After bringing out a fabulous new record called Anatomy Is Destiny and being the creators of the one and only Gore Metal, I was really looking forward to do this interview with Exhumed. My colleague Demondust was supposed to do this interview at the No Mercy festival, but it turned out that I had to do it instead some days later in the Little Devil. The questions in this interview are made by Demondust. This interview was done with Matt Harvey, creator of Gore Metal.
M-C: This is the last day of the tour, how has it been going and how do you look back onto it?
Matt: It’s been going actually really fucking well. We sailed in the states for a 5 week tour with Cannibal and Hypocrisy. We continued for a headlining show and then laid back. After that, we went back to Europe for the No Mercy tour and it’s been really fucking great man! We also went to Iceland, which was a cool experience, but the show sucked! Then we returned here, and now we have some days of.
M-C: Do you think you’ve reached a more mature level concerning the artwork on Anatomy Is Destiny?
Matt: Yeah… I hate to say mature though, that sounds not right. We have been working and improving our style, and that also includes the artwork and the band had more problems with that actually hahaha. You know, it’s like preserving the cool things we’ve done in the past and also expanding… you know grow with the band and stuff like that. We are continually challenging ourselves musically, physically and visually and everything else. We want to push ourselves with everything we do and also try to do it different. I know that this album is different than the usual heap we produce, but we just don’t want to keep doing things over and over again. Like our next album, it will pretty sound the same as Anatomy Is Destiny, but a little different. That’s us you know hahaha. Our artwork will be different and we keep on moving forward.
M-C: What was your family’s first reaction when they saw and heard you play Gore Metal?
Matt: Honestly… My mom watched once.
M-C: Was that in the period you vomited on stage gheghe
Matt: Nah, it was way before that. It was in 1991, when we had our first shows. She didn’t like it the first time she saw us do it. My family is just like that. They did not like it, but after awhile they’ve come to accept it and they don’t care anymore. It’s just the thought that I’ve come to that point of.. Hey, It’s cool to travel around the world and do my thing I like. I think it’s just cool to visit new places and practice your hobby and when you get back home, there’s still time enough to find a job.
M-C: How big are the influences of Thrash metal in your music, if you are to speak?
Matt: I would say… Pretty big hahah. For us this music is a mix between death metal and certainly thrash with pure grindcore. We are the very few bands that have been inspired by Unseen Terror and Agent Steel. We are not afraid to show it because we all love all kinds of metal. For example: Accept… and King Diamond of course. We have influences from other kinds of music too. To us we can say Thrash-Core, but that would just be the next thing for us. We just have influences from a great range of various styles.
M-C: Throughout the years you guys have had a big amount of line-up changes. Could you guide us through that story and how is it to work with different people over and over again?
Matt: It kind of is actually. The ideal situation for me would be a stable band, where there would be the same old guys, rehearsing together and who really know each other. Too bad 2 guys quitted with it, but we still wanted to go on tour. We had some problems with jobs, but we just want to tour constantly when possible. It just didn’t work out as we wanted and that’s the main reason behind all those changes in the band. That’s a note for the future as well, we don’t want to be a band which holds up Mike and me and some other guys. We want to be a regular band with regular guys. Well, we had some changes before but now those times are hopefully over and we’ll get things ready for tour. We want to keep as steady as possible. I want to be able to say in 5 years: Hey we are the exact same guys for 5 years, YES I know we had a lot of changes before… but! We are not 2 assholes who constantly kicked people out of Exhumed hahaha. To be honest, we still hang out with those guys who have been in the band. We see each other at parties and stuff.
M-C: Nice party that would be gheghe, I think the whole Exhumed would be 20 people or more hahaha!
Matt: hahahah no man, ahh well. At parties we see each other, for example, when Mike throws a party we mostly are complete, I would come, our old guitar player and Jake, our former vocalist when he’s in town, he lives in L.A. now. The point is that we are still in touch with everybody and we still support each other’s bands and what they are doing.
M-C: What do you think of the Dutch grindscene with bands like Inhume?
Matt: Inhume!! I really love them, their one of my favourite grindbands around.. Nah not the only one though…. Pig Destroyer too (who are not from around here… M-C) I think the scene here is quite strong; there are a lot of good bands. Lots of grind, but also a great lot of death metal bands, like Houwitzer and Severe Torture. We are real fans of those bands, that’s the reason we like to come here because we always meet friends here.
M-C: So the reason you like to come here are because of the cool people if I understand correct?
Matt: Yeah, you can put it that way. We actually like it better here than in the U.K. It just seems that the people here…. Well you’re just the people you meet on the street, who are really into the scene. You have those people in other places too, but you people are cooler.
M-C: A different question this time… Why do you guys give no thanks to… in your booklets?
Matt: Many people behave in the way: Hey, I’m cool because I know George from Cannibal. Fuck that I know George too, but I don’t want to sell with it. It’s not about who you know, but what you do and this is just a funny ‘fuck you’ to those people who behave like that. The people we thank because they helped us with some thing, we thank in person. We do that to everybody.
M-C: For this tour you’ve had the services of John Longstreth. My question is if he’s to stay around with you and perhaps record an album.
Matt: He’s just for this tour actually, because we had need for a drummer and he had some open space in his time. We know John for 2 or 3 years and we knew he could do it; he’s a decent guy and a very good drummer. We tried two other guys, but we asked him to do the job. The cool thing for us is to do more technical work and the cool thing for him is to learn the groove.
M-C: Is the job you do in any way connected to your lyrics?
Matt: Honestly I’m unemployed right now; I worked in a department store for a couple of months. Mike works in a coffee shop
M-C: Obviously your lyrics don’t refer to your jobs..
Matt: No too bad. Actually I don’t mind it either because if my lyrics would truly come from my job, I would get off balance I think. It’s like turning the inside over in the outside. I need a balance.
M-C: What’s about with the Dekapitator project?
Matt: We have a new guitar player now, who’s actually the first…. No not the first, because I’m the first. The SECOND Exhumed guitar player that played in all our demo’s and stuff. You probably know him: Darrel Houdashelt. He’ll be playing guitar and he’s cool so we’ll begin rehearsing with him, write material and perhaps getting it out on tour. We’ll see what’s coming
M-C: My last question then. What would you do with ten pounds of human guts?
Matt: hahahhaa, what would I do with ten pounds… Hmm, well just look at our album covers. You can see for yourself what we do hahaha. Most stuff you see on our album covers is real. Ahh well some of the blood isn’t. It’s just some mixture which gets out better through a camera. We just use as much gore as possible…
Matt: You’re welcome!