Emmure’s Frankie Palmeri Discusses Onstage Electrocution, His First Concert + More
New York City-based Emmure has a busy summer ahead, playing on the Rockstar Mayhem Fest and then heading off around the world on several other runs before settling back home at the end of the year to start work on a new record. Loudwire caught up with the metal outfit’s ferocious frontman, Frankie Palmeri, at Mayhem’s kickoff show recently in San Bernardino, Calif.
Frankie, first up, a couple of months ago, you were electrocuted onstage in Moscow. You’re all recovered now, right?
Yeah, I’m fine. It was a pretty intense thing when it happened, but I’m all good.
Can you describe the actual sensation?
It’s like it's like having the rug pulled out from underneath you and then having a ton of rocks dumped on you at the same time. You completely go out and your body is totally stiff and it’s scary, but once the guitar tech pulled the mic out of my hand I came to.
And the video on YouTube preserves it all forever.
[Laughs] Yeah, I love that it is out there. Nobody can accuse me of making it up. That’s the age we live in and I think that’s cool.
What first got you into performing?
When I was really little, my older brother brought me to my first show. I was 11 and it was a hardcore show out in Middletown, Long Island. While Skycamefalling was performing, in the midst of all these older kids, I got the microphone and I knew all the words so I just started yelling them out. I remember my brother and his friends couldn’t believe it; they were blown away that I could do that. And I loved the fact that these kids in the place recognized me for doing something cool. I loved the feeling and I was like, "How can I make this happen again someday?" So here we are.
What else influenced you musically, as a kid?
There was one thing – I watched Limp Bizkit play on the MTV Beach House show in about 1998 and that was a real experience. I said that's it -- that's what I want to do. That's the answer.
You’re on Mayhem now with some pretty big bands. Any special approach you take on a tour like this?
I wander a lot and watch the other bands before we play. I want to see what I can do that will separate me from the rest of what is happening in the day. I study the other bands to make sure I don’t repeat anything they say or do. The kids out there in the heat don’t need to be hearing the same things from anybody.
Did you attend festivals like this as a kid?
Other than that one concert I mentioned, I never saw any shows. I was a very sheltered kid. I lived in Queens, New York and if it were not for MTV I would not have had much experience with music. But my parents didn’t let me see anything.
Do your folks come and see you play in NY?
My parents are great and I love them to death but they are still like absent members of my life. They don’t come out to cheer me on or anything like that. It's cool. When I go home I’m just Frankie, the black sheep idiot moron that I always was in the house. [Laughs]