The following interview is done with Jeff Nardone.
Special thanks to Marco and The Black Vomit 'Zine for contributing this interview.

I don't think the cult band Goatlord needs an introduction, but please tell us about the history of the band anyway.

Joe and myself started Goatlord in the summer of 1985. We quickly got Ace to do the vocals and Jeff Schwob to play bass. We wanted to put together a band that combined all the styles pf music that we listened to back then. A little black metal, death and doom metal. We didn’t really know what it was going to sound like at the time but we quickly found our style and it just evolved from there. From the first note and passage of ‘Possessed Soldiers of War’ which was the first song we completed, you could see the path we were headed down.

Back when you formed Goatlord in 1985, could you ever have realized how big the name Goatlord would one day be?

Not at all. I am still humbled that people all over the world know about Goatlord. I had no idea that we had reached so many sick motherfuckers out there. I can’t speak for the rest of the guys but I’m sure they feel the same way that I do, ‘honored’ that so many people acknowledge us as being a cult band in the underground. It’s still a trip for me that people say those things. Thanks!

Do you still have contact with the old members of the band?

I still talk to Joe every now and then. Jeff lives in Vegas but I have not talked to him in a long time. Ace moved away in the mid-90's but comes home every once in a while and we catch up when we can. But for the most part no I do not talk to them much.

Over the last years the label Nuclear War Now! Productions re-released and released a few Goatlord albums on CD and LP, are you satisfied with these?

Yosuke from NWN does an amazing job with everything he does. We couldn’t have been happier with the work he did on those releases. There was a lot of work on our part to get everything that he needed for ‘The Last Sodomy of Mary.’ Hours of going through tapes and gathering all the old interviews in the ‘zines that were spread all over. But it was all worth it when we saw the final outcome.

Let us begin to talk about the discography... between 1987 and 1991 Goatlord published three demos, how was the reaction at that time toward these demos in the underground?

That is the reason why I am shocked today at the popularity of the band. We did not get good reviews. Most people thought we were a joke, I guess because of the imagery we portrayed and the rawness of the band. We didn’t care what people thought of us we were just doing what we felt was the thing to do, be the sloppiest, heaviest and darkest band out there. I think we made a lot of impressions on people but most were bad. I guess it’s true what they say about bad press.

Can you tell us why Ace left the band after the demos?

Well it is kind of a strange story but Ace never officially left the band. Back in the early 90's there weren’t a lot of places here in Vegas to have gigs, so we played very few shows. We would go through long stretches where we would not even see each other let alone practice or play shows. It just so happened that we were on one of those breaks when our friends were starting Doom Snake Cult. Paul Roger and Glen needed someone to lay down some vocals for their demo and Ace agreed to do it. We didn’t care what he did because they were our friends and we just didn’t think anything of it. After a few months went by Doom Snake Cult started booking shows and Ace was fronting them. Before we knew it we didn’t have a singer. No words were ever spoken, it was weird.

The first vocals for ‘Reflections of the Solstice’ were by Mitch Harris, after Ace came back. What can you tell us about this?

When we got the deal with Turbo to record ‘Reflections’ we were kind of scrambling to figure out who would do the vocals. Mitch agreed to lay down the vocals for us so we began rehearsing with him. We had the studio time booked and just before we went in to record I talked to Joe and Schowb and we all agreed that Goatlord was not the same without Ace doing the vocals. Let this be known: Mitch Harris did not record any of the tracks on the record. The deal was done before we ever even went in to the studio that Mitch would only provide some backing vocals and the chorus on ‘Underground Church.’ There are no mystery tracks with his vocals on them. We had to let Ace do the tracks because we knew it was the right thing to do. He worked very hard, as we did making those songs. It was the right choice.

The ‘Reflections of the Solstice’ and ‘Goatlord’ albums were released in 1991/1992 and most tracks were from the demos, what was the difference working with this material in the studio and hearing the finished album?

Up until that point none of us had ever stepped foot inside a recording studio. It was very intimidating but I think we got through it all right. As far as the final outcome of those recordings I am sad to say that I have never been happy with the work. Don’t get me wrong, but the recording is awful. We were never able to capture the true essence of the band like on ‘Sodomize the Goat.’ We were hoping that it would be similar but with better production. The drums fucked the whole recording up. I somehow got talked into using electric toms and snare thinking it would sound better. I was wrong. The studio that we went to was not the best and we had no experience in the process. So that is what you end up with. But I am not complaining because I guess that is what made us stand out from the rest of the bands at the time. It was still the best thing we had ever recorded to date.

How much was the band involved in the compilations ‘Distorted Birth: The Demos,’ ‘The Last Sodomy of Mary’ and the split EP with Nunslaughter in 2004?

The only one of those I had anything to do with was the ‘Last Sodomy of Mary.’ The demos I saw one day while looking through a mag at Tower Records (now deceased.) I had no idea that it was coming out. I guess I was out of the loop for a while. I had to buy my own fuckin’ CD. But that was good ‘cause I hadn’t talked to Joe in a while and that release got us talking about releasing ‘Last Sodomy’ a few years later. Don, all on his own, I believe, put the Nunslaughter split together. I didn’t know about that as well.

How did Goatlord split up?

After many years of being together and all the shit we went through it was hard sometimes to just get together and practice. Like I said before we would go on long breaks sometimes months without playing. We had just returned from playing some shows in California and Arizona and we got home and just stopped playing. I think we were all burnt out on the whole thing. It is a shame but we would have self-destructed soon anyway. We did like to party, that has been well documented. It was getting to the point where that’s all we did. I wish things had been different because I liked the direction we were heading in after ‘Reflections.’ To this day I cannot tell you why it happened, it just did. We all went out separate ways and there was never any talk of getting back together. No one even started any other projects after Goatlord, so it wasn’t personal, it was just that we were over the whole band thing I guess. I am the only one of the four that has done anything musically since Goatlord, that being Spun in Darkness. And it took me about twelve years to even want to do that. But I missed it and did not like where the scene was going. I felt the need to bring back some of the ‘Old School’ sound.

On the NWN re-releases I saw 3 different Goatlord logos, the old one, the one on the back of the release and the Moyen logo, what is your favorite logo for Goatlord.

Well I have always been partial to the original logo. It is the truest representation of what the band is, RAW. Second would be the Moyen logo.

About Chris Moyen, what do you think about the cover artwork that he has done for your releases? Do you think his work represents the music and message behind the band?

Chris and I go way back man. Goatlord and Moyen both started around the same time in the early 90's. There wouldn’t be a Goatlord without Chris Moyen. His work is truly amazing. He has a way of letting his art become a window to the inside of the band’s soul. He has never disappointed me in anything he has done for Goatlord or Spun in Darkness. Don’t think I need to say anything else about that. He kills.

You started in the middle of the 80's with Goatlord in the underground scene, what can you say about this time?

Well we all graduated high school in the mid to late 80's so that left us a lot of time to party and play. As far as the scene here in Vegas, there wasn’t one. We were mostly into European bands that most people didn’t know about at that time. The scene was in southern California though so we would make trips to Los Angeles to see bands like Celtic Frost, Voivod, and St. Vitus. Vegas would have a band every now and then come through. We saw Slayer at a club called Dirty Mamas in 1985. They showed up in a van and were cool as fuck. I think there were about 50-75 people there. It was the heaviest show I had ever seen, up to that point in my life.

You’ve been involved in the scene from the 80's to the present, what can you say is the difference between then and now?

The biggest difference from back in the day is the amount of bands nowadays compared to back then. It was truly underground back then. Nowadays with computers and Myspace and Facebook and file sharing sites it is much easier to get your band’s name out there. But that is why it pisses me off, every dude with a guitar and a drum machine is a band now. I just wish that more of these so-called ‘death metal musicians’ would do some research back to the early days and learn what the music is supposed to sound like. Younger dudes who talk to me about any band from that era always impress me. That is what getting old is all about. FUCKIN’ KIDS DON’T KNOW SHIT!!!

Over the years other bands played cover and tribute songs from Goatlord, do you have a favorite cover?

Interesting question man because the Goatlord cover that I am most looking forward to is Spun in Darkness’ version of ‘Distorted Birth.’ We are set to record it in late January. It will be on our next record. As far as all the rest, Coffins, Loss, Necros Christos and Nunslaughter, we are all totally humbled by that. They all have done great jobs with their versions of the songs. Out of all the covers I would have to say that I was most impressed by Coffins version of ‘Acid Orgy.’ They are one of the only bands who did a cover of Goatlord that I thought was actually better than the original. Hats off to all though and thanks.

What can you tell us about your band Spun in Darkness, and what is the difference between it and Goatlord?

Spun in Darkness is a totally different creature than Goatlord was. We are all older now and way more focused. As far as SID is concerned the band is not trying to be Goatlord or any other band for that matter. Tom and I started the band in 2005. Paul and Rene came about two years in and we haven’t looked back since. We have a great chemistry and all of us are into the same styles of old school death and doom metal. The only thing we are trying to do is keep it old school. As far as the songs go most people will love this band even if you are not familiar with the early days of death metal. It would be impossible to recreate the sound of Goatlord. It would also not do me any good to try, so what is left is what you hear from Spun in Darkness. It is where Goatlord would have ended up anyway. If you listen to ‘Last Sodomy’ it is very much in the same vein as SID. Only not as refined and with poorer production. We are very excited about this project. We have had a few releases now and are getting ready for a busy 2010. Please check us out at or

You play Spun in Darkness with the former Doom Snake Cult bassist Paul Brady. How did this come about?

Well after our original bass player left Spun in Darkness I knew Paul and Rene were trying to get something started so we just asked both of them to join SID. Paul and I have been around Vegas forever and he was just getting back into playing again so I knew it would work out.

I have read you are a big fan of horror movies. What are your favorites?

I do like horror movies. But the way I like my horror movies is the way I like my death metal, old school. My favorite is Fulci’s ‘The Gates of Hell,’ fucking classic! Also the first ‘Evil Dead.’

Great favorites... I am a big fan of the horror movies from Italy in the 70's/80's, films from Lucio Fulci, Dario Argento, Ruggero Deodato, Umberto Lenzi, Joe D’Amato, Mario Bava, Michele Saovi and more... what do you think about the Italian film industry from the 70's and 80's? (sad it all got bad at the end of the 80's...)

From the ones that I have seen they were pretty much the masters of horror. It’s a shame what that industry has become as well.

What do you think about all the remakes of classic movies?

I think it is cool just because it might provoke a younger person to go get the original and watch it.

What can you tell us about your private life (hobbies/interests)?

When I am not playing my drums I am spending time with my 10 year old son Jake. If I am not doing that then I am riding my motorcycle. Been riding motocross since I was a kid. Love it. Between that and my drums I have nothing else to give.

Before we close the gates to hell, what are your plans for the future (maybe a Goatlord reunion and new album?)

A lot of people ask me that question and I wish the answer were different but there will never be a reunion. Joe is having trouble with his hands and cannot play at all. Arthritis or something. The closest thing you will get to Goatlord is Spun in Darkness, sorry.

It is the end of the interview so let me thank you for your time and words and for making this issue special with Goatlord. I wish you all the best with Spun in Darkness and in your private life. Please give me your last words...

Marco I have done a lot of interviews over the years and I just want to thank you for actually doing some research about my band before you wrote the questions and actually knowing something about Goatlord. It was my pleasure man. When I saw how long this thing was I was like FUCK!!! But it was a great interview man. One of the best I’ve ever done. Thanks to all of you out there and again thanks for keeping Goatlord relevant through the years.

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