ORIGIN have just released one of the best albums of their career with Unparalleled Universe. They are also getting ready to shred stages on this year’s edition of The Summer Slaughter Tour alongside THE BLACK DAHLIA MURDER, DYING FETUS, and more. A&GS caught up with vocalist and frontman Jason Keyser to talk about what is shaping up to be a very busy summer for the band. Have a look:
Amps: I have to tell you that your different take on the Wall of Death, the silent one, at Devastation On the Nation 2015 here in Philly was so cool.
Jason: oh, thank you. I try to come up with different shit as often as possible. One thing I’ve noticed is that a lot of bands just go through the motions onstage. A lot of the singers do the same bit night after night, and it’s kind of a bum-out. We like to change it up. On the BELPHEGOR tour that we did, and on the MARDUK tour in Europe we did kind of a Black Metal vs. Death Metal Wall of Death (laughs)! I’m still trying to figure out one for this year.
Amps: Can you please not rub in the fact that you’ve toured with MARDUK and BELPHEGOR because neither one of those bills came anywhere near here.
Jason: Oh man, I’m sorry! It’s so weird how tour routing goes, you know? I mean, The Troc is a great place in Philly and we haven’t been there since 2014. And I used to be there all the time when I was with SKINLESS. There are some cities that used to be hotbeds. Montreal for instance, I haven’t played there in years, and I have no idea why.
Amps: This new record is an absolute crusher and our photographer and writer Kelly goes to me, “Fucking brutal! Even for ORIGIN this is some riff violence!”
Jason: Thanks. That’s cool, I’ll take it.
Amps: What was your mindset going into this one? Because it sounds like you were trying to unleash Hell on Earth.
Jason: You know, the process of doing it, it feel so different when you’re actually putting it together. There’s moments when you think, “Hmmm, should we do this in that spot?” and maybe second-guess yourself, you know? And each of us does his parts, but Paul (Ryan, guitar) primarily comes up with the framework and the meat and potatoes of everything. Me personally, there were a couple of songs where at first I was a little taken aback, but by the end of the recording process I was like, “I am notoriously wrong about things. You got it, it’s gonna be amazing!” (laughs). Some of the curve balls come naturally. It’s the insane mad scientist logic of Paul Ryan.
Amps: I’ll put Unparalleled Universe up there with HOUR OF PENANCE, DYING FETUS, and SUFFOCATION’S records as best Death Metal releases this year. And I say that with five months left to go in 2017.
Jason: Well alright, cool!
Amps: As far as the writing goes, are the lyrics all you, or does anyone else write them?
Jason: On this one and the last one we kind of went into a pattern where the first track on both albums was all Paul. When I joined the band I knew my style was drastically different from what they were doing before, so I said to Paul, “You HAVE to write at least one in THAT style, the signature ORIGIN style of the old records.” But other than that it’s all me. Plus, I think Paul prefers to work on the riffs now, so a lot of it is just me doing what I do.
Amps: The Summer Slaughter Tour opens in Reading, PA on July 27 and I will be there! I am so pumped for this tour, especially since Reverb is one of my favorite venues. But…you guys should be much higher up on the bill, just sayin.’
Jason: Well sure, it would be nice to have been higher up on the bill but we have no control over that. At the very least we’re banking on people coming out in time to see us. We’re pretty much in the same spot as last time, but hey, at least we didn’t go down any notches, right (laughs)? But fuck it, it’s an early day for us. We get to play in kind of a prime spot, then relax, drink with the fans, hang out, and watch the show. We’re stoked because it’s a great line-up and a lot of our friends are on it like DYING FETUS, THE FACELESS, and BLACK DAHLIA.
Amps: What would you like the listener to get from this record?
Jason: I want people to listen to it with an open mind, and be stoked on it. Ideally they’ll headbang in the kitchen while doing their dishes. And we’re well aware that Omnipresent had a bit of a mixed reaction because it was a little more ambitious and artsier, I guess. This one is more individual songs, and a heart attack from start to finish. Hopefully that translates.
Amps: What would you like to say to all the ORIGIN fans out there in the world?
Jason: We have a LOT more to announce for you very soon. Pick up the new album and check us out on the road. We have more tours, we’ll be everywhere and nowhere real soon!
Jason Keyser is a very unassuming, laid-back kind of guy. It’s hard to believe this is the same dude who gets up on that stage and incites chaos night after night. I really enjoyed speaking with him and can’t wait for ORIGIN to hit my town this week. Y’all need to get up off your asses and buy Unparalleled Universe if you haven’t already. And THEN you maniacs need to head out to whatever city is closest so you can catch ORIGIN live on Summer Slaughter this year. You can find a complete list of dates HERE.