Cannibal Corpse Interview: Rob Barrett Bringing Heavy To The Masses


cannibal corpse - band pic

It’s called The Skeletal Domain, is there any meaning behind that? I know there is the usual mentioning of killing (Kill or Become). So what, if any, is the meaning of the title?
It just came up as a cool sounding name for a song title at first, is how it started. It kept growing on us and we just decided to name the album that. If you read the lyrics, there is kind of a scorched-Earth imagery going on. The whole planet is just decimated, and then it’s just a skeletal domain and people are just reduced to being skeletal [laughs], even buildings and structures are just burned and destroyed in some way.

My favorite track has to be “Icepick Lobotomy,” mainly for the middle guitar riff, one guitar that is holding the riff and another is spastically coinciding with it, it has a thrashy feel to it. Was there more of a try for a thrashy influence on this album in particular?
With “Icepick Lobotomy,” I wrote all the music for that song, and when I write songs I try to get that one part in the middle of the song that is only played once, and I’m pretty sure that is what you are talking about in the middle, which starts with the kick drum. My main influence is from old-school thrash metal and then it just developed into death metal. There are a lot of moments where you can say, “yeah, that sounds like thrash metal instead of death metal,” but it’s incorporated into the Cannibal Corpse sound. Whatever we do play, where even if it is on the thrash side, it is making the death metal side with George’s vocals. There are some thrashy moments.

How was Mark Lewis? I feel like he knows how to make a technical album with a little more room to breathe, like he knows to to make even the little things sound interesting.
Yeah, he is definitely, the best way to put it is, a more modern producer. He has his own certain trick to be very time efficient with editing and definitely gets a big sounding production. The studio we recorded in wasn’t very big at all, but it sounds big. He has a really good vision of how he wants everything to sound, he knows how to get there. He is a guitar player as well, which saves time; he knows what we are talking about before we try to explain it. He would be “like that” and we would be like “yeah.”

Keith Buckley of Every Time I Die wanted me to ask you if you remember hanging out at Denny’s on Union Road at West Seneca?
Denny’s on Union Road at West Seneca? If he didn’t say a year, you know what, I don’t remember. I’ve been to many Denny’s across the country, ya know? [laughs]

Favorite kind of pizza?
Pepperoni, mushrooms.

pepperoni mushroom pizza

What’s up next in the year for Cannibal Corpse?
Saturday we are hopping on a plane to Australia to do five shows there. Then we are going to Japan for four shows. And then we come home for about a week and then we are supposed to be doing eight shows in Russia, which I’m hoping still happens. We will see what happens with the political situation before we leave. Hopefully those shows go through, and then we do a full European run with Revocation (from Boston) and Eon (from Sweden), and then after the holidays we do another full U.S. tour.

How excited are you to get The Skeletal Domain out there? There are about two weeks left till it releases (September 16th).
It seems like a really long time since we actually finished it, ya know? [laughs] I guess especially since we did the full mayhem tour and the album still wasn’t out yet. It seems like quite awhile. It will be good to finally get that out there and we are going to be playing at least four or five new songs in the live set. It will be good to be out finally so people can hear the stuff and know the songs we are going to be playing.

What is your personal favorite song?
Right now it is “Sadistic Embodiment,” the first song to get leaked. It is a really fun song. Pat wrote that one and it is a straightforward Slayer-style song. It’s fun to play.

Any last words for Yell! Magazine, myself, or fans?
Well, I’m sorry I don’t remember the Denny’s meeting with Keith. Maybe it will come back to me next time I see him, maybe he will remind me of what happened. I’ve done a lot of stuff in my life at this point [laughs], remembering every time I run into someone from a band at Denny’s is kind of random. Thanks a lot for the interview and hopefully we’ll see you next time we are on tour there [Iowa].

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