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CORPSEGRINDER Talks Solo Album, 40 Years Of Metal Blade & 30 Years Of Tomb of the Mutilated

Plus a reassessment on Violence Unimagined and his insights into pandemic downtime.

George Corpsegrinder Fischer

George "Corpsegrinder" Fisher is the fucking man. End of sentence and story. Thanks for reading.

Less than a year removed from Cannibal Corpse's Violence Unimagined and the thick-necked growl monster (with the power to pulverize and heart of gold) is set to drop his debut solo album Corpsegrinder through Jamey Jasta's Perseverance Music Group on February 25.

Corpsegrinder was co-produced by Nick Bellmore (Dee Snider, Kingdom Of Sorrow) and Jasta himself, and musicians Charlie Bellmore (Dee Snider, ex-Toxic Holocaust) on guitar and bass duties, Nick Bellmore (Dee Snider, ex-Toxic Holocaust) on drums, and a guest appearance from shred lord Erik Rutan (Cannibal Corpse, Hate Eternal) on the lead-off barn-burner "Acid Vat." Corpsegrinder is a 10-song frenzy of classic death metal with hardcore thrash leanings, all with of the signature Corpsegrinder vocals we've come to love.

We sat down with Corpsegrinder himself ahead of the album launch for a deep dive into the project, a reassessment on Violence Unimagined, a salute to Metal Blade Records on their 40th anniversary, a discussion on 30 years of Tombs of the Mutilated, and his insights into his pandemic downtime.

Man, I'm so excited for this record. I was such a fan of Violence Unimagined, and then for this to come on the heels of that. It's like Cannibal Corpse fans are double treated, but with something that isn't typical Cannibal Corpse. You've got your thrash influences, your hardcore, your death metal – it's kind of like a big stew of heavy. And I'd guess there are some things you can kind of get out of your system that wouldn't be right for Cannibal Corpse.

Oh, sure. There's no reason to do just a straight death metal record. I've done a bunch of appearances on death metal band records, and pn some stuff that was not close to what Cannibal does. So there's no reason to do a whole album that sounds like Cannibal Corpse. I mean, I'm in Cannibal Corpse. I'm not going to try to do anything like that. And like you said, this one has thrash. There's some definite elements of thrash.

I mean, the last single we released "On Wings of Carnage," the beginning riffs sound like Morbid Angel to me, but then it goes into something almost more hardcore slamming riff. So I think it has something for everybody. I didn't want it to be just blast beats everywhere and me doing what I've done with Cannibal Corpse. The lyrics are maybe in some spots like Cannibal, but the phrasing of the vocals, the patterns I think are a foot in the ground with the hardcore side of things and maybe some thrash metal. It's not as just straight up death metal, especially in the lyrical phrasing. That's what I think sets it apart.

CORPSEGRINDER Talks Solo Album, 40 Years Of Metal Blade & 30 Years Of Tomb of the Mutilated

In terms of who you brought in, I guess you could say the band is Charlie and Nick? Then obviously the guest appearance from Erik, who you have such a familiarity with at this point. How hard was it to come up with the team? Because I'm sure there were a lot of people you could have leaned on to ask to come in for a guest spot or collaboration.

Well, here's the thing. I did "They Want Your Soul" with Jamey Jasta for his second solo record. I sang that song with him and then a few months later he said "hey dude, how about doing a record with me?" And he already had Charlie and Nick on board. I was like of course, "that'd be great." They were writing songs and stuff. So he started sending me things, material. And I, of course, got a hold of Erik because I wanted to work with him. And then we had the record and we recorded it. So I didn't put those guys together. And you know, Jamey obviously worked with them with Dee Snider and all the other things they've done, so he had those guys already there. He knew who he wanted. I think he already had ideas and he just put it all down. I mean, we're where we're at.

It was always kind of in my mind, like maybe one day I could just call a record Corpsegrinder if I wrote a bunch of songs. I've never been much of a person for writing lyrics. And that's the same on this. You know, Jamey did that. I don't play guitar. Well, I'm sure if I had one I think I could, but I really can't. I could probably do a little bit of drums. If I had like a drum machine, I could program it if I just learned how to use the damn thing or just program on a computer, which is more likely these days … But with all that said, I'd always thought that maybe I would do something along those lines and it just never happened. Cannibal has been busy and just other shit happening. Jamey just said "hey, let's do a record?" He wanted to call it Corpsegrinder and I thought "no" because I always thought maybe one day I would do my own thing. But then I thought "let's do it. Why not? We're just trying to brand this as me and whatnot, so we should just call it Corpsegrinder. My first band's name was Corpsegrinder."

And again, going back to what you were saying about other people. I mean, I'm pretty certain I could probably talk to most people in the death metal world and say "hey, let's do a record." But then it's a supergroup. You get people together, and if you get five guys and they're all super popular guys in other bands, then it's not really worth calling it Corpsegrinder. Because it's a supergroup. But I want everyone to put their two cents into it. And then I would just end up probably being a death metal record. So this was a unique situation. And Jamey coming from the background he comes from, and Charlie and Nick, it all worked out perfectly. I'm really happy with it. I think it's a great album … I'm excited for people to hear it because I know it's not just a straight up death metal record. It's not a bunch of blast beats and drum rolls all over the place. It's got a lot more groove, but it's got speed on it. There's fast parts here and there, but it's not like that's the predominant part of it. I think it relies more on that groove and maybe the slam parts, if you will.

What's your take on Erik as a collaborator and a guitarist? I'm such a fan of Hate Eternal, and I think he fits so well in what you guys do in Cannibal. How has he kind of been in that world and also working with you on this.

First, we did four tours with him, the last tours we were able to do in 2019 … He just stepped right in perfectly and we've known him for so long. We recorded with him. He was basically a sixth member anyway just with all the records we've done with him. It wasn't even skipping a beat. It was almost like he'd just been there the whole time anyway. Recording-wise with him, come on – he's a great death metal singer in his own right. So for me recording with him is easy. He knows everything. He's seen it all, done it all. He's recorded all these other great bands as well. So being in the studio with him, it's like the easiest thing to do.

It's the most fun time. I can tell you right now, there's times where we're not working like we're supposed to be working. It's a lot my fault and it's not really him. We screw around a lot in the studio … Working with him is just a lot of fun. Obviously it's work. But I mean, and I'm not saying I would never record a record with anybody else because who knows what happens in the future, but I prefer to record with him. For me, it's the best time.

Cannibal Corpse has the Metal Blade Tour coming up pretty soon. I know that one's going to mean a lot to you guys. I'm sure you're properly going to tour and promote Violence Unimagined, but here you're saluting this label who have been with you guys since ground zero, since day one. Metal Blade has been incredibly supportive for you cats.

Oh yeah, it's been awesome. We're just ready to get back out on the road and obviously being able to celebrate the label and just being able to tour again. I know there's some tours that are going around. I've been to a few shows recently. I think Obituary is playing here in a few days as well. Last year I saw Dying Fetus with Terror and that was great. So hopefully it is getting back to normal here. You never know.

I don't want to go and call it over. It's not for me to say. Hopefully we can just get through this tour. I know we're going to have protocols in place. Probably not going to be hanging out around the bus signing stuff and taking pictures like we normally would. Everyone wants to make sure that no one gets sick and has to miss any shows … But we're going to be happy to be back out there. At the very least, better to be out there playing and not being able to interact with people as we normally would then to not be out playing at all and just be sitting at home hoping that this thing would end.

Going back to Metal Blade, on a more positive note. I mean, come on, the band has been there since before I was in the band. And they took a chance with these guys years ago. I don't know if anybody really thought it was going to turn out this way with this band. I don't even know Brian thought it would turn out the way it has for Metal Blade. But I mean, they are the metal label. It's the first name you think of, or if you ask anybody about a record label you're going to say Metal Blade Records. They've been great to all the bands and have been great to us. We've had the best working relationship with them. If you're going to do a 40th anniversary tour it makes sense … We've been there as long as anybody, if not longer.

In terms of anniversary tours, are you a fan of doing that as a band and playing a record in full? I believe 2022 is 30 years of Tomb of the Mutilated, which is such a big Cannibal record. And then we have 20 years of Gore Obsessed. Is that something you'd have any interest in? Going back and re-learning some of the deep cuts. Obviously you guys are always going to play "I Cum Blood" and "Hammer Smashed Face".

We would have to think about it, but we just want to get back out on tour. Now we can tour for Violence Unimagined, which we weren't able to. We want to play some new songs. It gets harder. The more records we have out the harder it is, you know? We always used to say we're going to put one song from each record in the set and it just became impossible now. Listen, "Hammer Smashed Face" is never going anywhere. That is our one untouchable song. I mean, if we didn't play that song, you can forget it. There would be a problem in the crowd. They would not be happy. So we've always said "Hammer" is untouchable. And there's plenty of other songs we can revisit. I don't even know if anyone's even thought about it.

I was doing an interview the other day and someone brought up to me that this year's the 30 year anniversary of Imperial Doom [by Monstrosity], the first record I did. It's the 30 year anniversary in 1992. It's in May, and I was like, "oh wow, I didn't even know it." Time has flown by so fast. I didn't even realize it. I think everyone's probably conscious of the fact, but I don't think we put much stock into it as like "let's do a Tomb of the Mutilated 30 year anniversary tour" where we just play that record, because we couldn't get away with that. How many songs are on that record?

It's kind of like this Corpsegrinder thing. If I was going to tour with it I can't headline right now because there's 10 songs. If you play 10 songs and leave, no one's going to be happy. I don't care what records you play. If you go out on tour and play Reign in Blood in its entirety and you just pay all this money for a half hour show, no one's happy with that. So it would be hard. I mean, we could do something, but we haven't thought about it at all. We're just excited to get back and play and we want to play some new songs as well from Violence Unimagined. I wouldn't say anyone would be opposed to it. We just have to work it out. Maybe play a mini set and then play Tomb. We weren't even thinking about it, so I would say probably don't hold your breath.

CORPSEGRINDER Talks Solo Album, 40 Years Of Metal Blade & 30 Years Of Tomb of the Mutilated

I always think about it, especially in something like a pandemic where you might have all this material, songs you might have been sitting on forever. And by the time it actually gets out you're probably ready to move on and do something else. We're creeping up on a year removed from the release of Violence Unimagined. How do you assess that record now with some hindsight?

It is crazy to think it's almost a year old now. It feels like we just put it out. Here's the crazy thing. After we recorded that record, I went in the studio within two months and recorded the Corpsegrinder record. It was like back to back records. It's kind of like as soon as we were done that one we went on to the next one and it kind of didn't get lost, obviously. And yeah, we released it. And the reaction to Violence Unimagined was incredible. We thought we had a great record, but you never know. I can sit here and say this Corpsegrinder record is the greatest thing ever written. That doesn't mean shit if no one else thinks that. But we really thought we had a good one.

People reacted positively the way that we felt about it. We just did the Corpsegrinder record so soon afterwards, it didn't get lost, but we're excited to play the songs because, yeah, we've had to sit on them. I don't feel stagnant about them because like I said, I was doing that. We went right into that. And now I've been doing all these interviews with the Corpsegrinder project and I've been dealing with Jamey with all the different things that are part of that. Not that Violence Unimagined is like forgotten in history. But it's like since everything else, it's been a year and now we'll be revisiting it. And it'll probably feel a little new because it's been a while.

It's hard to consider whether or not you've had any downtime during the pandemic, between the two records you've released and being a husband and a father and everything that goes along with that. But have you had the chance to check anything off the bucket list? Any shows or movies or books?

I'm not really into book reading. I'll play PlayStation. I've been playing the Harry Potter game. Just go collect coins and smash stuff up, you know? I'm currently playing the second part of it, years five to seven I think it is. I've been playing Warcraft here and there, but I've just been busy with the Corpsegrinder thing.

I will say, last July, four days after my birthday, my wife had started doing Weight Watchers and I started doing it. And I'm down almost 40 pounds now where I was when people saw me last time. On stage when we played in Vegas, I was probably down about 15 pounds. But I can feel it. I could tell. I haven't really been like working out with weights or nothing else but doing Weight Watchers and going walking … I've just been trying to be a little bit more active and get a little healthier. I tell you, when I played that show in August, I could feel the difference of just 15-20 pounds less weight, like on stage. I felt it. I could just tell it. And I was like, "wow man." I mean, I was probably just hurting myself so bad, just struggling so much harder.

So there was that. Playing some video games, some World of Warcraft, of course. Hanging out with my wife watching movies. I've had a bunch of shows that everyone keeps telling me that I should be watching and I should binge watch, and I just never do it. I've never watched Game of Thrones, and this is a perfect time to watch Game of Thrones. Cobra Kai, I've heard that's a really good one. I've never watched The Walking Dead. So I didn't do any of that. Mostly, if I'm watching TV I watch football, American football, or I watch old history shows about World War II or mafia stuff. Or I do watch a lot of paranormal TV shows.

Corpsegrinder will release his self-titled debut album on February 25. Pre-orders are available here. Cannibal Corpse will also hit the road this month with Whitechapel, Revocation, and Shadow Of Intent.

2/18 Center Stage – Atlanta, GA
2/19 The Ramkat – Winston-Salem, NC
2/20 Baltimore Soundstage – Baltimore, MD
2/21 Reverb – Reading, PA
2/22 The Roxian – Pittsburgh, PA
2/24 Brooklyn Steel – Brooklyn, NY
2/25 The Palladium – Worcester, MA
2/26 Anthology – Rochester, NY
2/28 The Majestic – Detroit, MI
3/1 The Vic – Chicago, IL
3/2 Skyway Theater – Minneapolis, MN
3/4 The Gothic – Denver, CO
3/5 Metro Music Hall – Salt Lake City, UT
3/7 Showbox – Seattle, WA
3/8 Hawthorne – Portland, OR
3/10 Ace Of Spades – Sacramento, CA
3/11 The UC Theatre – Berkeley, CA
3/12 The Observatory – Santa Ana, CA
3/13 The Belasco – Los Angeles, CA
3/14 The Van Buren – Phoenix, AZ
3/15 Sunshine Theater – Albuquerque, NM
3/17 Vibes Event Center – San Antonio, TX
3/18 White Oak Music Hall – Houston, TX
3/19 Amplified Live – Dallas, TX
3/21 Red Flag – St. Louis, MO
3/22 Mercury Ballroom – Louisville, KY
3/23 Iron City – Birmingham, AL
3/25 Jannus Live – St. Petersburg, FL
3/26 Revolution – Ft. Lauderdale, FL

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