Matthew Young (King Parrot) interviewed

** King Parrot don’t care that you’re snappy dresser, or smart as a whip, or have enough money to buy pussy for an eternity. They’re a grindcore band—actually more than that—with an all-fun, no bullshit disposition. The group’s first album, Bite Your Head Off, made dicks hard across the globe. The single of said album, “Shit on a Liver”, is arguably one of the best extreme metal videos ever made. Youtube it after you read this! Now on their second album, Dead Set, for the Housecore label, King Parrot are yet again the proverbial cunts they set out to be. They’re just heavier this time. Believe it or not!

Inquiring minds want to know. What’s Bonox?
Matthew Young: A Bonox? It’s kind of like Vegemite, but it’s a beef extract. It’s got the bones and slimy parts of the dead cow put into a weird substance that’s thick and disgusting. Then, you put hot water in it and stir it like a cup of tea. It was very popular in the ‘70s. Maybe even before that. My grandparents really liked it. Then, people were like, “This is kind of fucked up!” When Slat [Wayne Slattery] started talking about it in the “Shit on a Liver” video, were like, “What the fuck are you talking about?! What the fuck is Bonox?!” Obviously, we found out. You can’t get it in America, ‘cause it’s fucking disgusting. They won’t even allow it to be shipped here. Now, we get kids in Australia throwing it around in the mosh pit. It fucking stinks. It’s bad, man. The first time they did it, I was like, “What the fuck is that smell?!” It was like a slaughterhouse. We created that for ourselves. [Laughs]

The intro to “Shit on a Liver” is one of the greatest ever. I immediately want to know more. Like, who are these guys and how fucked up are they?
Matthew Young: Oh, thank you!

Well, did you make a difference that day?
Matthew Young: Well, what do you think? [Laughs] We tried to make a difference. We talked tight that day. We had a really good time making that video. We had no idea how it would turn out in the end. The way it was edited—by our film guy, Dan Farmer—was brilliant. We love working with him. We did another video with him called “Home is Where the Gutter Is”. We’re on to new things with this video.

Who is coming up with the video ideas?
Matthew Young: It’s a collaborative thing. All the guys in the band obviously. Dan, the guy who likes the shoot. Another friend of ours, Boyd Synnott, is an artist. He always has a lot of input. He’s acted in a few of the videos. We got a good little crew at home. Usually, things morph into things that become their own. It’s pretty natural. Awesome!

Do you find that your humor translates to other countries? Are the Germans having a good time. Do the Finns get you? That kind of thing.
Matthew Young: The Germans are pretty good. Belgium and France were like, “Who the fuck are these guys?!” [Laughs] When we play in England, they get it. You guys get it. It’s taken five tours for you guys to get it. [Laughs] The Canadians get it. The last time we got to play with Down and Orange Goblin we got to play in front of new audiences. The work we’ve put into the band is now starting to pay off. Which is a fucking shock. [Laughs]

When did you find time to write the new record, Dead Set?
Matthew Young: We did a tour with Origin and Beyond Creation. After that, we took a month off. We were supposed to go on tour with Cryptopsy, but that got canceled. We did the Housecore Horror Fest. A little tour of our own. In between that we had a month off in Vermont. We went into a barn in Vermont. A friend had a barn. It’s fucking beautiful up there. It wasn’t winter so that was good. [Laughs] It was in this forest. We had a blast there. We got to know all the locals. They were like, “Oh, there’s an Australian heavy metal band making noise out back!” We just hung out there and got looked after. We were locals for a month.

You wrote the album in a month?
Matthew Young: We had a couple of ideas before, but the majority of it was written in Vermont.

Dead Set is tighter, less manic. The spontaneity is still there though. Would you agree?
Matthew Young: Totally. There’s more space on this record. We definitely let it breathe a bit more. It’s probably heavier. On the first album, we wanted to make an impact. I had just started doing extreme metal vocals when we started King Parrot. The vocals were done in four hours on the first album. We had no money. We had to do it quick. And it shows. [Laughs] It’s opened a lot of doors for us. That was the idea. It got recognized internationally. On this record, we had no pressure. No time constraints. It felt like we had time to hone our craft. Having Phil [Anselmo] in our corner is a huge help, too. It’s a dream come true.

What attracted Phil to King Parrot?
Matthew Young: We played a show in Baton Rouge one year ago. The one thing he said to me is: “You guys are fucking upholding the tradition. I really respect that.” Bands like Extreme Noise Terror and Napalm Death. We want to put our own twist on that. We want to build our band a bit and have a shitload of fun while doing it. That’s one of our main objectives. To have fun. We’re not from fucking Norway. We’re from Australia and we’re going to have as much fun as possible.

The new record is out on Housecore.
Matthew Young: Correct. Our previous experience wasn’t that great. We wanted a label that would show us mutual respect. A label to give us a fair deal. More freedom like cool vinyl and stuff like that. Housecore is all about that stuff. They’re not about restricting their bands. Some of the labels don’t really give a shit. Housecore does give a shit. That’s why we’re with them. They respect us and we respect them. It’s a great relationship.

Would you say King Parrot is a fence sitter on Dead Set? Between death and grind.
Matthew Young: In my eyes, it’s more than that. There’s a big punk influence. A big thrash influence, too. We brought into this record, especially the vocals, some lower end vocals, some higher pitches. They give the record a different color. Genres and pigeonholing don’t really appeal to me. If people want to pigeonhole us then that’s OK.

Wait a minute. That’s the title of your next record, Pigeonhole.
Matthew Young: [Laughs] Hmm… Pigeonhole. That might work! It’s going in the bank.

Where’d you get the name King Parrot?
Matthew Young: A parrot in Australian slang is an annoying cunt. That’s us, man. We’re annoying cunts. [Laughs] Like Tool. What a fucking shit name! But, hey, they’re Tool now.

Ever thought of going on tour with Hatebeak?
Matthew Young: [Laughs] Of course, we’ve heard of Hatebeak. We should go on tour together. [Laughs]

The Fowl Fall Tour!
Matthew Young: [Laughs] Totally! Christ!

** King Parrot’s new album, Dead Set, is available now on Housecore Records. The defiled, the Bonox-eating, and the piss-swilling can order Dead Set HERE.