Exclusive Interviews Only Found Here at MetalCore!
Brad Moore used to some of my covers for Metal Core way back when it was a print zine and when I found him on Facebook I thought he would make for a cool interview and well here it is:
CF: Where were you born and where did you grow up? Did you come from a big family or a small family?
BM: I was born in the little coal mining town of Harrisburg, Illinois, USA. My family was ever changing, with divorces, re-marriages, etc... so, the amount of people in the house was in constant flux.
CF: Were you a big fan of music in general at an early age or did that come later? What were some of the 1st bands that you heard and got into?
BM: Although I took guitar lessons in second grade, I became a REAL music fanatic in 8th grade. In my small country town, there wasn't much available, but on station, WQRX, miles away, was the only rock station. They would play whole album sides, old and new stuff, and at that age, I didn't know what was vintage, or the latest, so I heard Led Zeppelin, Yes, Kansas, Queen, Budgie, the list was endless. They featured jazz fusion, deep space/mood stuff...it was incredible and the variety fueled my imagination. But, it was the HEAVY stuff, like Sabbath, Heep, Zeppelin, that really got me going.
CF: How did the world of metal into your life and what were some of the 1st metal bands that you heard and did you immediately like metal or did it take some used to getting to?
BM: The first death metal band I heard, and got into, was Possessed, "Eyes of Horror", and though they had a slight Motorhead vibe in the guitar, I had never been so taken, I thought they were so original/unique and I bought the vinyl immediately. A publisher in Minneapolis, Jake Wisely, was looking for dark artists, and he hooked me up with a pile of tapes, all thrash and death, bands I had never heard of, and I got hooked!!
CF: Now was metal music like a drug that you couldn’t get enough of and that you wanted more and more of? Did you ever tape trade or did you get into the metal scene after tape trading wasn’t around so much anymore?
BM: I got into tape trading, and almost immediately hooked up with Wild Rags Records, in L.A. They got me some c.d. cover art gigs, and I bought a TON of tapes from them. I am still a hopeless collector of music, and bizarre films.
CF: Did you ever pick up and instrument at any time during your life or did you even have an interest in learning how to play an instrument?
BM: I did mention earlier that I play guitar.
CF: Now how did you get into the world of art and drawing and are you still involved in doing drawings and art these days?
BM: Art, in all its forms, has always been my life and work. I went to painting college, and got my start in horror comic books right away. I did full page pin-up illustrations in the famous, banned comic book, Jeffery Dahmer, Portrait of a Serial Killer, And did my own gore/horror strips in books like Cadaver, Necrotica, did a full length comic book at Boneyard Press, called Bathory, which was banned in 3 countries, and I filled in the between times freelancing ink, and color work, for books like Razor, and Faust. I'm not going to list all of the projects; I've been published close to 500 times, worldwide.
I rarely do comic book work these days, as my art for record companies, and the murals I design, and supervise, take up my time. I'm also involved in independent films. I'm working on creating the special effects for a film called, Platypossum, and I acted in the film Dig Two Graves, starring Ted Levine. As readers probably know, he was "Buffalo Bill, in Silence of the Lambs. ( He was also on Monk).
CF: So what are some of your favorite bands that you have become a fan of over the years and are there any that you loved back in the day, but you are not such a fan of them these days?
BM: Fave bands are too many to list, way too many. I am mostly into the Maryland Doom Metal scene, these days, and I do a lot of art for bands in that scene, like Sixty Watt Shaman, Argus, Penance, Place of Skulls, etc...
As far as death metal goes, I am very much into rediscovering all of the old school bands these days. Don't forget: I am the artist who painted the covers for Morpheus Descends, "Ritual of Infinity", and Organic Infest, "Penitence", two releases that are considered CLASSICS of the defining first wave of death metal. Morpheus Descends just came out with a box set, and in it are a few of my illustrations, and one old pic of me, from '92, in NYC, when I first met the band!
CF: Where you were living back in the 80’s and 90’s was there a healthy metal scene and were you able to see many shows and if so what were some of your favorite shows from back then?
BM: Illinois had a good scene, for a time, small fests in mid-state often...
CF: Now refresh my memory, how did we end up meeting ha ha?
BM: We met, by mail, when I sent art samples to you, back when you were the manager of Symphony of Grief. I wanted to create art for the band. Later, you hired me to draw covers for your 'zine, Metal Core.
CF: Now you did 5 covers for my zine, issues # 25 through # 30. Do you have a favorite cover out of the 5? How long did it take you to put together each cover and looking back are you pretty happy with all of them?
BM: My faves among the 5 covers would be the first one (#25, the girl in the dungeon of freaks), the Y2k/end of civilization one (mI forgot the number) and especially # 28, The Reptile God cover. I still sell prints of those, to this day.
Each cover drawing was "10x15", with a one inch border, and, from pencils, to inking, took about two day each .I still love them em all!!
CF: Now have you ever done any bands demo or album covers, flyers, or any other zine covers over the years?
BM: I have done TONS of 'zine covers, t-shirts, comic books (as I said), over the last 20 years. I have had my work published over 450 times, around the world, I have taken part in over 70 international art exhibits, and I work full time in art, at this very day. In 2006, I was hand chosen by HR Giger( designer of the Alien films, and album covers for Celtic Frost) to exhibit in his castle, in Switzerland. My fave 'zine cover I did, was for Brutal Fuck! to list everything would make this interview read like a resume.
CF: Did you read many zines over the years and what were some of your favorite ones and how did you find out about new bands and stuff back then?
BM: I read Death by Metal, Metal Mafia, Profane Existence, Eternal Holocaust, The Wild Rag, your 'zine,.... again, these lists are crazy long, but they were the best way to find out about new bands, especially bands in Europe.
CF: When you look at a cover of something, what sort of catches your eye first and do you think with all of the technology available these days that it just takes away from people putting together really cool artwork/covers?
BM: The first thing I look for in a cover, be it one of my own, or another artists, is the atmosphere it creates, or perhaps, fails to create. Mood is key, but right after that, I look at the artistry, and technical aspects of the work; is it done well, is it well designed?
I do think too much technology is a hindrance, only because lots of young artists take the easy way out by copping a photo, twisting it about, and calling it their own. So many people are so into the graphics they see in gaming, that, when they see a version of it as an album cover, or t-shirt, they respond by thinking it’s cool, rather than being informed that a lot of it is just manipulation of an already existing image. I don't dislike computer art, I have seen INCREDIBLE, amazing pieces, and I don't expect people to have a trained eye for painting, as I have. Enjoy what you choose.
CF: Now who was personally your favorite metal band and have you ever got to meet them?
BM: No single fave, sorry, and I have met most of them.
CF: Tell me about some of the coolest album covers you have seen over the years and in your eyes what makes them great
BM: When we discuss my favorite album covers, I can go way back, because my collection is very eclectic! The artwork for Nazareth, "Hair of the Dog", and "No Mean City", Emerson Lake, and Palmer,''Brain Salad Surgery", all of the Yes covers by Roger Dean, "Eyes of Horror", painted by Kent Mathieu, Obituary,"Cause of Death", all, of the cover art by Erik Moonhawk Roper, all the art by Andreas Marshall, again, a list that may not end. Check out the artwork of Juha Vuorma, Brian Tutlo, Jeff Gaither, Scott Jackson, Eric Rot, Artgore Ruiz, and Mark Riddick.They are great because of their mood, their technical painterly aspects, and they fit their subject well, I left out a million more, but man, these lists!!!
CF: Now when you hear a song what do you listen for within the song structure? Do you feel there are too many bands and labels around these days with a lot of the bands just rehashing the same ole stuff that has been done to death and then some?
BM: Right now, I am re-evaluating my old school death/industrial collection, and the doom scene is overflowing with wildly creative bands, so there is a world of work to investigate. Music is endless, choose you poisons, and dig in.
CF: When you went to shows did you ever got into the mosh pits ha ha and if so did you ever get hurt? Same thing with stage diving?
BM: Yeah, I used to mosh, until I got my left eye punctured by a thumbnail, in a pit. It was Cornucopia of Death( I used to do their artwork), opening for Wrathchild America, and I had to go to the Emergency Room. We feared I would be blind in that eye, but it healed, and works as well as ever, thank you GOD!! END of mosh pits, though I stand at the edge, still, and slightly participate, at bands like Super Joint Ritual, Motor Head, Napalm Death, and Exodus.
CF: Out of all the following metal genres are there any you’re not fond of any why is that: heavy metal, thrash metal, death metal, power metal and black metal?
BM: Not very into Nu-metal, Black metal, and NO Rap-metal.
CF: Now when you sat down to say to do a zine cover, did you have to be in some sort of mood and where did you get ideas at for some of the covers?
BM: I set my moods by picking the correct films to run, in the background, or the perfect music to create my model atmosphere, my studio is loaded with skulls, wall hangings, candles...in fact, it resembles an oddity museum. Antique lamps, dinosaur replicas, rubber bats, bones, etc.... Ideas come from everywhere, every piece of wood, each shadow, old picture frames, clay sculptures, and stains in a wall.....
CF: Do you still have copies of all the stuff you have done over the years?
BM: Unfortunately, due to a fire, several moves, a flood, and general relocating, I have lost several pieces. Also, over the years, to keep mind and body together, I have sold signed copies of published works that I wish I still had.
CF: Now we re connected back on Facebook. Have you met many other people on there?
BM: Facebook is awesome for that reason!! I have not only RE-connected, but contacted film people, and others that seemed untouchable 20 years ago!
CF: Do you think if underground bands had all the technology of today that some of them would have sold more records and gotten a bigger fan base? Have you personally download many bands releases instead of paying for them?
BM: I don't know, does it help them now? I have met bands who think they are worldwide, only because they have a website...that doesn't really make you worldwide. I liked the days of the mail; it was VERY underground, but DIRECT!! I sometimes miss that.
I have never downloaded, I believe in buying the real thing, so that the bands, and the illustrators, get their fair share!!
CF: How would you rate yourself as an artist?
BM: As one that is always evolving, and always has been.
CF: What are some of your favorite artists that you have enjoyed their work over the years?
BM: I get into the work of F. Staroweisky, Ernst Fuchs, Daniel Murante, Max Ernst, Gustav Klimt, Jean Poumeyrol, Sybell Ruppert, Mati Klarwein, and Johfra Bosschart.
CF: What did you parents think of you doing all this or they didn’t care as long as it made you happy?
BM: My parents never understood that this a job, and that it is work, but they are coming around, these days, as I have never been on unemployment, and I have made of myself what I said I would. PBS recently did a special on me, and my work in metal, and that impressed them the most.
CF: So what are you doing with yourself these days?
BM: My current major project, outside of Metal paintings, would be my "Mobile Murals" project, for the city of Carbondale, Illinois. I supervise creation of 36, "10 x 4 " panels, each containing two mathematical patterns, based on the pioneering work of Prof, Roger penrose. His notion was that you could fill space with only two rotating shapes, and create a solid pattern, My change on that was to create a mathematical pattern, and repeat two COLORS, in such a way that any portion of the mural can moved( hence, "Mobile"), or replaced with another, and not lose the whole. I met with mayors, showed my plans, and got the commission, which has been ongoing, for a few years now. In Metal art, I just did Ed (Monster Magnet) Mundells album cover, for his solo project, Ultra Electric Mega Galactic, "Through the Dark Matter" (one of the very BEST album covers I've EVER done!!), I just did the cover for "Go Down Fighting, A Tribute to Nazareth", for Underdogma Records, I do all of the cover art( and a few T-shirts ) for Argus, I did two covers for Zuul, "Out of Time", and To the Front Lines", and one for The Swill, "Thirst for Misery", got a LOT of upcoming projects, and I'm working on an independent film, that I mentioned earlier, called 'Platypossum", a sci-fi/comedy throwback to the '70s Eco-Horror flix. I am creating the special effects for that, as well as playing a role in it,. Find it, on Facebook, under Platypossum, the Movie.
CF: Any last words to wrap this interview up?
BM: Do your best work. What you do today is still there, tomorrow. "Later" is sooner than you think and check out my website at: www.bradmooreartwizard.com, and my two facebook pages, Brad Moore, and Brad Moore's Illustration Station. Thanx for the interview, old chum!!!! Let's do something together again!!