Interview with Cory Johnson

Cory Johnson is the guitarist for the Christian death metal band Impending Doom. Cory and the band are set to release their 4th studio album titled “Baptized in Filth” on March 13th. Media Mikes had a chance to talk with Cory about the new release and his thoughts on the bands upcoming tour with Devildriver.

Adam Lawton: What can you tell us about the new album?
Cory Johnson: We feel that this album is the best musical album we have ever done. The album is being released via Eone and we think that this album is really our best effort. We are anxiously waiting to get out on the road.

AL: What was the recording process like?
CJ: We spent about 6 months writing the album. It was probably our most stressful. We had a headlining tour over the past summer and we left for the road prior to completion of the writing phase. We ending up taking our demo rig out on the road which made things a lot harder than we thought it would be. Not only were we doing a headlining tour but we also had to find time to get away from everything and write the rest of the album. Every album is stressful but this one felt more out of control. As soon as we got in the studio with Andreas Magnusson he took everything and helped us tie it all together. Having an actual producer this time around helped a lot. We have never had that before. Prior to this record the engineer would just push record and we would take the best takes. Andreas was very involved in the musical process. We think that helped us put out a better musical product. Having Machine produce the albums vocals also helped out. He is phenomenal.

AL: Was there any specific inspiration behind the album?
CJ: The album is not a concept album. We do try and push some boundaries as we are a Christian band with Christian views. We try and step out of our comfort zone and push people to do the same thing with their faith. A lot of Christians see the title of the new album and think it sounds kind of evil. If you read our lyrics it will all make sense.

AL: Do you find it harder to write material having that Christian background/association?
CJ: We don’t want to step outside of faith but, whatever inspires us comes out. We then will take time to evaluate it and see if it’s what we really want to do. It’s not that much different than any normal band.

AL: Are there any songs off the new album you are really looking forward to playing live?
CJ: The song “Murderer”. We just finished a video for that song a few days ago and hope to have it out soon. That song will be available as a single also. We are definitely looking forward to playing that song live.

AL: What are the tour plans for the album?
CJ: This summer we have dates confirmed on the Warped Tour. Starting March 13th we will be part of this year’s Metal Alliance tour. We will be playing with Devildriver, Job for a Cowboy and Dying Fetus.

AL: Do you find it hard blending in on tours where the other bands/fans don’t have Christian backgrounds?
CJ: We have never toured with an older set of bands before. All of our previous tours were with bands like White Chapel where everyone is around the same age. There has never been an issue when we have toured with bands that have different beliefs than us. I am interested to see how this upcoming tour will go. We have never toured with such extreme bands. I am confident that we will all be getting along back stage. I think the fans are going to really enjoy the show. We have such an extreme live show that I think everyone will have a good time. We don’t preach on stage or try to make people feel uncomfortable. I feel as long as we go up there and put on a good show people will enjoy it. Everyone can have a good time no matter what.

CD Review: Caliban “I Am Nemesis”

“I Am Nemesis”
Century Media
Producer: Benny Richter, Marc Goertz
Tracks: 12

Our Score: 3 out of 5 stars

“I Am Nemesis” is the 8th studio album from heavy metal group Caliban. The group hails from the Ruhr area of Germany and consists of Andreas Doener- vocals, Marc Goertz- guitar, Patrick Grun- drums, Denis Schmidt- guitar/vocals and, Marco Schaller- bass. The album is being released via Century Media Records and features 12 tracks that were produced by Benny Richter and Marc Goertz.

The new album by Caliban grabs you by the face and just doesn’t let go. The album cuts directly to the core and picks up where the bands previous release titled “Say Hello to Tragedy” left off. Guest vocal performances by Mitch Luker of Suicide Silence and Marcus Bischoff of Heaven Shall Burn only add to the guttural attack of “I Am Nemesis”. Tracks like “Memorial” feature machine gun like double bass playing along with melodic choruses while tracks like “Broadcast To Damnation” and “Modern Warfare” go up one side of you and down the other. Producer Benny Richter and Co-Producer/Guitarist Marc Goertz did a great job creating a really heavy album. Each song on “I Am Nemesis” features a fairly straight forward arrangement which I felt made the songs quickly accessible. Personally I would have like to have heard more melodic choruses/break downs as I think this is a real strong point that the band does not utilize enough. Over I feel Caliban’s “I Am Nemesis” is sure to be hit among the head banging faithful.

Track Listing:
1.)    We Are The Many
2.)    The Bogeyman
3.)    Memorial
4.)    No Tomorrow
5.)    Edge Of Black
6.)    Davy Jones
7.)    Deadly Dream
8.)    Open Letter
9.)    Dein R3.ich
10.)   Broadcast To Damnation
11.)  This Oath
12.)  Modern Warfare