DEATH BREATH featuring PONTIFF BENFUNK THE THUGNIFICANT – ‘Nixon’s Revenge’ ["Re-fleshed - Volume 6"]

“What do you get if you combine Toe To Toe, A.C, Boredoms and GN’R, plus the sounds of squeaking drills?
Probably horrible shite, and that’s exactly what Death Breath was.”

- Some guy, 1999


DEATH BREATH was a noise/punk band formed 1995 and were together until around 1999.
Their debut recording,
“The Stench of Absolute Shit” was a nasty little recording of improvised noise/punk from bass, drums & vocals.
‘Songs’ consisting of blast beats, punk beats, constant rumbling bass, annoying riffs & stupid, animal-like vocals along with a few childish samples.
After about a year, the trio morphed into
Head Stomper, which was just as horrible – just with more members to add to the noise.
Both bands actually laid the foundations of what would go on to become Chewed Food, which showcased Scotty’s crazy, yet cheekily clever lyrics and improvised vocal madness.


PONTIFF BENFUNK THE THUGNIFICANT aka Battle Pope
aka Barry Hall
aka Tha Thugarious
aka Mad Skrilla, is known to many to be the greatest vocalist of all time, whether alive or dead. A legend of insurmountable party.
Most well known for his contributions to the phallic holocaust known as
Battle Pope, where he would regularly flex not only his vocal chords but his tremendously well sculpted body and intense festive hammer rage.

Ben is also the vocalist of a new project by the name of Jackals, (featuring members of Serious Beak, Adrift For Days and Snakes Get Bad Press). They’ve been described as “drone/punk” and have a demo coming soon!

09 – Death Breath featuring Pontiff Benfunk the Thugnificant – ‘Nixon’s Revenge’ (Squeaky Drill mix)

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10 – Death Breath featuring Pontiff Benfunk the Thugnificant – ‘Nixon’s Revenge’
(Year of The Barry mix)


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the original song from ‘Fleisch’

09. DEATH BREATH featuring PONTIFF BENFUNK THE THUGNIFICANT
- Nixon’s Revenge (Squeaky Drill mix)
Produced and performed by Death Breath (Andrew Mortensen) with B.R.U and Scott McCotter.
Recorded at “Stoned Studios” (AM Frequencies) by Morto (Andrew Mortensen), September “1995″ (2011).
Mixed at “Bannerman Studios” (AM Frequencies) by Morto (Andrew Mortensen),
June “1996″ (2013).

10. DEATH BREATH featuring PONTIFF BENFUNK THE THUGNIFICANT
- Nixon’s Revenge (Year of The Barry mix)
Produced and performed by Death Breath (Andrew Mortensen) with B.R.U.
Recorded September 2011 and mixed June 2013 at at AM Frequencies by
Andrew Mortensen

All vocals recorded at Eugene’s Grindhaus by Lachlan Dale, May 2013
Scott McCotter samples recorded at Stoned Studios circa 1996

Original music by Andrew Mortensen
Lyrics written by Pontiff Benfunk the Thugnificant
© 2013 Andrew Mortensen / B.R.U

The song is obviously inspired by Richard Nixon. After watching the Oliver Stone film ‘Nixon’ with the Nefarious Carb Loada, I had the thought of Nixon coming back as a zombie and killing hippies – that was the starting point. Would have to pay some cred to Futurama and their Robot Nixon character also, this definitely had a piece to play – so much so that some of the lines in the song are pretty much direct quotes of the character in the show. - Pontiff Benfunk the Thugnificant, June 2013

Death Breath - The Stench of Absolute Shit (1995)

Creating these re-versions was so much fun!! The idea basically came about while listening to a lot of grind, d-beat, hardcore when thinking of re-versions that could work.
After I got the idea, I laid down some rough guitars. So rough in fact, that it brought to mind the playing in my first band Death Breath. Looking at the song closer, I realised that with the ideas played much faster, and with a punk vibe, it really did start to sound like a song I would have written for Death Breath back in 1995.
I then got the idea of making two versions; one to sound like it was recorded in Scotty’s garage (Stoned Studios) on a tape player and one to sound like what maybe Death Breath would have been if we were still around today and stuck at it.

After I came up with the idea of making the track to be under the moniker of Death Breath, I asked original member Ben Burns to be involved. I also wanted to do a kind of homage to member Scott McCotter who had passed away not long after I began recording the track. Ben was really excited and began working on lyrics & ideas. But unfortunately Burnsy had to pull out due to technical issues as well as the birth of his second son.
I kept working on the tracks trying to think of who would be great for the track and also have the vibe of what Death Breath used to do.
Then it came to me – Ben from Battle Pope! He would be perfect!
I thought about how had we been in High School together, we probably would have started a band similar to the tracks I was creating, so it seemed right. I asked Burnsy if he was fine with having Ben Unicomb do the vocals, and he was fine – and excited & honoured, as Burns is a HUGE Battle Pope fan.
So I hit up Ben and he did his thing, and it was perfect! The vibe, execution and the lyrical ideas really did suit what Burnsy, Scotty and myself used to blast out back in 1995. Even having the song about Nixon was perfect, as we had an ongoing-inside joke amongst our group of mates about Richard Nixon.


Squeaky Drill mix
I’m really happy with how this version turned out, and it’s quite uncanny how it actually sounds like our old recordings from Scott’s place.
To create this I did a few little things to emulate the space, equipment and technical abilities we had in 1995.

  • Firstly, I programmed the drums to be how Scott might play them. He used to play pretty simple, then do some fast, technical fills, so I tried to re-create his style.
  • I then hunted for samples of the same kits Scott had, which was a Pearl with a few Zildjian and Sabian cymbals.
  • Only used the room mics of the drum samples, as we obviously only used the tape player to record in 1995, so it would only pic up the room sounds.
  • Then I played the guitar parts to be loose and also did them in 1 take, and kept any mistakes in – we couldn’t edit out mistakes on the tape player we had.
  • Put the guitars and bass through similar cheap amp sims/impulses – matching close to the amps we had, which were small 10″ and 12″ practice amps with distortion pedals.
  • Put Ben’s vocals through the same the same 10-inch amp speaker impulse as the guitars, as that’s what we did at our jams.
  • Sent all the tracks through an impulse response of a small garage/basement – it gave a very similar room sound to that of Scott’s garage.
  • Sent everything through a bus with extra saturation & lo-fi filters.
  • Added samples of Scotty and his drills to make it all the more Death Breath and authentic.
  • Added cassette tape error sounds, tape player samples, hiss as well as cassette tape wobble effects to the main output, making it sound like it was recorded on our old cassette players.

  • Year of The Barry mix
    Quite happy how this turned out in the end too.
    Basically added more guitars, made the drumming more complicated and utilised multiple takes of Ben’s vocals to create the gang-style backing vocals, as well as trying hi-fi mixing techniques etc.
    I was aiming for an early-2000 era Napalm Death sound, maybe like the sound of “Order of the Leech”. I probably didn’t get close to that sound, but I’m happy none-the-less with how it came out.

    So basically pretty happy with how this whole dual re-version turned out. The song suited the style and it was fun and a challenge to do.


    Mentor, you truly are a king among men

    Big thanks have to go to Ben and Lachlan Dale for taking the time to write and record Ben’s vocals.
    Also thanks to Tom S van Iersel for his tech tips with “Year of The Barry mix”.
    Also thanks to old pals for the great times making horrible noise in that garage:
    Scott McCotter (R.I.P), Ben Burns, Rhys Turner, Adam Pringle, Murray Turner, Ryan Coates, Glenn Suter and Matt Falone for introducing us to ‘Mentor‘.
    - Andrew Mortensen, July 2013

    This entry was posted in experimental, Grindcore, Metal, Noise, Punk, Remixes, Rock, Volume 6 and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

    One Response to DEATH BREATH featuring PONTIFF BENFUNK THE THUGNIFICANT – ‘Nixon’s Revenge’ ["Re-fleshed - Volume 6"]

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