On November 2 I got to do a Suffocation interview. When I got to the venue, I was greeted by guitarist Charlie Errigo. As I prepared for the interview he asked if I’d like to talk with anyone else as well. I mentioned Hobbs, I’d been told Mullen was not doing interviews this tour, he said he’d ask if he was able to accommodate.
The bands had dinner at around 5:30 so I sat and waited for a little while. When I got taken back for the interview by the tour manager, they took me to the tour bus. Before we got inside, Errigo told me “Alright man, so it’s going to be you, me, Terrance, and Frank Mullen interviewing”. When I heard everyone’s names I am sure my eyes went wide, this interview turned into a dream interview for me. I did not expect to interview all of those guys! It was even more special considering the band has been on the Farewell Frank tour.
If you have seen Suffocation before, you know how Mullen talks about watching TV shows about killers. When I got on the bus and I looked at the TV, there was a show on about a killer. So there you have it ladies and gentleman, he is 100% serious, that’s what he watches. The band showed me around the bus and gave me a drink while we chatted before the interview. At one point, Mullen told everyone he was going to answer all questions with the word seldom. When we heard that we all laughed. At this point Hobbs and Errigo started poking fun at him for the way he said the word. So after the little bit of harmless jabbing at each other, we were able to start recording.
There is some strong language used throughout the interview at times. I hope you all enjoy the following interview!
YesterdazeNews Magazine, Patrick Burt: Alright guys, how are you all doing today?
Hobbs: Oh you know, flipping out, hanging out.
Errigo: Good, hung over, dead, amazing, alive!
Mullen: Seldom. (We all laughed hard at that answer. For some reason none of us saw it coming.)
So I have all of my questions already written down. Feeling pretty proud of myself.
Hobbs: Oh boy, I’m scared man.
How have the shows been going so far?
Hobbs: Frank Mullen!
*laughing ensues yet again*
Mullen: Yeah man, they’ve been sick so far. A lot of them have been sold out. The fans have been going crazy, so it’s been a great tour and it’s pretty cool to see. It’s my last time doing it, so it’s pretty awesome to see everyone coming out one last time.
Good, I’m glad to hear. It’s always been a pleasure seeing you all perform. I’ve seen you guys a bunch of times, I think my favorite time though was when you played Modified Ghost Festival in Vancouver a couple years ago.
Hobbs: Oh yeah! I remember that one. That was cool.
So I remember last time I interviewed you guys last year we had talked about some fun stuff that happened during the tour.
Hobbs: Oh yeah, there is a lot of stupid shit.
The main one I was told about last year was Kevin Muller’s birthday.
Errigo: Man all of our birthday celebrations are very dangerous. For whoever’s birthday it is and for pretty much anyone surrounding them.
Hobbs: Well all except mine. I tend to try to maintain and go to bed early.
Errigo: *scoffs* yeah right.
Hobbs: I’m old now.
How does your plan work out for you?
Hobbs: We got wrecked on my birthday. It was a good time.
Errigo: Oh yeah! Don’t play it down man. You’ve still got that party in you.
Hobbs: Yeah I know, I party everyday! I like to party.
So on this tour have there been any instances like that?
Hobbs: In regular life? No, not really.
Errigo: Hold on, for this tour, last night was pretty crazy. We were tackling each other over couches.
Hobbs: Yeah, it was fucking sick dude! Shit got broken, it was great. You know you had a good party when everyone is in a riot room and they just freak out.
Errigo: Everyone on this tour are good friends. Like sometimes on tours there are one or two bands who don’t necessarily hangout. But on this tour, everyone is fucking flipping out and it’s been cool.
Mullen: I was in bed.
Hobbs: *laughs* Well yeah. You know sometimes evil has to sleep too.
Mullen: That’s right.
With this being Frank’s final tour has it been any different in comparison to any of the other ones you’ve done previously?
Mullen: We’ve done so many tours that have been sick throughout the years. This one is just cool because of the amount of love from everyone coming out.
Hobbs: It’s a more sentimental type thing.
Errigo: It’s a cool vibe in the room every night.
Hobbs: People love Frank, so he’s gotta give the people what they want!
Mullen: I’m going to miss everybody, I love doing this. I’ve loved playing for the fans for the last 30 years and everything but, unfortunately, all good things must come to an end. And I’d rather go out on top, then be the asshole who’s still out touring as this beat up old geezer who sucks. And he fucking sounds like *makes wheezing noise*. So I’m going out on my own terms! I think 30 years is a good enough time.
Hobbs: Yep, that’s good enough.
Errigo: Yeah, that’s a good cap.
Hobbs: Yeah, but not for me. I’m going to play metal until my hands melt off. It’s just comfortable you know?
You know after your hands melt off, they do make mechanical ones so you can still keep playing.
Hobbs: Yeah but I’ll have to buy one. And that’s different. I don’t think I could afford that with death metal, but I’m having a good time doing it!
After the tour are you guys going to take a break? Or just get right back out there?
Hobbs: There is always stuff getting booked. But for these next few months we’re going to take off until about January or February. And then maybe go back out on the road. Hopefully try to get Frank over to Europe so he can say goodbye to those guys. It all depends on if it’s a proper bill. But we’ll see, we have some stuff in the works but I can’t really comment too much on it because we don’t know if it’s going to go through or not.
Mullen: I’ve got a couple of golf lessons lined up. And shuffleboard. So that’s where I’m at after this.
Hobbs: Right, shuffleboard and he wants to go skeet shooting.
Oh man, I don’t think I would have the accuracy to skeet shoot.
Hobbs: Frank likes guns!
Errigo: Yeah it’s just an excuse for him to go shoot.
Mullen: *laughs* Yeah pretty much.
In regards to the sound of the band for the future. Kevin Muller has a similar style voice as Frank. Are you going to stick to the same sound or so you think you may experiment with a little more technical stuff as well?
Mullen: Kevin is actually no longer in the band.
Hobbs: Kevin kinda started to quit it after a couple tours.
Mullen: But, we got Ricky Myers back.
Sorry about that, I didn’t know about the line up change I hadn’t seen anything.
Hobbs: No it’s okay, we don’t really tell anybody anything, we don’t like people. *group laughs*
I totally get it, I just deleted a good chunk of my social media for pretty similar reasons.
Hobbs: See what I’m saying?! You get it.
Well, now that I know Ricky is back. Do you think you may experiment at all to see what you may be able to get out of him?
Hobbs: Maybe, it depends on the writings and everything else as well. Mainly it is always testing the waters and seeing what we like and what we don’t. Not saying we may not try anything new but for now we’re just going to get these tours out of the way, get Frank out of the way. *group laughs* Yeah, we have to get Frank out of the way! This man has to say goodbye to the world! This is something that took planning! It took years! But yeah, there is always stuff we are going to look into trying. We just haven’t put our finger onto it yet. We do have our mode of being Suffocation this long, and we’re doing a change, but it’s still going to be the same brutal shit that you’ve grown accustomed to. But we’ve got to get Frank out of the way. Seldom!
I just want to say on the topic of brutal shit for music, my go to choice for brutal shit is always your self titled album.
Hobbs: Oh Yeah?!
Yeah, your self titled album is by far my favorite death metal album.
Hobbs: Oh that’s cool man. That’s a first honestly.
Mullen: Yeah that’s a first. There’s a lot of good material on there.
So the first time I saw you guys was on the Despise The World tour. John Gallagher had been doing vocal duties for a good chunk of the tour, but you joined the band in Seattle. During the set when you guys played Bind. Torture. Kill. I was in the pit and I kid you not I thought I broke my ribs during the breakdown. After the song was over I walked out and was like “Oh God I just got my ass kicked. These guys go hard live. I need to go buy a shirt of theirs.”
I know you guys have sound check here in shortly so last question. Are there any up and coming bands that are on your radar that you think your fans may want to check out?
Hobbs: For me there are quite a few bands. Bands like Virvum, Desecravity, Defeated Sanity bands like that, and bands from Europe that are brutal. Obviously Visceral Disgorge is killing it, Embryectomy, Exhumation, so quite a few bands. The list can go on and on and on. I have to go through my fucking record bank in my head, but there are quite a few new bands that are cutting edge that are doing the right thing. Obscura, Beyond Creation, Archspire, those bands are holding it down too. So it’s not all dead yet. The younger generation is coming up and they are doing some good shit!
Errigo: Any band that Slam World Wide has on their youtube channel.
Errigo: Hell Yeah! Honestly though, When we aren’t playing, and we aren’t necessarily listening to the exact type of style we play because we do it all the time. I like to listen to more hardcore, or a bit more slam, but I really like this band The Last Ten Seconds Of Life. They are a little more hardcore, metalcore, I don’t really know what you’d call it. But like I said, always keep searching around, check youtube pages and see what’s around.
Thank you so much Charlie, Terrance and Frank for your time.
See our review and photos from the Seattle show here.