CANNIBAL CORPSE drummer Paul Mazurkiewicz, in a recent conversation, touched on the vocalist change in the band that took place in 1995:
“It’s actually just crazy to remember that we took that step. And here we are, stronger than ever. It’s hard to pull it off. The early era, the ‘Barnes era,’ as I think everybody calls it, is the beginning of the band; it’s where we obviously started, how we started out and everything. And we were doing pretty well. We went up the stairs. We’re progressing. We’re a force to be reckoned with now. So changing the lead singer in the middle of that seems a little crazy, but it was meant to be. Now you think back, and we all feel like we’ve made the band better; overall George is just better as a vocalist. And we were moving forward. And here we are – God, and Barnes has been gone from the band for what? 25 years or so. But both eras, they certainly matter. It’s the beginning of the band, so there will be purists who will say, “I love that era more because…” Okay – whatever. It’s not an issue for me. What it is is what it is. He was part of the band, and we were successful; that doesn’t mean he was a nobody or nothing was going on at the time… It was a serious situation, and fortunately, we were able to persevere and get through it all and be stronger than ever.
I think it will always be discussed; people will argue about it. But that’s the history of the band. Whether you like it or not, whether we like it or not, it doesn’t matter. He’s as much a part of CANNIBAL’s history as anyone in the band. If it wasn’t for him, I’m guessing that maybe the band might never have existed. So it was an important era and cannot be ignored, nor can the importance of the original lineup and the birth of CANNIBAL CORPSE. It’s great that we can talk about it – a cool story that maybe a lot of bands wouldn’t have been able to relive. And we, fortunately, have been able to survive and, like I said, accomplish more than we ever thought possible, and maybe it’s all thanks to having George in the band!”