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Chris Reifert: It's good to be joining forces as Autopsy again and laying down the deathly gospel

Chris Reifert: It's good to be joining forces as Autopsy again and laying down the deathly gospel
BANDS : Autopsy

The latest Autopsy studio album was released 15 years ago. I knew some things about a reunion that took place some time ago, but I had no idea what to expect, so the release of The Tomb Within took me by surprise. As Metalfan never had the opportunity to talk with Autopsy, I challenged Chris Reifert to a discussion.
Read on and you will find out what he shared with us.

Metalfan: Hello and welcome to the pages of Since the history of the band is long and full of moments I am sure our readers know well, I’ll start by asking you how you feel after all these years.

Chris Reifert: Feeling better with each drink of coffee, thank you very much. Heh heh.
Metalfan: When you started Autopsy, did you think or hope it will last that long?

Chris Reifert: I'm pretty sure we had no idea of what the future would hold for us. We were living in the moment and if we could see ahead into the future, we would have been more surprised than anyone.

Metalfan: When one looks at the actual line-up of the band, one thing easily stands out – three of the oldest members are still there (Reifert, Cutler, Coralles). What is your secret?

Chris Reifert: If I told you, it wouldn't be a secret anymore! Let's just say it involves cheap whiskey, a pair of shoes, a tub of chocolate pudding and several toothpicks. Insert your sick imagination here. Haha!

Metalfan: Since you are one of the oldest death/gore metal bands, would you be so kind to answer why did, in your opinion, death metal appear?
Chris Reifert: Seems to be just a natural progression in the quest for the heavy. Death metal seems to be the last outpost in the realm of metal before it gets too ridiculous. Where can we go from here? For us, we are always trying to perfect our own little personal formula.

Metalfan: Are you proud of being part of the actual death metal scene? Do you feel it is a healthy scene? What bands (both old and new) caught your attention lately?

Chris Reifert: Well, I'm still not tired of it. There's something special about it for me. Maybe I still hold some of that teenage excitement that I felt when it was just getting started. Maybe there's something terribly wrong with my brain. If so, I must confess I like it. Is it healthy? Not sure if feasting on zombie flesh and drinking the blood of Satan himself is healthy but please pass the salt and a celery stick and we'll go from there. Don't forget the horseradish! 

Metalfan: Looking back at the moments when you created and recorded your studio albums (Severed Survival, Mental Funeral, Acts of the Unspeakable, Shitfun), what do you remember? Are you still proud of these albums? Is there anything you’d like to change about them?
Chris Reifert: They are all statements of that time in our initial existence that we felt were necessary so I wouldn't change them. Maybe we should have thrown a few Bay City Rollers covers in there but it's probably best we didn't.

Metalfan: I know that you take the artworks and the lyrical concepts of your albums very seriously. How important are they to you, compared to the music?

Chris Reifert: They have to form a perfect gag inducing marriage. All that stuff needs to come together....the music, lyrics, artwork, etc. Don't forget the actual songwriting, which we take very seriously!

Metalfan: Your music has always been intense, dark, brutal and ferocious. Where do you get your inspiration from?
Chris Reifert: We started off with our original influences way back when of course, but honestly, we get the best ideas from the backs of our rotten stinking brains. It's like looking down into a dark well, lowering a bucket into it and seeing what gets scooped up and brought into view.

Metalfan: Still dwelling in the musical and lyrical area, superficial persons who aren’t able to see beyond appearance might consider you obsessed, even dangerous persons. Would you be so kind to chase their misconceptions away? How are you as persons?

Chris Reifert: I am peace and love in the midst of all violence. Now give me that chainsaw please.

Metalfan: I know that around 1995 there has been a break in Autopsy’s activity. What happened? What have you done (musicwise) until getting back together again?
Chris Reifert: Eric had his band Funeral for a brief time and Danny, Joe and myself had Abscess for its existence, among a few other projects. It's good to be joining forces as Autopsy again and laying down the deathly gospel.

Metalfan: Some people probably don’t know that you were the drummer on the mighty Death debut album, Scream Bloody Gore? What was your contribution to this album? How was working with Chuck Schuldiner?
Chris Reifert: I was the drummer and working with Chuck was fantastic. We were close friends and had a great time making death metal together. I'll always be proud of those times as well as these ones now!

Metalfan: Have your children got the chance to listen to your albums? Did they ever come to you asking: Daddy, is that really you singing? Why are you screaming?
Chris Reifert: My son has indeed heard our stuff. He's used to it, so it's no big deal to him. 

Metalfan: On a more serious note, what are your family and relatives thinking about Autopsy? Are they fans of your music?
Chris Reifert: The ones that know about it think it's great. Not necessarily fans, just happy that we're doing what we like to do.

photo by Maciej M

Metalfan: Have you ever had problems singing or promoting your music and albums because of the lyrics and covers? Did you ever have to do alternative artworks to your albums (as Cannibal Corpse did in Germany) in order to have them accepted in a country?
Chris Reifert: We did have the original cover of Severed Survival changed in 1990 which was great because we ended up with two sick horrific covers for that album. Haha! Acts of the Unspeakable got some heat from authorities in Australia but all that stuff was so long ago and we never felt any pressure personally. We just kept going with no compromises.

Metalfan: Why do you think people are afraid of brutal metal?
Chris Reifert: Because since zombies are naturally attracted to music that sings their praises, it could alert them to the listener's presence. This is ok with me since we get along just fine. Just watch out though, because they cheat at poker!

Metalfan: Now coming closer to the actual days, could you please tell me how was the press and public’s feedback to your latest studio product, The Tomb Within?

Chris Reifert: So far it's been really eerie as all the reviews have been really good. What have we done wrong? I'm used to the critics doing their best to slaughter our output to the best of their abilities. We'll try harder next time, blokes!

Metalfan: The Tomb Within was very well received on our website too, it is on the 9th place in the annual top with a ratio of 8.91 out of 10 points. Would you be so kind to make a brief presentation of every track on this EP?
Chris Reifert: Each track is chock full of Autopsy goodness just the way your grandma intended. It's an old family recipe which stands the trials of time. For best results, just listen to the whole EP over and over until it sounds like one continuous version of the Judas Priest song of your choice.

Metalfan: What can you tell me about the lyrical concept of The Tomb Within?
Chris Reifert: If you're referring to the title track, it's pretty much about facing the reality of death and being ok with it.

Metalfan: I know that the person responsible with the artwork is Matt Cavotta. I happened to be a Magic: The Gathering player in the past, a game where he used a lot of his creativity. Are you familiar with his non-musical work?
Chris Reifert: I have seen lots of his stuff and judging by his talent as an artist, we knew he could channel it into some killer work to fit our needs perfectly. He hit it out of the park on The Tomb and it would be great to work with him again some day. Hail, Matt!

Metalfan: How long are we going to have to wait until receiving a new Autopsy full-length album? I hope you are aware that The Tomb Within is nothing more than a teaser for your die-hard fans?!
Chris Reifert: We will record it in the early part of February 2011 and it should be out a couple of months after that. We'll do our best to make it worth the wait!

Metalfan: How did you manage to release all your albums via Peaceville Records, a record label more renowned for releasing doom and gothic metal acts? What is the secret for such a long relationship?
Chris Reifert: The original owner, Hammy was interested in us back in '88 and we struck up a deal even though we were different from the other bands at the time who were mostly crusty HC. This was even before they started in with the gothic doomy stuff, so we're talking waaaay back and we kept up a good relationship with them. There were a few ups and downs over the years but overall we were still happy working together and still are to this day. Crazy, huh?

Metalfan: Are you going to do any promotion for The Tomb Within (in terms of tours, concerts, shows)? Are we going to see you live in Europe too? Who are you going to play with?
Chris Reifert: We are playing the Neurotic Death Fest in Holland next April and we may do a few more choice gigs but definitely no touring. We don't have the desire or means for that so just come and catch us if you can!

Metalfan: Thank you very much for your time and kindness in making this interview happen. The final words are yours.

Chris Reifert: The thanks go to you. Great thoughtful interview there. Thanks for putting up with my dumb answers, but I have to keep myself entertained after all, you know. Haha! Cheers, chunks, beheadings and all that good stuff to ya......
Autor: Sake
   November 09, 2010  | 1 Comments  | 6247 Views « BACK

Comment on: Chris Reifert: It's good to be joining forces as Autopsy again and laying down the deathly gospel

  • Bravo bre, superb interviu!
    Albumul anului, fara nicio umbra de indoiala.
    Si ala de anu viitor o sa fie albumul anului pe 2011, sunt sigur.

    1. Posted by Bolo | 10 Noiembrie 2010 10:52

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