Interview with the Founders of Malevolent Creation
Malevolent Creation is still spreading their death metal straight out of Florida after two decades. The three founding members vocalist Brett Hoffman, guitarist Phil Fasciana and bassist Jason Blachowicz are going as strong as ever and put on a hell of a show that even the old school turned yuppies will come out to see and mosh to. Touring in celebration of their latest creation "Invidious Domain" produced by the illustrious Erik Rutan, I got to talk to Brett and Phil about this new record, touring relentlessly, and Jason's thriving touring tattoo business. A transcription follows.
Buick Mckane: Hi, guys. Welcome to New Orleans!
Brett Hoffman: Thanks for having us.
Phil Fasciana: Well this is the beginning of the second leg of the tour. Two weeks just prior to this we did a video. And we’re working our way up to Oregon to start a tour with Exodous. Had a week off so this is our first show.
Buick: Well your latest album “Invidious Domain” is coming out August 24th, that’s in about two weeks from now. How exciting is that for yall?
Phil: Good because the reviews are good and we’re all happy with it. We’re really excited to see if people like music that’s that fast.
Brett: Yeah, can’t wait for the album to get out, then we can maybe for the next tour we can do five songs off it. We’re only doing one off it this time ‘cause we can only do nine songs.
Phil: Our record label won’t let us do anymore. You’ve got to wait til it comes out. They’ve been doing a really good job of not leaking it. This is the first time we’ve done an album that hasn’t been out like three months before it’s released like in ten years.
Brett: If everyone’s got the album before it comes out, so no one’s downloading it.
Phil: It’s usually online. This is the first time an albums going to come out on the release date without everybody already having it, you know.
Buick: I think they’re getting better at the security for that kind of thing.
Phil: Yeah, they have to. They had to figure out a way how to do it. I think they kind of figured it out. That’s how we first got to hear it. “What the fuck? I’m in the band. We don’t even get a copy?”
Buick: There’s one song you’re playing from the new album called “Slaughterhouse.” How are people receiving that song?
Phil: Good because it’s been out on our Myspace page and shit. We just shot a video for it which I can’t imagine it not being amazing, the way it was filmed and the whole storyline behind it. It’s going to be really good. Should come out sometime around when the album comes out hopefully, or a little bit afterwards.
Buick: Erik Rutan produced the album. He does a lot of Florida death metal bands like Cannibal Corpse. Have you worked with him before?
Phil: We’ve worked in his studio before or his older studio. I think we did “The Will to Kill” album at his studio, but with a different producer; J.F. Dagenais from Kataklysm did our album there. He produced it at Erik’s studio. But Erik, I mean, just over the years hearing how much better he’s gotten and gotten and gotten. And even after hearing the last two Cannibal albums, and he found out we were doing a new album and he went, “I have to do it.” You know, he was actually going to take April off for a vacation, but he didn’t and we’re so glad we recorded with him because we’ve known him since 1989 when we played with Ripping Corpse in New York before we had an album out. You know, we’ve done a lot of shows, we’ve known him for years and years and years. He’s a great musician and great guy. Even better producer. If we keep recording, we’ll keep recording with him.
Brett: Yeah, it reminds me kind of like Scott Burns back in the day was approached to record and engineering and producing. He’s got the…
Phil: He’s real tough on you, man. He’s real anal about everything. It’s kind of good because if we had things our way maybe it might not be so good.
Buick: That’s what I heard about him; that he’s a tough guy but he does very well.
Phil: He gets the job done, man. He gets the best out of you.
Buick: So you are going to work with him again, you think?
Phil: Well, as long as no one dies. God willing, we’ll be there.
Brett: As long as he wants to record another album, we’ll record it with him.
Phil: Any recording I’d like to do, It’d be with him. I can’t imagine working with anyone else. Man, he’s…we’ve been flopping around working with different producers over the years. Working with him just made sense. It was easy, painless, fast. I think we recorded the album in nine days and were done.
Buick: That’s pretty fast. Well, of course, you have a new member who’s not really new; your bassist Jason came back, your original bassist.
Phil: He likes to have sabbaticals. But after we recorded the new album, when he heard it, it opened his eyes. Well, he’s a tattooist. He’s a really well-known tattooist in south Florida. He’s got his stuff together so good he’s able to just have someone run his shop for him now. He just said, “Man, I want back in.” He goes, “I’m in til the end.” “Well, alright man. You can’t quit now.” And we get free tattoos.
Buick: Absolutely. Nothing wrong with that. He should do tattoos and be in the band.
Brett: He does. He just did that one.
Phil: Brett just got a nice new one.
Buick: Oh, wow. That’s awesome.
Brett: Did that before the tour started, and he’s got some other pieces he’s going to do on me during the tour. So , I’ll be all scarred and scabbed for the next couple of months.
Buick: Who wouldn’t love to have a tattoo done by a metal musician?
Phil: He’s actually really freakin’ good. I mean, it’s not just because he’s our bass player or our friend. He really is that good.
Brett: This is going to be on my skin for the rest of my life; ain’t gonna put shit on there.
Phil: I know, man. Fucking shit ain’t coming off, so I want it to look good.
Buick: And it does look good. Very good. How do the fans like having him back?
Phil: It’s good. Me, Brett, and Jay started the band. So, it’s kind of good for everybody that listened to us when we first started the band that’s still around following our band see us and think, “God, you guys are still alive?” We are. So we’re having fun, man. We’re a lot older and grown up somewhat.
Buick: He doesn’t tattoo in the bus, does he? Going down the road?
Phil: No, no, no, no.
Brett: Well, not in this bus.
Phil: Maybe in a real tour bus.
Buick: I think those are still pretty bumpy.
Phil: Actually, getting tattoos on tour is pretty rough because they don’t heal right because we kind of sweat a lot.
Brett: But he’s got all his gear so he’ll do it in hotels and stuff.
Phil: Yeah, he’s got like fans and friends all over everywhere in the world, man.
Brett: He’s got appointments already. He’s got appointments set up for this tour.
Phil: He makes more money tattooing than he does playing music. He’s not even at home or working. He’s on tour with the band.
Brett: It’s sad. He makes more money on the road doing tattoos.
Buick: Well he has to be in the band to get the clout to do the tattoos, right?
Phil: No, he’s part of the band, you know. He’s been there since the get go. We’ve had our ups and downs, but this is how it works the best.
Buick: Well, you’ve got a lot of dates set up in America through September.
Phil: A lot. All the way to September 18th.
Buick: Getting to old for this, right?
Brett: It’s still fun. I just wish we had a bus.
Phil: Got to wait til that album comes out. It sucks, we’re touring without an album.
Brett: Yeah, the album doesn’t come out til half way through the tour, so we just got to roll with it, get in this funny van, and just let it ride.
Phil: You should call it “One Van, Seven Men, Two King-Sized Beds, Here to Spread Metal through the World.”
Buick: That sounds like a lot of fun, kinda.
Phil: Take a ride with us.
Brett: If you weren’t one of the seven men, it might be fun, but…
Buick: Do yall have plans for more touring, especially in Europe, this year?
Phil: Oh yeah. After this we’re going to do some in Puerto Rico and there’s so many offers coming in, we just got to take the best ones. And we’re not going to stop touring for a long time, til someone drops dead literally. And then when someone is violently, deathly ill, then we’ll write a new album or something.
Buick: And Jason will be spreading his tattoos all over.
Phil: And his belly. Don’t forget about his belly.
Brett: And his belly too.
Phil: He’s 36 months pregnant.
Brett: Got 18 more to go.
Buick: How does he put his bass over that?
Phil: It’s weird, but it works. He’s got a custom B.C. Rich Belly Bass.
Brett: And the back’s hollowed out so it curves around.
Phil: The back’s hollowed out so it curves around his stomach.
Buick: Aww, he’s not going to get mad at yall for saying that, is he?
Phil: Oh I love you, Jay. Nah, not really.
Buick: Is there anything else yall would like to say?
Phil: Yeah, go buy our album. Don’t steal it off the internet.
Brett: Come out to the shows and we’ll kick your ass. And you’ll have a good time.
Buick: Hopefully, you won’t get your lip bit off.
Brett: No, hopefully you won’t.
Phil: You won’t get your lip bit off, maybe. If Jay gets hungry…
Buick: Alright. Thanks so much!
Phil: Your Welcome.
Emily is an avid supporter of the New Orleans scene, often filming shows and conducting interviews with local bands to help promote their music. She also runs her own site dedicated to the New Orleans scene, Crescent City Chaos.
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