Andreas Kisser - Sepultura - Back
Interviewer: Cameron Edney -

Every now and then an interview comes along that you just can't decline. For me that interview was with Sepultura guitarist Andreas Kisser. As a long-time Sepultura fan I was looking forward to talking to Andreas on the phone about many different issues surrounding the band. Unfortunately due to time commitments on both our parts we had to conduct this interview via email. Andreas has been keeping very busy over the last year working on the latest Sepultura album 'Dante XXI', Andreas also found the time to record some tunes for longtime friend Dino Cazares' band Asesino. Andreas even made an appearance on the Roadrunner United album which was a huge success around the world. Since the release of Sepultura's latest album 'Dante XXI' the band have been on an up and down roller coaster, receiving praise by critics around the world, Sepultura hit the road in support of the album but unfortunately drummer Igor Cavalera announced to fans that he wasn't going to do the European tour as he wanted to spend more time with family. Only 24 hours after I conducted this interview with Andreas, Igor announced that he was leaving Sepultura so I never got a chance to ask Andreas his thoughts on Igor's decision, but I did talk with Andreas about touring Australia, the latest killer Sepultura album 'Dante XXI', Working on the Roadrunner United project, his work with Asesino and much more. Time to get back to our 'Roots' with the one and only Andreas Kisser...

Metal Fanatix: First of all, I want to thank you for taking the time out to answer the following questions for all of our readers. As a long-time Sepultura fan I am over the moon to have the opportunity to ask you the following questions mate.

Andreas Kisser: Hi Cameron, no problems

Metal Fanatix: The latest album 'Dante XXI' is everything I have come to love and expect with Sepultura, congratulations on a fantastic job. Looking back at the album now a couple of months on are there anything's you would have changed?

Andreas Kisser: Not at all, I'm very happy with the final result and live the songs are working great.

Metal Fanatix: I was really impressed with this album, I believe it showcases some of the best work you guys have done in years, did you guys approach this album in a different way to some of the albums you have done in the past?

Andreas Kisser: No, I mean all the albums are different, but with this one, it was totally influenced by the book from Dante. It was something different for us, it felt more like doing a soundtrack for a movie.

Metal Fanatix: For years you guys have been putting out fantastic albums from 'Beneath The Remains' to 'Arise' and of course the latest 'Dante XXI'. How do you constantly come up with new fresh sounding material without falling into the trap a lot of other bands do by repeating themselves?

Andreas Kisser: By looking forward, not backwards. We are always trying something new, and the most important thing is that we love what we do.

Metal Fanatix: What equipment did you use on the album?

Andreas Kisser: On Dante I used Fender Strat guitars with double humbucking and floyd rose tremolo bar. Mesa boogie amps, many different pedals, cold beer [Laughs].

Metal Fanatix: Andreas, in a few words, tell us the first thing that comes to mind when I mention the following tracks from 'Dante XXI'

Andreas Kisser:

Repeating the Horror Stupidity: of the human being, not learning with our errors

Crown and Mitter: End of purgatory, still fast but with a feeling of relief

Buried Words: It's a great song to play live, simple and direct.

Dark Wood of Error: Fast and evil, it's the beginning of hell…

Metal Fanatix: Let's talk about your most recent video 'Convicted in Life' there was some amazing make-up effects used in the video which I really enjoyed. Take us through a day on the set of a Sepultura video shoot?

Andreas Kisser: It was only a day to shoot for the band and the rest was done by computers in post production.

Metal Fanatix: For those who haven't seen the video, tell us the story behind it?

Andreas Kisser: It deals with the first part of the trilogy and shows the worst of hell. We wanted to show the shit we make here on earth and to be more responsible on our acts, think a little more about the consequences of what we do…respect!

Metal Fanatix: During the eighties I can remember seeing so many different hard rock and metal videos on our televisions but these days they are few and far between, Being in a rock/metal band these days do you feel it is still important to spend so much money making film clips that don't get anywhere near the airplay they deserve?

Andreas Kisser: It's always important to express your art it doesn't matter where and how, if you do something good it will survive.

Metal Fanatix: Andreas I'd like to talk about life on the road; What's the most ridiculous thing you have ever asked for on a tour rider?

Andreas Kisser: We have never asked for anything stupid, we only ask for the things we really need.

Metal Fanatix: You guys recently completed a very successful European tour, how did the fans react to the new songs?

Andreas Kisser: It was a great tour, one of the best the fans really reacted very well on the new songs.

Metal Fanatix: The first time I got to witness Sepultura live was back in 1994 on the Chaos A.D. tour, a show I still regard as one of the greatest I have seen to date. You guys have done many tours over the years. Is there one tour that stands out above the rest for you?

Andreas Kisser: We did so many tours and shows it's hard to choose one, but that tour it was very good.

Metal Fanatix: You have played Australia on a number of occasions, what memories do you have from your visits here?

Andreas Kisser: I love Australia, it's a beautiful country with great people, we always had great gigs in Australia. Too bad it's so far but we have great friends there…

Metal Fanatix: It's been a few years since your last visit, are there any plans in the works for an Australian tour?

Andreas Kisser: Hopefully by the end of the year we will be back there.

Metal Fanatix: With a catalogue that spans over twenty years, how do you come up with the perfect set-list, you are always going to have fans that will want to hear early songs & the occasional obscure tracks and every band at least two or three new songs are thrown into a set. How do you juggle the set to make everyone happy including yourselves?

Andreas Kisser: We play what we like, it depends on the tour, and it really depends on how long we get to play our set. We have to take many things into consideration when we work on the set.

Metal Fanatix: Do you do anything specific to warm up and prepare for a show?

Andreas Kisser: I drink cold beer and the rest comes later [Laughs].

Metal Fanatix: You have performed with many talented artists over the years. Has these experiences helped to develop the techniques that you are using today?

Andreas Kisser: Of course! I love to play with different musicians from different styles, it's a great school.

Metal Fanatix: Over the years you have shared the stage with so many fantastic bands such as Sacred Reich, Pantera and most recently In Flames just to name a few. Who have you enjoyed touring with the most & can you share a funny story from the tour?

Andreas Kisser: They were all great, we learn a lot playing with them, but the best for me was the tour we did with Ozzy Osbourne in 92 with the reunion of black Sabbath at the end of the tour.

Metal Fanatix: Being a huge soccer fan no doubt you will be glued to the TV over the next few weeks watching the world cup, Australia are to take on Brazil, any predictions?

Andreas Kisser: Well the game already happened and to be honest I expected a lot more from Brazil, but we won, and that's the important thing. I think Australia still have a great chance to qualify, they are playing great so far.

Metal Fanatix: Andreas, being in one of the most influential metal bands of our time, who were you surprised to learn was a fan of the band?

Andreas Kisser: Dave Grohl from Nirvana / Foo Fighters, back in 92 he was using a hat with our tribal "S", we were very happy to see that.

Metal Fanatix: What's the craziest rumor you had ever heard about yourself and or the band?

Andreas Kisser: That I was dead once, that was terrible news for my family, but everything was fine after a phone call.

Metal Fanatix: Being a member of such a successful band I would imagine you get asked some pretty weird questions from time to time. What's the strangest question you have ever been asked?

Andreas Kisser: Oh I don't remember, there have been a few.

Metal Fanatix: Over the last twelve months or so there has been a lot of speculation that Max would be returning to Sepultura and or there would be some kind of reunion tour planned. Can you set the record straight for us! Have there been any talks/meetings taking place where this has been discussed?

Andreas Kisser: Well, I don't talk with max. I haven't spoken with Max since he left the band back in 96. No reunion right now.

Metal Fanatix: Did it ever cross your mind that when you joined Sepultura way back when that all these years later you guys would still be going and influencing kids all over the world?

Andreas Kisser: No, not at all, I always had my dreams and we've conquered so much more than I ever imagined.

Metal Fanatix: If you woke up and decided to stop playing music tomorrow, what would you be doing?

Andreas Kisser: I'll Be Dead!

Metal Fanatix: I believe you are doing some work with Dino Cazares' band Asesino? How did you become involved with this project and what can you tell us about your involvement?

Andreas Kisser: I have known Dino for a long time and we met up again last year on the Roadrunner party. Dino invited me to be a part of the new Asesino album and so I went to Los Angeles to record some solos and extra guitars noises, it was great, really brutal and heavy.

Metal Fanatix: I would like to ask you about the Roadrunner United project. Working with so many iconic musicians must have been a blast.

Andreas Kisser: Yes it was fantastic, it was a lot of work and I saw some people that I hadn't seen for a long time, it was a blast. Besides the amount of musician's participating everything went smooth.

Metal Fanatix: Can you see yourself working on something like that again in the future and maybe taking it a step further doing a full scale tour?

Andreas Kisser: Yes, no doubt! It was a great heavy metal circus, hopefully they put something like that together.

Metal Fanatix: The Roadrunner album is a great example of some of the amazing talent the metal industry has produced, showcasing both old and new artists. In your honest opinion what do you think about the direction that hard rock & heavy metal music has taken over the last few years?

Andreas Kisser: This style of music can be mixed with so many different styles and that's why is still here!

Metal Fanatix: After all these years in the business and tremendous success what goals have you set for yourself these days?

Andreas Kisser: I have a solo album that I'm working right now and hopefully it will be ready to release next year. It's a very different music to what I do in Sepultura and it will be a new challenge in my career.

Metal Fanatix: No doubt you guys have a mountain of unreleased tracks covers and demos, are there any plans in the works to release a box set anytime soon?

Andreas Kisser: Oh I don't know! We've had two different labels in our history and that's kind of difficult to deal with, but let's see what happens in the future.

Metal Fanatix: I am a huge fan of many of the songs you guys have covered over the years, 'Symptom Of The Universe' to my personal favorite 'Orgasmatron'. Is there a song you have always wanted to cover but just haven't gotten around to doing?

Andreas Kisser: There are many bands that I love, and so many songs I never tried to do versions of. We have done a lot of covers already, from hardcore to metal to reggae, anything is possible.

Metal Fanatix: Of all the albums you have played on in the past, which is your favorite to listen to, is it even possible to narrow it down to just one?

Andreas Kisser: No, all of them are very important to me as a player and as a person.

Metal Fanatix: I know that some of you guys are into very different styles of music to what you play listening to U2, Johnny Cash & The Highwaymen among others. Tell us something about the other guys in the band that we may not know!

Andreas Kisser: We like everything, music is music to us.

Metal Fanatix: Which record/song would define Andreas Kisser to a complete stranger?

Andreas Kisser: I think Roots is the album I did a lot of different stuff, from heavy sounds and riffs to acoustic experiences as solo and with the Brazilian Indian tribe.

Metal Fanatix: There has been so many highlights in your career, what would you say have been your greatest achievements to date?

Andreas Kisser: To still be here talking about Sepultura, alive and well.

Metal Fanatix: Mate, what advice would you give to up and coming rock/metal bands?

Andreas Kisser: Play what you like and fuck the rest, play it loud!

Metal Fanatix: Andreas thank you so much again for your time today, there is so much more I would love to speak to you about but I know you guys are very busy. Hopefully we will see you back in Australia very soon. Do you have any last words for our readers?

Andreas Kisser: Thank you all, I wish we could talk on the phone because to write the answers is a pain [laughs]. Hopefully we will be in Australia soon Thanks for everything.

Grab your copy of Sepultura's latest album 'Dante XXI' where all killer metal albums are sold.

To keep up with all the latest Sepultura and Andreas related news check out the following websites: - Official Sepultura Site - Sepultura MySpace Site - Dedicated to 40 years of hard rock & metal music

© Cameron Edney August, October 2006 Not to be re-printed in any form without written permission.