-Starting with the mandatory question about how the tour is going.
Yeah, it’s amazing. You know, we’ve been here 5 weeks now. 24 shows so far and three to go. And then Obituary jumps on an airplane and heads to London for a headline show to celebrate the new album with our British fans.
-All right, that sounds great. So, about the new album, ‘Dying of Everything’. How is the reception for the new songs being so far?
It’s amazing, you know; the interviews, the press and everything we’ve read comment-wise. People love it; we couldn’t be prouder of it. That makes us feel so good that our fans are loving it. The journalists think it’s a fantastic album and live, you know… We’re playing three songs off the new album on this tour and the crowd response has been very positive, so we could not be happier.
-I must say that I’m a bit sad that I couldn’t go to the to the show here in Helsinki where I live. But I hope to catch you guys soon, because in my opinion, you’re quite a force to be reckoned with when it comes to death metal live. It’s a really crushing sound.
I appreciate that. So good words and a good compliment. Thank you very much.
-No, no problem. I also wanted to ask how is the difference between American and European shows? Is the crowd very different or…?
You know, believe it or not, if you step off the tour bus and we’re not told where you were, what country or what city in the US you were, or what country in Europe you were, and you simply just went to stage and got behind the drum set and started playing…. It’s a big metal family on this planet. It’s just really cool to see. You know, Obituary has been a band for a long time so, we’ve been through the late 80s’, early 90s’ and we saw the explosion of death metal and fans and just the manicness of the death metal scene. And then of course, over a 3-decade career, you see all kinds of changes. It’s a great feeling to see that it’s full circle right now and all the all the cities in the United States are going mad with metal, and so is Europe.
And it took us a long time because of the pandemic to get back here. And we’re here and we’re very proud to be back and it’s great to see fans coming out to see these shows.
-And also, about the pandemic; has it felt very different to play after it or has it been kind of like back to business and kind of like being back to the good old feeling?
Yeah, it’s a good old feeling. Here in Europe, you know… But since the pandemic opened in America anyway, I think Obituary has probably been one of the busiest bands on the planet. We’ve done over 100 shows since the pandemic. I think 120, almost 130 in America since the pandemic allowed our country to start having live music concerts again. But you know that this is the first time back to Europe in many years since the Slayer Tour, so it is a fantastic feeling. It’s great to see fans leaving their homes, coming out and getting some live music in their lives again.
-I also asked because here in Finland the pandemic was quite easy going. We never had any lockdown. So, I feel like we were kind of a little bit isolated from what was happening to the rest of the world. But I’m glad that everything is going fine again.
Yeah, it is a good feeling, you know, and as a Floridian, compared to most of most of America, we were not locked down. We took precautions. But after a while, once everybody had the option to go get vaccinated, our governor, thankfully, and our state did not stay locked down. We knew the importance of getting back to life. Going and getting your vaccine and moving on with your life. And we did that so along with along with Finland, we were not locked down too bad in Florida.
-And well back to metal I have here this question that a friend wanted me to ask about how are the differences in your songwriting process between back when you started in the 80s? And now?
Yeah, it’s a good question. But you know we are simple guys, you know we, have been a band so long. Myself and Trevor and my brother, we’ve been writing music so many years together that, you know, we found what works for us and that is not that is not working from laptops and sharing files, emailing each other’s ideas. We get in the room together, we close the door, we crack a cold beer and we and we jam. And this is how we create music. I think this is an important part of why obituary stays true to the sound and the style that we have, and it’s just a great feeling. You know that the technology is there where bands can share files, they can write stuff in their own houses or their own towns and send it across the city or across town or across country, or even across the pond. But we’re old school, you know, we still do the same style. Which is we, you know we get in a room together and we just jam.
-No, and I really think it shows, especially in the new album, it reminded me quite a lot of cause of death, which I must say, it’s my favorite release by yours. So yeah. So, I’m guessing that when it comes to music, musical influences. You stay also true to the roots.
Yeah, I mean, you know, you can’t teach an old dog new tricks, I guess is the saying because you know at 53 years old, I’ve been playing drums for a long time. I’ve been writing music for 2/3. Of my life. And again, I tend to want to stick with what I feel and how I approach things. Because again, it’s working for us and Obituary is not going to be the band to reinvent the wheel, we’re not trying to, we’re not trying to be the most technical band and we’re not trying to change because you know that logo, that obituary logo and that style that we have is it’s bigger than just one band member, it’s bigger than just the band. saying let’s change styles just because, but instead we know that there’s millions of fans around this planet that that want Obituary, want to make sure when they get that new album, that sounds like obituary you. Know there’s people that have our logo and our album covers tattooed on their bodies and that just goes to show you how much we’re a part of their lives. And we don’t take that for granted, man. You know, that’s a big compliment and that’s a huge commitment. We’re proud to carry this style that we have.
-Yeah, and at least, well, I can’t speak for all the fans, but of course I do appreciate it. And I really think it shows that organic sticking to your guns kind of style.
-And yeah, going a little bit off track here. I just wanted to ask, have you considered going to see the Triptykon concert playing Celtic Frost in hell’s heroes in Texas?
I wish I could, if you knew how far Texas was from my hometown of Tampa, FL, you know, it’s a full commitment and when I’m home. You know, as you can imagine when you’re as busy as we are, home time is extremely blessed and time to recharge and stay away from the music world. And again, family and just enjoying ourselves. So, to have to jump on airplanes and go live out of backpacks and hotel rooms… As much as I love Tom G, actually we just communicated with him today because we’re playing in Zurich today. So, we invited him out to the show, and he replied, and he said unfortunately he’s out of town right now. But he told us that he loved the new album, which is so cool because he’s one of my heroes, and I would love to go see him in Texas, but I don’t think my schedule would allow me to travel halfway across the United States to go see a show.
-That’s totally understandable. But well, he seems to be quite active nowadays. I saw his Triumph of Death comeback, and it was just amazing. So hopefully.
Well, there’s always that. There’s always that dream Obituary must do a tour with Tom G. whether it’s with Tryptikon or Celtic Frost or whatever, whatever he’s doing at the time, I think it would be incredible.
-I also think it would be incredible that it would be one of my dream tours for sure.
Yeah, me too.
-So hey, here’s hoping. And well, one of my last questions is to ask about your cat rescue that you have been going on for quite some time. And recently you made the national news back in the States.
Yeah, yeah. You know, it’s just what I’ve done for the last 15, 16, 17 years and you know for me it’s just common sense, I live in a town in Florida, where with homeless cats, the overpopulation is an issue because there is no freezing cold winters and when it’s a hard winter, like in states like in Minnesota or in Finland it stops the breeding process, it unfortunately kills the young, it kills the old and so that’s what keeps the population under control. In Florida it’s tropical weather so all year round they’re breeding so, so you know all I did was, I got sad, I got tired of seeing cats getting run over, I got tired of seeing kittens running into bushes and not being rescued or not being helped. And so, I just, I learned what can I do, what would be a responsible thing to do, and my Humane Society of Tampa Bay is an organization that helps with this issue, and it’s called trap neuter return. And it’s exactly what it is. Cats always live in a colony. And they live behind restaurants, they live behind apartments, they live behind bowling alleys. And what I what I did is I started in my own backyard and got the cat that kept walking through my backyard, you know, I got him fixed. I got the female fixed and that stopped the breeding process there. And then of course. That drove me to be more active, and so I did it in my community and that’s actually right around the old Morrisound studio, I still live 1 kilometer away from Morrisound studio and so for the last 15 years I just took care of colonies, getting them all fixed, neutered and getting the kittens that are young enough get them out of there and getting them into an adoption program, and then all the other ones that are scared of humans, I just you know, before I eat my dinner every night when I’m at home, I make my rounds and I go make sure that they have food and fresh water and check on the colonies and any new cats that show up. I get them fixed and vaccinated as well and then you put them back right where they were so that you know, they get to live their lives, but they’re not continuing getting pregnant and they’re not breeding any longer.
-I think it is a truly great initiative, especially because in the modern world sometimes stray animals are kind of seen as pests or they forget about them. So yeah. It’s truly incredible the labor that you’re doing and about it, how does the organization work? Do you guys run on donations? Or it comes out of your pocket, or it’s a little bit of everything?
It comes right out of my pocket, I don’t ever ask too much for the fans about donating, but anytime somebody wants to find out how they can help, you know, we do have a PayPal account. That is just like their Obituary website, the PayPal’s email@example.com and that’s how we take our PayPal donations and anybody that does that it goes straight to the food for the homeless and the rest of it I’ll pick up the bill It’s, you know, it’s something I do. I don’t have human children, but I do consider colony cats my children because I’ve been caring for them their whole lives. And it’s just something I love to do, you know I can see that I make a difference in my community, more importantly, I make a difference in that individual cat’s life when he actually gets a little bit of love, little bit of attention and he gets some fresh water, and he gets food every night.
-Yeah, absolutely. So, I will make sure to put the PayPal link in the interview page because I think everybody should know about this. Those cats deserve a chance, so if you have any final comments or anything you want to say to the fans, both in Spain and Finland. Please do.
You know the Spanish, the Spaniards. love the music, they love Obituary
Finland. We don’t get there enough but the good thing is with this new album, this album is extremely important to us, and we are going to stay super busy. Europe was a big part of waiting to release this album, and this summertime 2023, we’re going to be coming back here and then we have big plans for 2024 headline Obituary European Tour full tour, so it’s something for the fans to look forward to and same with me. I can’t wait to get back to Finland. I can’t wait to get to get back to Spain and really, you know, give our fans what they want, which is live music.
-Yes, well, I must agree with that well then, but thank you very much for your time. Thank you very much for your time and I hope everything goes well.
Absolutely, man. Hopefully we see you soon. We see you sooner than later.
-Oh, I will do my best to attend the next time you guys are around.
Awesome man. I appreciate it.
-Hey, I appreciate it too.
OK. Yep. Cheers.
-Thank you and have a good day today.
Yeah. Thanks man. Cheers.