ALEX WEBSTER Reflects On CANNIBAL CORPSE's 'Vile' Album Cracking BILLBOARD Chart: 'It Was A Big Deal For A Death Metal Band'

April 8, 2021

In a recent interview with Kyle McGinn of Dead Rhetoric, bassist Alex Webster of Florida death metal veterans CANNIBAL CORPSE reflected on the band's 1996 album, "Vile". "Vile" marked the first CANNIBAL CORPSE album with now longtime vocalist George "Corpsegrinder" Fisher, who replaced Chris Barnes (SIX FEET UNDER). Barnes reportedly left CANNIBAL CORPSE over disagreements regarding the band's more technical direction.

"With 'Vile', the big story was that it was our first album with George [Fisher]," he says. "That was the big thing, really — how was the album going to do? And, how are people going to like George and the band, and everything else? That was the story of that album — making the transition from Chris [Barnes] to George. It ended up charting on the Billboard Top 200. That was our first appearance on that chart. So, we were very happy about that as you might imagine. We were on tour when we got the news. I think it debuted at like 151 on the chart, and then of course it immediately dropped off the following week [Laughs], but still, being on that chart especially in 1996, it was a big deal for a death metal band. we were excited and eager to see how people would react to George, and it was overwhelmingly positive."

Webster was then asked whether CANNIBAL CORPSE would consider playing one of their classic albums in its entirety live. "We've talked about that and it would be hard," he says. "If we would do an anniversary tour for any of the albums, I would think that it would be for 'The Bleeding' or 'Vile' perhaps. If you look at 'Vile', four out of the five guys are in the band right now, which is a lot for 25 years. Erik [Rutan, guitar] being the only guy who wasn't on 'Vile'. That would be a cool one to do. But boy, those are some hard songs! We'd have a lot of work relearning all of those! [Laughs] Some of those songs we haven't played since we wrote that album and recorded it. We'd have our work cut out for us, but maybe 'The Bleeding' or 'Vile', one or the other would be a cool choice to do the whole album as a tour kind of thing."

You can read the entire interview at Dead Rhetoric.

CANNIBAL CORPSE's new album, "Violence Unimagined", will be released on April 16 via Metal Blade Records. Erik Rutan, one of the death metal's most acclaimed guitarists who is known for his time as part of MORBID ANGEL throughout the '90s and early 2000s, as well as handling vocals/guitars for HATE ETERNAL, lent his guitar as well as production skills to the effort, which was recorded at his Mana Recording in St. Petersburg, Florida. Rutan previously produced four CANNIBAL CORPSE albums (in addition to "Violence Unimagined"),alongside the likes of GOATWHORE, SOILENT GREEN and BELPHEGOR. Filling in live on guitar since 2019, in 2020 he became a full member, contributing to the writing process.

Rutan joined CANNIBAL CORPSE as the replacement for longtime guitarist Pat O'Brien, who was arrested in Florida more than two years ago on charges of aggravated assault on a law enforcement officer and burglary of an occupied dwelling with assault.

Photo credit: Alex Morgan

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