J.R. Hayes interviewed by PSL
There's nearly three years between Prowler in the Yard and Terrifyer. How come it has taken so long to put out something new?
Making records isn't an exact science. You never want to rush it, 'cause once you put it out, you can never get it back again. We wanted to give it time to reach its full potential.
On Terrifyer you have broadened your musical spectrum further compared to your previous material. I assume you seek musical inspiration within other genres in order to evolve?
Not really. Generally we always came back to the same influences; old thrash and death metal, and just try to twist those ideas into new shapes. We don't really go around seeking new inspiration, but sometimes it does seek us out.
Songs like "Towering Flesh" and "Carrion Fairy" reveal that Pig Destroyer is so much more than just full throttle all the time. Do you think just blasting ahead gets too monotone in the long run?
If you do any one thing all the time it's gonna get old. We still wanted this record to be fast and hectic, but we tried to accomplish that with some different kinds of beats this time. I think it makes each song stand out a lot more. There's a lot of different ways to go fast.
Could you tell a little about the Audio DVD track "Natasha"?
It's a 37 minute track, kind of split 50/50 between sludgy metal parts and dark ambient parts. Scott mixed it in stereo as well as 5.1 surround sound, which is why it's on a DVD. It's pretty trippy in the 5.1! I encourage everyone to check it out in that format if they can. It was a very experimental project for us, it's one of those things where people are either gonna love it or hate it. I think it turned out really well though, I'm very proud of it.
The lyrics seem to be mainly based on issues like wife-beating and violence towards women in general or am I wrong? Could you tell me a little about the lyrics, sources of inspiration and so on?
I don't think there is a "wrong" way to interpret a lyric. If that's what you get out of it, then so be it. But I think people see certain words and they start jumping to conclusions, like the word "rape" for instance, and they just automatically think "Oh, he must hate women." I mean, just because there's an image of a battered girl in the song does not mean the song is about battering girls.
Definitely. Scott is always trying to outdo himself. Not just as a producer, but also as a songwriter and a guitarist as well.
A common conception about grindcore is that it can't be good due to the length of the songs among other things. Why do you think grindcore is great and what does it offer that other styles of extreme music don't?
Maybe those people have just never heard good grindcore. I think what makes it great is that it's raw, it's direct. There's no time to fuck around.
Do you think grindcore has become somewhat more accepted thanks to the popularity of bands like Nasum and yourselves?
Accepted by whom? Power metal fans? MTV? The government? Fuck that. Grindcore isn't supposed to be for the masses. It's for the few thousand freaks out there who live and die by it, and that's the way it should always be.
Why is it that you, unlike most other bands, don't have a bassist?
I don't know, same reason Slayer doesn't have a keyboard player, I guess. We don't need one.
Doesn't it affect the soundscape when playing live?
Not at all. We're a pretty fucking loud band.
Do you have any shows coming up in the next few months?
We're gonna play Germany, Belgium and the Netherlands in April, I think. Other than that we're keeping things pretty low-key.
Any closing comments?
Thanks a lot for the interview, man. Take care.