Goatwhore vocalist Ben Falgoust talks new album
New Orleans has long played home to some of America’s most notable extreme metal bands, and among the more influential is Goatwhore. There is something about the attitude and visceral bleakness of NOLA which feeds the caustic and caliginous aura of the bands which are birthed there. Goatwhore infuses that feeling into its songs which can be heard on the band’s newest album, Constricting Rage of the Merciless.
In preparation for the release of the band’s sixth studio album, Goatwhore spent the spring tearing up the road with Behemoth as part of the 2014 Metalliance Tour. They will kick off July with an eight-date solo tour in celebration of the album’s release. This will be followed by a slot on the 2012 Summer Slaughter Tour with Morbid Angel and Dying Fetus.
Goatwhore was formed in 1997 by guitarist Sammy Duet in the aftermath of his former band, Acid Bath. Duet immediately reached out to Soilent Green frontman Louis Benjamin Falgoust II to handle vocals duties. Drummer Zack Simmons joined the cause in 2004, in time for the band’s third album, A Haunting Curse (2006). James Harvey, who plays with Duet in Ritual Killer, took over on bass in 2009.
This month Metalholic caught up with Falgoust to discuss the recording of Constricting Rage of the Merciless which was once again produced by Erik Rutan (Hate Eternal, ex-Morbid Angel) who has produced every studio album since A Haunting Curse.
Falgoust hails Rutan as the band’s extra weapon. “It’s funny cause most of the time when you feel comfortable with something, it’s time to get out of it. But it’s just a comfortable experience and I think we always joke around about how Rutan’s like the secret fifth member of Goatwhore. He doesn’t write any of the music, but he contributes in a way that makes a difference for the band when we record. He’s got a certain ear and he won’t let you do a subpar performance.”
Goatwhore opted to go old school for the new record, recording on two-inch tape as their heroes did before them. Falgoust shared that the band felt it would make the sound warmer and more organic. “It’s becoming more of an obsolete form because of the lack of quality tape. We got used reels and it’s really weird because you bake them in like this jerky machine. You bake it for like four hours then flip it and bake it for another four hours. And the whole time while you’re getting the tape ready you kind of got your fingers crossed, but everything worked great. The tape was great. It’s got that nostalgia to it, and we wanted to get that sound. You might not notice the difference but we notice it. It’s a more warm, full tone that you get out of it.”
Check out the full 30 minute interview below as Falgoust talks in-depth about the new record; the songs, the recording, the artwork, and more. he also shares the albums which changed his life, and the story of his first tattoo.