Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Vaginal Incisors: An interview with Danny Nelson of Malignancy

What year did Malignancy take form and what was the scene in New York like at the time? Was there any camaraderie amongst the bands in the area at the time?

Malignancy formed in February of 1992, first practice was on Valentine's Day. At the time we only knew a few other bands. Once we started playing out in 93 we met more bands. There was a total camaraderie within the scene here. Everyone wanted to book shows and play together. Not much has changed since than to be honest. Still a lot of cool muthafuckers wanting to be friends and trade shows. 

What were the primary musical influences of the band in those days and what were your initial intentions? Did you expect to have lasted this long?

Initially we just wanted to see what we could, which wasn't much. It was just a jam session for a few months until we started to attempt real song structures. It was a good process to undergo just to weed out the members that were not dedicated enough. Influences were many in the band. From Napalm Death to Pink Floyd, you name it we jammed it.....or tried to. When I started Malignancy I never thought I would still be doing it almost 20 years later.

Malignancy circa 1997

For a New Yorker having experienced it first hand, what was it like around the time Immolation and Suffocation released their iconic debuts? Did those releases play any part in fueling the fire to start your own band?

Pride is the first word that comes to mind. New York has always had great bands in every genre but one of the sickest cities in the world churning out those two was music to my ears. I used to write to Immolation during the demo days so I could not wait for Dawn to come out. Always support da Yahhh kaaass boys. Human Waste was crushing but Effigy smashed that. I was like a kid in a candy store losing my mind. Effigy and Dawn are still in my top 10 period.

Malignancy's lyrics have always been unique. I guess to some degree they could be classified as being "gore" lyrics though in truth they're way beyond that. Was it intentional for you to steer clear of the lyrical commonalities of the death metal scene or is biological sci-fi an unconscious endeavor on your part?

Thanks for noticing brother! Yes, it was a conscious decision and a natural progression to the more realistic side of writing. All of the best gore stuff has been done and rehashed a million times. My lyrics have gore elements but they are there to get a better visual experience from the reader. I always try to visualize the song. I can remember when lyrical content had a message, remember that? Hhahaha. My intention is to educate and write about things that are possible. 

What year did Ronnie and Roger join Malignancy and what elements of their own did they add to the mix?

We met Roger through his studio The Crypt in Yonkers. When we were looking for a replacement drummer he offered to jam with us. He joined in about 94 or 95. I knew Ron since high school but he was not interested in joining Malig at the time. Roger brought him in around 95 or 96. Roger brought his very loose guitarist style of drumming. Ronnie had his own take on death metal. He brought Malignancy the sound I always wanted. 

From your perspective what are the biggest differences between the original Malignancy line up and the bands current incarnation?

I would have to say musicianship. The original line-up was young and not as refined, we all were. This was something that started out as a goof and turned into something more. The current incarnation is just more mature and the talent level is through the roof. 

I understand you and Roger are involved in a project that goes by the wonderful and enlightening title...'Prosthetic Cunt'! Could you tell me about your involvement in this and any future plans you guys may have?

Yes I have been jamming with Roger on PC. Its fun as hell when we do it. We plan to do another session to rap up the few we have already done and release it on CD. 

Back to Malig, could you tell me what fans can expect from the upcoming album, 'Eugenics' and will there be any upcoming tours in support of its release?

Eugenics is a different album for us. Don't worry folks, it's still Malignancy. We just toyed with some different things and had fun with it. The songs are less chaotic and more focused. Of course the chaos is there at times. We plan to tour when we get offers that we can do. 

3 albums you can't live without:

Ride the Lightning, Them and Confessor - Condemned

Alright, random question from out of left field time! I've always been fascinated by stories of 'The Son of Sam' and his presumed involvement in The Process Church. How far do you live from the infamous 'Untermyer Park' and what are your thoughts on the alleged cult activity that took place there throughout the 70's and 80's? Fact or myth?

I live about a 7 minute drive from the park. We all used to hang there for keg parties. I used to see the graffiti on the walls with pentagrams and 666 but that was normal to me. Never really gave it any thought. I have friends that claim they saw some weird shit going on there but I never did. To me it was a great place to drink with friends and try to get laid. Hahaha. I would always drink a coke.

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