The new album 'Slow Dissolve' and performing as a two piece band...
Haug: The last couple of Contrive albums, even the last one The Eternal Dialogue we did sort of introduce some backing keys and I was triggering samples from pads and stuff like that anyways. So, we just felt it was the natural step when Tim (Stahlmann) couldn't commit any further, Paul (Haug) and I sort of were at that crossroad of "do we just find someone else?" and even that in itself is always difficult because you've gotta work around someone schedule and life and it's a lot of work being in a band people don't realize and yeah I just said to him "look, there's no taboos in music today, anything can work if you give it a go" I figured we are already running backing keys so that eliminates a keyboard player, I said "why don't we just use Tim's bass tracks?" and run those. Obviously you've gotta make sure you play in time with them otherwise it can be a train-wreck, that in itself is probably a lot more difficult the way we're doing it now than it would having a live bass player. So he was a little apprehensive at the start, but I said look "leave the tech stuff to me" I've been running all that stuff for awhile. Once we sort of got it running and ready we just didn't think twice, then we sort of said "let's make this a visual angle as well" and now we're playing side-by-side instead of having a drummer up the back on a riser and having the singer block the drummers view and all that sort of stuff. We're literally playing side-by-side with me a angled a little bit on the left so I can see Paul. So instead of me staring at the audience from the stage and then turning my neck 90 degrees to stare at Paul. We're mixing things up, it's got a few people intrigued which is cool, too us it's just another step-up musically, we just don't have a bass player but we're still running Tim's bass tracks and so far so good.
On how Paul Haug ended up singing "Dead Skin Mask" with Slayer...
Haug: At the gig I was on the balcony with Paul and Slayer came out and they were two or three songs in and I was like "why isn't Tom (Araya) singing?", then he got on the mic and his voice was shot, he literally couldn't even speak. He was literally telling people to come on stage, "hey you wanna sing?", he was sorta pointing too his throat and to the mic. Nobody did, then I was like "Paul, go up!" and he was like "oh I don't know..." and we had friends there that had access passes so all had to do was walk out the balcony. He umm'd and arhhd and said "I don't know. Then he walked off, and I thought he could do it so well. I was with a mate at the time as well and he pointed and said "look there's Paul", and I said "where?", "He's on the side of the stage talking to Araya" and I was like "no way!". Out comes the old phone, whatever phone I had and Tom let him come up and sing and then bang! "Dead Skin Mask". The original Slayer, you can't top that you know. Paul has a running joke he says "I'm the front man for Contrive and the ex-Slayer vocalist" just for a gag. That was magical, I mean that just doesn't happen, I don't think anyone has ever done that, played with Slayer, got up and sung with them. People are like "you just don't do that, it's Slayer" but watching that video and Tom was there laughing and Jeff Hannerman was there, he has obviously since then passed on. It was just Metal history right there and never to be repeated you know, so it was just yeah... magic.
Listen to the full interview below. Hear What Andrew Haug has to say about being featured on the John Saffron's Music Jamboree on SBS and his thoughts on the current state of Heavy Metal!
Check out the awesome music video for the new song "Connect-Dead"
Click the album art for a link purchase a physical copy of the new album Slow Disolve. It's also available on Spotify, iTunes, YouTube etc..