ALL SHALL PERISH’S HERNAN “EDDIE” HERMIDA & MIKE TINER: OUR WACKIEST INTERVIEW EVER?
Standing out in metal is difficult, considering that even the subgenres that splinter off from metal’s whole don’t take long to feel overcrowded. So in an era where bands increasingly have to earn their keep, All Shall Perish worked hard to definitively (and rightfully) make their mark in 2008 amidst the deluge of death metal. The band’s mesh of breakdowns and technical death metal forcefulness wowed many on their latest full length (Awaken the Dreamers) and during their copious touring (including one sponsored by us).
It was before their Providence show on that tour that vocalist Hernan “Eddie” Hermida and bassist Mike Tiner were kind enough to grant us an interview. They seemed to be guys with a good sense of humor about everything, not taking themselves (or anything, really) too seriously during the whole interview. With a dry, absurd wit later blown to bits by their fierce set that evening, the band didn’t seem to typify in person what their music may imply. They’re seemingly just dudes, albeit dudes that play in one of the chief death metal/ hardcore (but certainly not deathcore) bands out there. Eddie and Mike discussed their thoughts on deathcore and their insights into how they compose breakdowns, among other things.
So how is the tour going?
EH: The tour is killing it, man. We’re fucking having a great time.
MT: It’s awful. I hate everyone on it.
How have the crowds been reacting to the new album?
EH: For the most part everyone has been really enjoying it. You get a lot of kids coming up to you in the beginning of the night saying “Are you guys playing a bunch of old shit tonight?” “No we’re playing a bunch of new shit because we just released a record.” And they’re like “Oh, man,” but at the end of the night they’re like “Man, that new shit was awesome!” You get a lot of kids who haven’t heard the new stuff yet or just heard speculation and then made their own judgments on that. Once they hear the new stuff; they are kind of stoked on it.
EH: From there it has been great. The reaction to the new stuff has been amazing.
MT: Kids don’t typically pay attention unless [the song we’re playing has] been on Myspace for a thousand years.
MT: I can deal with it.
How would you guys describe the new direction you have taken? A lot of the new stuff is very intricate and different from what you used to do.
EH: We just try to go in a metal direction I guess. We’re still writing the same kind of songs and have the same All Shall Perish feel. I guess from this point on we’ve been striving to branch out and still be us but have a more metal background instead of sounding deathcore or death metal or hardcore. We just want to sound like a metal band.
MT: We definitely don’t want to put out the same bullshit album 5,000 times and think that it’s cool.
MT: Just think of something new.
MT: Something fresh and something new.
That being said, you guys still put a lot of weight on breakdowns, although not too much weight. It still sounds good. How do you guys keep breakdown sounding, as you put it, “fresh,” after what metalcore has done to them for the last 5 years?
EH: We attribute our breakdowns to Morse code.
MT: We spell out things like “fucked up” and other things. Somehow it fits into the songs.
EH: I think one of our breakdowns says “Mike is a little fanny, and he loves cock.”
EH: I said you’re a little fanny.
EH: As in a girl.
EH: As in a little girl.
MT: I thought you meant as like an old lady word for “bottom.”
EH: Yes. You are a bottom, aren’t you?
MT: Yeah, bottom feeder.
Speaking of deathcore, it’s gaining momentum. How do you guys feel being lumped into that scene?
EH: Whatever, I don’t really care. I think when you start lumping shit together, it starts to have negative effects. I personally don’t like to be lumped into shit, but when it comes down to it I don’t give two flying fucks. I’m still going to write and play music. So fuck you all. Fuck your moms. Fuck your grandmothers. Fuck your sisters.
MT: Wow, that’s a lot of anger. It personally makes me want to take a CD from the deathcore bands and break it in half.
EH: But at the same time it’s cool. People like it.
What would you guys say influenced this record both musically and externally?
MT: Fucking fannies again.
EH: My beard is sweet. Fuck you.
Was that a conscious decision, to all grow beards?
MT: It was a lazy decision.
EH: I can’t grow a mustache, otherwise I would. I got every different color of white people hair on my face. I got a blond mustache. I got gray, black and red. I’m a fucking mess.
MT: If anybody asks if I did it on purpose, I give them a look.
MT: For me, I’m just fat looking when I shave my beard. So I’m trying to stay away from that.
Enough to make it a permanent addition?
MT: If you look fat, cover it up with hair.
EH: That is the way to do it. If your belly is fat, grow some hair on it.
MT: It’s a happy trail.
EH: If your penis is little, grow some hair on it. It makes it look more enticing.
MT: Or it will make it disappear.
EH: I used to swim with this kid, and after practice we would shower to get the chlorine off our bodies. He would come in with a bush.
MT: He looked like the girl in the beginning of Carwash.
EH: Like his penis wasn’t there, and we were all freaked out by it. It was weird and we had to look for it.
EH: Probably to a corner in San Francisco begging for crack and/or sucking dick for crack.
MT: Probably doing the same thing over and over again. We’re going to rewrite the first album again.
EH: We’re going to put out another record called Hated, Maliced and Revenged.
MT: It’s all past tense.
EH: All past tense, and it’s going to sound exactly like it. I’m going to call Craig [Betit, original ASP vocalist] and have him sing on the record, too. I’ll probably just quit the band and have him join the band again. Then they can fire him a year or two after that album sells and then I’ll come back.
MT: There are a lot of icy roads out there and stuff. I want to see if I can get up a nice big hill and…
EH: Van flip.
MT: Van flip.
What are you guys listening to now? Anything good?
MT: Nothing. No metal. I hate metal.
EH: Otto Von Schirach. Breakcore is the shit.
Those guys are big Rusty Cooley fans.
EH: We love Rusty Cooley. That guy shreds the guitar. He is, hands down, one of the best guitarists on Earth.
EH: I swear. I kind of feel like nominating him for the Nobel Peace Prize.
MT: Then I’d get into his dick pocket.
EH: Where’s your pass, Rusty? “It’s in my dick pocket.”
MT: Oh, that’s so good.
EH: Rusty will know when he hears this.
MT: Reads this.
EH: He doesn’t read.
MT: Does he read?
EH: I hope so. He can read musical notes.
I assume that you guys aren’t writing or anything yet because of the new album, but do you have any idea for a direction to go in?
MT: We’ll probably spend like two weeks writing and another week recording and just throw it out.
EH: Our next record is going to sound a lot like Chicago.
EH: Early Chicago, yeah. I’m actually playing trombone on the next record. Like I said we’re going to hire Craig again. He’s just going to go off in a fit of joy, and I’m probably going to play all the horn section. Yeah we’ll sound a lot like Chicago. Except it’ll be “Tuesday in the Bathroom” instead of “Saturday in the Park.”
You have to make sacrifices.
EH: Yeah. I mean, you can’t plagiarize.
MT: You can’t be Chicago right away.
EH: You got to work up to Saturday.
MT: Maybe “Wednesday in the Kitchen.”
EH: “Thursday in the Bedroom.”
MT: That’ll be a fucking awesome song.
EH: “Friday in the Ass.” Yes.
MT: Oh son.
I think I’ve run out of questions.
MT: Keep in mind we haven’t opened up any or had any of the alcohol yet.
Note to self: you guys have two full cases of beer.
EH: They’re not for us. We’re straight edge.
Is there anything else you want to add?
MT: I have to poop.
EH: Why are you guys called Metalsucks?
Because we’re ironic douche bags and we like metal.
EH: Got you.
But we’re trying to poke fun at it. I didn’t name the site.
EH: Got it.
MT: You guys are sponsoring the tour, aren’t you?
EH: Listen to Sleep Terror. Luke [Jaeger, Sleep Terror guitarist/occasional ASP guitarist] said that, not me.
That didn’t sound like Luke.
EH: Who cares, it doesn’t matter.
MT: If you pinch his nose he might sound like him.
EH: Sleep Terror is the best band ever. Please don’t listen to that other band that kind of has a name like Sleep Terror but is not Sleep Terror. They’re only half a band because they only have a “terror.” Again, don’t kill me for saying that.