Mark Greenway - Napalm Death
Everyone should know about - Mark "Barney" Greenway - the crazed growler from Napalm Death. If you have had the privilege to see him perform, you have been amused by his seizure like stage presence, while wearing shorts, looking like an uncommon British punk. I spoke with Barney about his being a true atheist, and advocate of secular humanism. We dialogued about the scum of religion. This was a very engaging conversation, where Barney was open, honest, and forthright. Lend your eyes, ears, and hearts to the wisdom of the enlightened, for time waits for no slave!
MettleAngel: Hey Brother, thank you for taking the time to sit down with me and answer my questions.
MettleAngel: We were going to do this when we last saw you with Exodus, but you had to manage your own merch booth.
MettleAngel: What about concepts of nature,
I assume you believe in the processes of life, and evolution as a construct?
MettleAngel: So you are not really a nihilist, you see the beauty in life, and nature?
MettleAngel: So you would concede to a conscious evolution, that allows for human emotion. You would agree that humans prosper by serving each other with love and compassion?
MettleAngel: How do you explain concepts of love, emotional, passion, sentiment, etc.?
MettleAngel: I view mankind, as human beings noticing, not judging, condemning, or destroying one another. If we chose to focus on service, we will bring about our own healing.
MettleAngel: I have great respect for someone who truly embraces his beliefs, with no ambivalence. Belief has a tendency to become a limiting process of self expression, based on personal experience; attributed to one's own emotional reaction. Religion then steps in, and manipulates the beliefs until they are under some form of control. Once one has become a slave to the system, or institution of religion, he has relinquished his personal freedoms.
MettleAngel: Religion is systematic instruction, based upon empirical knowledge, attributed to faith. The religious experience, which supposedly converts the individual, is always subjective. This life altering moment becomes justified by an experience of signs, miracles, wonders, etc. All these contribute to the ongoing delusional process.
MettleAngel: That is so cool!
MettleAngel: I totally agree! Why does everyone feel the need to save everyone. Why don't they just leave us the fuck alone! I mean with all these musicians giving up drugs, and finding Jesus, they have just substituted one fix, for another. Religion is another form of addiction.
MettleAngel: This is why religious beliefs violate those two freedoms. Religion stems from the Latin root meaning to "tie a knot", or form a relationship. The school of apologetics (where we get the term apology), means to defend one's religious beliefs. Too many religious fanatics are concerned with apologetics, and proving their point, thus making you out to be wrong. They are so damn righteous, they either pray that you find the truth someday, or else you will suffer eternally; what B$!
MettleAngel: Say what! How did that offend them, or impose upon their beliefs? Sounds like your rights were violated!
MettleAngel: I agree, as a former Catholic myself, I became enthralled in the essence of the whole Catholic mass experience. Sadly, all I experienced from the attendees was pride, vanity, and judgment.
MettleAngel: Me too, I just cannot be party to all that vile hypocrisy, and exclusivistic thinking. I have no need, or desire to participate in than chicanery. I understand you support animal rights, please elaborate on this.
MettleAngel: You mean like zoologists, or ecologists who are trying to preserve a dying species?
MettleAngel: So you respect the circle of life, and the way it works. You have a reverence for nature, and it's hidden mysteries. You are not a heathen, or pagan, or advocate of Wicca, because those groups are just another example of disorganized religious nonsense.
MettleAngel: I agree Satanists are also arrogant, and close-minded. Everything is about self-preservation, to the exclusion of others. This is diametrically opposed to the secular humanist philosophy. The followers of Lavey, with the exception of King Diamond, tend to be pricks.
MettleAngel: I agree, what about concepts of mythology, and how it leads to mysticism. Most religions begin with a good story, which is then heavily exaggerated, and then inculcated upon a community.
MettleAngel: I agree, I don't know how one accumulation of wisdom texts was ever used to verify historical facts. This was never the case in the past. I often quote the Bible, like I do Shakespeare, because there is wisdom to be found, which can help you in life. Take the saying, "Love your neighbour as yourself.", even though this was a common gnostic phrase way before the so-called life of Christ, it still serves a real truth, which if followed, works.
MettleAngel: Where would metal be without the use of the Bible! As an atheist, I assume you have no fear of death.
MettleAngel: Like with Jesse Pintado, I'm sure you miss him as a friend, but you don't grieve for him, or act like the victim to his loss.
MettleAngel: I assume you have no fear of a final judgment, life review, or the karmic wheel and the possibility of reincarnation.
MettleAngel: I agree, fear of sex, or just living life to the fullest has become anathema, especially with some fanatic Jewish and Muslim tribes. Women are so held back from everything.
MettleAngel: Nor do I, especially when it comes to parenting. Many so-called non religious moms and dad's impose strict morality on their children at such a young age. They shame and punish their children for trying to express themselves individually.
MettleAngel: This is social convention, dictated by the media, and the powers that be. We all follow like lab rats. Everyone is judging everyone else based on bullshit criteria. We are all swimming in the same ocean, but most prefer to let the other drown, rather than throw him a life preserver. It is like you mentioned with Darwin, and "survival of the fittest". Why does everyone feel they are in a competition?
MettleAngel: In other words, you really just don't need anything. Need is the ultimate illusion which divides the human race.
MettleAngel: I agree. Now to actually get off our soap box, and focus on your work with Napalm Death, you have been with the band most of your career. You are now celebrating 20 years with a very influential band. Do you find that being in Napalm Death has allowed you an appropriate avenue for expressing you humanism, and atheist beliefs?
MettleAngel: You are really more of a free thinking band, than political.
MettleAngel: I agree, which is why I enjoy reading your lyrics, even if I have difficulty understanding your vocals. I have always respected what Napalm Death has accomplished over all these years. I've actually been listening to them since Scum, when Lee Dorian and Bill Steer were in the band. I guess Shane Embury is the only original member still in the band.
MettleAngel: Well, Barney, you are the main reason the band has prevailed. Thank you for being so personal, and upfront with me.
MettleAngel: Honestly, Brother, you have given me plenty of food for thought. You have allowed me to rethink my own beliefs. I am not an atheist, and I do attribute a great deal to the spiritual world. I recommend the Conversation With God books, as you advocate the writing of Stephen Dawkings. We agree to not always agree, without making one another wrong. It is like with Napalm Death, the music is heavy and thrashing, and I appreciate your lyrics, but it is not as memorable as say Nuclear Assault, who would uphold similar world views. I appreciate the extreme, I'm just not always in the mood for it.
MettleAngel: That is my favourite Napalm song, so I will. That song epitomizes all we have discussed about the sham of morality, and how we are deceiving our own children! Thank You again for everything! I truly appreciate this conversation.