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The Rock Pit - Hard rock, Metal and Blues Interviews, news & reviews from Australia and around the world
Cryptopsy - Interview
The Rockpit interviews

FLO MOUNIER

CRYPTOPSY


Cryptopsy

True pioneers in extreme metal; Cryptopsy push, bend and smash musical boundaries with their unique style that is distinctly their own. Their latest offering "The Book Of Suffering - Tome 1" is nothing short of a musical bludgeoning. Completely self released and only available from the band themselves (in physical form), Cryptopsy do things on their own terms and make their own rules. The band hit Australia this week so we spoke to drummer Flo Mounier ahead of the tour to find all the latest with the band and what to expect at their shows.

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Steve: Hi Flo it's Steve here from the Rock Pit in Western Australia. How are you going?

Flo: Good, good, yourself?

Steve: Yeah not too bad. An early start for me. So how are things in the Cryptopsy camp?

Flo: Good, well I mean we had a practice yesterday 'cause I leave tomorrow 'cause I have a drum festival in Melbourne to do and then we meet back up in New Zealand to start the tour. So they leave Saturday night but I leave tomorrow.

Steve: Awesome! So you must be excited to get down here?

Flo: Oh yeah man, excited to get rid of the travel you mean?

Steve: Yeah, 'cause it's a bit of a hike for you guys.

Flo: Yeah it's literally like 48 hours, with the 14 hour difference.

Steve: Yep for sure. So last year you guys dropped "The Book of Suffering", would you call that a mini EP?

Flo: Yeah it's an EP. It's the first of a series of EP's, so we're currently working on the second one now.

Steve: Ok so you're going to do it in EP's as opposed to a full length, am I reading that correctly?

Flo: Yeah the plan is to do 3 and so we have 2 more to do before we think about doing another full length album.

Steve: Given that you guys have been around for such a long time, what keeps you inspired in terms of your playing and just overall?

Flo: That's a tough question 'cause you know we all have different bands that we listen to. It varies in style as well, we listen to metal of course but there's also other styles we listen to. So when it comes to writing Cryptopsy, we also listen to what we done in the past and trying to get that vibe so bringing new elements into play and we're all pretty serious musicians so we try to evolve from day to day, year to year. We have new techniques and stuff like that we try to utilize them, put them into the Cryptopsy melting pot if you wish. So it's just a bunch of different influences of music and creativity and technique.

Steve: Sure so given that Cryptopsy is such a brutal band, how do you keep yourself fit? Do you have any pre-show rituals you like to do before you go out on stage or is there anything you can think of?

Flo: We all do a warm up if you wish as far as the guitar players with their instruments and I usually have a practice pad, Mat (McGachy, vocals) that does vocalization warm ups at every show. So yeah we get ready 'cause we want to hit the stage and hit hard and maintain that energy throughout the show. So yeah definitely get ready and even doing some stretching and things like that if that helps.




Steve: So on the musical front when you guys come to writing new material, how does that go down? Do you do your part and send it on or do you guys come together, get in a jam room and bash it out? What's the general consensus?

Flo: We've done it all. You know sometimes it's in the jam room, sometimes it's just Chris (Donaldson, guitars) and I in front of a computer and with his guitar, you know piecing stuff together. Sometimes I've worked with guitar players in the past I think you can get a full song and they just want us to....I'm usually there with a structure and to bridge things and to put things together and to set up little traps and stuff as far as the composition goes. But the guitar players mostly write the riffs themselves so it's kind of like a collaboration usually between myself and often like our guitar player and in this case it's been Chris for the last 10 years.

Steve: Given that extreme drumming has so many, I guess you could say, rising stars, who do you look to these days and sit back and say 'Wow, this guy is really on point'. Is there anyone out there that you can think of that comes to mind where you're just inspired?

Flo: Yeah I mean there is a few guys that I think are quite good, actually quite a lot of guys I think are really good. Off the top of my head Simone "Arconda" Piras. I think he's from either Mexico or Brazil, I'm not quite sure which one it is. A really exceptional works-hard kind of drummer and yeah, he's definitely really cool. But you know also all the good ol' boys like John Longstreth, you know Gene and Sean Reinert, still kicking it, I mean he was a huge influence on me. I listen to a lot of gospel type players of late. Some gospel players play in metal bands now like Derek Moore who plays in Suicidal Tendencies, I mean the guy's just a monster. I try and get inspiration from drummers that can groove because speed is one thing but it's gotta sound good so you know there's just so many.

Steve: Yeah, you and I could go on for days.

Flo: I think so yeah.

Steve: So I guess that leads me to my next question. So you said you've been listening to gospel recently, what was the last album you brought or downloaded?

Flo: Yeah no I buy my albums. I'm a musician, I try and get things alive. Actually the last one I did buy was The Lillake album that features Eric Moore from Suicidal Tendencies and it's definitely metal but it's kind of has a different edge to it. I brought it either yesterday or the day before.

Steve: So it's still fairly fresh?

Flo: Still getting into it yeah.




Steve: How many times have you guys been to Australia?

Flo: Not many I think, just the once so this is going to be our second time.

Steve: So what are you most looking forward to when you get down here? Besides the shows, is there anywhere really you want to go and see?

Flo: I don't think we have time to sight see. No we don't really have a lot of time, it's actually fly play, fly play, fly play. So I'm really looking forward to the drum festival myself 'cause I love doing stuff like that. Where it's you mainly playing, we're really comfortable when we're playing and that's what we enjoy the most. We'll try and catch some sleep somehow somewhere.

Steve: Sure, so given that you've been playing for so long, is there still anyone you've got that you'd like to collaborate with in terms of production or a musician that is still on your wish list? Or have you played with everyone that you ever wanted to work with?

Flo: I'd like to work with a lot of different people. I'd probably be doing another project with Rune Erikson at the end of the year who I really love to compose with. I'd love to work with many different people right now keeping things more on a personal level, working on my playing more than playing with other people and then trying to focus on Cryptopsy. I mean I'm sure if I think real hard there would be lots of people I'd love to play with I just can't name them all.

Steve: Sure, I've probably hit you at an ungodly hour.

Flo: A non-imaginative hour [laughs].

Steve: That's right! So what can the fans expect in terms of the live show when you guys hit our shores very shortly?

Flo: Well it's going to be, like you said, brutal. There's a lot of mix of old songs, I mean we have a few albums. We can't cover them all but we'll cover the most important ones like our favorites and a couple of tracks from the new EP, about an hour show. It's going to be full of energy that's for sure.

Steve: Awesome, can't wait! Are there any particular favorites of yours that you love to play or do you just love to play the whole back catalogue?

Flo: Oh it's all kinds of different, like from album to album the playing is different. I really like playing the new songs just 'cause it's more me right now. I pretty much like playing them all. Some are more challenging than others, some I can improvise more in. It's fun, it's a good show.

Steve: Have you ever hit the stage and made an absolute blunder of a song or is it fairly nailed down these days?

Flo: Yeah the whole point I guess of practicing and trying to better yourself is to try and avoid those blunders, to be as consistent show to show as possible. So it's happened like I've had a brain-fart or two in my career, so yeah where I have just totally lost it, it happens. It happened a long time ago, it's can always happen. It's just a matter of concentration. I had it once that I can remember, I think it was in Detroit or something like that. I just lost my way in a song. We found our way back but you know, we notice it more than others. It's happened.

Steve: So it's not just a myth?

Flo: Oh no no [laughs].

Steve: Excellent, it's been awesome to chat with you Flo and I really look forward to catching up and seeing you guys live very shortly.

Flo: Awesome, thank you very much for your support.


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CRYPTOPSY AUSTRALIAN TOUR DATES:

Wednesday, August 31: Valhalla, Wellington
Thursday, September 1: Brisbane - Crowbar
Friday, September 2: Sydney - Newtown Social Club
Saturday, September 3: Melbourne - Northcote Social Club
Sunday, September 4: Perth - The Rosemount Hotel

Tickets and tour details can be found at Direct Touring.



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Interview by Steve Monaghan on August 24th 2016