Jack Slater released their 4th album, ‘Extinction Aftermath,’ earlier this year. One of my favorite releases of this year but you’ll see my favorite albums list of 2010 soon enough.
Recently Slater’s bassist Chris agreed to do an Email interview with me, read it after the jump.
Dose of Metal: First off, tell us a bit about yourself and what you do in the band.
Chris: Thanks a lot for the interview. I’m Chris, I joined Jack Slater in 2003 to play bass. Since then, I recorded 3 Albums (Metzgore, Blut / Macht/ Frei and Extinction Aftermath) and played around 180 shows with them in the last few years.
DoM: You joined the band in 2003 and recorded 3 albums with them so far. Which one contains your favorite work?
C: When I joined Jack Slater, I had to record the first album after 3 months being in the band…which meant I had to learn a complete live set plus all the new songs for a decent recording process, which was quite demanding. BMF was a smooth recording, but we had a lot of internal band problems, so it was quite a process to put this one out.
The last album, Extinction Aftermath, which is in every aspect better then BMF, (playing, songwriting, production, everything…) is definitely my favorite work.
DoM: Which song, on your new album, is your favorite one?
C: That should be Dysthymia, since its a straight, groovy Death Metal song. Hard to play, but still fun.
DoM: Which song, on any Jack Slater album, sucks in your opinion?
C: I HATE the song Töten! Its kind of like a “wecantpullitoffbutstillhavetotrytoplayastechnicalaswecan” song… I am glad we dont play this one live anymore. I definitely like the new songs better, they work better in a live situation than the old stuff.
DoM: ‘Extinction Aftermath’, your new album, was overly positivly received by critics and fans alike. How do the songs work live?
C: They work quite well actually! The new songs are still quite technical, but at the same time a little more “groove orientated” and more catchy, which makes it more fun to play live.
DoM: Since you joined the band, lots of people joined and left Jack Slater. Isn’t it weird to see so many people come and go? Who’s even part of the band at the moment?
C: This is Horn – Vocals
Kevin – Guitars
Chris – Bass
and Simon – Drums
You have to keep in mind that, although being a “hobby” band, Jack Slater still takes quite some time. It’s understandable, that not everyone wants to spend hours and hours in the rehearsal room or spend your whole weekend in the car to be on stage for 45 minutes for hardly any money.
DoM: Is there a reason why you guys don’t use your original logo anymore? Ever since ‘Blut/Macht/Frei’ the logo almost disappeared from your album covers.
C: No reason really. I think Horn just came up with the logo for BMF…nobody really missed the old logo, so it was just cool… Most people probably did not even notice that it was gone.
DoM: You released your new album on Unundeux Records, how did that come about?
C: The dudes from Japanische Kampfhörspiele run the Label Unundeux. Since we have known for quite some years now, they were so nice to give us the opportunity to put the record out out their label and also use their distribution.
DoM: Stefan Horn used to work a lot on his flash-cartoon site Ballz. What’s your biggest hobby, aside from playing the bass?
C: As far as I know, he actually doesn’t do ballz.de anymore, already since a few years…
Biggest hobby? I like traveling! In the past few years, I have been to Hungary, Czech Republic, Israel, Thailand, India, China, Poland, Italy, Turkey etc… I have been to Japan in the last weeks… So that’s quite a nice, but also expensive hobby…
DoM: To me, it seems like most German Death Metal bands incorporate lots of Grindcore and Brutal Death into their music, you recently shifted to a more Groove oriented sound, that’s still very complex and technical. Was that a natural change or did you plan on going that route?
C: That was really a natural change, coming along with the change of both guitarists and the drummer. We did not really think about getting more “groovy” or shit, just happened… I like it!
DoM: Why are Jack Slater so much better than all the other German Death Metal bands?
C: Thats obviously due to my outstanding, world class bass playing
DoM: I can imagine being part of a Death Metal band doesn’t really pay that well. Do you have a day job yourself?
C: In fact, being part of a Death Metal band doesn’t pay at all… It would be nice to play DM for a (good) living, but this is obviously impossible. Everyone who thinks differently is just an idiot…
I work in the IT business, which is more or less boring, but, at least compared to other jobs, pays okay.
DoM: Do your workmates know about Jack Slater? If so, what do they think about it?
C: No they don’t know anything about it. Try to explain your 40-50 year old coworkers, that you invest your spare free time in playing a bunch of talentless noise (at least that’s the average people’s opinion!) and spend your weekends on the road for a laughable amount of money… apart from people in the metal scene nobody can really relate to this, so that’s not really worth telling somebody…
DoM: Why Death Metal and not Symphonic Power Metal?
C: Because Symphonic Power Metal is gay.
DoM: Does Death Metal make people sexy?
C: Me, definitely. For others, I have my doubts…
DoM: Rob Halford showed every metalhead how it’s done. When you’re playing music in a club filled with sweaty men, be gay. Wouldn’t being gay make a lot of things easier for you?
C: No thanks dude, not for me. But you’re right, it would definitely make things a lot easier. I always wonder, why there are never good looking girls in the crowd… Too bad. 95% of the people attending Death Metal shows are ugly guys… Fuck.
DoM: I’ve never heard of a gay Death Metal band, you could be pioneers!
C: No thanks, there are certainly lots of other bands that would fit that spot right!
DoM: Assuming you’re not gay, Cowgirl or Reverse Cowgirl?
C: Right. Cowgirl. Your mom is quite good at Reverse Cowgirl though. You should try her out, not too bad.
DoM: Any last words for your readers at Dose of Metal?
C: Thanks man, check out our new album Extinction Aftermath!
DoM: Thank you for your time!