Pig Destroyer - Pretty Girls Make Great Corpses
By: David E. Gehlke
Blistering.com: Katherine Katz from Agoraphobic pops up on ďEve.Ē Was it nice for a female to lend a voice?
Harrison: Yeah. That song was better coming from a womenís perspective with a womenís voice. Kat doesnít sound like a ďwomanĒ per seÖI donít know [laughs]. She came in and she nailed it in two takes and that was it. Whereas my vocals, I was a lot less efficient [laughs]. She came in, her and Rich [Johnson, Agoraphobic Noseblood] and Jason Netherton [Misery Index], they just nailed it really quick.
Blistering.com: Itís not like you guys had to force their way into the songs. All three fit rather comfortably.
Harrison: That was something we were really concerned about. Itís a death knell to me when you see a band with a record and they have six guest vocalists. Itís like ďThatís the last weíll ever hear from them.Ē Maybe Iím traditional, but thatís how it goes.
Blistering.com: One of the important aspects of Phantom Limb was the fact you had some longer songs, at least by Pig Destroyer standards. Book Burner goes back to short songs, so is there a length you think suits the band best?
Harrison: I think the four-on-the-floor short and quick grinders are bad-ass. I think if you can say that in the time that you need to do it, then thatís fine. If itís a longer format, then thatís fine. For me, I come from a more punk rock/power violence background, so I prefer the shorter side of things. Leave them wanting more.
Blistering.com: The album is 32 minutes, but it takes a lot to get into.
Harrison: Itís weird. When I listen to it, I get a different thing. When I get into the short blasts, I think the album is stripped-down. But there are different arrangements Iím not familiar withÖIíve heard them, theyíre just different for me. I think itís a combination of all of our records. If you want to go through all the records, Iíd say Phantom Limb is a thrashier record, Terrifyer is an artier one, and Prowler in the Yard is a death metal, old-school one. This album has elements of each of those.
Blistering.com: You have one of the more interesting roles in metal. Youíre considered the sampler or ďnoiseĒ guy, so how do you approach the songs? Do you get to them early when Scott is writing, or do you figure out your parts when heís done? And, do you get to do whatever you want?
Harrison: Iím involved from the get-go, but I definitely donít get to do whatever I want. My shit probably gets nitpicked more than anyoneís [laughs]. When weíre writing and arranging, itís a difficult position. Like, a bass player knows where he stands. I donít want to just twiddle knobs and drop in movie samples over the entire thing. You have to let the song breathe and live on its own, and finding that line is difficult. I think my contributions on this album could have been a little bigger, but this is where we ended up. Iím not jumping up and down screaming ďLook at me!Ē Iím very fortunate to be in the position that Iím in and grateful to be here. To answer your question, we work on it. Itís the four of us working on the songs. Itís gutted, stripped, rebuilt and sometimes itís like ďJesus, letís just go with it.Ē
Blistering.com: Your spot is tough because if you do too many samples or noise bits, you might cloud the guitars and vocals. I think you do a good job of picking your spots.
Harrison: I definitely donít want to overshadow JR and Scott. The chemistry is there between them as a songwriting team. I was fan of the band before I joined and I definitely donít want to ruin that. Iím not there to be in the spotlight. Scott wanted to add this thing and asked me to be part of it, and I am stoked and grateful for it.
Blistering.com: Are you always collecting noise and sample bits? Do you have a nice cadre of stuff for when the time comes?
Harrison: I do. And it never seems like itís enough. I have gigs of stuff and when we were going through it, and somehow, itís not enough. Iíll be watching a movie and Iíll hit pause, then Iíll have it to grab it. I donít know if it is good or right, but if something sticks out, it sticks out.
Blistering.com: The samplist/DJ role in metal is a tough one because thereís this stigma against them because of nu metal. Did you ever encounter any ďThis guy is going to come in and ruin Pig Destroyer by using a turntable?Ē
Harrison: Yeah! I donít get it [laughs]. Itís one reason I try not to read too much on the internet. I just want to play music with my friends. There is a lot of that, but there are people who think it adds something and they enjoy it. The more critical reviews seem to think I add something.
Blistering.com: I saw an ad for the album and it looks like Relapse is releasing a version of it in cassette format. Whatís up with that?
Harrison: I guess cassettes are making a comeback. Like vinyl did in the 90ís, but I was always a collector, so it didnít make a comeback in my eyes. I think itís a limited run, like 300 or 500 copies. There are kids that want something like that, like that really rare, hard-to-find copy. I think if weíre going to go that far, might as well do an eight-track, reel-to-reel [laughs].
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