Interview: Anders Colsefni (Painface, ex-Slipknot)

After reading a lot about Slipknot’s Iowa lately — and many people calling it their favorite Slipknot release — I had to think about which one actually my favorite release is. If I had to choose from the Corey Taylor era, I’d definitely go with Iowa. But Mate. Feed. Kill. Repeat. is without a shadow of a doubt my favorite release of their entire catalogue.

This album was the only record Anders Colsefni (real name: Andrew Rouw, and it’s Colsefni – not Colsefini) released with the band. In 1996 the band intended MFKR to be their debut album. But when they signed with Roadrunner Records, and Colsefni had left the band, Slipknot from then on referred to it as a full-length demo.

To me it doesn’t really matter if it’s a demo or their debut album, MFKR is my favorite Slipknot record. With that being said, I tried to keep my eyes and ears open for anything Colsefni did after Slipknot. I enjoyed the album he did with Painface, called Fleshcraft, in 2000. And I tried to follow his work with Vice Grip Throttle but admittedly struggled to stay up-to-date with their output.

Not to celebrate the 10th anniversary of Iowa, but to celebrate the 15th anniversary of Mate. Feed. Kill. Repeat. (it was released in October of 1996) I reached out to Anders Colsefni and talked to him about Slipknot, Paul Gray’s passing, Painface and more. You can find the interview after the jump.

Dose of Metal: Hi Anders, how’s life treating you?

Anders Colsefni: Pretty good, actually! I have some exciting musical projects in the works. Lots to look forward to!

DoM: You’re a man of many bands, including Painface, On A Pale Horse, Vice Grip Throttle, All That Crawls and most prominently Slipknot. Looking back, are you satisfied with how your career has worked out so far?

AC: No. I have only one thing I really want to do in life, and that is to “get to the next level” so-to-speak. I won’t be satisfied until I can be a musician full-time.

Colsefni with Slipknot

DoM: In May of last year, Paul Gray — one of the founding members of Slipknot alongside you and Shawn Crahan, and also a former bandmate of you in Vexx and Body Pit — died of an accidental drug overdose. Were you still in contact with Gray or anyone else of the band during that time?

AC: Yes. Paul and I talked periodically via phone, and Shawn was working on producing OAPH, and later, VGT. Corey also has been in contact with me about Paul’s death.

DoM: In 1996 you released Mate. Feed. Kill. Repeat. with Slipknot. Personally it features my favorite work by the band by far. What do you think about your former bandmates labeling this release just a demo? Surely it was intended to be your debut album when you originally released it, wasn’t it?

AC: heheheh. IF the band did not get a record deal, MFKR would have been their first official release. Since they had progressed musically since MFKR (or steadied the craziness a bit) and got a nice contract advance, they chose the right thing and started fresh. Every album I’ve ever been on has technically been a “demo”, so it doesn’t bother me a bit. Even the full-length ones. MFKR has become somewhat legendary, even with it’s flaws, so it was one hell of a demo.

DoM: The current bandmembers of Slipknot claim not to own a single copy of MFKR anymore. Over the years, the CD was sold on bidding sites, like eBay, for ridiculous prices. What do you think about the one album you’ve been featured on being such a collector’s item? And do you still own a copy of the album?

AC: I sold all of mine on eBay LONG ago. lol. $300 is a lot of money to me. For someone to offer me that for an album of mine, how can I refuse. I still have the studio Master CD I got from the studio. Just no artwork, which does sadden me. We spent a lot of time at Kinko’s putting that sucker together. lol

DoM: And what do you think of the band reusing several parts of MFKR for later songs? Maybe I’m alone on this, but the reworked version of ‘Gently’ can’t hold a candle to the original.

AC: That’s very kind of you to say. I also have no problem with them cannibalizing riffs from other songs. It can be vital to the writing process when ideas are in short-supply. Also consider the fact they never inteded MFKR to be re-released, so with only 1,000 originals and I think another 1,000 2nd-pressings, they probably assumed it would die in the dark so their path would be well illuminated.

DoM: To close the Slipknot part of this interview, could you tell us why exactly you left the band? There have been a lot of rumors about that, for example that Corey Taylor replaced you as the main vocalist and you moved to percussions before ultimately leaving Slipknot. How did it really end?

AC: Corey was a much better singer than I, so they brought Corey in to 50/50 the vocals with me (with him being the actual frontman) while I also continued with the drums and percussion. Corey would do the clean singing and I was to add the screaming and yelling. I tried for 2 months, but after the shock of all this, I couldn’t “feel it” anymore. I just felt like an idiot flopping around onstage with a ridiculous outfit, acting like a caveman. Depression. So, I shaved my eyebrows off before my last show, and announced I was done after we played “Heartache & A Pair of Scissors” for the closing tune.

DoM: In 2000 you released the Painface debut album Fleshcraft. Fleshcraft was an album that did not quite get the attention it deserved. Were you disappointed by its reception?

AC: I really had no expectations when we released that, but I think it has a strong underground following even now, actually. People say so, anyway! Being used to the finnicky Des Moines music scen has made me used to disappointing turn-outs. lol.

[caption id="attachment_16044" align="alignright" width="199" caption="Colsefni screaming his guts out."]

Slipknot (w/ Colsefni) - Gently

DoM: Whenever I think of that album, the first song to come to mind is ‘Last Rites.’ Which one is your favorite song of that album, and why?

AC: Last Rites and Polymer. Damn, Last Rites sounds like I wrote it about Paul 12 years ago. Hard for me to think about.

DoM: On Facebook you posted that you “brought back the name Painface and began writing and recording.” Can we expect a new Painface album sometime in the near future?

AC: We have most of the album written, and some demos recorded (AndersColsefni.com in video section), and we hope for the next album to be released around next spring! I can’t wait.

DoM: You’re also the singer of All That Crawls, which also features your son Joshua. Tell us a bit about that band.

AC: All That Crawls was a full band, with some members of VGT and Josh. We broke up 1 year ago, so Josh and decided to try to keep that going under the same name (from my lyrics in “El Innundacio’n” – VGT 8-song demo). Just Josh and an accoustic guitar, and his dad, with a mic. Josh also sings. We are releasing a video for the one song ATC recorded before disbanding: “The Endless”. I’m dedicating the song/video to the memory of Paul. Beyond that, Josh and I haven’t spent much time on writing music this year, as we’ve both been crazy-busy. He’s working towards college at the moment, and I’m working towards Painface. We will keep this project as a very loose, whenever we can, project. Josh is a terrific finger-picker, and I look forward to writing more with him soon.

DoM: What are your plans for the future? Can we expect you to tour with one of your bands?

AC: If Painface is granted the ability to tour, then we did our job, and the fans did their’s. Touring is my main goal, but we can only tour if people want to see us. It will happen if the album sells well.

DoM: Is there anything else you want to tell your readers at doseofmetal.com?

AC: For more information on my world: my website, my Facebook page, Painface on Facebook. Painface will have it’s own website soon.

Donate to the Multiple Sclerosis Society. MS sucks.
Asperger’s Syndrome is real.

DoM: Thank you for taking your time to answer my dumbass questions!

AC: Not dumbass at all, Guido! Thank you for taking an interest!

[ photo credit: anderscolsefni.com ]

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