Updated: 03/18/00

Dismember has been brutalizing the world with their intensive brand of death metal well over a decade and continue to record heavier than hell albums. HATE CAMPAIGN is no exception! We recently had a chance to speak with Matti Karki in the early hours of a California morning, even though it was well into the afternoon for him. Read on for the latest on the great Dismember!!!

Highwire Daze: Introduce yourself, tell me what you do in Dismember and how long the band has been together.

Matti Karki: I'm Matti from Dismember and I'm the singer in the band. I think we're on our tenth year now.

HD: What are a few of the changes you've seen on the metal scene since you started back in 1988?

Matti: There's been a lot of changes in the death metal scene. From the beginning it was really nothing and then it turned into something really big. And then it died away but now it's coming back again.

HD: How does HATE CAMPAIGN compare with your other releases?

Matti: The difference isn't that big. We've learned from our mistakes from our previous albums -- we gather all those experiences together with some new influences and just made a new album.

HD: Where do you get the ideas for some of the lyrics on HATE CAMPAIGN?

Matti: Pretty much real life. And of course the old fascination with serial killers and some of the anti-Nazi propaganda that's going on here in Europe at the moment, especially in Sweden. Just watching the news pretty much.

HD: Do you still find it exciting to record, tour, and just meet fans after all of this time?

Matti: Yeah! That's amazing! That's the best part of being a musician -- to get on tour. You get to meet so many people who are into the music -- and see something new than just your home and your own friends. You open your mind and stuff like that. Touring is the best part of being in a band. Unfortunately we don't get to tour that much, but I enjoy the times that we get out.

HD: Describe a live Dismember show to those of us who have yet to see you play.

Matti: It's one hour of pure aggression!

HD: Do you enjoy playing the newer songs or the older material more?

Matti: It depends. Some guys in the band prefer the old songs and a couple of the new ones. But I would prefer the new songs more. We always have to fight to make the set lists. Some guys say, "No, we have too many new ones, put in some old ones," and the other guys say "Too many old ones! Put in some new ones!" It ends up being kind of a compromise.

HD: What songs are you excited about on HATE CAMPAIGN?

Matti: "Questionable Ethics" is one of my favorites. "Bleeding Over" -- I think that one is real good. And "Beyond Good & Evil" -- those are my favorites from the album.

HD: What are your impressions of American death metal -- such as Cannibal Corpse, Six Feet Under and Monstrosity?

Matti: I think they're real good. It's a little bit different on how our opinion death metal should be played or what real death metal is like. But hey, they do their thing and we do our thing. I think they are all good bands, but I wouldn't prefer to play the way that they do. But it's an individual thing.

HD: What do you think has kept Dismember going after all these years?

Matti: I guess it would be that we're freaks -- I don't know. We're just death metal freaks. We've never evolved to the point that we're doing the music for a living -- instead we're doing the music for fun. We still love to play live. It's fun to record albums and make new songs. I guess that actual fact that Dismember never really became a huge name or anything has kept us realistic about the music. We just do it for the pure enjoyment of it.

HD: When you go back and listen to your first few albums, what do you think?

Matti: (laughs) Oh, my god! Of course it's fun to listen to the old albums. But we've matured so much as musicians. When you hear the old music and hear the mistakes, you think, "Oh my god, what were we thinking about?" But we always learn from our mistakes and hopefully we don't make them again.

HD: What do you think of the Black Metal scene?

Matti: I'm not into the Black Metal scene so I can't really make any comments on that.

HD: Okay. So what would you like the music of Dismember to be remembered for 20 years from now?

Matti: As brutal death metal. Always. If we would change our music style, we would also change the name of the band. Dismember, for ten years now, has been about brutal death metal. We don't want to tarnish that reputation with doing something that Dismember isn't. So we just keep it death metal until we feel we can't do it anymore -- so let's bury it and have a funeral. But as long as everybody in the band still has the enthusiasm, we'll keep on doing the same music until we feel that it's finished.

HD: Do you have any messages for Dismember fans here in the States?

Matti: Stay true to the death metal scene. Believe in what you're doing and never give up. And that's my final word.

The final word from Highwire Daze -- HATE CAMPAIGN is the best Dismember album yet so get yourself a copy!!!


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