Originally published in ‘zine issue #5, 1992
Trevor Peres is the rhythm guitarist for Florida’s Obituary. RC Records released the death metal band’s third album, The End Complete, one of the subjects of our discussion.
D.U.: I don’t know if you’ve heard the general opinion some people have, that it’s trendy to go to Scott Burns and Morrisound Studios to do an album?
Trevor: Yeah, I know about it. [laugh] Something to say about it? I mean, we’ve been recording there since 1985. So basically, I see why a lot of kids like to go there, because I think they hear a good production, you know? I don’t think they go there thinking, “Well, if we get Scott Burns to mix us, we’re gonna sound like them.”
“Every president in the whole world is fuckin’ … fucked.”
How much flak did you guys get when it came out that John Tardy didn’t have standard lyrics the first album?
Yeah, we had a pretty good reaction to it, actually. ‘Cause, I mean, I figured a lot of people were gonna freak on it, you know? A lot of the press really liked it. It was kind of surprising, actually. I think it’s cool, ‘cause we’re not, like, a political band or a Satanic band or whatever. We don’t really try to convey any kinda heavy duty message to anybody, so there’s no real reason for lyrics. We just kinda use it as an instrument.
Did John make a point to have more structured lyrics on the new one?
No, it just kinda turned out that way, actually. I guess you could call it a progression for the band, maybe.
And Cause of Death was a halfway point?
Yeah, exactly. ‘Cause we had some lyrics on the last album, you know. It was like, this album, he just put a lot more. I mean, there is still parts of this album where there’s no lyrics at all.
Why do you downtune to D natural?
I don’t know. The first album, we tuned to normal E, but when we went into the studio for Cause of Death, we didn’t even plan on doing it. In fact, I recorded the scratch guitar tracks in E on Cause of Death. And when we went back, they were like, “We’re trying to tune down. Scott Burns, it was his idea.” And I go, “Whadaya mean, man?” And he goes, “Just try it, man. It might sound heavier.” And I was like, “I’m sure it will, but …” So I tuned down, and it was really fucked up. And I got used to playing it. It sounded heavy, so I said, “Fuck, let’s keep it that way.”
Do you pay attention to politics?
Politics I fuckin’ don’t really even give a fuck about. [laugh] ‘Cause, man, it’s like, every president in the whole world is fuckin’ [pause] fucked. I mean, he’s not gonna do what I want, so I don’t see why I should vote. But if kids would vote, that’s cool.
Do you think that if they took away the Electoral College vote, the popular vote would make a difference?
Yeah, I think so. I mean, if they didn’t have the electoral vote, man, it might be a whole new ball game. ‘Cause I think pot would be legal now then. [laugh] ‘Cause, you know, a lot of people know that [the government] could make a lot of money off of it, ‘cause they tax it. Plus there’d be a lot more jobs, ‘cause people gotta grow it, harvest it, pack it, and ship it, whatever, you know? That’d be a killer thing.
Has anyone ever told you that you look like you’re dead?
Yeah. [laugh] I get it all the time, believe me. It’s a normal, everyday occurrence. People call me “skully” all the time. [laugh]
How much creative control do you get? Do you run into arguments with RC Records?
We have, actually, a couple times. I’ve had Monte [Conner, A&R man for the label] fuckin’ try to tell me, “Hey, man, why don’tcha play that riff at the end again.” You know, all this shit. Yeah, there’ve been a couple disputes over certain things.
Is there something on the new album that you wish you could have gone back and done over?
Uh, as of now, no. I mean, I like how everything sounds right now. Maybe in about a half a year, there’ll be something I’ll really hate on it, you know? Like Cause of Death, I fuckin’ hate it now. The production mainly, ‘cause we didn’t work that long on our guitar sound on it.
Have people told you that the guitar sound is like Celtic Frost?
Yeah, I’ve heard that a few times. I guess maybe it does kinda, but I mean, I think ours is a little bit heavier sounding. It’s still got that same fuzzy sound, whatever. I was totally influenced by them when I was in high school and shit.
Do you have something at the end to throw in?
Just I hope everybody enjoys the new album, check us out on tour, and everybody, we’ll all party [laughs] or whatever. ■
Photo: Obituary (courtesy RC)