Wednesday 13: Condolences, serial killers and movie soundtracks

Wednesday 13

Horror punk and grave-robbing aficionado Wednesday 13 is releasing his seventh studio album Condolences on June 2, via Nuclear Blast. A pitch black romp through the mind of the slasher-loving Murderdoll, it draws on everything from serial killers to necrophilia, with loads of classic Wednesday wit thrown in for good measure.

We caught up the man himself for a quick chat about murder, John Carpenter and the curse of 2016. As you do.

Why have you named your new album Condolences?

“It came from observing something that seems to be happening more and more over the past couple of years. Celebrities and musicians are falling one by one; Bowie, Lemmy, Prince, then it was actors. I kept seeing the word ‘condolences’ everywhere I turned, and I felt like that was a really powerful, dark word. You know, it just means death. I thought it was one really cool word that said a lot. I wrote it down in my notebook for song titles and now here we are.”

A number of songs on the new album are inspired by serial killers. Which one of these people interests you the most?

“I grew up reading all these books and watching all these movies and documentaries, but I guess I’m most fascinated and know most about Richard Ramirez or John Wayne Gacy. I have one of John Wayne Gacy’s drawings from prison, I used to have like ten of them but now I’ve only got one left. It’s still one of the creepiest things that I own. It’s called The Sex Skull; it’s a skull made of naked ladies and all their bodies form the skull.

“I heard there’s only a few of them, it’s hard to count them because the victims’ families buy these things and destroy them, so it’s hard to know how many there are, but this is one of the more famous ones. I have that one and I know Marilyn Manson has one of his paintings of Snow White And The Seven Dwarves, which is way cooler than the one I have.”

Condolences brings together your two passions for campy horror and really dark imagery. But what scares you?

“I grew up watching horror movies and was obsessed with all that stuff. I still like horror movies a lot but I’ve got older. It’s like horror movies aren’t scary any more, at least not to me, so for me reading books about serial killers, it’s true horror and stuff. That’s terrifying because someone really did that, I find that way scarier than the new Nightmare On Elm Street franchise.”

Do you miss when rock ‘n’ roll was considered scary?

“It doesn’t seem as dangerous as it used to be, people don’t seem to be scared. Whenever I make a record I always keep that in mind, I think about the parent out there that’s going to pick up their kid’s record and go ‘Why do you have this?!’ I always keep that spirit there. If your parents hate it, it’s gotta be good.”

If you could go back and re-soundtrack a horror movie, which one would it be?

“Any of the old John Carpenter stuff like They Live and Halloween, I’m obsessed with that sounding stuff. I’m love that TV show Stranger Things, that soundtrack is in the same spirit as those movies. If I could do any of the old John Carpenter stuff that would be great.

“I would eventually like to get into doing soundtracks for movies because I’m obsessed with that– all I do is sit around watching them. I think it’s in the future, I’m starting to meet a lot more people involved in movies, I’m getting more into that world. I tell people all the time that as far as doing soundtracks, it involves being at home for a long time, and I hate not being on tour. I love being on tour which is why I tour so much. When I decide I want to sit at home for a while, that’s when I’ll start working on movie ideas, but for now I just want to play.”

Wednesday 13’s new album Condolences is out June 2 via Nuclear Blast, and is available to order now.

Wednesday 13 - Condolences album review

Wednesday 13 answers your questions

Luke Morton joined Metal Hammer as Online Editor in 2014, having previously worked as News Editor at popular (but now sadly defunct) alternative lifestyle magazine, Front. As well as helming the Metal Hammer website for the four years that followed, Luke also helped relaunch the Metal Hammer podcast in early 2018, producing, scripting and presenting the relaunched show during its early days. He also wrote regular features for the magazine, including a 2018 cover feature for his very favourite band in the world, Slipknot, discussing their turbulent 2008 album, All Hope Is Gone.