Metal Wani editor in chief Owais "Vitek" Nabi recently conducted an interview with vocalist Chris Barnes of death metal veterans SIX FEET UNDER. You can listen to the full chat below. A few excerpts follow (transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET).
On if SIX FEET UNDER has "reached the pinnacle of their creativity" with its forthcoming album, "Torment":
Chris: "I don't think I'll ever reach the pinnacle of creativity. [Laughs] There's always something more that's enticing my imagination and creativity, and all of that. I always look forward to the next project."
On the early fan response to the new songs from "Torment":
Chris: "It seems like everyone's digging it so far, man. Two songs are released and the video, and a play-through video with Jeff [Hughell, bass/guitar]. It's been cool; people have been, I guess, pleasantly surprised at what we put together for this. It's a killer album. I'm hoping that vibe will continue."
On not rehashing old ideas on SIX FEET UNDER albums:
Chris: "I like having elements that I do and that I've done. I just like the idea of doing those things just a little differently. It's no fun listening to the same thing over and over. There's too many other bands that like to do that. I like to go around and see what will stick to the wall, and get that killer feeling again with music. I like what I'm doing. I've always enjoyed creating music, so being inspired is always important. I'm just lucky to have great musicians in the band. I've always had great musicians that I've worked with. I think it's cool to build upon what you've done and I don't mind looking back at things. I'm very proud of all the albums and music that I've been lucky to be involved with. I think this album right now for me is very exciting because it has such a real good flow to it. I think our fans have been waiting on something that every song is really powerful. This is that album. I'm glad that we've gotten a good response so far. That's important."
On what new members Hughell and drummer Marco Pitruzella brought to the band:
Chris: "I didn't really do anything different on that side of things on this one. But Jeff wrote the whole album, music-wise, so that was really cool. He came up with some great songs. Marco did a great job lending his drumming talents, extensive talents to the album. It made for an interesting album. It's what I always wanted to do."
On Pitruzella reportedly recording all of the drums on "Torment" in one take:
Chris: "He did a great job. He did all the songs, each song, in one take from what I was told. Each song was recorded in one take. He's a very talented guy, like I said, he was able to bring out some real cool ins and outs on the album for sure."
On whether he wondered why he didn't use Hughell for songwriting sooner:
Chris: "Everything has its own vibe. At certain points, things worked out a certain way, so I absorbed what the universe at whatever point in time it is, and try to do my best with that. We worked on stuff before, but it didn't gel at certain points in time. This album came together, I guess, we're all in alignment and everything worked out. When you fight things against the grain, it's never a good thing at any point in life. You just have to flow with things and feel out where you're supposed to be. At this point in time, I was supposed to be with Jeff working on this album."
On his identifiable vocal style:
Chris: "I think of it as my first album. I just approach it from a fresh point of view, because I don't blanket a vocal style, a specific vocal style over music. That's not how I work. I listen to a song, and I interpret from some part of the universe, I don't know where, but I just try to blend what I'm hearing in my head with the music as I'm singing it. I don't know. It's just my approach is from the music itself at that point in time and how I hear it, and how I feel it sounds good in my head, and accommodating. I can't put a finger on it, but I don't come in with any preconceived notion, and I don't think about how I sang in the past. The past is now, and now is the past. People can say what they want to say about my vocals, 'He can't sing like he used to.' I don't know…I know my vocals and myself pretty well, and there are things I did on this album that I know for a fact that I never would have been able to accomplish in 1991. There's a lot of things that people like to believe that aren't true. It's just their daydream opinions."
"Torment" will be released on February 24 via Metal Blade. The disc was mixed by Chris "Zeuss" Harris and was previously described by Barnes as "the most brutally intense, groove-laden masterpiece we've ever put together!"