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Interview with Flo Mounier (Cryptopsy)

  • Interview by: Adarsh Rajagopal
  • Date: May 5, 2011

Cryptopsy is pretty much a household name for any death metal fanatic, a legendary technical/progressive death metal act from Canada who have left their scars with albums like Blasphemy Made Flesh and None So Vile. Here we talk to Flo Mounier as he tells us his take on the band, the music and the media.
HB: Greetings Flo. How have the recent times been?
Flo
: Been good, thanks, very busy!

HB: Let’s go back in time to the very inception of the band. You have been known for your “high speed and hard hitting drumming”,how was it to join the band and take things further? Did you have a vision as to where you as a musician wanted to go or was it just taking it as it came?
Flo:
It was a great challenge, and I was thrilled to let out some energy this way, positively. Well i guess we wanted to do something very heavy and fast at first, something that really wasn’t being done in great quantity.

HB: You and Eric have been the longest lasting members of the band, what’s your take on that? Is there anything you wish that hadn’t changed in Cryptopsy over the years?
Flo:
Not sure I guess that for me its the passion of the music and the energy release of playing this kind of stuff. I have no real regrets, what happens in Cryptopsy is due to the moment and situations. everything should be held as a learning experience, and that’s the way I see it.

HB: None So Vile is regarded as the greatest ever Cryptopsy release owing to the line up of brilliant musicians. What’s your take on that? How would you describe the change in the band’s sound from None So Vile to The Unspoken King? And what do you have to say about line up changes endured by the band thus far?
Flo
: Yeah the musicians on that album were great, but I don’t think that’s why it is looked as a classic metal album, I think that it is more so the timing and era of the release. The Unspoken King was written and recorded YEARS after NSV, our frame of mind had changed and situations and the scene had changed as well. As far as the musicians on that album they were great as well. Different time, different sound, different influences.
Line up changes are frequent in metal due to the lack of support from media and promoters, hence not a lot of $$ to support the continuity and growth of a band.

HB: What’s your take on journalists? How do you feel about metal critics writing stuff about the bands on various websites? What do you think are it’s pros and cons?
Flo
: Everybody has an opinion of course! I’ll make this real simple: I respect and love constructive criticism, people that bash for the sake of bashing and couldn’t play a
note to save their lives, can just fuck-off!

HB: What’s your take on extreme metal? And do you think there is a thin line that separates extreme metal from the others? What, according to you, can be called “extreme”?
Flo:
I love extreme metal, we were one of the first bands to create the genre. Extreme metal to me is a mix of all sorts of different styles and genres played really brutal at times and really fast at times. But mixing things up means different vibes, styles and dynamics should be apparent in the music. Extreme metal has to be progressive (for me).

HB: What bands are you listening to right now? And what is it that you generally enjoy listening to?
Flo
: I enjoy listening to a bunch of different things. I usually put my i-pod on random and listen to it all. Often I end up listening to projects I’ll be playing for to get things into my head, lol.

HB: What’s your view on Lord Worm, who is cited by many as one of the greatest death metal vocalists of all time?
Flo:
Lord Worm is a good friend of mine, a great person and a good singer when he did BMF and NSV. I understand peoples compassion about original members of bands but my view is that he did what he did and now we need someone else to drive Cryptopsy.

HB: What does Flo Mounier do when he’s not the drummer of Cryptopsy? How different would it be if I met you backstage at a concert and I met you on the street on a regular day?
Flo:
Not much different in the sense that I am pretty down to earth. I have kids and a steady home life. My passion is music and I try to do it fully without ignoring my responsibilities and love for my family.

HB: Your drumming takes up a lot, especially live, when you have to play continuously for a long time. What measures (physical and mental) do you take to bring out the best?
Flo
: I guess being in good shape for me is key! Also I don’t think that I am a natural, so practicing often does help me a lot. I have lots to learn and lots to know, I guess my approach is just that I always want to improve myself and my playing.
Its hard to explain my mental state, cause i always have tons of things running around in my head, stressful sometimes, especially when I’m trying to sleep, lol.

HB: Canada is known for it’s flourishing metal underground. Is that the place you enjoy performing most? Would you consider playing a show in a place you haven’t been to? A place like India, where the metal underground is unknown to most of the outsiders? Is there a show you played in a foreign land that blew you away?
Flo:
I enjoy performing everywhere. I would love to play in India for sure!!! New places are fun, cause an exchange is made between the band and the spectators, an exchange of energy that is indescribable!!

HB: And finally, what’s in store for the future of Cryptopsy? And what do you have to say to the people reading this?
Flo:
We are working hard on new material! New surprises are in the future and the future for Cryptopsy and our fans is looking up. Cant wait to release new stuff and play for all of you!!! See you soon!!! And thanks a ton!