"The Infidel Manifesto"

By Dr. Abner Mality

Thrash is back on the menu at the metal buffet. And one of the prime chefs is this band with roots in the Far East, Ritual Carnage. For those of us who delight in the unholy mayhem once created by Slayer, Kreator, Exodus, Nuclear Assault and more, the latest Ritual Carnage creation "I, Infidel" is a sweet feast indeed.

Headquartered in Japan, R. C. are hardly a new face on the scene. Each of their previous records..."The Birth of Tragedy", "Every Nerve Alive" and the classic debut...have gotten their fair share of notoriety. However, "I, Infidel" should really put things in the red zone. The band is on fire with a scorching ferocity here, ripping through some killer thrash like "Perfect Strain", "I Am War" and "Do Not Resuscitate".

Lead singer and main man Danny Montgomery is the only U. S. Citizen found amidst these sonic samurai. He's a man of strong opinions and strong resolve who is not afraid to speak his mind on controversial subjects, especially on the new album, which is hyper-critical of the wave of Islamic terror that now engulfs the world.

Heed the words of this modern day warrior and do not block his path of fury...

WORMWOOD CHRONICLES: It's been a while since we've heard from Ritual Carnage. Why the long lay-off and how did the down-time help the band?

DANNY MONTGOMERY: I have been extremely busy. Actually all of us have. You know, we are all getting up there in age now and have families and other responsibilities, that the band comes second after our personal responsibilites. I think the down time helped the band in a way that made us thirsty to record the latest album. We all missed the stage and we definitely were eager to put our latest creations to disk.

WC: Thrash metal seems to be enjoying quite a resurgence. Do you think it can regain the stature it had in the 80's?

DM: Not really. I think it will breath new life into the extreme music scene and give the fans something different to taste. There are just so many different styles of metal, and that whole swedish metal movement had such an influence on the young bands these days,honestly, its just too hard to predict the direction that metal music will go.

WC: Eddie has done a lot more writing for "I, Infidel". What led to this turn of events?

DM: I think for him, it was personal. When he first joined the band,he had a lot outside distractions which caused him to not be as focused as he was on this release. Lately, I have seen a big change in Eddie, he is much happier and outgoing as compared to the past. In the past, Eddie always told me that he wanted to contribute much more to the band, I was actually surprised when he wrote the majority of the music on this record. I always knew he had the ability to accomplish that task.

WC: Your vocal approach changes with each album. Explain what leads to these changes in style, including the more "nasal" approach on "I,Infidel".

DM: Personal preference mostly. THe band has always progressed with each release, but my vocals always seemed to be stagnant. The guys in the band urged me to make some changes on this release, so I did. We used to play "Wrathchild" and "Electric Eye" live, and I always used clean vocals. The guys urged me to try the semi-clean approach on this release and we think it worked out very well.

WC: I hear an influence from the band Hirax on "I, Infidel", includingthe vocals. Would you agree?

DM: I never really followed Hirax so much, so it's hard for me comment on that. I know some reviews have made comparisons to Mike Muir and Chuck Billy, I guess it's all in the listener. When I sing, I never really have a certain vocalist to portray, its just a matter of going for it. James Hetfield was probably an early influence for me though.

WC: Your new bassist Hiro came from the band King's Evil. How did he hook up with Ritual Carnage and what does he bring to the band?

DM: We have been gigging with King's Evil for years. We actually played the majority of our shows together. I like Hiro personally because he is a critical thinker like me. He also is a great bassist. I personally rate a bassist abilities on his timing and ability to work with the drummer. The bass and drum section to a band is so important for success.

WC: What's the thrash scene like in Japan and what strength does the band getfrom its Japanese roots?

DM: Well, as far as thrash is concerned, I think there was only 3 or 4 true thrash bands, so there is not really a scene. The metal scene is very strong and the fan base is massive. I think what the guys draw from their Japanese roots is dedication. Music is very important in Japanese culture and the Japanese educational system pushes music in its schools. Here in America, we emphasize sports, but in Japan, there is more emphasis on the arts. In other words, the guys in the band have the talent and desire to suceed.

WC: Your lyrics on the new album condemn terrorism, but are different because they specifically name Islam as a source of terrorism. Have you gotten any flack because of this?

DM: Not yet, and frankly I don't care. I have no respect for the religion and its followers. Personally, I am godless, but I lived
peacefully amongst Christians and Buddhists for years. If they want to go back to the Dark Ages and live like savages, so be it. If you can't be tolerant like most other religions, then go away! I have gotten flack on every album lyrically, and I kind of expected a lot more from this one. But so far, its been fairly minimum to none at all.

WC: The previous album "Birth of Tragedy" was very political lyrically and was harsh on America. A lot of things have changed since then. Have your views become even stronger since that album?

DM: I will simplify and put my political beliefs in layman's terms I guess. I believe 100% in our constitution and what our forefathers had in mind when they created this great country, but frankly, the present America has lost its focus. I love this place and would not want to live anywhere else on this planet. I guess living in post-9/11 America has changed all of us, and all the blame falls on Islamic Extremists. That I have to change my life and surroundings because of these idiots is frustrating. Obviously I released all that frustration and rage on this release!

WC: The world today seems to be under the control of giant corporations. Do you believe them to be terrorists as well?

DM: I really believe in free markets and becoming successful, and corporations do not bother me. In other words,I may go to Starbucks, but I will never set foot in a WalMart (for obvious reasons!). Just a personal preference. As a matter of fact, I buy most of my clothes and other personal items on E-bay, supporting individual entrepneurs in a way. It's like buying a CD, I don't buy it because its popular on the radio, or on MTV, I buy music because I like it.I do think that the Car industry and Oil industries are corrupt!

WC: Your song "Room 101" is influenced by Orwell's "1984".Have Orwell's predictions come to pass?

DM: There are similarities. The way that the government and media has so much control over the general, mainstream public is a coincidence. The quote "Your freedom is slavery" is also coincidental. Americans in general take their freedom for granted and are in a sense slaves of freedom, in other words the cost of freedom financially and personally is enslaving!

WC: Is there any chance of Ritual Carnage making it over to the States in the near future?

DM: I hope so, I am already here as you may know. It's kind of difficult to get everyone together to tour. Plus, there is no tour support and we always end up losing money out of our own wallets.

WC: Do you guys have any "Spinal Tap" stories of funny mishaps or occurences to share with our readers?

DM: There are so many alcohol mishaps. I guess one of the funnier ones is when we did our last tour of Europe. On the way over from Japan to Austria, we got completely tanked on the plane. The stewardess stopped serving us alcohol, but they forgot that we had our own personal stash. We kept drinking and partying and actually had the Japanese business men sitting next to us tanked too. We all ended up, puking everywhere on the plane, in customs, in the air terminal. It was pitiful, but hey, it's metal!

WC:Any final words on the state of Ritual Carnage or metal in general?

DM: Thanks for everyone's support over the years and we hope that everyone enjoys the new CD! Bang that head! Thanks very much for your time!

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