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   MONSTROSITY
Lee Harrison Lee Harrison
January 2004


Metal Blade is just about to release MONSTROSITY's latest album "Rise To Power" in Europe. I had the chance to ask a few questions that were answered by drummer Lee Harrison.

Hello guys, how are you?

Hello!!! Things here are good. Right now we are doing the press for Europe as well as practicing the set and going over songs we haven't played in a while.

I guess you may get a little bit tired from the next question but we can't avoid mentioning the constant line-up changes that happen to Monstrosity.

The bio on the promo CD is old and outdated so I will update you. Pat Hall left the band a couple of years ago and joined the army. He is in Korea now but we haven't heard from him in a while so I'm not sure if he is still there or not. Sam Molina was singing after Jason left the band in 2001 but we brought Jason back in last April so Sam moved to guitar since he was a guitar player before doing the vocals with us. The line-up is steady now with Jason Avery vocals, Tony Norman guitars, Sam Molina guitars, Mike Poggione bass, and myself, Lee Harrison on drums. Tony is also second guitarist for Morbid Angel now so we will use a substitute for when he is gone but Tony will remain an official member of the band.

Just in recent reviews of "Rise To Power" you were still mentioned as "Gorge Corpsegrinder's old band". How do you feel about it? Aren't you tired of people always relating Monstrosity to him when he is out of the band for almost eight years now?

Yes it's old news. We are a bigger and better band now so I don't worry about it.

Your previous release, "Enslaving The Masses" was a sort of best of CD, with the demo and live material. Whose idea was putting together such a doupble cd pack? I don't want to sound rude, but did you try to gain some time before you came out with a new album? I'm asking because if I look at "In Dark Purity" and at "Rise To Power", four years passed between them.

Yes we average about four years between all of releases so this is nothing new. Enslaving was a release to help bridge the gap between releases. The reason we take so long between releases is because we don't want to rush to put out an album and then afterwards decide that the album sucks. We strive to make something better than most of the other bands in this scene and it takes time to do something right. Of course we don't plan it like that but it works out that way and I think now we've come to accept this as the price we have to pay for perfection.

Monstrosity From an outsider's point of view - plus not counting the last year when you toured heavily - these four years gave you plenty of time to work on a new album. But how long did it really take to put "Rise To Power" together? When were the songs born?

The first song was started in 1999 and the last was finished in the studio July 2003 ("Visions Of Violence" and "Rise To Power" respectively). The writing credits are listed in the CD booklet if you are curious as to who wrote what.

How much time did you have in the studio for the recording, mixing, mastering? The drum sound could have been a bit thicker...in my opinion.

We had a month in the studio. If you listen to the record on a good system it will sound amazing. I think the drum sound is thicker than the last album so I don't know... maybe you need a new stereo. What do you say about the latest Nile, Dying Fetus, Morbid Angel drum sounds??

Congrats on the great guitar themes we can hear on "Rise To Power". Besides the solid death metal, the tight rhythms including the great solos and the typical thrash-death metal riffs completed with the sinister vocals, they are the highlights of the album.

Yes thanks... The guitars turned out really good, I think. My inspiration really hasn't changed since I was like seven years old. I've always wanted to play music. Obviously it takes different forms as I get older but I still have a hunger to keep playing and writing music.

You were working on a DVD, that was planned to be released after "Rise To Power" came out.

We are still trying to decide exactly which form it will take. We have several video clips finished already but we want to add more as well as maybe film some live shows professionally. We have tons of footage to go through as well that we've gathered through the years. We filmed our show in Venezuela but we've never recieved the tapes. I'm not sure how they turned out.

You've toured a lot last year. But are there plans to tour with the new album in 2004? Or do you rather look for some rest now? ;) If you are going to tour, do you have exact or planned dates..?

We will tour Europe at some point and will keep doing the South American shows when we can. We probably won't do a tour in the US right now just because the scene here is so weak.

How much are you satisfied with Monstrosity's status in the death metal scene? Or let me put it this way: how many of your aims you've had when you formed the band came true?

Before we started the "goal" was to make an album and do a tour. Just one. So now I've got five albums under my belt as well as been to countries others only dream about so I can't complain.

Monstrosity If you weren't playing in Monstrosity, what else could you imagine for yourself to do? Is it rather work or a hobby for you playing in the band?

It's really a lifestyle. Everything I do revolves around music in one way or another.

Thank you very much for answering our questions. Hope to see you in Hungary someday so I won't have to travel to Poland again ;)

We played there in 1998 with Vader and Fleshcrawl. It was a pretty sick show I do remember!!! Hopefully we will be back and can play again!! See you then!!


submitted by Katalin 29.01.2004

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