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Alex Webster – Bass player for Cannibal Corpse

Date: 5/15/06
Interviewed By: Rich Catino


1. Your new album “Kill” seems to have a new energy, as do the riffs. What do you think led to this say inspired recording?

ALEX: Well part of it is Rob coming back to the band, he brought some energy to the band plus Pat and I were writing most of the stuff. Our former guitarist Jack was just going in a different direction than we were, and I don't want to talk shit about him because its not like that, but he just wasn't motivated anymore to play in Cannibal anymore and he even admitted to losing interest. Jack didn't write anything for the new album, he was out even before we finished touring for “The Wretched Spawn”.

2. Any reason you went for such a simple cover this time and the title “Kill”?

ALEX: We did get a nice piece of work from Vince Locke which you can see on the inside cover of the zombie character holding the knife, but the album title is very simple so we figured a simple cover would go better for the vibe of this album. I mean its called “Kill” so what you see is what you get with a title like that. I believe Paul had that title a few years ago. Even though a lot of the riffs are pretty complex the vibe and delivery of the songs are pretty straight ahead and pure violence really. That's why we called it kill.

3. The production and separation of instrumentation is very clear for “Kill”. What were the factors for such a clear and strong production sound?

ALEX: It's a number of different things I think but a major thing was we changed studios to record the album. We worked with Erik Rutan this time to produce the album, working with Neil Kernon on the last few albums was really good, but this time we were even really surprised as to how well Erik made it sound. He definitely brought some new ideas to the studio and that helped to get a killer performance out of us. I think we will definitely work with him again.

4. Do you think this is your best sounding album yet?

ALEX: It may be , it probably is. I have to sit down and listen to all the albums back to back , I think its my favorite album so far but then again I think every band thinks their latest album is their best.

5. Cannibal Corpse always have some rather creative song titles and album covers. What influences the creativity of the band?

ALEX: A lot of it comes from us working together in the practice room, the actual lyric writing comes from each individual but the song titles we come up with after we write the songs. The idea of zombies is certainly not our own. I mean we like movies by of course George Romero, Lucio Fulci , Dario Argento , so that has some influence on what inspires our creativity. That helps inspire us but we still want to write and create our own ideas.

6. With this type of recurring theme in your music, have you ever considered doing a concept record?

ALEX: Probably not, I wouldn't not say never but I don't see it. Every song we write is its own idea, writing a concept record is like writing every song as part of one big story, its like a symphony.

7. Cannibal Corpse are one of the originators of Death Metal. What do you think of the many Death Metal bands out there influenced by your music?

ALEX: Its very flattering because there are some really great bands out there and to know we inspired what they are doing is great to hear. Like we toured with Spawn of Possession and they said they listened to us a lot and they are really great players. We are pretty proud to be part of inspiring a talent like that if that is indeed the case. Aeon I really like, and Aeon have said they have listened to us a lot as well.

8. Are there any Death Metal bands that you find particularly important?

ALEX: Bands are definitely taking it in different directions now. I really like the bands that are keeping it within a more pure Death Metal sound while doing new things within those boundaries. A band called Aeon has a lot to offer, Prostitute Disfigurement are fast Death Metal with really gory lyrics. We toured with those two bands recently and everybody was really into that tour because everyone was just getting their fill of brutal music. Most of the time I like to tour with the more extreme bands but we are not against touring someone different as long as they are a great band. We are pretty opened minded but when we do a headlining tour we like to do it with Death Metal bands.

9. What kind of spot do you have on this summer's Sounds of the Underground tour?

ALEX: We are around the 4th or 5th band and we get about 30 to 35 minutes, probably 9 or 10 songs. Some nights they have special guests like Killswitch Engage or Shadows Fall who will be higher on the bill than us. Trivium and As I lay Dying are headliners right now. It's a good package tour and a good amount of time for each band. You get a little taste of everybody. Its tough with festivals like this. Booking agents have to be careful with festivals because if you put too many bands on then everyone gets burnt out by the end especially if it goes for a couple days .. It's better to have less bands and more time for everybody. I think the guys who are running this festival have their shit together so I am looking forward to it.

10. How much longer do you see Cannibal Corpse making music?

ALEX: I really don't know. As far as live performances we have to stay physically fit playing this kind of music. Plus we are still very much inspired doing what we do so I don't see an end anytime soon.

11. Is there anything musically that Cannibal Corpse has yet to tackle on a future album?

ALEX: We want to remain well within the boundaries of brutal Death Metal, I want make that very clear to everyone. I think what we want to do is come up with our classic album. We are continuing to learn how to write classic memorable songs so I think we will continue striving for that. We still have yet to write our “Reign in Blood” or “Master of Puppets”.

12. As far as Cannibal Corpse's success, do you see it on an incline with each release or has your path been up and down?

ALEX: It has gone up and down over the years. “The Bleeding” was the biggest album and then curved down after “Gallery” and now its curving up again with this new album. It could have something to do with downloading I don't know. It could be people didn't like some of the albums. The album that sold the least was “ Bloodthirst ” and we really like that one. That one was kind of pummeling from start to finish and its all pretty much fast and tech and I think sometimes that goes over some peoples head. That one is like that to but still has variety, some people didn't think it had enough variety. We try to write variety to our songs and let each song have its own character. It helps when you have different people writing in the band. Pat wrote four, I wrote seven, Paul and Rob wrote one. I do write about 50% of each album but at least its not 100% so everybody gets to contribute and add variety.

13. Where do you see Death Metal going in the future?

ALEX: It seems it just gets better and better. I know the skill level has never been this good among the players. I think you are going to have a lot of players that can play their asses off, write technical music but with catchy brutal songs. Not that the music is getting wimpy but just more memorable. I think that is the goal.

14. Anything you would like to add?

ALEX: Just want to thank the fans as always for their support and we look forward to seeing everyone on tour and thank you for doing the interview.

Official website: www.cannibalcorpse.net

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