American Melodic Death Metal on the Rise: Necrofier’s Perspective from Christian Larson (Guitars)(Vocals)

From Double Pedals to Dynamic Texture: Necrofier on Their Musical Approach...

Interview by: Chris Rugowski


As I was listening to Necrofier I was really getting into it, the whole package. Sometimes with metal there’s this major emphasis on the double pedal but yours was much different. I appreciated the fact that there was texture to your music.

A: Thanks. Yeah, I get what you’re saying. There’s a ton of them where I feel like the entire song will be blasting. I feel like we have a lot more dynamic style changes throughout. There’s more in there than just blasting for 45 minutes for the album.

What went into writing the new album musically speaking from your previous album to the new album? Was there any musical shift?

It’s definitely along the same lines. This one had a little bit more of a traditional heavy metal influence on especially the track “Forbidden Light of the Black Moon”, things like that. There’s a little bit more guitar work on this record in certain parts. But mostly, I’d say it kind of sits at the core of everything we know and how we sound.

How was it recording with Joel Hamilton? (Hamilton is a grammy nominated American record producer and audio engineer)

I felt like Joel really brought out the best in us, and I would say he made us play better. He had good ideas. We were really comfortable working with him. It honestly just kind of felt like somebody else in the band hanging out. We’d come up with an idea and record it like he’d be like, “Okay, cool. I’ve already got it.” Let’s try and do this and do that.


Especially when the producer feels like a member of the band. It can really add a little bit of life to the album that wasn’t there or that could have been missed.

One hundred percent. When the producer’s feeling it, everyone’s feeling it. It’s just an extra thing that pushes you. And if it’s working together then it’s great. It was really good with Joel. I have nothing bad to say about it, period. It was a great experience.

Do you have any new music in the works?

We started playing some stuff together recently. I think I could possibly say we may start recording demos and such sometime later this summer. We’re still putting emphasis on “Burning Shadows”. The next record probably won’t be out until 2025.

How’d you come up with the band name?

We threw a bunch of different kinds of things together. It’s like “Death Fire”, but we changed the order of I and E to get a differentiated point where it’s more like a personification of death, so then we went with Necrofier as one word.

Being an American Melodic Death Metal band is unique, let’s talk about that.

There’s starting to be better bands coming from America. But traditionally compared to Europe it’s like night and day differences.

That’s certainly a good point, I’ve found Europeans love their metal, whether it’s melodic or not. That’s not to say people don’t love it in America. However, here there’s certainly a more niche underground movement. How does it feel to be on the precipice of a movement?

It feels really good especially as it seems to be growing, black metal from America in general that is. In America there seems to be shows with kids in their 20s, even late teens – all ages shows really – that are coming in full corpse paint, just really excited about the show. They’re like, “We love you guys. We’re so excited! You guys actually come to our town!” And they want a bunch of pictures and things like that.


That’s really cool, especially when they’re younger.

Yeah, agreed. There hasn’t been a new generation in this vein of heavy metal, traditional black metal, and melodic black metal in about 10-15 years from what I’ve seen. It’s been about that long since I’ve seen handfuls of younger people get into this.

How do you feel about streaming, and the internet, do you feel like that’s made things easier?

It definitely makes it easier for people to access music. People have more exposure to music, however it’s kind of a double edged sword of good and bad.

I heard you’re a really big gear head. Talk me through the guitars you’re using.

Currently I play ESP. I use the E-II series Flying V. I just started with them a couple years ago. I really love it. It works perfectly. I have a bunch of old Gibson’s, but those don’t leave the house anymore.

What about your pedals?

I have way too many pedals at this point. Especially in the reverb and delay area. I have almost everything by Michael Klein. He does custom only orders through his Instagram ( Especially a couple different things like Lonely Ghost and Blood Ritual, which are basically like a chorus. One of them’s like a chorus, reverb and boost. The other one’s like a chorus, delay, boost, and for leads it’s perfect.

I also like Mr. Black a bunch. And also, my friend in Texas has a company called IdiotBox.

I have a laundry list of other different pedals at my house. I think I have at least 100 pedals just hanging out.

What is your usual set up for a show?

So, that’s the thing, I usually keep most of my pedals for the studio.

For tour, generally, I have one of those single row Pedaltrain’s so I can only have arond five pedals on it at a time. There’s no reason for me to have more, I’m not in Kylesa or some kind of crazy experimental band. I don’t need to have all of that. Plus there’s more things to go wrong with all of that, and I’m not going to use them. So usually I cut it down, and I only have X amount of pedals on it.

As a guitarist, and pedal enthusiast, I agree. I also think it kind of forces you to stay within a reproducible quality on a nightly basis.

For sure. I mean especially live you don’t need to mess with that much stuff, especially with the style we play. Boost for leads. I’ve got some reverb running constantly. I’ve got another extra reverb for something. It’s basically something like that.

I’ve got six pedals I keep on my Pedaltrain, a tuner, one reverb, a delay, two overdrives, and a flange if needed.


Yeah, keeping it simple like that’s the way to go live. In the studio you can go crazy, like six pedals running for the lead, but creating some super particular sound like that for our live show isn’t necessary.

Do you get into amp modeling?

I don’t really mess with the amp models too much. I’m a big Marshall guy, I’ve been playing the JCM2000 a bunch, the Silver Jubilee is my favorite Marshall ever made. I broke down and bought a re-issue, and I still use it live.

Amp modeling has its purpose. They’ve gotten really good for recording, but I feel like mixing them with the real thing is key. Don’t get me wrong I’ve done it for shows that you have to fly out to do and you can’t have your rig with you. It’s something in that vein, where you can run it through a head and still run through a cab on stage. I feel like it’s worth trying.

What’s your favorite Overdrive pedal?

Michael Klein makes this one called Dybbuk, and that’s probably the best overdrive I’ve ever heard.

Do you have any big plans for 2024?

We have the Decibel Tour for the current record that goes through March 18, 2024.

Then after the Decibel tour I do a festival in Houston, Hell’s Heroes.

This Spring is super packed, we’ve got Milwaukee Metal fest of course too, then trying to sort out the rest of the year. So far 2024 is off to a bang.

What is Hell’s Heroes, and how did that start?

This is the sixth year of the festival. It started smaller and kind of naturally grew over the years. It’s been nice, people really love it. I tried to put on something that I would like, band wise and experience wise for both bands and festival goers. This year’s lineup is more than ever, it’s going to be the biggest one to date.


Check out the Facebook page to learn more, It’s a has traditional heavy metal bands like Sodom, Queensrÿche, Candlemass, Rotting Christ – a whole bunch of big names. The festival is March 21-23rd at White Oak Music Hall in Houston.

Here is the TicketMaster link for the event,


The Decibel Magazine Tour 2024 dates:
Feb 21, 2024: Roseville, CA – Goldfield Trading Post
Feb 22, 2024: Oakland, CA – Thee Stork Club
Feb 23, 2024: Los Angeles, CA – Echoplex
Feb 24, 2024: San Diego, CA – Brick by Brick
Feb 25, 2024: Mesa, AZ – The Nile
Feb 27, 2024: Austin, TX -Empire Control Room
Feb 28, 2024: Dallas, TX – Trees
Mar 1, 2024: Atlanta, GA – The Masquerade
Mar 2, 2024: Orlando, FL – The Abbey
Mar 3, 2024: Miami, FL – Gramps
Mar 5, 2024: Greensboro, NC – Hangar 1819
Mar 6, 2024: Baltimore, MD – Baltimore Soundstage
Mar 8, 2024: Philadelphia, PA – Underground Arts
Mar 9, 2024: Brooklyn, NY – Brooklyn Monarch
Mar 10, 2024: Boston, MA – The Middle East
Mar 12, 2024: Pittsburgh, PA – Preserving Underground
Mar 13, 2024: Cleveland, OH – Grog Shop
Mar 14, 2024: Detroit, MI – Magic Stick
Mar 15, 2024: Chicago, IL – Reggies
Mar 16, 2024: St. Louis, MO – Red Flag
Mar 17, 2024: Lawrence, KS – The Bottleneck
Mar 18, 2024: Denver, CO – HQ

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Photo Credit: Chris Rugowski

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