On Friday, Feb. 12th, Audiotopsy and Drowning Pool will play at the Diesel Concert Lounge in Chesterfield, MI. Audiotopsy is almost Frankenstein-like, being a supergroup with monstrous riffs that commands attention: Skrape lead singer Billy Keeton joined forces with Mudvayne and Hellyeah guitarist Greg Tribett, bass player Perry Stern and Mudvayne drummer Matthew McDonough. Audiotopsy exploded on the scene in October with their Napalm Records debut album “Natural Causes.”
Author Marisa Williams: Reviews of your debut release “Natural Causes” say that this is a different sound than some of your previous musical endeavors. What musical techniques did you stay away from on this album, and what are some musical techniques that you experimented with on this album?
Greg Tribett, guitar player for Audiotopsy: The musical techniques I stayed away from on this album was more of the technical aspects of song writing. I introduced my style of playing, which is a more easy flowing way to write good hard rock songs.
MW: Your little brother, Derrik “Tripp” Tribett, plays bass for the band Dope. How did you both get started in music? Did you come from a musical family, and did you push each other musically growing up together and throughout both of your successful careers?
GT: We both come from a musical family. My dad’s side is kind of the more musical side, where Derrik got his start. He’s a natural like me. I learned and taught myself. We both had really good ears for music. I believe I really got interested when I was 12 or 13, but I actually started playing when I was five-years-old, so it did start early for me.
MW: Do you play any other instruments?
GT: I can play bass, drums, piano, and I have experimented with cello. I played cello on a Mudvayne song back in the day. It’s a very cool instrument, very hard to play.
MW: What was your first concert that you attended, and how did that compare to the first concert that you played?
GT: First concert was AC/DC touring the “Back in Black” record. It stood out, as it was so fucking loud. The first concert I ever played actually was a cover band, at a public swimming pool. I think it was called swim and dip, rockin’ dip, or something like that. It was funny.
MW: What was the first album you purchased?
GT: I’m going to have to say one of the first KISS records, “Destroyer” probably.
MW: How do you go about writing music? What comes first for you: drums, guitars, vocals or something else? Has the process of writing changed for you over the years at all?
GT: Well, when I go to write music, the songs usually start with humming. I hum in my head, and I transpire that onto the guitar. I envision what the drums sound like playing, like seeing someone else writing music. I tell the drummer what I envision, figure out what the chorus means, and take it from there.
MW: Can you walk us through a track on your latest album that stands out to you from the standpoint of the creative process?
GT: I can do that with “The Calling.” The chorus, vocally and musically, we were having a really tough time coming up with a chorus. We sat there for an hour working on it, and we ran out of beer. We made a beer run, and the song was playing on a loop. I heard a melody in my head, sang it in my head, then sang it to Billy. Everyone was happy. “Yes! We got a chorus!” Sometimes, that’s how it happens; you have to walk away for a minute.
MW: What is your favorite musical technique?
GT: I would really love to play the banjo. I like the techniques in blue grass, all the finger picking, plucking all that stuff, as well Spanish guitar. I would love to take the time to learn flamenco, but I would rather just listen to it and eat tacos.
MW: Best or worst tour moment?
GT: On one of the first Mudvayne records, we toured with Ozzy and Rob Zombie. That was the big tour that we got. All of the Ozzfest shows, being on the main stage with Iron Maiden and Black Sabbath, meeting Zakk Wylde, who is one of my idols besides Randy Rhodes.
MW: I remember first meeting Zakk when I toured on Ozzfest in 2002, which was the year after you played the tour in 2001 and just before you toured with Iron Maiden and Black Sabbath on the main stage in 2005. He was a really a great guy though, as were all of the guys from Black Label Society.
GT: Zakk is a great guy; he’s like a little kid, really hyper.
MW: What’s the most important thing to remember?
GT: Most important thing is stop taking life for granted, live it day by day to it’s fullest. You just never know.
MW: What has been your most influential moment?
GT: Honestly, starting this new band has been very influential to me. I had the chance to write an entire record, so there’s only one cook in the kitchen, not three. For me, it’s my song writing, my music period.
MW: What are three things you must have with you when you are on the road?
GT: One is my phone, two is toiletry bag, three would have to be my music. I listen to a ton of different stuff, so honestly, I’m not a real metal fan, as I listen to everything from Jazz to Radiohead kind of music, orchestra, and blue grass, like I said.
MW: Someone once told me that if you really want to make it in the music industry, you really need to be able to appreciate all types of music.
GT: I think that makes you a real musician, when you can appreciate what you’re doing, because you’re definitely not the best. There’s so many different styles of music, down to people playing buckets for drums on the side of the street, and I just look at that in awe. I appreciate music and everyone who does that kind of thing. Music makes the world go round, period. Without it, I don’t know what life would be like. It’s in the air, the birds, the trees, it’s all there.
MW: Very true. Do you have any advice for musicians starting out?
GT: I would say be as good as you can at your craft and be original. Get in a garage with a band, play your music, experience it. Don’t sit in your bedroom on your computer and just throw it up on the internet. There’s no interaction with people. Do whatever for a few years before you think about doing anything on a professional level.
MW: Anything we did not mention that you want to make sure to include? Closing thoughts? Additional comments?
GT: I would like to include the current tour with Drowning Pool, give everyone a heads up on that. Our record’s out, came out Oct. 2nd, literally only out for four months now. Hopefully, you’ll hear another single soon, don’t know which song yet, still working on it. People should keep up with our Facebook, Instagram and Twitter for updates, as those are the three main accounts that we use.
The author of more than 100 books, Marisa Williams earned her Master’s in Writing from the Johns Hopkins University and is the publisher of Thorisaz Views. Learn more personal things about Greg by reading the full interview at Thorisaz Views.