Obituary – Back to One, Basically

Tuesday, 6th August 2013

Dead Rhetoric: Not a bad crew…

Tardy: It was awesome! We just set up there and jammed it. We answered some questions about Morrisound’s early days and how things went while we were there, so we ended up putting together this documentary, even though I hate that word, “documentary.” We were just jamming there, having a few beers, shooting a documentary, but trying to tell the story of Morrisound at the same time. So that’s another project we dumped a bunch of money into, trying to generate some stuff to do. That’s going to be cool.

Dead Rhetoric: It seems like in terms of being active on the social media front, as well as trying new things, you guys are really taking the bull by the horns. Where does that come from?

Tardy: Once we got the website going, I grabbed that and spent a lot of time with it, especially on the road. I’d wake up every morning and you have a bunch of pictures to go through – you have to re-size them and put them up on the website, update all of the information, and change every page. I would spend a lot of time doing that. Now the social media started coming along, where instead of going to our website, people were going to our Facebook page. I was slow to pick up on it; I was like, “I don’t like this, man.”

My personal Facebook page – I have one, but we have someone around to help get it set up, but what happens is that there’s a whole bunch of people pretending to be John Tardy [laughs]. Finally a year ago, I started taking interest in the Facebook page of Obituary, so I’ve been doing that, and I have Twitter on my phone. So if I’m doing something, I’ll send a tweet out from time-to-time. I’m not that dude, “I’m drinking some coffee.” That’s not me. Some people live their life through it, but at the same time, it’s pretty cool.

Dead Rhetoric: Moving along, you have a new lead guitar player in Kenny [Andrews]. In terms of the grand picture of Obituary lead guitarists with Alan [West] and Ralph [Santolla], how does he fit in?

Tardy: I think he’s great. We’ve known Kenny for a really long time. He’s from Orlando and we’re from Tampa, but we’d still run into him a lot. Donald [Tardy, drums] got to know him real well because they played in Andrew W.K. together and played a lot of shows together, so they hit it off really well. Kenny’s the kind of guy who always has a smile on his face, such a pleasure to be around. That fits in with us. We’re very upbeat, just want to have good time type of band, whether you’re stuck in an airport and you missed your flight so you have to sit there for eight hours, or whatever the circumstances may be. Kenny fits in so well with that. His style, maybe he’s not the most technically-sound person on the planet.

Dead Rhetoric: Like Ralph [Santolla], who is super-technical. 

Tardy: Like Ralph [laughs]. Ralph is just super-technical, laying down scales all day long, but he didn’t want to put the [whammy] bar on his guitar. Early Obituary stuff, what made Big Al’s style set out so far was that he was just great with using the bar. Kenny is not afraid of it; he works [it] in there. Whereas Al used more bar than anyone and Ralph didn’t use any, Kenny settles right between the two of them. He’s more than technical enough for our band and the solos that sound good for what we do. 

Dead Rhetoric: What’s the progress on the new album?

Tardy: We really are – which is why we went ahead and started with that campaign – we’re going to have the master done in December. We’ll be recording in November. Most of the songs are done now; we only have a couple more to put together. We want to get about 13 songs ready; have 12 for the CD and have one in the wings to do something as a bonus. So we have the bulk of those things done; there’s probably five, six, seven of them that are nearly complete, and another three or four where the structure is really there, we have some filling in to do. There’s a couple more we have to put together.

We’re doing our best and we’re trying to get them all done. Before we jam them, we want to give ourselves a month of just playing them time and time again, getting the feel for them and really feeling them out to make changes. That way, it gives you some flexibility to make changes, so the more you hear them, the more flexibility you have to make changes. That’s where we’re at. We hope to finish writing soon. Be done recording in November, mixing in December, and bam, have the thing out next year, and get the campaign started in January.

Obituary official website

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