KING PARROT Phil’s Place


Dead Set, the sophomore album from Melbourne thrashers King Parrot, reveals the fruits of two long and interesting years on the road. Bassist Wayne ‘Slatts’ Slattery chats to JESSICA WILLOUGHBY ahead of their shows at the Prince Of Wales, Bunbury, on Friday, June 5, and Amplifier on Saturday, June 6.

Phil Anselmo is synonymous with the journey of discovery that most metalheads go through in their salad days. 

Yet to meet someone who doesn’t profess a deep affection for Anselmo’s former outfit, Pantera, in their formative years – the reach of this vocalist’s legacy has helped him build a career filled with great music as frontman of Down and head of Housecore Records. So what if he wanted to record your band’s next album?

“14-year-old Slatts definitely got a boner,” King Parrot bassist Wayne ‘Slatts’ Slattery jokes about the humbling experience. The five-piece spent time recording their sophomore LP, Dead Set, at Anselmo’s property is Louisiana recently. After striking up a friendship, both bands joined forces to tour the US last year – but King Parrot never imagined they would be working with one of their idols shortly after.

“The last year-and-a-half has been fucking amazing,” Slatts tells X-Press. “Being on tour with Down was unbelievable and the people that we met. Jello Biafra (ex-Dead Kennedys, Guantanamo School Of Medicine) even got up onstage at one point too. Even just writing this new album, we experienced things we’ve never done before. We had a month off in America because it was too expensive to fly back to Australia and then have to come back for the next tour. So we wrote the album in a bar in Vermont – that was a highlight. Then recording the album in swampland in Louisiana at Phil’s place.

“The idea of Phil producing the album was kind of daunting for me personally. He’s kind of the biggest name in metal and I kept thinking ‘…what if it doesn’t work?’. After having time with him and his Housecore engineers, we got into it big time – they were definitely on our wave-length. It was a great experience.”

The environment definitely rubbed off on the five-piece. Known for their short-fast numbers, they took the chance to write a few longer tracks on this release. Slatts says Home Is Where The Gutter Is, the debut music video from the album, is a good representation of just how intense this album gets – with a dash of the signature King Parrot humour thrown in for measure. The clip follows a day in the life of a homeless war veteran who gets his revenge on those who have mistreated him.

“We just put out the film clip for Home Is Where The Gutter Is and I think the theme of that is it doesn’t matter if you’re homeless or a businessman, people still get fucked up and can be arseholes,” he says. “Youngy (Matthew Young; vocals) and the rest of us, have all been through the drug and alcohol taking years. The alcohol years never stopped, from my perspective. We know how shit things can get. I think this song shows how far we push ourselves in our songwriting, and the things we consider. We reject, we don’t comply.”