A Conversation with Frank Mullen of Suffocation

Over the past 30 years legendary front man Frank Mullen has led death metal pioneers Suffocation on a brutal path.  Early in 2018 Frank announced he would be retiring from the band after one last "Farewell Frank Tour". That US tour came to an end in December and, in a MisplacedStraws.com exclusive conversation, Mullen looks back over his career with the band he started in 1988 and gives his exit interview.

Please listen below to the exclusive  MisplacedStraws.com Conversation with Frank Mullen:

Press Play for the Frank Mullen Exit Interview

On his last NYC show with Suffocation - I came real close to tears, very emotional because having done this for 30 years pretty much and being from Long Island, seeing (the fans) one last time with this band I started 30 years ago was very emotional night. 1:20

On deciding to step away - I really felt that I was ok with everything I've accomplished with this band and I felt that I wanted the band to move forward as a group that doesn't have to (wonder) if Frank is going to do this or not do this, I felt that this is the right time to let the band continue to thrive without me bouncing everywhere. 3:40

When I say farewell, I mean farewell. I'm not coming back, I'm not gonna do a Farewell Frank Tour 36. 4:40

On his early influences - I knew the direction I wanted to go, I was listening to Slayer, Cannibal Corpse. Morbid Angel, Deicide, it was a really good time. 6:20

On creating the Suffocation sound - We knew we didn't want to sound like the bands that were already established. We had the technical, but we also wanted the heavy breakdowns associated with hardcore and thrash, the slam parts, the mosh parts. 8:40

I wanted to sing with the low, guttural real heavy and later on I wanted to polish it where I could remain legible while maintaining the heavy, low end vocals.  I felt the low end with the music was like a "punch-yourself-in-the-face" type of thing 9:15

On the impact of Effigy of the Forgotten - Those songs are just timeless. They are still so heavy to this day. 10:30

Those songs to me, the beginning ones, are usually the best one you pretty much write your entire life. 11:10

On disbanding in 1998 - It was a time where the scene was really taking a dive, fans weren't coming out to the shows as much, it's just had a feeling that it needed a reset. 15:40

On reforming in 2002 - I felt that I didn't do enough the first time around...I want one more shot at this and see where it can go. 16:30

On the possibility of farewell shows in Europe or Asia - Nothing is set fully in stone, there's a possibility of going to Japan for a few shows...I would like to do some European festivals. 21:30

On the "dream" Suffocation line-up - It would have to be me, Terrence (Hobbs), Doug Cerrito, Mike Smith because that's where it started, I'd have to bring out the two bass players, Chris (Richards) and Derek (Boyer).  I'd also be cool playing with all Suffocation members as one big grand band. 23:00

On the future - I still plan on getting together with different people I met in the industry...record a song here or there...do some back vocals on projects. Suffocation albums going forward will be with Ricky (Meyers) on vocals. 26:00

On the defining Frank Mullin Suffocation song - I'd have to say Pierced From Within. 28:00


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