Punishment At Bloodstock - Marky speaks out about Reunion!
Who would ever think that Swiss Thrash Metal god's 'Coroner' would be playing live after a 2 decade absence? Growing up with their music back in the day and having seen them with Watchtower back in 1990 was truly mind blowing. With this power trio consisting of Ron Broder (vocals/ Bass), Tommy Vetterli (guitar) and drummer Marky Edelmann completing the line-up the band were once roadies for Celtic Frost. The band soon formed back in the early 80's and with their demo tape 'Death Cult' in 86 featured Tom G Warrior from Celtic Frost handling the vocals saw the band signing to Frost's own label Noise. In 87 the band released their debut album 'R.I.P.', and to this day it is still a cult classic, their finest album ever. If you haven't discovered the band yet this is an album I highly recommend. The band continued with 'Punishment for Decadence' in 88 followed by 'No More Color' 89, 'Mental Vortex' 91 and 'Grin' 93. Unfortunately this was the last we would hear from this impressive act until 2010 when the band finally reformed and played a series of festivals including the UK's Bloodstock. It was a pleasure to see the band live once again and also interviewing them again after 21yrs since the fanzine days. I managed to catch drummer Marky after their set to talk about the reunion, and the past. Here is what Marky had to say.
Well it's been a long time since the last interview so I better ask which is your favourite album you recorded with Coroner and why?
"Well it is hard to say, I think it would have to be 'Grin', I do have a favourite song or 2 on each album so it is hard to say really.
What about the debut album 'R.I.P.', it's a killer album to me your best!!
"Yes I like some of the songs but for me 'Grin' is my favourite album. I think we made a progress on each album and we went in the direction that we always wanted to go in. I think it was the logic way and I think it is the way we had to go."
There's a lot of people who said that was the album that killed the band, do you agree?
(Laughing) "Well there are 2 types of people out there, those who liked the 1st 2 albums, and 'No More Color' and I think they didn't like the band anymore and you can feel it still when we play live. There is another group of people who really like the later stuff we did which is ok."
Do a lot of bands approach you and tell you that your debut album has influenced them a lot? I do see young guys playing some of our stuff on 'You Tube' which is amazing to watch.
"Yes there are some band who have said that and for me it is a big honor for us."
So Marky why did the band break up back in the day, what was the reasons?
"Well we broke up after 10yrs been together and it was kind of hard to go on without to many compromises but on the other hand I think we would of gone even further than on the 'Grin' album. I think if we did any more album it wouldn't of been Coroner any more, it became clear to us after the last album."
So what did after the band broke up? I know Tommy joined Kreator, so what did Ron and yourself do next?
"Well I joined 'Apollyon Sun' with Tom G Warrior from Celtic Frost which I did for 2yrs and we recorded 1 album and then I quit the band. The band broke up and I think the music was pretty cool and I think they could of done another album. After this I went more into electronic music and it was great to create loads of bass lines and melodies but not just the beat 'Spoo' which was done on a play station's children's program, it was psychedelic music. After that I did another project and I didn't care as I wanted to experience new boundaries. Now it's great to be back playing drums in a metal band, it's fantastic!! Ron didn't do much after Coroner he pretty much gave up on the music, and he was working on his fathers business and he was totally out of music."
Did it take you w while to get back into drumming again?
"Yeah it did, it took about 9 months and it was hard. I didn't play drums for 15yrs and I played samples with Apollyon Sun. Playing drums for Coroner wasn't easy either."
What do you do now for a day job Marky?
"Well I take care of a billionaire's art collection I take care of his collection. (Ed: Does he have any Coroner art work?) No not at all, but there are some artist who are familiar with Coroner and the art work."
So let's move on, how long is this reunion tour going to last for?
"It is hard to say? We are trying to play as many shows as we can in as many countries as we can, we hope it will last till 2012. Our first show was 'The Maryland Death Fest' in Baltimore (U.S.) and I was a little curious to how it would turn out for the band and it turned out better than I thought it would. We also played 'Hellfest' in France, which was great!! France has always been good for us. We toured a lot there back in the day. (Ed: did you play Wacken? Did you get an offer t play there?) No we didn't play there this year. I don't know why we didn't. (Ed: This is the perfect time for you to play? How strange??) yeah I know it was strange for us too!"
Would you play there in a year or 2 if they asked you?
"Yes of course I would. I much prefer smaller club venues closer to our fans and under a roof. Festivals are always a short set were you play only for about 45-1hr set and then the next band comes on."
How did you get on the Bloodstock bill this year?
"Well I have no idea? I think we just got offered to play here and we excepted it. It's a great little festival which is slowly growing from that I have been told. We were suppose to of played here back in 88 or was it 89 but we were in jail in Dover, and we arrived in Dover from the ferry and and they asked us for a working permit which we didn't have. So we stayed in Jail for one night & then went back to Switzerland next day. Our manger and label fucked it up for us. People had already bought tickets and they were pissed off."
Do you remember the tour with Watchtower back in 90?
"Yeah it was a great tour, I remember we played only 2 shows, Bradford and London."
Back in the day you released the live in Berlin video, has anybody asked you if they can re-release it as a DVD? I'd love to see that again with extra footage from the reunion tour.
"Well the thing with the East Berlin show was that it was a festival with Kreator, Sabbat, and the deal was they would film it and we would decide if we would use it or not. We decided not to release it and the record company released it so we were pissed off with the label. The label at that time said if we don't release it they would not give us any tour support at that time. They were actually blackmailing us. We have filmed some of the reunion shows recently some of them with 8 camera's and I think we will put the original East Berlin show with some of the new shows on a DVD in the near future. We will release something that is for sure."
Your demo tape you did back in the day under the name of 'Death Cult' has it been re-released at all on CD?
"Yes it has been released on some bootleg records but never released officially. I don't are if it has been released as we don't make any money out of our releases so for me it is more of an honor that it has been reissued."
Ok let's end an argument once and for all, it is true that you were all roadies for Celtic Frost back in the day?
"Well it was just Tommy and myself who did the roadie job for them, but Coroner were formed before Celtic Frost. For us it was great been good friends of theirs, a big family. It was also a great time for us to sell our demo whilst we were on tour with them in the U.S."
What good memories do you have with Coroner back in the day?
"I think one of the highlights for me was touring with Kreator, which was fantastic in 89 in North America. We arrived at JFK airport and we were sitting in the tour bus getting to know one another for about a month. During that tour we became the closest friends you could imagine, we had a lot of fun. We are still friends today.
It's rather strange as you have Kreator, Triptykon and yourselves all on the same bill today, one after another, how does that feel for you all?
"Again it is amazing!! We all met up at the 'Hellfest' and we met roadies that were on tour with us back in the day, its one big family."
How was the set today at Bloodstock?
"It was great, but we had to cut 1 song short which was 'reborn through Hate', and Ron walked off the stage & I think he thought we were going to play an on core but we arrived late and I think the stage crew were ready to get the next band on. It was a 45 minute set which was too short for me. I hope we have a change to play a longer set as we usually play a 90 minute set. I feel very honored to of played here today."
Who was the the guy onstage with you today helping with the effects pedals?
"That is Daniel Stossel who does the samples and on the last tour we did before we quit we had so many samples on the record that we needed somebody to help with them on the stage. It became a very important part of our music. We had known Daniel for a pretty long time so he was the guy to do it. He did the last tour and he has done the reunion tour too. (Ed; Has he ever fucked up live?) No he has not at all!!)."
If a record company approached you know to record a new album would you do it as Coroner?
"To be honest I have never thought about it? I think there might be some interest but we have to deliver something that is which is as good as the last album 'R.I.P.' so I don't think it is possible. I think we could do one song but a whole album I'm not so sure."
I'm surprised you didn't play 'Purple Haze' today
"Yeah we are too we usually finish with that song."
How would you feel if there was a Coroner tribute CD?
"Wow!! I would feel like it was a complement for us or honor. For me I feel great that people are still remembering us after all this time, we have never been a big band and people still remember us. It's not as if we broke up 5-6 yrs ago and still we have a fan base."
Has any labels offered to re-issue the 1st 3 albums which will be re-mastered?
"Well I didn't know that the albums are not available anymore! Yes I think we will do that very soon, make them sound better with different booklets. Maybe re-issue the 'Death Cult' demo."
Well Marky thanx for taking your time out, lets hope we don't have to wait another 21yrs for the next interview. Best of luck with Coroner and I hope you do another album soon. Do you have anything to add before we finish the interview?
"Yes thanks to everybody who remember us and for your support, we really do appreciate it and I appreciate people buying our records in the past."
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Thanx to Marky for the interview & Coroner management for setting the interview up.