Interview with vocalist Scott Reigel
Interview conducted by Luxi Lahtinen
Date online: April 23, 2013
Brutality is back and I mean the old school Death Metal band from Tampa, FL, that recorded Death Metal tour de forces like Screams of Anguish, When the Sky Turns Black and In Mourning before splitting up in 2005 (they resurfaced in 2008 for a short time, without playing any shows or recording). Even more surprising is that Brutality managed to collect all the troops from the classic line-up that recorded the band's most appreciated album, their debut, Screams of Anguish.
Brutality recorded two new songs, "Ruins of Humans" and "Irreversibly Broken," at Florida's Morrisound Studios, in January and February 2013, with Jim Morris at the production helm once again. These songs clearly prove they have still got the skills to make Brutality music.
Vocalist Scott Reigel opens up for The Metal Crypt and talks about the band's plans to assume the top spot on the throne of Death Metal, amongst other things, of course...
Luxi: How's life Scott? Brutality keeping you busy these days?
Scott: Life is pretty good right now. Yes, life has gotten busier for us all now that Brutality is back.
Luxi: How were you able to get the same line-up together that recorded Brutality's debut album, Screams of Anguish? It's been 20 years since that record was released so you must feel very lucky to have exactly the same line-up?
Scott: We are very lucky to have been able to put this line-up back together. It took a lot of time for us all to finally talk about reforming Brutality with the Screams line-up.
Luxi: After 20 years each of you probably have your own families and careers outside of music, so now the band is back again, do you feel like you still have the same vibe, the feeling and the chemistry you had back in the day?
Scott: When we played together for the first time, after twenty years, it was obvious the five of us together is the key to Brutality.
Luxi: What are the things that have changed most, in your opinion, if we exclude the matter of aging?
Scott: The way we all communicate now. We are all much more mature in life and about our music!! We are 5 guys with a common goal; a band.
Luxi: These two new Brutality songs ("Ruins of Humans" and "Irreversibly Broken") have been really well received by fans of the band. I guess that kind of positive feedback really fuels your desire to give your very best effort to Brutality's, hopefully last, comeback, correct?
Scott: We are back with this line-up and we will end with this line-up. But for now we are enjoying writing new music for our fans that waited patiently for 17 years. We have been vey humbled by all of the positive responses we have gotten.
Luxi: Besides those aforementioned songs, I suppose you have lots of new, raw and unfinished material in the works right now. Would you mind telling us about this new Brutality material?
Scott: We do have other new material in the works and all I can is if you are a Brutality fan you are going to love it!!
Luxi: I would like to know how much you guys take advantage of new technology, like recording a song entirely alone at home, with drums, bass, guitar and everything. You don't necessarily need full band rehearsals anymore to hear how a song will sound with all the other instruments supporting your guitar, for example. Of course rehearsing for gigs with a full band is a whole different thing. If you don't rehearse enough with the whole band, there's a good chance things may get fucked up in a live situation. Preparing properly for playing live certainly cannot harm a band, can it?
Scott: We do use some of the technology of the day. I live in another state so the guys write and record music and send it to me. I go down to Florida about once a month to rehearse with the guys when where going to get ready for a live performance.
Luxi: Have you given any thought as to when you might record Brutality's fourth album? Do you have any working album titles for it?
Scott: We are working on new material now and hope to be back in the studio by the end of this year. As of now we don't have an album title.
Luxi: What about a possible producer to work on the next album? Do you have any names in mind or do you believe you might handle the production yourself this time around? Jim Morris did great work on your three previous albums, so could we cautiously expect Brutality to use him and his Morrisound again the next record?
Scott: Jim Morris will be our man. We have been going to Morrisound for over 20 years. It is part of us and our sound.
Luxi: Whenever you are in the studio there are surely some mandatory things that you keep in mind whenever you are trying to find that optimal sound and vibe for a Brutality song. What might these things be?
Scott: Although we are serious about our music the only mandatory thing for us is to have fun.
Luxi: Do you consider yourself a perfectionist as far as Brutality's songwriting process is concerned? Some musicians suffer from the "this-and-that-could-have-been-done-a-bit-better" syndrome and they are never happy with anything they have accomplished, which is actually kind of brutal...
Scott: No I don't think we have some kind of syndrome. We go in the studio well prepared for recording so when we're finished it's what we envisioned. But don't get me wrong we always think we could do better.
Luxi: What makes you proud of Brutality nowadays and what made you proud of this band in the past when you first joined?
Scott: I guess I'm proud that we were all able to put the past behind us and go back in time and bring back the same vibes from when I joined the band.
Luxi: Where did the two dragon figures in Brutality's logo come from originally?
Scott: Jay drew a logo for the Sadistic cover that had dragons on it then, after we signed with Nuclear Blast, our artist re-drew the logo for Screams of Anguish and incorporated the dragons in it.
Luxi: Brutality recorded three albums for Nuclear Blast between 1993 and 1996. During your years with Nuclear Blast did you get all the label support that you needed or when you look back, do you feel like you were left in the shadows of some artists of the other artists on that label?
Scott: No I don't think we got what we deserved, support wise. As far as being in the shadows, we didn't mind. We've always been underground and because of that with think coming back with the Screams line-up could take us to the top of the Death Metal world.
Luxi: What exactly happened between Brutality and Still Dead Productions in 2005?
Scott: Nothing really...
Luxi: What's ahead for Brutality on the gigging front?
Scott: For now we have a show in June that will mark the 20-year anniversary of Screams of Anguish then we hope to do some of the Festivals next year.
Luxi: Now that you all have your families and work, do you think extensive tours are of out question for Brutality, or do you believe one could be arranged?
Scott: We have no plans to do extensive tours. Our families and jobs are #1 at this point in our lives and we hope our fans will understand, as they all probably have the same things in their lives.
Luxi: Brutality is one of those rare bands that have no official DVD out. Do you have one in the works, as I have to believe you guys have tons of live material available, maybe enough for a double or triple DVD release?
Scott: Unfortunately, footage recorded back in the day was low quality and really doesn't capture Brutality's true sound. We hope that we are able to produce live concert videos for our fans to drool over.
Luxi: What kind of personal expectations do you have regarding Brutality's new album? Or would you rather not expect anything of it so you cannot fall too far, haha! Let the Brutality fans be the judge when that time comes...
Scott: We expect it to be exactly who we are and will always be "BRUTALITY".
Luxi: Well, that is it for now. I want to thank you for taking some time to answer my questions, Scott, and in the very same breath, I wish you all the best with your future endeavors. May your paths be strewn with many positive things. Any closing comments, perhaps?
Scott: We just want to thank all of our fans who have stuck by us all these years. We came back for you and thank you all because without you we are nothing. STAY BRUTAL and be looking for the sickest old school Death Metal album in history.
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