Dear Hunter: Episode 8 — Welcome To The Meatdome

Dear Hunter

It’s Sunday night and the crock pot has a pile of cow carcass marinating in the juice of it’s marrow. Chimaira are back in the studio and we’re getting ready to feast after a long day of intense tracking over at Spider Studios. 

I love meat. I don’t think I would enjoy a vegetarian lifestyle one bit. It’s not that I’m a soulless bastard who doesn’t love animals (my Instagram is littered with cute dog pics), I simply understand nature and know that in the world we live in, a lion would find me tasty in the same way I love crispy bacon. 

The first few days we were here we shared the studio with another Cleveland artist, Machine Gun Kelly. We had the opportunity to listen to parts of his new mixtape while also getting a sneak peak into how rappers work in the studio. It’s really not that different than metal in some aspects. Like us, they are passionate about what they do and smoke a lot of weed. It was cool as hell hanging with them. If you haven’t yet, check him out on Spotify. The guy sings faster than an angry death metal guitarist shredding into oblivion. 

I love rap just as much as metal and have been listening to it just as long. The first tapes I owned were Beastie Boys and Slayer. Back then, the genres united and made some really cool music. The “Judgement Night” soundtrack being one of the coolest releases of all time (blows the movie was shit) and it featured some of these strangest collabs ever. I wish more metal artists would team up with rappers. I heard Dillinger and 2 Chainz are working together. That’s hot. 

A ton of my friends only listen to old rap and complain the newer stuff lacks substance. I disagree with that and find there are a ton of artists out there that drop brilliance. The production value has drastically improved over the years as well. Love him or hate him, Kanye’s production is next level and his last release was over the top. 

All the members of Chimaira love rap and it’s the music of choice on the bus if we’re not listening to instrumental electronic music. If you thought we got off stage and rocked metal after the gig, you were wrong. Of course, that’s not to say we don’t ever listen to our own genre, but it’s not as often as you might think. If you worked at McDonalds, would you eat Big Mac’s all day every day?

Here are a few rap albums that influenced me over the years. 

Eazy-E – Easy Does It – I got this album when I was 12. It was the first time I heard the word motherfucker on an album. My mind was blown. 

Public Enemy – Fear Of A Black Planet – Terminator X killed it on this record. “Welcome To The Terrordome” is my shit. 

Ice Cube – Death Certificate – I like how musical this album is. The beats sound nasty on this one. My favorite cube song is not on this album though – google “Ghetto Bird.” That is the hardest Cube beat, but I think this is the best overall album. 

Wu-Tang Clan – Enter The Wu-Tang (36 Chambers) – Pretty much the coolest rap album of all time. If you read one of my earlier columns for GSA, you know I was into kung-fu movies. When this album came out and I heard all those old samples, I knew I had found a new favorite group. 

Outkast – ATLiens – This album still sounds like it’s from the future. I think these guys are proof time travel exists. The intro of this album still gives me goosebumps. 

Well, that’s that. Some metal dudes love rap, and I am one of them. What are some of your favorite artists to bump while rollin through the hood?

P.S. Austin tracked two songs while I wrote this. Dude is an animal on the kit. Our producer, Ben, who’s a bad-ass drummer himself and tracked drums on our last album, thinks Austin is the bee’s knees on the kit and I couldn’t agree more.

‘Til then…thanks for reading. 

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