FIB MUSIC: Yes it is, I would have to say it's the one album I like the most out
of all of them.
I loved the whole Bram Stoker Story line. It's certainly the most technical
album. I notice that there is only you or Andre playing on a few
songs, tell me about that.
I think that was kind of the beginning of the end. I love that
album, we put a lot into it. However, I think that's when Andre and I
started going in different directions musically. I hated the
instrumental "Perseverance and Desperation". To me it was guitar
masturbation and I wasn't into that and I'm still not into that. He
said he'd do all the parts for it when it came to recording it. I said
go for it. Putting that song on the album was a huge mistake and I
wish I would have stuck to my guns and told him "no". Whenever I listen to
the album I always skip that song. That song is a good song but it
belonged on the Andre Corbin solo album, not Nosferatu. I did all the
guitars on "Harsh Reality". I don't really know why. If you notice, that song doesn't even have a solo. I've
never really worried about
being featured in a song, to me that's just egotistical bullshit. If a
song needs a solo; great, if not... shit, even better. I don't need to
put a part in a song so that I can stand in the spotlight and have
someone tell me how great a guitarist I am. I've never thought of
myself as a great guitarist. I'm an average guitarist really. I'm not
a shredder. When I solo I try to make my solos interesting and
tasteful. But if I had to play rhythm all night long I would be just
fine with that. That's where Andre and I were so different.
FIB MUSIC: What was touring like? Any fond memories there?
Larry: Well, all the tours we did were scraping the bottom of the barrel
tours. All of us packed up in a van and running out of money. I remember
one time we didn't know if we were going to have enough money to eat
the next day so we hit this buffet and just scarfed down like no tomorrow.
I'd look down the table and everyone had like 5 empty plates in front of
them. The shows were always great but the shit that went on behind the
scenes was always classic "Spinal Tap".
FIB MUSIC: Yeah I seem to remember two white vans, one for you guys and one
for the gear. And a lot of long hauls. Still there were some good times.
Remember that Club in T.J. Mexico. Cold Iguana I believe it was. We opened for
Fates Warning, they were out supporting Perfect Symmetry, it was the first
night we did. Anyways, someone either fell or jumped from the top balcony and
got jacked up during Intruders set. Do you remember that?
Larry: That was a brutal show. The best show of the tour actually. Those
kids were nuts. I'd love to go back and play TJ again. I'm sure they
haven't changed much.
FIB MUSIC: What about Playing "The Stone" in San Francisco, They had that
damn espresso bar. We all got spun up on Coffee? I remember, we were
given cds of an up and coming band called
Faith No More.
The only thing I remember was that we played on Thanksgiving and
we went over the bridge the day they opened it back up after being
repaired from the big earthquake. That sucked!
FIB MUSIC: What happened after Nosferatu, why did you leave again?
Larry: You know Nosferatu was our fourth album and we all poured our heart
and souls into it. We felt like it was going to be our turn to make
the next step. In the end we just ended up not doing anything because
issues with the record company and what not. I had to make a change.
FIB MUSIC: Can you elaborate on these issues?
Larry: Well, for one Metal Blade and Roadrunner where parting ways right
as Nosferatu was about to be released. Roadrunner didn't want to bring
us over because we weren't going to be part of their label. We
couldn't hook up with a booking agent here in the states and touring was just a
fiasco. The album died without any momentum and Metal Blade eventually
dropped the band.
FIB MUSIC: You left the industry after that, Why?
Larry: Basically, the industry destroyed my love for music. I was so
depressed and disheartened; I just had to leave it all together. I
could have stuck it out and moved back to LA, I had plenty of offers
but I just didn't like where I was at in my life at that time. I stopped
playing my guitar for about 6 or 7 years. I mean I literally did not
pick it up. They just sat underneath my bed waiting for me to come
FIB MUSIC: What did you do during that time?
Larry: Ah, you know the whole family thing, working corporate 9 to 5. I
went back to school but ended up getting a job with a big 4 firm KPMG.
I do IT and telephony there. I've been there for the past 15 years.
FIB MUSIC: You've also got this new band, ETERNITY BLACK. Tell me more about
Larry: Eternity Black was formed a few years ago by Rob Trevino and me.
The band features Russell Deleon on drums. Russ is also the drummer in
Helstar. On vocals we have Ryan McKnight and on bass we have Carlos
Fuste. This band is nothing like Helstar. It's very riff oriented
just straight ahead thrash metal. It's the heaviest thing I have been a
part of. When you come out to see us you'll see the energy is through the
roof. At first we caught some slack because people were coming out
expecting us to do old Helstar tunes or thinking we were going to sound
like Helstar but we nixed that from the beginning. Eternity Black is
very much its own band and stands on its own.
FIB MUSIC: Have you recorded anything?
Larry: Actually, we've recorded two demos. The first one we did 5 songs
and it was recorded at Spyder Studios here in town. Greg Gill
engineered it. We went back a few months ago and recorded 3 more
We recorded those at Greg's new place called Diamond Studios. The
songs are much heavier and we had a better idea of how we wanted it to
sound. We're hoping we can get signed to do a proper full length CD.
We have enough material, we just need a label.
FIB MUSIC: Are you playing out much?
Larry: Yeah, we've been playing quite a bit. We just played at the
Meridian opening up for Mastery. That was a lot of fun. And we also
did a co-headlining show with Stride at FBI Rocks. That will be it for
the year with the holidays coming up and whatnot. We'll get cracked up
again in January. We have a show in San Antonio and another show at
in February. There's also a short tour in the works with Vicious
Rumors. James also sings for Vicious Rumors. And in between all that
we will be writing new material for Helstar. That actually will start
in December when EB winds down.
FIB MUSIC: Anything else you'd like to add?
Larry: Hey, thanks for the interview Charles. For all the fans that have
supported us throughout, I thank you from the bottom of my heart. You
guys come out and see us live and we'll share a beer or 12 with you.
Check out my bands at
Larry Barragan & James Rivera
THE FAST 5
FIB MUSIC: What is your most disgusting habit?
Larry: Pull my finger. He-he.
FIB MUSIC: What is the most feminine thing you do?
Larry: I don't change my own oil.
FIB MUSIC: If there is a God, what is the first question you would ask God when you arrive?
Larry: There is a God and I'm just going to ask him "What the Hell?"
FIB MUSIC: Greatest Rock band of all time?
FIB MUSIC: What were you doing 40 minutes before you sat down to do this interview?
Larry: I was washing my Pandora, my bike.
The Funny thing about being in the music business; if you
it long enough, you will come full circle. Such is the case with
guitarist and co-founder of Helstar Larry Barragan.
The last time I saw Larry was when we toured with a little known band by the
name of Intruder.
Helstar was supporting their Metal Blade release, "Nosferatu",
what was billed as the
Metal Massacre tour. That was 1989. - Charles England