Mantar Drummer Erinc Sakarya Lists His Favorite ’90s Metal Albums


German noise metal duo Mantar recently put out Grungetown Hooligans II, a collection of covers paying tribute to some their biggest influences from the ’90s. Ranging from songs by L7 to Sonic Youth to The Jesus Lizard to Mudhoney, the album spins Mantar’s own sludgy take on famous tunes by some of the decade’s most notable alt rock progenitors.

But Mantar are a heavy band at heart, and though they decided to dirty up a bunch of decidedly less heavy rock tunes for their official release, they’re just as influenced by actual metal as us all. To celebrate the album’s release, MetalSucks asked the band’s drummer, Erinc Sakarya, to talk about some of his favorite metal album’s from the ’90s. Have a look at his picks below along with a few words about each from Erinc himself.

Melvins, Houdini

First time I saw the Melvins was at a show in my hometown, Bremen, in 1994. They were supporting Nirvana on their In Utero tour and also doing some headline shows promoting their new album, Houdini. Later I discovered all of their awesome older stuff, but this show and this record made me stoked on the Melvins forever. At that time I didn’t know that it was their first major label release and I also thought all American bands playing in Germany were superstars. I had never heard drumming like this before… it was so heavy and so slow, and the visual aspect of those giant drums impressed me so much that I stole a lot from Mr. Crover and still do. Favorite song: all of them.

Helmet, Meantime

I love Helmet and this is one of my all time favorite records. They are like a machine – they play so precisely but keep it simple.There was a brief period when I wasn’t too sure about this band because they didn’t match up with the other stuff I listened to (those were my problems in the ’90s), but I saw them live again on their Aftertaste tour in 1997 and all my doubts were gone. With cutting riffs and John Stanier’s drumming they defined their heavy and grooving trademark sound to me. I still listen to songs like “Unsung” to get inspired to play drums.

New Bomb Turks, Destroy-Oh-Boy!

− The New Bomb Turks were one of the best live bands of the ’90s, and I had the pleasure of seeing them several times in small clubs in Bremen. Their sound is a mixture of rock ‘n’ roll and punk and it was really hard not to have a good time at their shows. I remember one time when the singer Eric grabbed my hair and pulled me out of the mosh. That was one of those “we are in this together” moments! A funny side fact: last time we played Brooklyn, NY with Mantar I saw Eric hosting a flea market for vinyl and other musical stuff in the venue before the show.

Mother Tongue, Mother Tongue

There was this one song from that record called “Damage” that I loved when I first heard it, but then I kinda forgot about this band until the bass player of my band at that time, Sven, gave me the whole album. The songs, the music… it blew me away. Sven told me that the band broke up and I was devastated: they were supposed to be my new favorite band! I was so brokenhearted that I dreamt of seeing them live with that awesome drummer and how they would play all those great songs from the album. About 10 years later they reunited and I finally had the chance to see their show. They had a new drummer and everything was a little different from my imagination, but those guys still really rocked hard.

Primus, Frizzle Fry

There should be no debate about Primus… you either love them or you hate them, nothing in between. A lot of people think they are annoying, but I love them (obviously) and they’ve always had amazing drummers behind to Les Claypool. If you played drums or bass in the ’90s there was no way to avoid Primus. They were something like the punks of funk, a band that did whatever they wanted no matter what anyone thought.

Nomeansno, Live + Cuddly

This is the best live album ever… ever! I remember my best friend Klaus giving me a copy of this record and I was like, “Do they sound like Primus?“ and he said, “No… better!” I listened to this record every day in the early ’90s, saw them live a lot and I wanted to drum like John Wright. They were so good and entertaining in a very special way. I love all their stuff but this album opened the door to all my Nomeansno experiences.

Butthole Surfers, Independent Worm Saloon

Independent Worm Saloon had everything you need if you were into pop, grunge and punk in the ’90s. This album is brilliant from A-Z. The Butthole Surfers were known to be a lot more freaky and crazy than this record, but IWS rocks all the way through and still has some sensationally stupid moments. As a side fact, this album was produced by non other than John Paul Jones from Led Zeppelin. I made lots of mixtapes for friends and girlfriends at that time, and “Who Was in My Room Last Night” was the opening track on almost every tape I made. It has a lot of scratches and holes but I’ve still got my Butthole Surfers shirt from that time!

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