Meddlefan took some time out lately from his busy interviewing schedule to do another interview, fancy that hey! Who’d of thunk it! Today’s recipient of the Meddlefan treatment is none other than Matt Moliti, whom you may well know as the lead guitarist and Vocalist from New Jersey based Death Metal band Sentient Horror. How cool is that! Read on people!
Hi there Matt, many thanks for your time, let’s start with a standard, where where you born and raised?
I was born and raised on Long Island, NY, but have resided in New Jersey for the past 15 years.
What kind of exposure did you have to the local and world music scenes growing up?
There wasn’t much of any kind of local scene where I lived on Long Island. It was way out east. I was in high school in the late 90’s, so metal was completely dead, except for nu metal crap. Some kids had gotten into underground stuff though, I remember on the school bus a kid showing me this “underground Scandinavian” band called Opeth, haha! That was back around “Morningrise“, they were still really mysterious for a kid in the days before YouTube or even file sharing
What was the name of the first band you where in
Are we going back to like high school days? I think we were called 13th Hour or something like that, but my first serious band was Dark Empire.
What was your first musical instrument?
Drums, actually. My dad had an electronic kit set up in his music studio in the basement and I taught myself to play a basic beat and some fills. He wouldn’t get me lessons though, because I’d need an acoustic kit to learn. Eventually I found his old Fender Stratocaster and from then on I was a guitar player!
How old were you when you started playing?
I was about 13 years old. I messed around for a few months when I was younger, but 13 is when I picked up and never put it down.
Could you share with us what made you want to start playing Death Metal?
I got into more extreme stuff over time. My love of metal started with the traditional stuff, like Iron Maiden, then I got into power metal, and then thrash metal, then melodic death metal, and finally proper old school death metal. Death metal to me is a very physical genre to play. There’s a ton of energy to the riffing. I don’t like to feel bored when I’m playing, and death metal is constantly engaging for me to riff on. I also feel like death metal is very accepting of including a wide variety of influences outside of death metal. It’s not uncommon to hear influences from punk, traditional metal, prog rock, or even classic rock in some death metal tunes.
How did you meet your current band mates?
I work with our current temp drummer, Sean Meyers. Before he started filling in for us, he had introduced me to Jon Lopez, our rhythm guitarist. Our bassist, Tyler Butkovsky, is a former guitar student of mine.
So you didn’t you grow up playing together?
No, although I’ve known Tyler since he was like 14 or something when he started guitar lessons with me.
I really like all of the releases so far. They keep growing and getting better every time, just thought I’d throw that in.
How does everything come together and keep getting better, care to fill us in?
I think as a writer it’s important to try to do something a little different every time. “Morbid Realms” is a lot less straightforward and maybe a little more complex than “Ungodly Forms.” We are known for the Swedish influence, but two of my favourite death metal bands are Carcass and Death, and I think some of the material on “Morbid Realms” highlights those influences a little more than “Ungodly Forms” did.
Who are some of the bands from today that you think are fucking great?
As far as new bands, I really enjoy Gatecreeper. Their new record, “Deserted“, was one of my favourites of 2019. I liked the latest Exhumed as well, and the new Blood Incantation was really cool. Another favourite release was Oxygen Destroyer. Those guys rip hard. We went on tour with Carnal Tomb in 2018, and I really dig their sound, as well.
Where do you get your lyrical ideas from?
Kind of typical answer for death metal, but horror movies and books. I like writing death metal lyrics as horror fiction. I treat each song like a mini-story. A big influence for that sort of thing is King Diamond. One day, I’d like to do an entire story-album like he does.
Who is your favourite author?
Probably HP Lovecraft.
What type of books do you like to read?
Besides the horror stuff, I like music related books, bios, etc.
Who would you be if you could be anyone else?
I wouldn’t want to be anyone other than me.
And now for one of my favourite questions to ask ha-ha, do you like Conan the Barbarian?
To be honest, I’ve never really seen it aside from bits and pieces when it was on TV.
Monster Movies, do you dig them at all?
Love em. Ever since I was a kid. Horror monster/makeup/gore effects always fascinated me. I worked as an actor at a haunted house one year and had the opportunity to be involved in that process, albeit it was much much more minimal than a movie.
Do you like The Munsters or The Addams Family?
I really liked the Addams Family movie when I was a kid.
What about Scooby-Doo? Favourite character?
I watched some when I was a kid. No favourite character.
When are you guys going to be touring next?
No plans right now. I want us to go back to Europe, for sure, and it’d be good to do a few travel dates in the US. It’s hard for us to tour in an extreme manner due to my job obligations.
What are your favourites when it comes to the music you listen to?
Since I was a kid, its been progressive rock from the 70’s, like Genesis, King Crimson, and Rush. Those are my three favourites. Obviously I’m into death metal, but I like a lot of traditional metal like Maiden, Priest, Sabbath, King Diamond, and I like 70’s hard rock like UFO and Thin Lizzy.
What is your favourite horror character or series?
I really like the first two Hellraiser movies. I think Night of the Living Dead/Dawn of the Dead/Day of the Dead is the most consistent quality string of sequels I can think of. Nightmare on Elm Street 1 and 3 are good, and then with Friday the 13th, my favourite was always the 2nd one. I love Basketcase, but the sequels are unwatchable. My favourite Horror film of all time is John Carpenter’s The Thing.
May we ask what you do for a living when not creating Death Metal excellence?
I’m a professional guitar teacher.
And what would you say is your favourite food?
Sushi, or any kind of Asian cuisine.
Do you like creamy or crunchy peanut butter?
Where is the coolest place you have ever been, and why?
The Sedlec Ossuary in the Czech Republic. We had the opportunity to stop over there on the way to our gig in Nitra, Slovakia from Prague and it was unreal. Simultaneously morbid and beautiful.
If you could go to one concert from the past what show would it be and why?
That’s a super hard question to answer, since there have been some legendary tours that I either wasn’t old enough for or wasn’t born for. I guess #1 for me is I would have loved to have seen Death live.
Thank you for doing this interview man. Very much appreciated.
You’re welcome! It was a pleasure!
And sadly we are at the end, but it has to be said, what a great bloke is Matt! Another great interview containing all the elements that we so much enjoy from our mate Meddlefan, serious questions, random questions, and of course, the obligatory Conan question! Many thanks to Matt for being such a legend, and stay tuned for more Meddlefan, you know there will be a lot more! Now follow these links, you know you want to!