Thursday, July 18, 2013

Ripple Conversation with The House Harkonnen part II

And here's part two. 

Did all of the songs on Beastmode make it onto Volume VII?


Yes, the nine songs on Beastmode all made it onto Volume VII.  They have all been re-recorded except for the vocals and guitar solos which made the transition unaltered.  One more song, “Pressurize”, will also be found on Volume VII.  The band is very proud that all of the songs on Volume VII are unedited.  What you hear are single takes that create a natural sounding musical flow.



Did the band record the vintage-sounding song snippets that can be heard throughout Beastmode, or are they sampled?

These musical interludes are not sampled.  They are performed by the band and were recorded using vintage microphones.



Beastmode, to my ears, is much more varied than Volume VI.   It is very aggressive, but there are various shades of aggression throughout the album.  Was that approach taken on purpose?

Absolutely!  Volume VI was intended to be as unrelenting as possible.  That album was the band giving the finger to anyone who said they could not do something on or surrounding a record.  People told them they couldn’t put out a record that rocked harder than any metal band’s output.  They told them they couldn’t track their record off of the same amp.  People told them they couldn’t use one crummy microphone the whole time they were recording.  They said they couldn’t start a record with distorted feedback.  Well, one listen proves those people wrong.


Beastmode (and now Volume VII) was intended to be a much better representation of the kind of album that HK wants to produce.  The music flows naturally from one song to the next, from riff rocker to ballad to thunderous climax.  It is a rollercoaster that toys with the listener’s emotions.  What ties all the music together?  In the words of the drummer, “Every song makes me feel like I’m ten feet tall.”


I noticed that the song “Ocean” off of Beastmode contains a very similar guitar riff to “Let Me Get To The Point” off of Volume VI.  Is it important for The House Harkonnen to have a signature sound?


Yes.  If you listen closely you can hear unique notes and guitar lines that are repeated in nearly every HK song.  This in turn creates the sonic signature that is wholly HK’s.



I love the juxtaposition of the melodic sing along nature of “Ft. Worth Body Count” with the song’s death metal vocal delivery.  It creates a very nice balance, or imbalance as the case may be.  How did you arrive at this idea?

Originally this song sounded completely different.  It was much poppier and laid back, with all of the vocals sung cleanly.  However as the song evolved into its present state the music itself demanded the growled vocal approach.  The transition from the catchy introductory riff needed to be as jarring as possible to complement the abrasive guitars.



Is it by choice that the House keeps their albums at or under the 30 minute mark?



No.  The length of their albums is not planned ahead of time.  It is merely coincidence that they are all roughly the same length.



Waveriders, there is more information I’d like to share with you concerning the history of The House Harkonnen but I’m afraid that is not possible.  While typing up this interview I noticed a flicker on my computer screen which can only mean one thing.  The dictatorship has taken an interest in what I have to say and is directly monitoring my comput…



ATTENTION!  ATTENTION!  ALL CITIZENS WILL DISREGARD THE CONTENT OF THIS DATASTREAM.  THE HOUSE HARKONNEN ARE REBELS AND MALCONTENTS.  EVERYONE READING THIS IS INSTRUCTED TO NAVIGATE AWAY FROM THIS PAGE IMMEDIATELY.  IF YOU FAIL TO COMPLY WITH THIS ORDER THERE WILL BE CONSEQUENCES.  ANYONE WHO TAKES AN INTEREST IN THE HOUSE HARKONNEN'S ACTIVITIES WILL FACE PROSECUTION UNDER THE FULL WEIGHT OF THE LAW, PENAL CODE 11034.  YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED.



--Penfold

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