Vocalist Lord Worm Opens Up; Discusses Rage Nucléaire And Cryptopsy; Quells Rumors; Shares Tales Of Misanthropy And Cannibalism
Band Photo: Cryptopsy (?)
It would be a stretch to call Lord Worm a “controversial” figure in metal, simply for the fact that controversy requires a high degree of visibility, and mysterious anonymity is just the way the former Cryptopsy vocalist likes it.
That may change, however, with his return to the scene at the helm of Montreal black metallers Rage Nucléaire. Not two months after the release of the subtly titled debut “Unrelenting Fucking Hatred” through Season Of Mist, the band is already hard at work on new material. Worm graciously took time out from a Friday night jam session to chat with me about Rage Nucléaire’s background, current happenings, and hopes for the near future.
In an articulate and professorial manner befitting his English-teaching pedigree and wry sense of humor, Worm also quite frankly detailed the murderous thoughts and feelings surrounding his rather antisocial worldview, his excursions into the taboo of cannibalism, the gastronomical origins of his famed moniker, and more – proving that it’s not the theatrically costumed clown at center stage you should keep an eye on, but the reclusive figure lurking just within the shadows’ edge.
We pick up just after I introduce myself over the phone.
Lord Worm: Did you say your name was Mike SMITH?
Mike Smith (OverkillExposure): Yep.
Worm: That’s funny, ‘cause I was listening to Suffocation a little while ago.
Mike: I get that a lot, actually. [Laughs] So what’s up?
Worm: It’s a jam night for us. We’re putting the finishing touches on the writing for the next album. The three of us are here – Alvater, [bass, keys, samples] Dark Rage, [guitar] and myself – watching a video of our drummer Fred Widigs up in Sweden, doing one of our new songs. Fuck, that kid rocks. Sick drummer. [Laughs] It’s pretty cool!
Mike: And rather popular, it seems. His name comes up a lot.
Worm: And there’s a good reason for it. [Laughs] That kid can fuckin’ beat things. We’re very pleased with him.
Mike: The buzz on Rage Nucléaire has been increasing, yet so much remains vague and shrouded in mystery. I’d like to get to the bottom of a couple things. Was the band actually formed all the way back in 2000?
Worm: Well, it seems this whole millennium, 2000 thing has caused a bit of confusion. The IDEA has been kicked around for about that long, but the actual project and some of the writing started, I think, around 2004 or 2005. It hasn’t actually been a whole twelve years; it’s been closer to half of that.
Mike: How do you think that misunderstanding took root?
Worm: There have been a few interesting rumors. Like for instance, that Dark Rage is actually Steve Thibault. [ex-Cryptopsy] And he’s not. Or that Alvater was the bassist in Frozen Shadows, and he wasn’t. He played guitar in that band. Dark Rage will just remain mysterious, but he is not Steve Thibault. And I guess the real writing and recording, the full-fledged conception of the band, started around 2006.
Mike: The Steve Thibault rumor really seemed to throw people. I think Decibel Magazine swallowed that one!
Worm: Which is weird, because when I spoke to them on the phone, I could’ve sworn I made it clear, but hey, you know what? I’ve been spectacularly unclear from the start. [Laughs]
Mike: So about the debut album, “Unrelenting Fucking Hatred.” I’m hearing a lot of classic black metal, but also a very modern, industrial edge. It’s familiar in a way, but still sort of refreshing. What were your musical intentions, aside from the obvious hostility factor?
Worm: To be honest, it started as a private thing. The beginnings were… it’s not that they were so far back, but as I said, the IDEA began around 2000. The full-fledged conception, everything coming together, started around six years ago for our own private pleasure. We wanted to create something WE liked, that we could groove to, just for our own private enjoyment. And then it just grew from there, like, “Huh. Other people might actually like this too. Let’s just see.” So really, it was our own… I hate to use the word “fun,” but… okay, it was our own fun. So I guess the “refreshing” side of it, since you put it that way, is that everyone has his own kinks, if you will. Everyone has his own kink life, sex life, whatever. So if you knew what dark thoughts are in everyone’s head, I guess EVERYONE would be refreshing. So we just thought we’d go a bit public with ours. This is our “music kink,” if you will.
Mike: I suppose it’s the distinction between something you put together in a calculating way, knowing everyone was watching, and something organic you did spontaneously of your own volition.
Worm: Well, here’s a thought. Are you a cinephile in any way? Do you like cinema more than just blockbuster movies?
Worm: Okay. So take Ed Wood, with “Plan 9 From Outer Space” and beyond. This was Ed Wood’s private conception, and a lot of people say it really, really sucks, that it’s the worst of all time. I think, “No, man. This is gold. This is awesome.” Don’t look at it from this perspective; look at it from THIS perspective. Look at it from Ed Wood’s point of view, and it becomes just so awesome. That’s the way we basically started with Rage Nucléaire. “WE like it. This is OUR thing.” It just happens that if some people think we suck, others will get it and say, “No, man. We understand. We like this too.” That’s when we started thinking maybe we could go public with it.
Mike: And how long have the specific songs on the record been in the works?
Worm: They’ve been in there that long. It really was Alvater and Dark Rage, just the two of them. They called me in around 2009-ish, but we didn’t actually get around to recording anything together until the summer of 2011. So the ten songs were fully written for a long time. Not fully recorded of course, but there was nothing left to add except vocals at that point. So they presented me with the songs and said, “Okay, add your bit,” much in the way that Cryptopsy did with “Once Was Not.”  It was written; it just needed vocals.
Mike: So had they demoed the songs with someone else’s vocals, or their own, before they brought you in?
Worm: Nope. When they first presented it to me, they gave me four songs, and we thought, “Let’s just see.” At the time, Alvater was still very much in Frozen Shadows, although the band was sort of dying, and had gone through a name change. They were very briefly known as Shadow Division, and were looking to do at least one more album with Holy Records. When the band broke up, Alvater decided, “Yeah, I’m gonna do my own thing,” so he did a four-song demo. I don’t remember which of the four off this album were on it, but he presented them to me and said, “Can you do this?” And I liked it, so I said “Sure!” And of course, life, and the way it presents itself, forces you to focus on your own thing. You have to do the job, the family, and all kinds of extraneous things having nothing to do with music. So by the time they called me back, suddenly it was a ten-song album. I really liked it, so I said, “Man, let me do the album!” And they said, “Sure.” [Laughs] So honestly, we’re all fans of our own stuff. It really was written for us, and it just so happens that other people are trippin’ on it.
Mike: And I suppose it must’ve been… here’s that word again… “refreshing” for you to step back into music, raging on another record, after spending so much time away.
Worm: Well, the thing is, they presented me with the opportunity to do something… not to say “my way,” but in a way I’d wanted to do for years. Something I’d tried to do with Cryptopsy, in a very small way, on “Once Was Not,” and that I wanted to explore much further for the album that came out afterward. [“The Unspoken King,” 2008] And Cryptopsy didn’t want that. They wanted to go with what they eventually did. So happily, I can’t be blamed for the results. And when Rage Nucléaire said, “Come on in; let’s do the whole album together,” I thought, “Yes! Finally, I can do what I want to do!”
Mike: Your performance on this album is rather different from everything we’ve heard you do with Cryptopsy in the past. If you’d stayed with them, and they’d accepted your vision, can you imagine having taken them down the same stylistic route?
Worm: I would’ve tried to as much as possible. It’s not that I felt I was being “held back,” because I won’t push any negative vibes on Cryptopsy’s shoulders. I like them as guys, and I admire them for what they’re doing. But I would not have been as unconstrained, as “nomadic” even, as I am with Rage Nucléaire. I could’ve done something cool with Cryptopsy and I would’ve enjoyed it, but here, I really have carte blanche. There’s so much freedom. The three of us are so much on the same level, same page, same wavelength. And Fred Widigs, our drummer out there in Sweden, really is a hundred percent behind this the whole way. He’s doing the second album with us right now, so we’re really “three plus one.” I wish we could go out there, or he could come here, and hang together. He’s right in this with us.
Mike: That’d be quite a challenge in terms of playing shows. What are the plans, if any, for making Rage Nucléaire a live unit?
Worm: The logistics of the operation would be daunting at least, because let’s face it: you’d have to consider not only multiple guitarists, but bass, drums, and keyboards – not to mention multiple vocals. You see where I’m going? We would need an orchestra, almost. [Laughs] It would be difficult. Not impossible, but really difficult, and the logistics would require knowing six months ahead of time, minimum, if something was happening. And being really intense about it, just to make it sound like it sounds on the album. I mean, we wouldn’t want to be loose and bluesy and “un-tight” about it. It just wouldn’t fit. It’s gotta be the war machine.
Mike: Would you ever consider relying on something as simple as backing tracks to fill out the sound?
Worm: Knowing us, we’d want to be full-blown about it. Barring the participation of Fred, due to geographical constraints, Flo [Mounier, Cryptopsy] has actually offered to play drums, which is really nice. Of course, we would want Fred, because he’s our guy. But at least it’s nice to know that we have a “back door,” as it were. As for other musicians, there are lots of guitarists I’m sure we could rely upon, and extra vocalists, all in province. Finding the people to do it wouldn’t be that difficult. I think it’s more the jamming schedule that would be daunting. At least one of us is a father with a little five-year-old ragamuffin. So a full-fledged “TOUR-tour” would be difficult, because you can’t just pawn off a kid that age for a couple weeks. You can’t do that, y’know? Especially since he’s a single dad. But for a weekend, or a single show, or a fest? Yeah, it’d be possible, though the logistics would still require months of planning. We could do Ontario, we could do cities like New York, Chicago, or Boston. We could do things that could be done in a weekend, or possibly a week. But as I said, we have to watch those family considerations. We’re Rage Nucléaire, and we’re trying to be good dads.
Mike: [Laughs] So you’re working on a second album, and yet most of us have only recently learned of Rage Nucléaire, so I’d like to get caught up on the debut. I guess the first obvious question would be, “why so hateful?”
Worm: [Laughs] Ahhh, the Joker. “Why… so… hateful?” Well, I won’t be glib about it and just say “Why not?” So… for some of the reasons I stated before about the difficulties of playing live… that, and life itself, can really add to it. Y’know, being constrained by the Monday-to-Friday, 9-to-5 routines, not only for our own survival, but the survival of others… that can cause a lot of rage as well. Being surrounded by our hellish fellow humans can really engender an awful lot of fury too. And let’s face it: people have often said of serial killers that as they grow older, they mellow. But if you haven’t had the opportunity to kill an awful lot, there’s no mellowing with age. There’s a certain acerbic quality to life that actually… let’s just say that we mellow like whiskey. There’s an awful lot of complexity to the rage. To keep speaking in whiskey terms, I can feel the oak in me rising to the surface. The oaken flavors, like in a good single malt. That’s not a good thing.
Mike: How do you go about channeling these universal, often humdrum frustrations into extreme metal or black metal lyrics, which often come cloaked in dark, poetic imagery?
Worm: When we jam on Friday nights, we usually watch a movie. We’ll take turns in all the genres, and it’s whatever we feel like that night. Poetic imagery in cinema does pretty much the same thing – use images to show, or poeticize, an emotion or a thought. We pretty much try to do that with our music and lyrics. So “Fields Of The Crucified,” for instance, is very visually oriented, but none of it’s violent until you reach the end, with a sample that we were happy to find called “Crying Bitch.” We find that just ends the song so nicely. Why just visualize a field of crucified people when you can end it with a woman crying over them? It’s that extra touch, and this is what we always want to add to everything – that extra touch. But honestly, so few people bother. You don’t have to spice your food; you can season it too, y’know?
Mike: How about the next track, “Endziel?”
Worm: “Endziel” means the final play, the final move, in a game. A checkmate, if you will. It’s basically my take on a chess game, and I put it in an urban setting. I thought, “Wow, that sounds like what Charles Manson was doing,” so I threw in the Manson allusion.
Mike: The serial killer theme seems to come up a lot.
Worm: Yeah, that’s just me all over. Humanity can thank me for not having actually gone there. Yet.
Mike: [Laughs] Yet?
Worm: There is a temptation sometimes. It’s not that I have a need or even a desire, but sometimes I think the only means of self-expression that I haven’t attempted yet is murder. If everyone’s lucky, I won’t go there.
Mike: Homicidal rage makes sense as a cathartic artistic release in metal, but in reality? I mean, do you ruminate on this stuff constantly, or do you have other outlets?
Worm: No, this is it for us. I think I speak for at least the three of us here in Montreal when I say that. It really is the “kill, hate, war, violence” ethos that appeals to us the most. It’s just lucky for everyone that we choose music as an outlet, because if we didn’t… [Sighs] Well, anyway.
Mike: And your day job, by comparison, is fairly restrained, quiet, and erudite.
Worm: Well, my day job now isn’t what it used to be. Unfortunately, the teaching left off due to a dearth of students. And the dearth of students occurred due to an explosion of young, inexperienced teachers that were willing to take a massive pay cut just to get experience. Now, that is of course completely within their rights, and the language centers that all opened up are completely within their rights to give competition to the big boys, of which I used to be part. What happens is, if you have two million students and two million teachers, you’re going to end your classes very quickly, and this is what has happened. So my hours, despite my vast experience – and it really was vast – got cut down to about six or seven a week. And since I don’t charge $400 an hour, I got poor quickly. So I had to find something, anything, quickly, just to survive. So yeah, more hatred.
Mike: [Laughs] So what are you up to now?
Worm: Can I plead the American Fifth Amendment on that one? I’d rather leave that. Let’s just say that if a census taker came to my door and asked me what I do for a living, I’d be hard-pressed to tell him. I mean, if you’ve driven a Lamborghini, are you going to admit later that you generally drive a Honda? No!
Mike: Fair enough. I’m looking at the album artwork right now, and we have an obvious nuclear wasteland theme, but was there a specific concept or goal you had in mind for it?
Worm: Alvater had found something on the deviantART site. It’s worth checking out. By “deviant,” it just means “not over the counter,” that kind of thing. It deviates from the acceptable norm that people with money will go out and buy. This is stuff for absolutely everybody. That doesn’t mean it’s mass appeal; it’s appealing to people’s private desires, though that doesn’t necessarily mean sex. So Alvater found the original artwork on that, and Season Of Mist said, “Yeah, it’s great, but we don’t have the rights to it.” So it was a bugger for months trying to get a hold of the actual artist and get permission to use it. So Season Of Mist said, “You know what? We’ll charge you guys – as in Rage Nucléaire – a cent for our art department to do something in the same vein. Here’s a freebie.” So that’s the artwork. This is their conception of what we found on deviantART. We’re very happy with it. And then finally, the original artist got a hold of us and said, “Sure, you can use my art.” And we’re like, “Uh, yeah… the new one’s published now. Thanks.” [Laughs] Maybe we’ll use his on album two; I don’t know.
Mike: So let’s hear about this next album. What’s it going to be?
Worm: Well… it’d be… not terribly truthful, and dismissive, and glib to just say “more of the same.” But honestly, what you’ve come to expect from listening to the first album… it won’t be so much “more of the same” as… hmmm. You know when you buy shampoo and you can find a 33 percent bigger bottle at the same price? That’s what this is going to be. The same, PLUS. Some longer songs, more depth to the guitars, more variance in the drumming styles, more experimentation in the vocals while still keeping the “kill, hate, war, violence” ethos. It has titles like “A Sino-American Chainsaw War” and “Annihilation Frenzy.” Evocative, right? There’s more evocation of killing on a grand scale, because it’s fun!
Mike: You touched on this before in a general way, but I’m curious about the nitty-gritty details. What’s a good real-world example of something going on around you – something in the world, in the news, or in your life – that boils and enrages you to the point where you have to write a song about it?
Worm: This is going to sound odd. Would you believe that even though we sound blackly hateful and raging, we’re actually gleefully evil. Unrepentant, but lawful evil. We use chaos as means of pursuing our pleasure at violence. Several years ago, I saw Time Magazine – or maybe it was the Canadian equivalent, Maclean’s – do a cover story on the president of Iran, Ahmadinejad. They were basically calling him a nutcase, a Nazi, deluded, the whole bit. And I’m reading about him… and he’s fascinating! I mean, what a fruit loop! He’s wonderful! So we’re actually, in our own way, cheerleaders for the worst evil possible. The more killing, the better. We’re not actually “against” anything unless it’s against life. We’re pro-killing.
Mike: Speaking for yourself, where do you feel that comes from? What led you to this outlook?
Worm: I was born wrong. I was already a fruit basket at four years old. I remember being a total nut bar at that point, and here, it’s over forty years later, and I’m worse. So it’s me; I was just born wrong. No reflection on anyone else, no fetal alcohol syndrome, no nothing – it’s me. I’m rotten. And it’s good! I’m sure the other guys in the band would say the same thing. Not just about me, which of course is the general consensus, but about themselves too. We’re just a rotten lot, and we’re happy.
Mike: That seems simple enough from an academic standpoint, especially given your teaching background, but what about life? I mean, if you, your friends, or your loved ones were caught up in a violent situation like robbery, burglary, rape… Would you carry this outlook to your grave?
Worm: I can’t speak of the grave yet, certainly, but have I indulged in certain incidents? Yes I have, and I know for a fact that Alvater has. I can’t speak for Dark Rage; to his credit, he doesn’t open up much. He really is the mysterious one. But yeah, Alvater and I have had our moments. We don’t preach without practicing. First we practice, and then we brag later.
Mike: But what if someone in your life was victimized? Would you maintain your stance?
Worm: From the victim’s point of view, of course I could only be supportive and present and there, and if need be, an emotional sponge. Someone just to be with them, to help them through it. No question about that, and I’m sure it’s the same for the rest of us. But for vengeance? Absolutely! I mean, the best way to stab someone to death is with a screwdriver, because there’s no immediate gratification of feeling massive penetration. You need an awful lot of practice there. And let’s face it: everyone’s meat, and it’s wrong to waste meat. If you’re going to kill it, you should eat it. Otherwise, it’s waste, and that’s wrong. We do have moral standards, after all. By the way, I HAVE been cannibalized. You don’t have to eat the dead. Humans can be eaten alive. I’m not saying you can eat the ENTIRE human, because that’s just not the kind of thing you do or say. But pieces? Yeah, I’ve done that with other people.
Mike: You’ve BEEN cannibalized, or you HAVE BEEN cannibalized?
Worm: Both. Suffering is something that can be shared, y’know. You can’t be a good sadist without being a good masochist. If you can enjoy your own pain, then you can enjoy inflicting it on others. You can share these things.
Mike: How does shared cannibalism work, at least in your experience?
Worm: The first time was one day back in ’86 or ’87. It’s been that long. A friend and I were at Harvey’s, a fast food chain here in Canada. We decided to add bits of ourselves to what we were eating, and so we used the plastic knives to remove bits of ourselves, and we included it in our food. It was suppertime, so other people were present. It’s not like it was three in the morning; this was a daytime thing, a diurnal excursion into autophagia. And we did it. And we thought, “That’s all right.” So there have been repetitions over the years. Some private, some public.
Mike: How do you pull that off in public without making a scene? Do you need a shot of whiskey or something beforehand?
Worm: No. You can manage it if you… not so much keep a “stiff upper lip,” but make it seem as though it’s the most natural thing in the world. Like, “Nothing to worry about, folks, don’t panic, we do this all the time.” Go with what you’re doing. It’s amazing how a relaxed attitude will relax other people, and they’ll go “Okay, I guess it’s fine.”
Mike: And as far as your history with Cryptopsy goes, I understand you received your nickname by eating worms.
Worm: Actually, the gentleman with whom I first shared human flesh is the one who gave me the moniker Lord Worm. He was my butler for a while, but that’s a long story. We’re still very much friends, of course – I’ll probably go see him tomorrow. We’re planning on watching “The Last House On Dead End Street,”  which is wonderful. But the worm tradition started with… do you know your insects a little bit? Do you know what an earwig is?
Mike: I’m vaguely familiar with them.
Worm: Okay. If you chew on one, it has roughly the same taste as sucking on a dry teabag, if it’s Earl Grey tea. It has that essence of bergamot, that bitter little lime flavor. And it went well with the beer I was having, so it just evolved from there. If earwigs taste of something natural, what about other things? So eventually… it wasn’t even me; it was someone in our entourage that advanced the idea of worms, since I’d adopted the moniker Lord Worm at this point, thanks to my friend. So they said, “Well, if you’re Lord Worm, why not do like Kronos and eat your children?” And I thought, “Well… okay!” And another guy brought me a chalice and said, “You could share, and be like a priest,” and I thought “Um… okay!” [Laughs] So I didn’t do this all by myself. I had help! It really is a community thing.
Mike: Do you ever revive the worm ritual?
Worm: People that I haven’t seen for a while, like for months or years or any period of time, will jokingly bring me worms for occasions like my birthday or Christmas. And I’ll do it, just to show that I’m willing, or a good guy, or whatever. It’s not really my thing so much anymore, but people get off on it, so hey, what the hell?
Mike: To return to Rage Nucléaire in a lyrical sense, what can we expect on that score for the new record? What are you raging about this time?
Worm: Again, I won’t say “more of the same,” because that’s not true. There will be SOME more of the same. In addition to “A Sino-American Chainsaw War” and “Annihilation Frenzy,” we’re branching out. There’s actually a very personal song about suicide. But not against it. Or for it, for that matter. Just a description of suicidal emotions, but not depressing. We’ve given it a French title, “Le Grand Mal De Vivre,” which is a pun on the French expression “le mal de vivre,” feeling badly about life. So by adding “grand,” we’re comparing life to a grand mal seizure. There’s “Goddess Of Filth,” which is sort of a rejection of patriarchal societies and religions, and a description of blood disease all at the same time. You know my writing: I can’t write about “A Thing.” I have to write about many things at the same time, and I have to have double and triple meanings. My songs have to be pregnant with all kinds of ideas.
Mike: And you’ll be continuing with Season Of Mist, correct? How’d you get together with them?
Worm: Absolutely. They’ve been wonderful, by the way. Season Of Mist is fabulous. Alvater, who’s taken it upon himself to be the “busy one,” I guess, shopped the album around once it was properly mixed with a human drummer. The first incarnation with a drum machine wasn’t getting a lot of positive reactions, though Season Of Mist was the first of the “big boys” to say, “Well, you’ve got something, but see what you can do with it.” So we sent it back with Fred Widigs on drums, and they said, “Okay, yeah – contract!” It wasn’t instantaneous, but it was painless.
Mike: And as far as other people’s stuff goes, what are you listening to these days? What’s come out lately that’s really impressed you?
Worm: From my perspective – and I think the guys share that with me, though they don’t do as much purchasing as I do – the Quebec scene these days is fabulous. Pretty much everything that comes out on the local labels is excellent. Incredible stuff. On the international scene, the new Marduk is fabulous. Mika Luttinen of Impaled Nazarene has a new project; I think it’s called “Satanic Blood Spring” or something like that. Anyway, that’s really a lot of fun. And actually, we’ve heard a lot of great things about the new Suffocation, because we’re inveterate fans of theirs from way back.
Mike: If Rage Nucléaire had the opportunity to tour extensively, what would be the dream package?
Worm: There was a mention, and I believe this came from Season Of Mist, for a possible tour with Possessed next spring or summer. Which, of course, we would say yes to. Someone introduced us to a band called Kommandant, and that would be an interesting package too, ‘cause they’re on the same wavelength, and they have this interesting “gas mask” look that fits in well with our own faceless ethos. If we were to play live, you wouldn’t see our faces. You know those body morph suits? We wouldn’t wear the whole body suit, just the face, and the rest would be in shadows. That’d be sort of a little nod to Frozen Shadows, but anyway, you’d just have these shadow people, these three dimensional black figures. No hands, no faces, everything’s black. No features, no eyes, no mouth. Just black. It might upset people, especially if we do everything in just red light.
Mike: That’d be pretty tough to photograph!
Worm: I know. Isn’t it wonderful? [Laughs] Just like the confusion over the lineup. Like the whole “Steve” thing, which was weird, but hey, if people want to think there’s a Steve in the band, let ‘em. The anonymity thing is more grist for the rumor mill. The funny thing is, I’m sure Steve Thibault hasn’t even heard these rumors, and I don’t know if he’d like it or hate it. I’m still friends with him, by the way, but he’s living way out West, like in the Rockies. He’s never been a strong proponent of black metal; it’s never been his thing. So I don’t know if he’d be insulted to be “accused” of being in Rage Nucléaire, or if he’d be pleased. I don’t know.
Mike: Have you always been a proponent? It’s interesting that you’re known for this classic underground death metal, and now here you are, popping up in this black metal band.
Worm: The thing is, I was always black, but the only band that would give me a chance to get my chops at the time was Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, which months later changed its name to Necrosis. Then after playing a show in Boston with two other bands called Necrosis, we thought, “Okay. That’s one Necrosis too many.” So we changed our name to Gomorrah, only to find out two weeks later there was another band called Gomorrah, and so we became Cryptopsy. That was the only band that let me get any kind of practice in, and it just happened to be death metal, so I had to do that to gain experience. It’s like role-playing games, where you have to start as a “nothing” character to gain experience. So now I’m a Level 36 shitmonger.
Mike: [Laughs] Before we call this an interview, do you have any last thoughts, suggestions, or plugs?
Worm: Are we talking artistic, life, music, literature, or something else?
Mike: Any of the above, I suppose. Anything occupying your mind you’d like to impart to the potential audience.
Worm: First off, whatever it is that’s in your life, if possible, try to own it. Don’t let it own you; don’t let it dominate you. You own it. Make THEM conform to YOU, because eventually they will if you really want it badly enough. Because honestly, the will is very strong. So that’s one thing. Two, artistically? Experiment. Play stuff that you don’t know. Even if it costs you a couple bucks, try stuff, whether it’s books, music, cinema, whatever – try to find something new and cool. There’s one guy who introduced me many years ago to Tom Waits and Dead Can Dance, and I’m glad he did, ‘cause even if it’s not metal, fuck, that stuff is awesome! The same thing goes for Placebo. Awesome band, even though technically, I shouldn’t like them because they’re just not metal, but you know what? They’re awesome anyway. I could throw in Genesis or all kinds of stuff; I don’t care what decade it comes from. I could throw in Elvis. Just something that gets to you, and makes you breathe easier. And if it pisses other people off, so much the better. Other people are hell. Fuck them. So try new stuff. Become wise, educated, and powerful. Do it.
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