy gold. Though Heavy Meta has a lot of comical moments, a lot of hard work went into making the record as Scorpion (Keyboards/Vocals) discussed here in the interview as well as an “interesting” interpretation of the album’s title. Was I being trolled? Or maybe we should say goblined in this case. At any rate, this is also the first interview I’ve ever done where the artist actually asked me a question! We also talked about Andrew W.K., album reissues and future live shows!
So tell me about your new album, Heavy Meta. Were you going for something deep and philosophical with the title? “Meta” actually means “to transcend” or to “go higher.”
Funny you should say that! The definition of meta that I was thinking of is:
“Adjective US 1. (of a creative work) referring to itself or to the conventions of its genre; self-referential.” Essentially, the album is a story about goblins, which is also a story about the band. The depth and philosophy are just byproducts of the reality which inspired the topic in the first place.
But seriously, when you started Nekrogoblikon what were your goals? It sounds to me like you just wanted to play metal and have a fun time while doing it.
When we started Nekrogoblikon, it was just myself and my old friend Tim (who has since departed from Nekrogoblikon). We did it as a summer project, and we got into spamming it out to people on MySpace, since in those days you could send a friend request from a band profile. It started to gain some traction and we were both stoked on that. Tim found a grander vision and put in a lot of footwork turning it into a real band. I have always been more at home writing/producing/in the studio. Since then, I’ve fronted the band for thousands of people. Can’t say I expected to be here, but also not complaining.
What do you expect people to say about Heavy Meta? What would be your defense to the statement, “those guys are just a parody band.”
There’s really no need to defend against that. I think the music speaks for itself. I expect people to say that they love it. Some people will be confused by it at first, since it’s outside of the norm. Those same people will eventually realize that they’ve loved it all along. (Agreed.)
Lyrically, what inspires the topics for your albums?
Goblins, obviously. Goblins, philosophy, life experience, friends, memories… What inspires you to ask the questions that you ask?
(The reason I ask the questions I do, is because I literally want to know. I’m sure that some guys just do it as a day to day thing to populate their website, but I was offered the opportunity and decided that it is something I wanted to do, rather than something I felt I had to do. I like the band and feel that you guys needed to be promoted. More often than not, I’m spinning the album at the same time that I’m writing an interview, so that I can familiarize myself with the material and find things that I want to ask from the record itself. No one ever tells me what to write and I’ve always written what I want to know about a band or artist. Creators and artists fascinate me, so I find that I never run out of interesting things to ask them. Keep in mind that I’m also an artist. I write my lyrics and I perform them as well. So I’ve got a pretty good handle on this metal thing.)
Musically, who would you consider your influences? I’m hearing a lot of Children Of Bodom in there.
The answer is “the universe.” Honestly, there are too many to list. I will agree that Bodom was a gigantic influence; initially their memetics will always find a home in Nekrogoblikon. But really, yeah… like, you tell me.
What was it like working with Andrew W.K.? The man did an amazing job on “Let’s Get Fucked.” It was great.
The guy was just how one would imagine him. If he’s in character, he’s always in character. What I mean is that he’s not playing a character, he just is how he seems, which is good. He definitely showed no absence of willingness to party. Glad you liked the tune!
Let’s talk about the writing process for the album. Clearly a great deal of time and effort was put into the writing of this disc, there’s a great deal of progression and song structures regardless of the comical lyrical content.
I spent over six months outlining and writing the concept/story/lyrics for the album! I’m glad they made you laugh. (Smiles) We started with an ever-expanding pool of ideas, which are generally in MIDI format. We ended up using some of those ideas as starting points, while also writing a bunch of new ones in the process. We basically just got stoked and wrote shit. First music, then lyrics, then keys, the sequencing/supplementary keys, then production elements. It’s very step by step.
Now let’s talk about the recording process for the album. Where did you guys record the disc and how long did that take? What was the atmosphere like in the studio and what did you do for enjoyment outside of recording?
Writing Heavy Meta took about a year and a half to two years. We recorded demos by ourselves first, which is a great way to get the ideas in your head before you’re spending money on studio time. We recorded the drums, guitars and vocals with engineer and co-producer Matt Hyde. He’s a very nineties cat and that mentality was something I felt that we shared. After guitars, drums, and vocals were tracked by Hyde, I finished up keys (tracked at my home studio) with Raptor and went to Arizona to mix it with a guy called Matt Good. We ended up getting a few mixer-dudes to do test mixes, and Good’s won in a blind test. So we went with him. He’s a good dude and I imagine you’ll be hearing more from him in the not-too-distant future.
Speaking of enjoyment, what do you gentlemen do for fun outside of playing and recording music? What are some things you’d recommend we check out?
We just drink a lot, get in arguments and then work on more music. Check out Siriusmo. He’s definitely worth a good few listens.
Where can we see you goblins live on stage? What other acts will you be playing with? You can see us wherever we end up!
Admittedly, we play a lot of shows at the Whisky a Go-Go here in LA. We’re surely going on more tours, but we don’t have them planned out this far in advance. I’d say to like us on the Facebook/Twitter and we’ll keep everybody informed as to where we’re going and when (as soon as we know ourselves!).
Now that you’ve got the label push, is there a chance that 2011’s Stench could be re-released in the future? I’m sure that after hearing this one, people will want to hear it as well.
Well, it’s a self-created label, because of time being a factor. There’s absolutely a chance that Stench will be re-pressed. As soon as enough people buy Heavy Meta or anything else from us, we’ll be able to afford things like reissues. (Smiles again)
Thanks for continuing to make interesting music that I feel goes above and beyond the expectations of most people who will consider you a mere parody band. Heavy Meta is definitely one hell of an album, and it’s quite exhilarating from beginning to end. Hard work was put in and hard work was noticed here at The Grim Tower.
Very much appreciated, good bud. We poured all we could into Heavy Meta and it means a lot to hear your reaction. At the end of the day, I hope the work can speak for itself. Thanks for the questions, keep it real, and HAIL THE FRIENDS \mm/