Interview with Michael Eisenhauer (vocals)
Interview conducted by Barbara Williams (Crowley)
Date online: January 25, 2003
Hail and greetings from "Hell" Paso, Texas!!!
How would you describe Evil Incarnate to someone who's never heard your music before?
ST. MICHAEL: Things are going as should be expected considering it takes a long time to get a band popularized, but all is going as planned. If I had to describe us, it would be pummeling death metal with a sound straight out of hell in the style of acts like NECROPHOBIC, NILE, SLAYER, UNLEASHED, GRAVE, DESTRUCTION!!! We donít rely on any one style of riffing or drumming. There are way too many great bands in our metal realm to take an influence from style-wise, so I donít understand groups sounding identical to their favorite band. That will only take you so far, I think! Lyrically, Iím more understandable than most vocalists and I actually have a message to bring with the music. I AM LEADING THE PEOPLE TO SATAN!!!
You had two new guys fill the positions for guitarists and decided to change your name. Why Evil Incarnate? Who came up with the name and what is the significance (not meaning) behind the name?
This was in 1997, Barbara, and since then we have remained a three- piece with ROB RIGNEY as the only guitarist. The reason behind the name change was because SATAN IS EVIL INCARNATE, the venom of god and we spread his hate to the world until he comes to rule the world. There were already several bands by the name APOLLYN, just different spellings, and I wanted the cult to be much more than some side band anymore. When I was in NUM SKULL, I created this band and the name was my choice. I think itís original and fucking great. Satan is truly proud!!!
Why did you guys leave Num Skull and Jungle ROT?
NUM SKULL was a bunch of my friends who were, in my opinion, at the time more interested in working normal jobs and chilliní at home whereas my goal till death is touring my ass off, hopefully sooner than later. I just didnít feel there was anything more going to come off the record, When Suffering Comes, we released on DEFILED RECORDS in 1996, and to this day the only other member from the record who is still in the scene and working towards similar goals as mine is Scott Creakmore. I honestly think Tom Bradner (original member) was bitter from the management that ripped NUM SKULL off in the 80's and ruined everything for them on their record label back then. After they toured with DARK ANGEL, SLAYER, and MEGADETH , it sort of never took off again from the membersí problems, slowing them from the comeback trail. A sad situation, but a lot of musicians owe a lot they learned from Tom, including myself. Did you know Marty the owner of OLYMPIC RECORDS and Dave from JUNGLE ROT used to be in NUM SKULL? As for my old drummer, we kicked out Andy from JUNGLE ROT. He just couldnít get along with anyone who didnít want to worship VENOM 24 hours a day. That is all I can tell you, but Andy has been replaced in EVIL INCARNATE by drummer Garrett Scanlan from Chicagoís CORPSE VOMIT and is way better and way fucking cool!!!
How do you write your music? Is there a set guideline or do you write what you feel as you go along?
Sometimes I will feel like playing fast, or heavy then fast, or mid tempos. It all depends on my mood like anger or depression since everyone, including musicians and champions alike, have moments of differing motivation and feelings of worth. Basically though, we play what we think a band should sound like. Also, lyrically it is very important, especially with the new record Waiting for his Return that a definite message comes with the music.
How do you get the inspiration for writing your lyrics?
From everything dark-- including mankind and, most of all, demonic forces!
How did the change of members in such a short period of time affect the "evilution" of the way you put the songs together?
It didnít affect it at all considering toward the end of writing Blackest Hymns of godís Disgrace, I wrote everything, including all of the songs on our demos re-issued on the CD Blood of the Saints. It wasnít till we needed a few last songs for Blackest... and Robís other band FEAR SPAWNED RELIGION broke up that he added riffs and 90 percent of a couple pf tunes for that record. Till this day, even when Rob writes an entire tune, (which is more now, of course), I will always add something riff-wise to combine our styles and keep it one sound. I hate when you have two guys creating songs and they both sound totally different. That sucks!!!
Mike, How would you describe (or categorize) your style of vocals? Who have been your role models? Had it been difficult for you when Scott took over the vocals for a while?
I would say my vox will bring you back to the time when nearly every death metal demo kicked ass and all the singers were different and you knew who it was after the first words. Iíll admit I go out of my way at times to be more understandable,too. I get that a lot when people say they wished the singer were more understandable and, depending on the band at question, I usually agree. Scott only sang on two songs, Barbara. We signed with and received partial pay from Dwell Records to do a couple of more Tribute tracks to Black Sabbath and Venom, and two weeks before recording, I was finally re-captured on felony warrants after beating the crap out of my mother's boyfriend who had painted his religious bullshit on her mailbox I was using then for the band and who was tossing my mail in the garbage. Basically, I had satan on my side pulling strings so I could be out. Out of a possible 15 to 30 years in prison, I served three months in jail. My previous times being incarcerated was for the distribution of LSD, and serving nearly three years probation that I ruined by getting a Petition to Revoke against me, all helped me get this short slap on the hand, he he he !!! I LOVE AMERICA, HE HE HE !!! As for my past role models--vocally it was definitely GLEN BENTON (DEICIDE), JEFF GRUSLIN (VITAL REMAINS), JOHNEY HEDLUND (UNLEASHED), BLACKIE LAWLESS(WASP), CHRIS BARNES (CANNIBAL CORPSE), ROB HALFORD (JUDAS PRIEST) and also MORBID ANGEL,GRAVE and ENTOMBED. These are a few of my fave vocalists, but there are more!
You have opened up for Dark Funeral, Monstrosity, Nile, Incantation, Internal Bleeding, Cephallic Carnage, and several other bands. How do you feel about playing live? Are there any particular memories from the touring you would like to mention?
Iíll tell you what, when we toured in Mexico it was the best time of my life so far. The fans were some of the very best and most brutal; they loved us and we played our asses off just for them. A funny story was the night we only had one room with one little twin bed and Rob and I slept in it (no, we're not gay) and made our fill-in drummer (some little KORN KID PUNK not worth name-ing) sleep in this old nasty tick-infested mange- looking dog's bed. We all (bands including MASOCHISM and KRABATHOR, road crew) laughed for days about it, ha ha ha!!! A special hails goes out to our friends in MORBID VISIONS RECORDS, Mexico (promoter/road crew)and antimony from Mexico's DISGORGE for the killer buds and friendship in Salamanca . Also, hails to grind legends ANARCHUS, also from Mexico.
Which cities have you played? Any plans to go on tour? If so, where and when and with whom?
Weíve played some killer dates all over Mexico and all over Illinois; weíve hit Texas and Ohio several times, Wisconsin, Missouri, Florida, Georgia, etc.! The European tour was cancelled due to financial reasons, but after the next record Waiting for his Return, MORBID RECORDS(GERMANY) is paying for our flights besides tour support, so all is going well for this band this time around.
What made you guys decide to play in a band? Had it always been a dream? Who or what inspired you?
Believe it or not! Christianity and horror movies inspired me, but one of the first bands were BLACK SABBATH, MOTORHEAD, METALLICA, SLAYER, EXODUS,TESTAMENT,DARK ANGEL, NUM SKULL . The reason I say christianity is the fact that I would have given anything not to have had to suffer in my life the way I did. I hated church and all involved and they, along with my family, created me. This band is my release and my revenge!!!
Have your parents and friends always been supportive?
Friends, yes! Of course! My family -- I still hate them to this day, but since I have four kids, theyíre always popping in trying to make up for the bullshit. I could write a book starting with my offspring. Basically, they created me and so did the church!
Outside of playing Metal, what kinds of things do you enjoy doing?
Other than fucking my wifeís brains out and masturbating, I enjoy things like the UFC, WW2, POWERLIFTING, BOXING and history. The military and government politics all are interesting to me.
Do you guys have other "regular" jobs? How do you divide your time?
My wifeís a nurse. I donít work and when I'm not out with my band, she takes very good care of me and my drinking habits. Actually, my drummerís girlfriend supports him most of the time, too and my guitarist has a shit-hole job at the Eagle Truck Wash. (Ha ha ha to him!!!) I worked there and it just fuckin sucks!!! Actually, before recently I built wrestling mats for five years for universities/colleges. When weíre not rockiní out, weíre normal guys hanging with our bro's, smokin' out and getting drunk, listening to metal.
Do you feel that Death and Black Metal bands have it more difficult to gain recognition compared to those who play other types of metal? (Heavy,Industrial, etc.)
Definitely! Not as many people listen to something this extreme and there are so many bands doing it, and doing it very well, that competition is very hard. You have to really pay your dues in this music first.
You have four songs on Mp3. Do you think it has helped you to attract new fans? Do you think you're attracting new fans or are you pretty much catering for the ones who have been with you from the beginning?
We definitely have gotten a lot more fans. Itís a night and day difference since signing to MORBID and finally getting a website and e-mail account.
Love the songs you picked, by the way. They're fucking bad-ass. What made you choose those, though, over other songs you have?
These were hard because we wanted the better songs, but being that we wrote them, of course, we liked them all. I canít say there are songs we donít like as much even though they're not on mp3. The new record is even better.
Have you gotten any gifts from fans? Which would you say would be the coolest or weirdest?
In Mexico itís tradition at shows for the fans to make you trade the shirt off your back for theirs. When we did this, we made sure it was an EVIL INCARNATE shirt because for the most part the fans didnít have very much money and didnít get to buy much ďmerchĒ anyways. Like this, at least, they got to wear our shirts now and will tell all future fans we were the best ever.
Who designs your CD artwork and who has the final word on what actually goes on the album cover? You have a really cool logo, I noticed. Whose idea and talent?
Juanjo Castellano from Spain is our artist. He has done our last record Blackest Hymns... and our next one Waiting For... He just finished our new link banner on the web site and some new art for AVENGER from the Czech Republic, and INCANTATION shirt designs. We, as a band, decide on the artwork for anything. All of us are always involved as much as possible and thatís the way I like it. This isnít a solo project. Our logo was drawn by JUNGLE ROT's CD artist and Chris Jackson, the artist from the old 80's METALLICA, GUNS AND ROSES, KISS Comics. Recently, James Murphy (ex-TESTAMENT, DEATH, OBITUARY,etc.) air-brushed the colored version on our site at evilincarnate.imess.net.
Noticeably, your lyrics are very strong and straightforward in content. It's obvious you take a strong stand against religion. Are you guys all Satanists?
The guys are more christ haters . Theyíre more into paganism and that. I am the one who takes the satanic fist to the face of christ, his father and the holyspirit . Satan has made my reason for living and life-long mission very clear to me now!
I have just recently read an article (on anus.com) about boycotting Christian metal. What are your feelings about that? What does "Metal" actually mean to you?
It is the devil's music, I believe. Christian black metal is just retarded. Do these people understand the reason the old timers started it? I think not!
Oftentimes bands will use images on their album covers and/or websites that show a burning church. Obviously, there has been some criticism about that. What are your thoughts on that?
I think itís great, of course, but somebody ought to burn one with all the people in it next time!
How is the music and being Evil Incarnate connected with the person you are? Is your band image a reflection of you or completely separate?
Yes, it is definitely a reflection of who I am and why I exist.
Your music has a progressively heavy in sound. What are your plans for the next one in the making? How soon can we expect to see the next masterpiece? Any material yet?
The next one has eight out of eleven songs done; itís much faster; itís very, very heavy, and my lyrics will explain everything this time. Iíve taken a lesson from hard-core lyrics this time, I suppose. I would estimate we'll be in the studio around late February. After this, itís all up to the label, time-wise.
Now that you're with Death Gasm Records, are you happy?
Correction, MORBID, but Death Gasm was cool, considering the level at which they are.
Any video releases in the planning?
After our European tour, YES!
Who maintains your website? I noticed your last update was a little while ago. Will we be seeing new info on you guys pretty soon???
I do the news, but Eric Fisher from BRUTAL QUALITY DESIGNS does the rest. Yeah, Iím updating ASAP.
What are the future plans of your band?
Finally hit Europe, come closer as a consequence of it to our goal to reach the metal elite; find management (big management), a big dog label who can take us to the top of the heap, and continue for a long time to come. EVERYTHING THAT PEOPLE HAVE THOUGHT ABOUT THE FUTURE OF DEATH METAL WAS JUST THE BEGINNING, and we are the next evolution in the flesh!
How do you see yourself as part of the death metal scene?
I see myself as a guy who gives to the scene a fresh breath of air, Barbara. There are a lot of bands still doing the same old shit over and over whereas we have already done things like this AND NOW IT IS TIME TO MOVE ON! Also, I actually have a message to my music and lyrics, and at the same time, I understand you can only over-brutalize a riff so much before monotony sets in. Thatís why a lot of good bands get caught up in the little Indie label thing forever until they get tired and stop all together. They didnít branch away from their little barricade they surround themselves with by only listening to the absolutely most brutal bands. Most of this stuff is all rehashed CANNIBAL CORPSE. Like I said, we already did this a little bit ourselves. I also give to the scene by scheduling concerts and metal fests like last year's END OF DAYS METAL FEST in September 2001 after the trade center blasting. To me 9-11 was a wake up call to show that the end is near and the anti-christ is coming sooner than one might think.
Which element do you think makes Evil Incarnate music different from the rest of the bands?
Well, I can say if it is a good idea and we like it for ourselves, then thatís what matters. Never will we turn our backs to satan -- KING OF KINGS SOON TO TASTE YOUR SOUL. Also, we arenít scared of doing anything we like. We wonít scrap a riff or an idea just because its more melodic that what the brutal kiddies want. I donít care what anyone thinks of me as a person either! Itís all about ME, ME, ME!!!
How different is your current work compared to what you've been doing?
Itís so much faster because of Garrett. Andy was getting lazy in his older years and Garrett wants to go, man!!! I think it will be compared to classics like SLAYER's REIGN IN BLOOD meets ENTOMBED's LEFT HAND PATH.
Do you have or are planning to have a side-project?
Yes, Iím definitely looking forward to it in the future. The time will be perfect when I do.
Could you tell us a little about the lyrical concept for your last album?
Like I said, weíve already overdone everything, so the last CD was all pissy and not too much thought had gone into it. Not that we wonít be pushing the envelope this time, but this CD is so damn thought out, I have left no rock unturned. I think I have thought of everything, and if anything isnít up to standards, we have it this time; then it goes into the trash--something Iíd never done before either!
What kind of books do you read? Any good books you would like to mention?
I read magazines, mostly, and watch a lot of History and Discovery Channel. Iím big time into WW2 and Archeology like Stonehenge and Germania, and Ancient Egypt.
How do you see yourself as a role model (or idol) to many young people who listen to and who get into your music?
I never took this idea into my writing before until now. I know a lot of people are interested in my reasonings, so Iíve taken this into consideration for this record. I want to get that mental connection going with people this time around, if that makes sense to you? I think I have a lot in common with a lot of younger metal kids in particular who might have had the church forced on them and who might have had a fuckiní shitty life!!!
How is the metal scene in Zion, Illinois? Is it pretty active or a continuous struggle?
With a church on nearly every main street corner and ALL the names of streets being from the holy bible, it is a struggle, yes, but I accept it and try elsewhere to spread the satanic words. You can believe it when I tell you to stay away from here or your entire life you'll be miserable with god rammed in your face 24/7! Iím relocating when the band's activities permit. Chicago was too busy for me or I wouldnít have moved back here. Itís over-run by Jews and christians dictating your life, and gangbangers selling crack.
They say, "A poet is never appreciated in his own town." Do you see some truth in this or what is your take?
The few I do know here, ALL respect me and my work. The rest think Iím the plague, he he he!!!
I read about your little incident with the police during your photo shoot. Actually, the fact that they took you so seriously might have been a compliment in an ironic kind of way. You guys must have looked absolutely AWESOME!
Yes, we looked damn cool and the state police were freakiní out, he he he!!! Iíll never forget it!!!
Any last comments you would like to make to all the "heads" out there?
We definitely need more people in our scene like you, Barbara. You shall forever be my metal sister--and look us up any time. We will toast a drink to satan! If you have heard our last record and liked it, the best has just begun. Check our website for news on touringing dates and releases. Blackest... is coming out on vinyl for all the collectors and is limited to 666 numbered copies through HELLSHEADBANGERS.COM. Check out WWW.MORBIDRECORDS.DE
See you on the road or I'll see you in hell!!! st. michael...666
|Other information about Evil Incarnate on this site|
|Interview with Evil Mike on June 23, 2001 (Interviewed by Wilhelm)|
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