DATE OF INTERVIEW:
1st July 2011
METAL DISCOVERY: This UK tour is a continuation of your ĎMonster On Tourí dates, which have been touring around the US for a few months solid now, how has that been?
ANDY: Busy, but itís been really good. Weíre getting pretty close to an end for this tour now. Itís been fun, obviously. Thatís the only way to do it; if you donít stay busy, itís hard to continue. Itís like going to the gym once a month in the way that, unless you keep a routine, it gets harder each time.
(Andy LaPlegua on latest Combichrist album 'Making Monsters')
"Iím very happy with the new material. I think the amount of touring weíd done before I wrote that album inspired me to write in a different way so that it really worked well live."
Interview by Siobhan Hogarty
Official Combichrist MySpace:
Official Combichrist Website:
The Joy Of Gunz (2003)
Thanks to Nina Potthoff for arranging the interview
With Norwegian band Combichrist fresh off a tour of the States supporting Rammstein (their second time opening for the legendary Neue Deutsche Hšrte pioneers after a lengthy stint with them around Europe in 2009-10), Andy LaPlegua and co. hit UK shores late-June/early-July this year for a series of headline shows as part of a longer European trek. Metal Discovery's Siobhan Hogarty met up with the Combichrist main man for a chat before their performance in Glasgow's Classic Grand right at the beginning of July...
Combichrist - promo shot
Photograph copyright © 2011 www.kobaru.pl
Everybody Hates You (2005)
What the Fuck is Wrong With You People (2007)
Today We Are All Demons (2009)
Noise Collection Vol.1 (2010)
Making Monsters (2010)
MD: Do you feel that the new material has gone down quite well with the fans?
ANDY: Yeah, I think so. Iím very happy with the new material. I think the amount of touring weíd done before I wrote that album inspired me to write in a different way so that it really worked well live. I didnít even need to think about it, it was just somewhere in the back of my head. Thereís always people hating, but there is always people who will always love you no matter how crappy you are. But the majority have been very good with it.
MD: How does this more intimate tour feel following your arena shows supporting Rammstein?
ANDY: We always prefer this type of tour with the more intimate venues because it creates a certain energy that you just canít create in an arena. Of course, 20-30,000 people screaming is quite intoxicating, but itís also overwhelming. It was really good for us; we arenít exactly a goth industrial band but that is the scene for that audience. I think doing the Rammstein tour really opened up new doors for us - we were allowed to stand on our own and do what we do, not having to change anything. Itís good to be back in our shows and our own venues through, having more than a 30 minute set is always good as well!
MD: When you were on tour with Rammstein you spoke of how it felt like a family environment. Youíve got Aesthetic Perfection back on tour with you - do you have a similar family feeling with them?
ANDY: Yeah, for sure. Same thing with Mortiis. Weíre all long time friends. The only thing missing on this tour for us is Rammstein headlining and then it would be the perfect family, at least for us. You get to like certain people better than others. You just connect in a certain way with some people.
MD: On ĎMaking Monstersí you worked with Brandon from Bleeding Through and he laid down some vocals for a track. How was that experience?
ANDY: It was cool. I know Brandon really well. You know every single time you talk to a musician who is a friend you always end up in a conversation where you say ďOh we need to do something togetherĒ, you never really end up doing it because everyone is so busy. Iím never at home, but it just happened to be that I was working at home in the studio and Brandon was in town. So I just called him up to say ďIím coming to pick you up right now. Weíre recording todayĒ, so I just picked him up and we spent the day in the studio. It just has to be the right timing for it.
MD: Do you think you would do any more collaborations in the future?
ANDY: Yeah, for sure. Weíve always enjoyed doing that. Weíve had the guys from Ministry come out with us, had Wes Borland playing guitar for us for a while, John Pettybone from HIMSA. If people happen to be nearby that are friends with us, that we respect as musicians as well as friends then, yeah, weíll invite them onstage with us.
MD: You remixed a track on the recent Morbid Angel album, I know you are a fan so was that a cool experience?
ANDY: It was really cool. Looking back on the remix thereís a million different things I could have done with it; thatís just what I did with it. Not that Iím not happy with it, thereís just so many ways it could go. It was cool to work on a track of a band I used to listen to, it was a cool concept as well. Iíve known D [David Vincent] for a while, I never thought of asking him to do anything and then he approached me and asked me to work on it which was cool.
MD: That album received a lot of harsh criticism from fans. It seems being experimental isnít appreciated sometimes.
ANDY: I think the problem is that people who just listen to death metal, they have blindfolds on and they will not allow themselves to like anything else. I can see that when you are 14, I can understand that, I used to do it. When youíre 40 and youíre still behaving like that there is something not quite right. Music is music and to me music is everything - if it sounds good, then it sounds good. But it isnít just death metal fans, it goes through all the scenes, the industrial scene and everything.
MD: You experimented on the new material, is there any style or genre that you would like to experiment with in the future?
ANDY: Itís difficult to say. Everything that I do with Combichrist is just one red line from the first release to the most recent one, and that is that. Iíve done exactly what I wanted to do at the time I recorded it. That is what makes it difficult to tell you what I will want to do in the future. If I get an idea and I want to do it, I will. Are we going to make it more electronica? Maybe. Less? Maybe. I donít know. Iíll need to see how I feel when I write it.
MD: What can we expect from Combichrist tonight and in the future?
ANDY: The only thing that you can expect from us and from our live shows is that we will always give everything we can in our power to give you the best we can. Thatís all we can give, and thatís what we will give. Always.