by Ryan Meehan
King Parrot’s thrashy grind style of metal hails from Melbourne, Australia, formed by three ex-members of Watchog Discipline and the King Parrot himself, vocalist Matt Young. The band fired off an EP in short order and quickly became firmly established as an energetic and punishing live force. They have rarely been off the road as they play extensively throughout the land down under, doing shows of their own as well as a regional Victorian tour with Frankenbok and Dreadnaught, and doing shows with Obituary in Melbourne. In April of 2013 KP had signed an international deal with Candlelight Records and appeared at Hammersonic in Indonesia. This was followed by a tour with Thy Art is Murder and Cattle Decapitation and a headlining slot at the Dead of Winter Festival, then a national tour with Psycroptic. Last year they played Melbourne Sound Festival before embarking with yet more shows overseas. They toured earlier this year with Weedeater, and we are stoked to have Youngy from King Parrot as our guest today in 10 questions.
RM: Who was the first vocalist you saw perform live that shifted your focus from being a metal fan to actually wanting to be on stage and perform with a band of your own?
MY: I don’t think there was one in particular. I am also a bass player and before starting King Parrot I was playing bass in many bands, but being a front man always did intrigue me. I think early on people like Bon Scott, Brian Johnston, Alice Cooper and Ozzy Osbourne really appealed to me, and then as I got older and got into more extreme music I have certainly been influenced by the likes of Rollins, Anselmo, Keith Morris and many others.
RM: For those who might not be familiar with what the name of the band means, what is the slang meaning for the word “parrot” in Australia? Why do you feel that moniker is such an accurate representation of the type of extreme metal you guys are known for firing off?
MY: I like the fact that King Parrot is an obscure name for an extreme band. “Parrot” in Australian slang means an annoying person, so we feel like it kind of suits our in your face, and up front approach. That being said, we never really intended for the band to be touring internationally on a regular basis, so if you had of asked us to name the band now, it might be a different story. We like it though, it’s Australian and we certainly don’t hide the fact that we are from down under. I think it helps set us apart from other bands.
RM: What was your reaction to being nominated for a Metal Hammer Golden God award for Best New Band?
MY: We never really expected anything like that, but it was very nice to be even mentioned by them. It’s a really cool thing to get that kind of recognition with what is probably the most respected metal mag in the world.
RM: You’ve previously said that people either love the band or hate it…Why do you think that metal fans have such a black or white view of the music you make?
MY: The way that we perform live is full on and in your face. We take our performance right up to the audience and almost demand a reaction or response of some sort. I guess that can make people feel uncomfortable if they just came along to the show to tap their foot. We have certainly pissed many people off in the past with our behaviour and performance, but I think after people see us once or twice then they get an idea of what to expect.
RM: How would you best describe your writing style when it comes to drafting lyrics? Are you the type of guy who usually has an idea about what you want the lyrical structure to look like before you hear the actual riffs, or do you typically write the songs after hearing the band playing the different parts to the track?
MY: I usually like to hear the music first and get an idea for a topic or whatever comes to mind as a result of hearing the feel of the song. That being said, I am constantly writing things down and making notes for songs, whether they are written or not. I’ll often go over songs for weeks and weeks and change parts and sections and phrasing to better suit it. Sometimes it’s a quick process and very simple, other ideas can be more complex and take much longer.
RM: Could you talk to us a little bit about your relationship with Phil Anselmo and how you were able to get him to appear in the video for “Like a Rat”?
MY: We recorded our latest album “Dead Set” at Phil’s studio Nodferatu’s lair in January 2015, he acted as producer and the album is also out on his label Housecore Records. We decided that we wanted to make a video for the song just to document our time out there. It’s a really awesome place to record and we clearly had fun making the record.
RM: Let’s talk about the videos for a second…Who directs these clips; and what is the reason for such a delay with regards to when the music finally does come into the picture?
MY: We work closely with a producer from Australia by the name of Dan Farmer from Farmwalker Films. He has directed all of our videos except the ‘Like A Rat” video we filmed in the US. In terms of the short film aspect of the video, we just like that format and I don’t really think its uncommon for bands to do that these days. They are our favourite type of video, and it adds an extra element to the creative process. Performance videos can be quite dull and boring, let’s face it. Doing videos in this way allows us to bring an extra creative element to the band, and have a heap of fun while doing it.
RM: You are the youngest member of the band…do the other guys ever give you any shit for that?
MY: Well, actually our drummer Todd is younger than me, but we are certainly not a bunch of young dudes, all in our 30’s now, so I think we are past giving each other shit. As long as we are all still alive, we are happy. (laughs)
RM: What can we expect from “Dead Set”? Which of the tracks that appear on that program have been the most fun to perform live so far?
MY: I think it’s a full on album, and has some really dark and nasty yet organic production to it. It’s been great for us to inject these new songs into our set, ‘Hell Comes Your Way’ and ‘Need No Saviour’ are probably my favourite songs to play live so far.
RM: What’s up next for you in the remainder of 2016 and beyond? Anything big in the works that we should know about?
MY: Well we have this big 40 date North American tour with Voivod and Child Bite just about ready to kick off in a couple days, so that will keep us busy for a while. Then we are going home to concentrate on writing, and no doubt we’ll probably play a few shows in Australia. Very soon we have an announcement for a huge European tour coming up, and then we may potentially record at the end of this year or early 2017. We want to get another record out soon and keep kicking down the doors…Thanks for your support!
Housecore Records Website: http://www.thehousecorerecords.com/
King Parrot on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/kingparrotband
King Parrot on Twitter: https://twitter.com/KINGPARROTBAND
Matt Young on Twitter: https://twitter.com/younggun666
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