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Interview – Chris Barnes, Six Feet Under – January 2013

| 20 February 2013 | Reply

By Shane Pinnegar

SIX FEET UNDER have pulled out of Soundwave Festival, falling prey to the drummer dramas currently plaguing bands on the bill.  Never mind – here’s an interview with singer Chris Barnes regardless, where he talks about their latest album, lineup, lack of stagefright and more.  Enjoy!

Six Feet Under Chris Barnes 01

100% ROCK: Thanks so much for your time today.

Oh, no problem. Thanks for calling.

100% ROCK: So, Six Feet Under, heading to Australia for the Soundwave Festival. Are you looking forward to coming Down Under?

Yeah man, it’s going to be a huge tour obviously, and we’re just glad to be a part of it.

100% ROCK: Fantastic. You’ve also got a new album on the way. What can you tell us about that?

Well we’ve been working on new material. Getting it all done production wise. It’s a great group of songs. We’re really excited for the fans to hear this album. This is actually a continuation album [from the last one, Undead, released 2012] so it’s going to be interesting for you all to hear it I think. I’m really interested to hear all the fan’s opinions.

100% ROCK: When is the album likely to be released?

It’s going to be released working up to the Soundwave Festival.

100% ROCK: Cool. Will you be playing any of the new tracks while you’re in Australia?

I don’t think so just because they’re unfamiliar songs to the crowd and we would just rather give the crowd the hits, you know, so they know all the songs we’re going to be playing.   You know, our fans really want a taste of songs they know and haven’t heard for a while.

100% ROCK: Yeah. With nine albums under the band’s belt, plus the new one coming, how difficult is it to choose a set list?

It’s… it’s not really that hard. There are a lot of songs. We’re really picking off the fan’s favourites and we’ll play those. We have a really solid core group of our songs for our set list that we always have in the set list just because they are the most popular songs we have done. So it’s not too hard to pick songs. We usually just put maybe one or two songs from the new album in the set list and the rest from our catalogue.

100% ROCK: the new album have a title yet?

Yeah it does. I can’t release it though.

100% ROCK: Cool, keep your cards close to your chest mate, that’s good.

Yeah, I guess, I gotta wait ‘til we’re ready to push it all out there…

Six Feet Under Chris Barnes 02

100% ROCK: Sure. You’ve got a relatively new line up to the band as well, so how have things been working ou tin the live arena with the new guys?

Oh, it’s just been great. Having the new guys in the band – Jeff, Ola and Kevin – they’re just really talented musicians and it’s a challenge for me and Steve, y’know – we’re older guys, they’re a bit younger than us. They definitely raised the bar and increased the stakes a little bit, y’know – me and Steve are loving it, they’re all great guys and we all get along really well together and we’re having a great time working together.

100% ROCK: And the experience of recording the new album with the new guys in tow, how was that compared to previous experiences?

Oh it was great. We had a lot of material for this new album that is coming out and we recorded most of the material at the same time and stuff, so it’s just been, you know, a really interesting process. It’s a lot different from stuff I’ve done in the past, but we wanted to change it up in as far as the writing process and the people you are writing with, and the way you record. When you shake things up a little, you know, it definitely tends to kinda get things flowing in a new way, and it did with these sessions.

100% ROCK: You write quite a lot about death and there’s some violent lyrics and stuff in there. What’s the fascination with that, as opposed to, for instance, writing about life or love, or whatever?

Well I think it’s all in how you perceive things.  So, I think actually I am talking about life and love, you know. I think it depends on who’s reading it, just like looking at an abstract painting – you might see a woman’s vagina, and someone else might just see a penis, you know?

100% ROCK: Interesting. You seem a very quiet spoken, mellow kind of guy talking to you today. You’re more violent imagery; does that come from nightmares, or research? Once again, where do you get these things from?

It’s just what I’m interested in – telling stories.

100% ROCK: Considering Six Feet Under started as a side project for you, have you ever been tempted to do another side project which is less extreme, for instance I know you’re a big ACDC fan, like a hard rock thing or a traditional metal thing?

No, I just stick with what I’m good at and try and do it the best I can. I don’t like to step outside my atmosphere too much. I’ve done side projects with a band called Torture Killer, that was a lot of fun and really it’s a great album too, called Swarm, so that was a lot of fun. But that’s… my main focus is Six Feet Under and trying to, you know, make this band the best I can.

100% ROCK: When I was researching for this interview I found out all sorts of interesting stuff by hitting up Google and things, including the advertisement you appeared in for a used car salesman in your hometown of Tampa. That just seemed like a very surreal experience.

Well it was a lot of fun. They’re [near my house] in Tampa, and they were really helpful to me when I had just started so I wanted to give back a little bit to my community.

100% ROCK: Have you always been such a natural on stage and on camera?

Oh I don’t know if I was a natural, I’ve just been doing it for a long time so I’m used to it. I’m used to being up on a box, so to speak.

100% ROCK: So you don’t suffer from terrible stage fright or anything like that?

I suffer more from social anxiety than I do from being on stage. I could be on stage in front of 100,000 people but if you put me in a room with 12 people that I don’t know, I’m the guy that’s kind of real quiet and keeping myself to myself.

Metal Blade recording artists Six Feet Under

100% ROCK: Fair enough. So if you could magically go back in time and be a part of the recording of any one album in history, what would you chose?

Oh wow, probably Exile On Main Street [The Rolling Stones]. That’s one of my favourite albums and their recording session was probably one of the most amazing, indulgent session ever!

100% ROCK: I think you’re probably right there. Finally Chris, what for you is The Meaning Of Life?

The Meaning Of Life is the search for knowledge.

100% ROCK: Very cool. Thank you so much for your time. That’s awesome and good luck with the album and tour, and we look forward to seeing you when you get to Perth.

I appreciate it, and thanks for doing the interview. That was a really good set of questions, thanks a lot for taking your time on that.

100% ROCK: Have a great day.

Thanks man, see ya.

Category: Interviews

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Editor, 100% ROCK MAGAZINE

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