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December 2021 / January 2022

Here's everything you need to know about Ice Nine Kills' new album, 'The Silver Scream 2: Welcome To Horrorwood'

Spencer Charnas fills us in on some behind-the-scenes tit-bits.
Published: 11:36 am, October 27, 2021
Here's everything you need to know about Ice Nine Kills' new album, 'The Silver Scream 2: Welcome To Horrorwood'

Ice Nine Kills frontman and driving creative force Spencer Charnas reveals some interesting tit-bits about the band’s ambitious new album.

The record was predominately recorded in Los Angeles
, fitting in with the subject matter of the title 'Welcome To Horrorwood'. It was cool to be working on the album and waking up seeing the Hollywood sign every day. The album touches on the film business, and more so the horror side of the business, so to be in the mecca of that world really helped visually inspire the lyrics. Horrorwood is supposed to be the world of Horror, set against the glitz and glamour of Hollywood, so creating this during the pandemic when the streets were empty and looked like an apocalypse of sorts really lent itself to the subject matter. It kinda looked like an abandoned version of that town which you don't ever really see. Hollywood is usually all hustle and bustle and pretty fast-moving, and the pandemic almost made it look like it was in 28 Days Later or Resident Evil or something. Especially with SWAT teams going down the streets during the riots, it definitely felt like we were in a movie at some point.

Jacoby Shaddix of Papa Roach and Corpsegrinder from Cannibal Corpse are on the album.
I've always been a fan of Jacoby's voice, it's got this hard rock edge to it, but there's something really special about it. We were recording some of the album on the bus while on tour with Papa Roach. Hearing him sing every night, I thought, "We gotta get HIM to play Paul Allen" on 'Hip To Be Scared'. I brought him the idea one day at catering, and he was super into it, and it's nice that I got to cut his life into pieces in the video.

When we were working out 'Take Your Pick', it very quickly became clear to me that it would be the heaviest song we'd ever done
– it's the first song I've ever written that doesn't have a melodic chorus. I wasn't too keyed into the death metal scene in Florida when I was six but discovered Cannibal Corpse through Ace Ventura Pet Detective. The song is themed on My Bloody Valentine, and with the whole subject matter being so tied to horror, and Cannibal Corpse's history with that whole tongue in cheek then tongue ripped out of cheek style, who better to get than the lead singer of Cannibal Corpse. He absolutely murdered the track; he's got such a distinct bellow that really took the track to the next level.

'Funeral Derangements' has some crazy noises on it.
Joe and I were working on that song on the back of the tour bus, with Joe programming the guitars, which was a new thing for him. I knew we wanted to make a song about Pet Semetary, and he was able to use noise chords to kinda mimic cat screeching-like sounds. It was very impressive, and that was the start of the whole idea of that song – let's try and turn the guitar into a screeching, hissing cat and make animal noises with a guitar. In the video, I was able to get Miko Hughes, the actor in the original movie who played Gage Creed – the little boy that gets hit by the 18 wheeler – to play the truck driver in OUR video, who then hits the little boy. I thought there was something so cool about that full-circle moment, the irony of him getting to do that.

The album pays homage to some classic horror movies while also creating a new original narrative and character in Silence.
This record and the video series that goes along with it accepts the last album as a work of fiction, and this album is in a world where the murder of my fiancée has occurred, and they're using this album that they found hidden in my home, that the label wouldn't release, as evidence of my guilt. I thought that was kind of a cool concept. It came from my thoughts of what would happen if Rob Zombie or Alice Cooper was under suspicion of murder, if they didn't have an open and shut case against them, the authorities might use their personas as these twisted singers with horrific lyrics as evidence of their guilt. The album opens up with a monologue being read that sets up the story, and I'm really excited for people to get to know the world of Silence as we build it through this video series.

John Feldman co-wrote a couple of the songs.
He was one of my idols from the world of punk music as a kid. I saw Goldfinger live when I was 14, and that show inspired me to start my own band and write my own songs. One of the band's earliest goals was to get Feldman to work with the band – we HAD to get to Feldman! In the early days, we sent him recordings, videos but never really got anywhere, so to finally get to sit in a room with him and work on music was a very cool moment for me. He was such a nice guy and so much fun.

Taken from the November issue of Upset. Ice Nine Kills' album 'The Silver Scream 2: Welcome To Horrorwood' is out now.

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