Coroner : we agreed to meet up in a year’s time…

Precisely one year ago, Hellfest festival goers discovered the Coroner banner announcing that the band would be reforming for the 2011 edition of the festival. In fact we had the opportunity to speak with guitarist of the trio, Tommy Vetterli, who still seemed quite sceptic about the future of the band. He admitted having doubts about whether the band would be up to the challenge, even considering withdrawing if they were unsure of themselves, making an album was also not on their mind, etc.

A year later, on the 19th of June 2011, Coroner made it to the stage and performed an outstanding show for the Hellfest crowd. According to this, we simply had to speak with Tommy again in order to find out about his outlook today, see what future perspectives Coroner are considering and about many other things.

Here is the report of our conversation :

Radio Metal : How are you doing today?

Tommy Vetterli (guitar) : Pretty tiered! I didn’t get a lot of sleep. I went to sleep at around 6 o’clock.

6 in the morning!

Yeah, after the show, you have to calm down and relax a little bit.

Are you the kind of guy who doesn’t need a lot of sleep?

Actually I do but we had an appointment for the interview so I had to be here anyway. (laughs)

(About a new album)  » I actually want to do it but the other guys don’t want to do an album for now. I’ll have to try to convince them. I can’t do this without them. »

Last night, the show you did with Coroner was absolutely brilliant. As a matter of fact I wasn’t expecting such a great show since, last year when we met, you didn’t seem to be much confident in the band, partly because Ron and Marky didn’t play for many years. You even confessed that if you weren’t confident enough you wouldn’t play those shows. So I guess you were confident in the end…

Yes and it was a lot of work to get there. You never know after fifteen years and like you said they haven’t been playing for ten years or something. We had to find out if it’s possible or not. But after the first rehearsal we did together it was clear that we could get there. We found out that it was going to be possible. So we took half a year to practice for the shows. Actually the last show we played before the Hellfest, in Maryland Deathfest, we played for like ninety minutes. There are a lot more songs but we could play only for one hour last night.

How does it feel to be back on stage with Coroner?

It’s great!

Do you feel like fifteens years younger?

I wouldn’t say that! (laughs) No, but it’s just amazing. It’s amazing how the crowd react, the fact that, after all these years, they are still into that music.

Actually the music feels like it hasn’t aged at all!

I don’t know. Maybe it’s a little bit timeless because we never followed trends. We just did what we liked and it was never trendy.

And now that you did a few concerts, do you want to do more?

We’ll see. There are no plans. Things are moving slowly forward. We have to wait and see. It depends on the mood, on how things are going. The plan is to play all those shows now. We’ll play in Thun, in Switzerland, next month, we’re going to play Bloodstock festival in England. We’re also going to do the 70000 Tons Of Metal, on a boat. I’m really looking forward to that. The Sonisphere festival asked us too but we declined because they only wanted us to play a short set at like 4 in the afternoon.

You know, there are a lot of expectations from the fans, now that they have seen Coroner live…

They want an album!

Absolutely! I met a few fans after your show and they were all on their knees, so blown away by what they saw and they were like “man, they got a do an album after that!”

Yeah, like I said before there are no plans. We might write one song or two and record and produce them. I actually want to do it but the other guys don’t want to do an album for now. I’ll have to try to convince them. I can’t do this without them. Besides, we’re working on a DVD with live stuff, new and old, interviews, etc. Then, yeah, we’ll see.

How would a new Coroner song sound like today?

Good question! (laughs) I don’t know. I have to sit down and try some riffs. I didn’t record stuff but there are some riffs and ideas in my head for sure. But I don’t have the whole picture yet.

(About Celtic Frost) « it was good to see that a band from Switzerland could have success in other countries. Marky and I had the opportunity to go to America with them as roadies. […] It was a good opportunity to go there and give away our demo. »

And did you plan to record a show to release a live album?

Yes. We recorded last night. Actually we record all the shows that we play and then we’ll compile them into a live album.

Do you have a label yet that is interested in releasing Coroner material?

There are few labels interested but we haven’t signed yet.

Yesterday there was Kreator playing, did you and Mille meet each other?

Yeah, of course…

Didn’t he ask you to play a song with Kreator, from Endorama or Outcast?

No because it would have been difficult without rehearsing. I would have had to learn the songs again and it takes time. They were good, they played a great show. The crowd was really into it.

Are you two still friends?

Yes we’re still friend!

Because, last time we met you said something really strange about the time you were in Kreator. You said that Mille didn’t like metal…

Yeah, maybe I didn’t say that correctly. You know, I don’t listen to metal all day. I listen to a lot of different music as well. I think that’s normal. So, no, we’re still good friends and it was great to see the guys last night.

Another coincidence about last night is that while you were playing with Coroner, Tom Warrior from Celtic Frost who sang on Coroner’s first demo was playing at the same time with his band Triptykon…

Yes, it was a shame that we played at the same time. I really wanted to see them. But we’re going to play at the Bloodstock festival together with them. I’ll definitely check them out.

What was his impact on the beginning of Coroner’s career?

The main thing for me was that it was good to see that a band from Switzerland could have success in other countries. Marky and I had the opportunity to go to America with them as roadies. A lot of people think we were roadies and then we created the band. That’s not true, the band was here before. We just did that one time actually. But for us it was a good opportunity to go there and give away our demo.

But at one point in the beginning of your career, did you ask Tom to definitely join the band?

Oh, I don’t remember! It was a long time ago. We couldn’t find a singer and Tom offered us to sing on the demo. But after that we still couldn’t find a singer. So, that’s why Ron decided to start singing. (laughs)

Was he sure about his singing abilities?

No! He just started singing. He never sang before! He was like “ok we can’t find a singer. I’ll sing.” And he did well! (laughs)

« Sometimes in my career I get a little bit bored from just playing guitar. Because, music is not just guitar. »

What is the future for you now?

I have my studio, New Sound Studios. I produce a lot of bands. I’m going to produce the next Eluvetie album. Right now I’m working on the next 69 Chambers albums. It’s going to come out great…

You’re wife Nina told me that it was going to be less alternative and more metal…

Yes, that’s true. It’s way heavier.

Did you influence it?

No, not at all! But actually, now I’m in the band, since a week. (laughs) I had to prove first for half a year! But no, it’s not my influence. Nina writes all the songs, the lyrics and everything. She’s also playing all the guitars in the studio as well. I just play some overdub guitars, leads and solos.

And are you having a good time working in your studio?

Actually I’m doing that job for more than twenty years. But I’ve been working at New Sound Studios for eight years and four years ago I had the opportunity to buy it. And it’s a perfect job. You know, sometimes in my career I get a little bit bored from just playing guitar. Because, music is not just guitar.

You need to get your hands on every aspect of music…

Yes, totally.

And have you ever done any teaching?

I did a lot of teaching. I did that all my life actually. I have mostly stopped now, because I don’t have time. I only have a few students now, really good student, who just come every once a month or so to learn some new things.

Interview conducted the 20th of june 2011
Transcription: Chloé’

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