“I built a trailer that was big enough for me and eight guitars. Then I proceeded to travel, seeing everything that was out there”: How Gabe Mangold tracked a death metal record in the desert – and how the Quad Cortex redefined his songwriting

Gabe Mangold
(Image credit: Rickelle Tavares)

Gabe Mangold says there’s nothing he loves more than “nature and heavy fucking death metal” – and for the past seven years, his life has been loaded with that duality. Just before he joined American deathcore band Enterprise Earth in 2017, in a quest for perspective, he did what every sane person would do: he converted a trailer into a studio and traveled the American West, pounding out savage, genre-mutilating riffs along the way.

“I went out to a little hippie town called Taos in New Mexico to learn how to build Earthships [solar homes],” he says of his domestic upheaval. “I didn’t feel like I had set roots or stability, so I ran with it and I fell in love with the lifestyle.

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Phil Weller

A freelance writer with a penchant for music that gets weird, Phil is a regular contributor to Prog, Guitar World, and Total Guitar magazines and is especially keen on shining a light on unknown artists. Outside of the journalism realm, you can find him writing angular riffs in progressive metal band, Prognosis, in which he slings an 8-string Strandberg Boden Original, churning that low string through a variety of tunings. He's also a published author and is currently penning his debut novel which chucks fantasy, mythology and humanity into a great big melting pot.