Magazine article Guitar Player

Metalocalypse

Magazine article Guitar Player

Metalocalypse

Article excerpt

"AS THE FASTEST GUITARIST, I PREFER TO have someone a little worse at guitar in the band, because I think you would takes it for granted that I am the best. Like you get used to a room filled with the smell of roses until you go into a room with a rotting corpse. Then, you go back to the roses room and extra appreciates it a greats degrees better."--Skwisgaar Skwigelf, founding member of Dethklok, and the fastest guitarist alive.

Dethklok is a group so mired in brutality that one must sign a "Pain Waiver" releasing the members from liability if you are crushed, de-boned, or eaten alive during a performance. The band is so big that it is considered one of the world's largest economies. Dethklok is also a total fiction. The members are the "heroes" of Metalocalypse--a new series on the Cartoon Network's Adult Swim created by musical director Brendon Small and comedy writer Tommy Blacha.

What prompted you to expand the "Spinal Tap" concept into animation with Metalocalypse?

Blacha: There is nothing like the modern, electric-guitar god. Nothing in history has ever compared to the fanaticism it creates. Guitar players are extremely communicative, creative artists who can move huge numbers of people.

They're also among the weirdest individuals on the planet. We're just fascinated with the guitar, and we want guitarists to see something funny on the show, and really get it. A joke about a pickup so strong that it's receiving whale songs, or the horror of a meddling producer may be a little lost on you unless you play.

Small: We take a lot of pains to nail the nuances. If you watch the guitarists' fingers on the cartoon, you'll see that the animation matches pretty closely what is being played. They actually filmed me playing the parts, and copied it verbatim. To duplicate the physicality of the stage movements--such as the knee bends and hair windmills--we studied films of bands like Behemoth. …

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