CORROSION OF CONFORMITY Drummer On Band's Early Years: 'We Were Always Into Metal; We Just Couldn't Play It Too Good'

January 13, 2018

CORROSION OF CONFORMITY drummer Reed Mullin was recently interviewed by George Burnz of the "Full Metal Racket" show. The full conversation can be viewed below. A few excerpts follow (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET):

On the surprisingly fertile nature of the North Carolina music scene:

Reed: "Raleigh always had a good rock scene, punk rock scene back in the older days. Every once in a while, these little towns in North Carolina all of a sudden have great scenes — like, Winston-Salem had one, surrounded by this club called Ziggy's, and Winston is way smaller than Raleigh. And then in Wilmington on the coast, there was a place called the Mad Monk. When we were doing the 'Blind' stuff, we'd be getting 1,500 people in there. That was a lot of people for us. That was the first time we started drawing a whole bunch of people."

On touring with IRON MAIDEN during the British heavy metal legends' "Fear Of The Dark" cycle:

Reed: "We were out with MAIDEN for a long time. It was cool. It was the first, like, really big tour C.O.C. ever got offered. We were playing sheds and stuff. I was good friends with SOUNDGARDEN and ALICE IN CHAINS' manager at the time, Susan Silver, and I was so freaked out about [the tour offer] because I was sort of managing the band at the time. I called her up and said, 'Susan, I don't know if we should do this. I mean, we've never played anything bigger than a couple of thousand people.' She said, 'Dude, if you don't do it, you're going to regret it the rest of your life. What's the worst that can happen? Maybe some folks don't like it, but at least you get the experience, and it's an experience maybe you'll never get again.' So we ended up doing it, and she was exactly right. It was amazing. They treated us really good."

On C.O.C.'s Southern rock and metal influences:

Reed: "We've always liked ZZ TOP since we were little kids, and some SKYNYRD — well, a lot of SKYNYRD – but there was a time when we were punk rockers and we hated SKYNYRD. SKYNYRD and MOLLY HATCHET. Actually, we used to have a song called 'Rednekkk', which started with a MOLLY HATCHET version of an ALLMAN BROTHERS song, 'Dreams I'll Never See'. Actually, just to show how metal we were even back on our first album 'Eye For An Eye', 'Rednekkk' was 'Symptom Of The Universe' by [BLACK] SABBATH just sped up. It's the same music. There's a song called 'Mad World' where I used the drum roll from 'Prowler', the first song on the first IRON MAIDEN album. We did a FLEETWOOD MAC song JUDAS PRIEST covered called 'Green Manalishi'. We were always into metal; we just couldn't play it too good.

"The 'Deliverance' record, actually, we recorded with Phil Swisher on bass and Karl [Agell] singing. All the music you hear on that, actually, Karl and Phil sang and played on. It wasn't written with the idea of it being a 'Southern rock record.' A lot of it has to do with the way Pepper [Keenan] sings. We recorded the whole album with Karl singing with that music."

CORROSION OF CONFORMITY's new album, "No Cross No Crown", was released by Nuclear Blast Entertainment on January 12. Recorded in North Carolina with longtime producer John Custer, the album is the group's first studio effort with guitarist/vocalist Pepper Keenan in more than a decade.

CORROSION OF CONFORMITY is currently touring North America with BLACK LABEL SOCIETY. The tour kicked off December 27 in Denver, Colorado and will wind its way through nearly four dozen cities before coming to a close on February 27. Additional support is being provided by EYEHATEGOD and RED FANG on select shows.

Photo credit: Dean Karr