Brian Sweeney of Blistering recently conducted an interview with AS I LAY DYING drummer Jordan Mancino. A few excerpts from the chat follow:
Blistering: Tell me about the new album.
Jordan Mancino: It's more of a diverse album in terms of style of songs than we've ever done. We were able to spend more time writing for this album and we concentrated mainly on trying to make the songs all sound different and capture you in different ways, so we were able to put in the time to make each song its own so every song didn't sound the same.
We are really excited about the record and excited for people to hear it. We put a song up ("Within Destruction") on our MySpace [recently], and the response from most people has been really good. But it seems that a lot of the older fans that are used to more singing didn't really understand the song because it's a little heavier than we normally play.
Blistering: Are the rest of the songs comparably heavy?
Mancino: That's the thing, is that every song is so different. That's definitely one of the heavier songs on the album. We're planning on releasing another song in a couple weeks to let people know that every song doesn't sound like that—we're the same band, we're just trying to branch out a little bit. A lot of the younger fans don't really understand that because the song we put on MySpace is a little more thrashy. They haven't really listened to bands like ANTHRAX or SLAYER, so I don't think they really get it. We wanted to write songs like that because all those bands are big influences on all of us, so we wanted to show people that side of our interests and our music.
Blistering: The band self-produced both previous albums, but you decided to bring in Adam Dutkiewicz from KILLSWITCH ENGAGE as a producer. What was it like working with him?
Mancino: It was great. It was nice working with someone that was outside of the band. Certain parts that we all had disagreements on he was sort of the unbiased third party that would give us his opinion, and so we chose him because we value his opinion. It was really nice as far as that stuff goes. And he's also a great player — drummer, guitar player, singer — so when we were tracking he was really awesome, really nitpicky. He wouldn't take anything less than perfection from us. It was a very hard tracking experience because he wanted everything perfect, but it was great.
Blistering: Your band doesn't really use the typical grotesque death-gore-metal lyrics. Being a metal fan, do you have difficulty listening to bands that do use that type of imagery?
Mancino: No, not at all. Music is a type of expression. Who am I to say what a person can do and can't do? I might not personally do it myself, but I wouldn't judge anybody. I have no right to do that. We wouldn't do that, but CANNIBAL CORPSE, I guess they have some grotesque type of pictures on their covers or shirts, but that's their thing and that's cool. It's not like we have any issues with that. We actually toured with them this summer, and they're all the nicest, sweetest dudes ever. I'm sure that'll shatter some death metal fans' image of the band because they're really nice guys who aren't going to rip your head off or something. They're all really awesome dudes, and so we do our thing and they do their thing. It's like touring with bands like BEHEMOTH. They do their thing and we do ours. But we're all friends with those guys, so I guess music is our common bond.
Read the entire interview at www.blistering.com.