Korn Frontman Talks “Becoming A Vampire” While Making The Nu Metal Soundtrack For Queen Of The Damned

Jonathan Davis photo: Fadewood Studios (copyright transferred to Jonathan Davis) (Wikimedia Commons) / Queen Of The Damned image: Distributor: Warner Bros. Pictures, Production companies: Village Roadshow Pictures, NPV Entertainment, Material Productions
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Did you know that Korn frontman Jonathan Davis worked on the soundtrack and original music to the 2002 horror-drama Queen Of The Damned? In a recent retrospective written by Metal Hammer, Davis shared the creative process behind creating the film’s nu metal soundtrack and music.

If you aren’t aware, Queen Of The Damned celebrated its 20th anniversary last month. The film is based off the famous novel of the same name, written by Anne Rice, who is well-known for her vampire related literature. The story serves as a sequel to one of Rice’s other popular novels, Interview With A Vampire. In Queen Of The Damned, one of the prominent characters in Interview With A Vampire becomes a famous rockstar who is searching for other vampires.

As Metal Hammer share in the retrospective, the film’s director, Michael Rymer, turned to the Korn frontman and film composer Richard Gibbs to arrange a set of songs that would work for the movie. To get into the mind of the film’s protagonist, Lestat, Davis said, “I had to become Lestat, and I read the books, and wrote lyrics about being a fucking 400-year-old vampire, and it was so fucking fun.”

For the film, Davis recommended an Indian composer and violinist named Shankar to help create the score, given that Lestat starts his musical journey playing violin. In creating the music for Queen Of The Damned, Shankar lent his violin talents, Korn members Brain “Head” Welch and James “Munky” Shaffer provided their guitar skills, Limp Bizkit’s Sam Rivers played bass, and Davis lent his vocals. They created a number of songs together, with Rymer picking five of the bunch to be featured in the film.

Along with its own original nu-metal songs though, the film’s soundtrack includes a great deal of nu metal cuts (some that appear in the film). You’ll find such tracks as Disturbed’s “Down With The Sickness,” as well as Deftones’ “Change (In The House Of Flies)” make an appearance at key points in the film.

Queen Of The Damned is a nu metal gem, and it’s one of the best soundtracks that metalheads can get behind. If you’re interested in learning more about this nu metal infused horror film, you can find the full story in the latest issue of Metal Hammer, which is out now.

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Words by: Michael Pementel