Interview: Morta Skuld Finally Get Their Due on ‘Creation Undone’

Though they originally rose to underground fame in the ’80s, death metal band Morta Skuld are a great example of a band who didn’t get their due until later in their career. While they may have flown under the radar a little bit when they first burst onto the scene, they are slowly realizing what an impact they’ve had on the underground death metal world until years after the fact.

Recently we caught up with guitarist and vocalist Dave Gregor about the band’s latest album, Creation Undone, released via Peaceville Records at the end of last month. We unpack the record, the process, and how it feels to finally get the recognition.

Can you talk a little bit about the writing and recording process and how it represents an evolution in the band’s sound? 

With this album, instead of  the process of writing a song, then the next practice, you come back to it, we just came fresh to every rehearsal so each one was fresh and new. We came in and worked on a song and wouldn’t stop until the song was finished. Then we’d put it on the shelf and move on to the next song, so we didn’t really rehearse any of the songs until the whole record was written. Then we want back in and had more energy to spend on getting them tight. It was just a little more organic and fresh, vs. the other way to do the process where the creativity and spontaneity might not be there.

What are some of the lyrical and conceptual themes on the album? 

I’ve been asked if the lyrics are political, and there might be some overtones of that because our country was going through a lot of stuff, and we still are. When I write lyrics, I go through my own experiences, so if Im having a band day or in an argument with someone or whatever that is, I take those influences and translate them into my lyrics. So at the time when I was writing some of these songs, places were locked down. People were at home, and it just of felt like our world as we knew it was all over, and we were losing things were accustomed to, the 24 hour stuff, fast food in less than five minutes, those things were going away and being altered, so a lot of the lyrics were written about what was going on at the time for me and what was happening in the world.

I know y’all have always risen above the trends, but it feels like old-school death metal is having a moment in the spotlight right now. Are there newer bands that you’ve been digging, and do you feel like this resurgence impacted your decision to come out with a record at all?

I’d have to say as far as newer bands go probably Frozen Soul is one of my favorites, them and Skeletal Remains. They’re all younger guys … well I’m 57, so to me younger guys. (laughs) I really relate to Skeletal Remains a lot; I just feel like their first two records are something we could have written, and we played with them a bunch of times and will be dong a California run with them shortly.

I guess what also really impacts me is the stuff I grew up listening to, Suffocation, Immolation, Obituary, Death, things of that nature, and that’s what really influenced the writing process and the record.

That totally makes sense, and Frozen Soul are awesome. They’re a great example of modern death metal.

They’re really good guys, and when we played with them, they came up, and they’re like, “You guys don’t even know how big of an influence you are on us.” And I’m like “What? That’s crazy.” We were in Texas playing a show, and they were down the street on some big major tour. And they literally took an Uber down the street so they could see us last-minute. Just really cool all around.

Even though it’s early days, do you have any plans locked in for the next album, or are you playing that by ear? 

You know, I was just so happy with this record, I really haven’t given any thought to another record. At one point we started writing a new song, and then had to prepare for our tour run in January so we had to put that on hold. Then I have one other song I’ve sort of been working on, but I haven’t gotten the band together on it yet. So there’s some stuff in the works, but sometimes I don’t like to plan too far ahead because you never know what’s going to happen. Right now we really want to promote this record, and the rest is on the back burner jut in case we decide to start writing again.

Get the album here.