Stephanie Jensen of Infernal TV recently conducted an interview with drummer Chris Reifert of veteran death metallers AUTOPSY. You can listen to the entire chat below. A few excerpts follow (transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET).
On whether AUTOPSY has anything special planned for the 30th anniversary of their "Severed Survival" debut:
Chris: "No, not really. I didn't even realize it was the 30th anniversary until I saw someone saying something about it, so now I know. [Laughs] No, we haven't planned anything. Usually when we play live, we play a bunch of stuff off that album anyway. We're always keeping that stuff out there. Now, we're just focusing on some new stuff right now and happy that people still like that album after all these years."
On his current projects, including his punk rock/metal outfit VIOLATION WOUND, his band with comedian/guitar shredder Dave Hill, PAINTED DOLL, and old-school extreme metal act SIEGE OF POWER:
Chris: "I'm going to be a studio hermit this year, to some extent. Yeah, just lots of new stuff. I'm trying to keep busy. I'm not good at anything else. I like to make a lot of racket, so yeah, I'm recording a PAINTED DOLL album in June, which will be pretty cool, going back out to New Jersey to do that with our buddy Tom [Beaujour]. I'm going to get home and immediately, the next month, record the new VIOLATION WOUND and that will be pretty sick. We've been working in the meantime on AUTOPSY material, so we're kind of taking our time with that. We want to do it right and make it really worth the wait. We hope to record that sometime later in the year. We're not exactly sure when, but we're definitely working on some good stuff. SIEGE OF POWER, we're going to do some split, but I haven't heard about that lately, so I'm kind of just hanging out for the news on that. Yeah, so lots of stuff to do."
On not straying too far from AUTOPSY's core sound while trying to come up with new ideas:
Chris: "That's a good question. I'm not even sure. We just kind of know what we should sound like, I guess. When we write something separately at home, we try to really self-edit ourselves and kind of not really present to everything to everyone else unless we know what we should sound like. This album is kind of a trip because, for me, I had a bunch of songs I wrote last year to go toward the new album. I listened to them a little bit later and I threw them all away and wanted to start all over again fresh. That was kind of a cool approach; I've never done that before. I've always just used, for me, what I've had sitting around, ready to go. I've never thrown away four or five songs and said, 'I can do better than that.' I'm definitely trying to do that this time. That's one of the ways to keep it exciting and make it the best one we can possibly make at this point. In terms of where the ideas come from and stuff like that, I have no idea. It's there, you know? It's just swimming around in the brain for some reason."
On how he ends up taking part in so many different bands:
Chris: "I don't usually set out to start a band or anything like that. It's something that happens. Like with PAINTED DOLL, it just kind of fell into place without a big plan or anything like that. It kind of fell together. Same with VIOLATION WOUND. I just got this idea, 'I should do a crazy punk thing and maybe make a record just for the hell of it.' And it turned into this thing, and six years later, we're still doing it. SIEGE OF POWER, I kind of just fell into that one. They were already together musically and they had a vocalist who couldn't stay in the band for whatever reason. They just hit me up and I said, 'Yeah, it sounds cool.' They're my friends and it sounds cool. A lot of times, these things sort of happen by accident and morph into something from something else."
On how playing on DEATH's legendary 1987 debut, "Scream Bloody Gore" framed him as a musician:
Chris: "It was my first album, so that was exciting. Then just being the age I was at the time, that was… looking back, it's kind of crazy, being 17 and getting to play on that record and play songs that I already liked because I was a fan of DEATH before I ever thought I would get a chance to play in it, so that was extra cool. I got to play 'Beyond The Unholy Grave' and all the songs I liked from the demos, so that was awesome. Overall, it was a killer experience. It made me want to just keep going and keep doing this stuff, even after my time in the band came and went. I'm still hungry to do more. It's great."
AUTOPSY's latest release, the "Puncturing The Grotesque" mini-LP, was released in November of 2017 via Peaceville Records.