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Article: Korn’s Head and Munky Interview in MyRock (France)
“The Paradigim Shift”, the latest Korn, is now out in a very short time, and who better than Head and Munky, the guitarist of the group, to talk about?
By Roseline Artal • Photos Manon Violence •Translation Korn France
You have earned the festivals this summer. What are your plans for concerts headlined, especially for France?
Head : We are supposed to come back here in January. But it’s hard to say because we just finished the festivals, we are tired and we must consider the groups that will accompany us on tour.
Munky : And it is a lot of organization, among roadies and available venues … People think that we just need to want to play in a city for it to happen in the week, but unfortunately it is more complicated!
H. : Moreover, talking about our news, have you listened to the last album?
EASY AND INTENSE
We do it in drafting for a few weeks. It is excellent!
H. : It’s great that you enjoy it, because I’m crazy about it. We really had a great time in the studio for this record. It started in a very gentle way, it was easy and intense because everything was new. And then, depending on the day, it was a bit like roller coaster. We went through all kinds of feelings and emotions.
It’s funny because, musically, it’s almost as if you were never gone!
H. : It is true that magic took over immediately, without having had to force. It is a chance!
M. : To meet all five before we begin in earnest the work was’nt in the habit. After the departure of Head, this tradition has stopped, and we had to think about another way to write music. We started jamming together, like when we started, while in the process of starting new. It gave us a different sound, especially because we have learned to beware of certain details. Once an idea came, we was rushing to write and put it aside until to have twenty. This is Don Gilmore, the producer who helped us choose the best. It was not easy to erase some riffs we though good, but we trusted him to keep only the best.
What the last decade had brought for you?
H. : I think it gave me a lot of strength. Whether as a man, father, friend or musician. It allowed me to come back and be confident about the ideas I had to offer for Korn. It was ten years ago, I had no more confidence in myself. I was depressed, miserable, and I thought only saving me running. Now, I feel good, and I have again things to share with the group.
M. : In my case, his departure has helped me become a better composer, because he was not there to help me. I relied heavily on him. Since then, I take more risks, I even try to production, that I never imagined before. With these developments, the current sound of Korn is much more rich and complete than it has ever been. The fact that we have also stopped drinking, Head from eight years and myself from three years, has allowed us to bring more maturity in our music. Before, partying going on in priority to writing songs. Producers had even threaten us so that we come to work! But times have changed, and now when we laugh, it’s real, it’s not because we’re drunk. We found our urge to spend time in the studio, composing all together and give us fully to the songs, which had not happened for a long time.
We think of “Untouchables” or “Follow The Leader” by listening to “The Paradigm Shift”, but with more modern sounds.
H. : I did not know at all how it would happen, and I was even quite nervous because I wanted us to evolve into a genre close to “Issues” and also “Untouchables”. I wanted to make a really rock record, while Jonathan still was bringing several electronic touch. That was not much enchanted me, and he fully understood. So we made sure that mix everything for that everyone is benefiting.
The most electro track on the album, which can be linked to “The Path Of Totality” is “Never Never”. But it turns out that you have chosen as the first single …
H. : That is the label which had decided. All people know about my return thought we would offer a single very rock, as in the past, but the label wanted to put forward a song pretty close to Korn has made these past two years, not lose new fans who come from the dubstep movement. I fought for we choose another and I lost. But, it’s a matter of business, we can do nothing. And then we made a compromise by proposing “Love & Meth” on the Net, as if it was another single, then this is not the case.
The closest song from your beginnings, we could say that is “Paranoid & Aroused”.
H. : Yes completely! This is my favorite from the album!
M. : It’s funny because this song is almost an accident. We came back from lunch, I started to fiddle with the strings of my guitar, and it was very exciting the guys. While I was only stretch my fingers!
H. : Thanks to the effects pedal, the sound is very rock. The lyrics concern raves and all drugs circulating during these events. This is very popular for American teenagers, unfortunately, and Jonathan having lived that, he wanted to talk about that. “Mass Hysteria” is also a a powerful song. Jonathan wanted to write something in the pure tradition of heavy metal, which might make you think of Black Sabbath.
TWISTED IN HIS HEAD
Finally, what is behind the title “The Paradigm Shift”?
H. : This is the principle of having several possible interpretations for the same idea. Words can have different meanings, depending on the state of mind in which we find ourselves when we listen to the songs. There are several layers, which makes it a very intense album. Musically, this is the case in “Prey On Me”, which can change direction if the word is pronounced in different ways. I told you that Jonathan was a little twisted in his head (laughs)!