Words by Dan Epstein
"I'm sorry, I'm doing an interview right now," Austin Carlile apologizes to an insistent young woman. Carlile, the frontman of Southern California's Of Mice & Men, is standing in the parking lot behind a supermarket, trying to finish his phoner with Revolver before going in to grab something for lunch. But even in this most mundane and anonymous of settings, there's a fan who wants to take a selfie with him. "No, really," he says with a laugh. "I'm in the middle of an interview."
In truth, Carlile digs the attention, but not necessarily in the way your average rock star might. "I love connecting with our fans," he says. "I don't really like social media, but I love talking to kids at our shows, on the street, wherever. I really think I get as much out of it as they do. I think a lot of kids respond to our music because we sing about things that actually happened to us. The best music is the stuff that makes you feel like you're not alone in the world, because this other person went through the same thing, whether it's bullying or losing someone to suicide or whatever. That's what music did for me when I was growing up, and it means so much to me to know that we've had that same effect on others."
Though Of Mice & Men have been around since 2009, their audience expanded exponentially with the release of Restoring Force, which debuted at No. 4 on the Billboard charts in February 2014. The first OM&M record to feature the clean vocals of bassist Aaron Pauley, who joined the band in 2012, Restoring Force sounds much different than the group's two previous releases, 2010's Of Mice & Men and 2011's The Flood. Songs like "You're Not Alone," "Feels Like Forever," and "Bones Exposed" showcase sharper songwriting and a more focused, nu-metal inflected sound with elements of early Slipknot, Disturbed, and Deftones clearly audible in the mix.
"We think of Restoring Force as our first album," Carlile says the band, which is rounded out by guitarists Phil Manansala and Alan Ashby and drummer Tino Arteaga. "It's the first one that really sounds like the music we wanted to make, and it's the first one that's really been taken seriously by, uh, magazines like yours," he laughs. The record also caught the attention of Linkin Park, who tapped Of Mice & Men to open for them on their European tour in November—a huge honor for Carlile, who counts the band as one of his formative musical influences.
"I bought Hybrid Theory when I was a sophomore in high school," he remembers. "It was the angriest thing I'd ever heard at the time, other than Pantera—but Pantera was my dad's music, and this was the first record I really got into that I didn't learn about through him. Linkin Park has been my band for such a long time."
While Of Mice & Men have toured relentlessly for much of their existence, Carlile's health has gotten in the way at times. The singer has had problems with ruptured eardrums (he's deaf in one ear), he was forced to undergo surgery in 2010 for an enlarged aorta valve, and his recent hospitalization for a different recurring heart issue forced the band to cancel some European tour dates. "I don't like to talk about my heart thing," he insists, "because I don't want that to be what this band is about. Yes, I have to deal with it every day, and it's a hard thing sometimes, but being able to make music and get up onstage is what makes it easier to deal with. I don't know how I'd deal with it if I didn't have music."
For Carlile, the drive to create music is an all-consuming obsession. The singer says his strong sense of motivation dates back to the days before he even cared about rock and roll. "Before I wanted to be in a band, I wanted to be a baseball player," he recalls. "At first, I was taller than everyone, so I was a pitcher — but then when everyone caught up to me, I moved to centerfield. My dad would always wait in his car until the end of practice, and then after everyone else went home, he'd come out to the field and hit me fly balls for an hour.
"He always told me, 'Austin, there's always going to be someone better than you, someone with more ability. If you want to do something, you really have to put everything you have into it. Otherwise, if you fail, you'll always regret not doing everything you could to succeed.'
"Of Mice & Men is my life, music is everything to me," he continues. "I don't have a family, I don't have a wife or a girlfriend, I don't even have hobbies. This is what I do and who I am. Making music in the studio, or those 30 minutes to an hour onstage every night, that's what I live for."
Sons of Texas have recently signed to Razor & Tie and announced their debut album, 'Baptized in the Rio Grande,' will be released on March 3. In anticipation, the band has teamed up with Revolver to premiere a new song and music video for "Baptized in the Rio Grande." Check it out below and let us know what you think in the comments!
The members of Black Veil Brides have just returned from lunch at a Manhattan Hooters, and now bassist Ashley Purdy and drummer Christian "CC" Coma are crashed out in their record label's conference room on a pair of leather couches while guitarists Jake Pitts and Jinxx sit at a table, holding bottles of Coors Light and listening to '80s tunes on a computer. The sounds of Def Leppard, Hagar-era Van Halen, and Mr. Big flood the room as vocalist Andy Biersack walks in. At first, he shakes his head in mock sympathy at the playlist his bandmates have chosen. Then he grins and starts to enthusiastically air-guitar along.
There's a reason Black Veil Brides are all smiles. They've just released their new self-titled record, their heaviest and most metallic offering to date. Following the slick concept album the band put out in 2013, Wretched and Divine: The Story of the Wild Ones, the new LP should gain the favor of headbangers eager for a grittier, more stripped-down approach. Everyone in the band, too, is happier with the straight-ahead attack of their latest album.
"Admittedly, we didn't like how glittery the last record came out," Biersack concedes. "It's a very theatrical record and we steered away from doing the heavier stuff we enjoy." Most of Black Veil Brides is anchored by chugging '80s-style guitars alternately reminiscent of Vivian Campbell–era Dio and late '90s Megadeth. Gone are Wretched and Divine's abundance of pianos and violins, replaced by Pitts' gripping leads, which echo the shredwork of Randy Rhoads and Kirk Hammett.
"People these days don't spend the time to really learn their instrument," Pitts says. "They just go, 'I'm gonna be in a band,' and they get together and start jamming before they know what they're doing. Before I decided to be in a band, I made sure I learned what I was doing. And I made sure the people I was with could play their instruments as well. Otherwise, you might as well stay in your garage."
Contributing to the dynamic sound and arrangements of Black Veil Brides was über-producer Bob Rock (Metallica, Mötley Crüe). He met the band last year through a friend and was won over by the group's ambition and charisma.
"They reminded me about the best parts of the great bands I've worked with before," Rock says. "These guys are definitely special in their musicianship and the way they approach their career. Everything is new and exciting to them and you can't help but get caught up in it."
Yet for their new album, Black Veil Brides were driven by more than a megaproducer and a desire to showcase their abilities as songwriters and players. Having grown apart during the making and touring for Wretched and Divine, they were eager to re-cement the bond that brought them together in the first place.
In addition, Pitts and Biersack were coping with crippling personal and health problems, respectively. The most tragic event happened in January when Pitts' mom suffered a massive heart attack and died at age 58. An accomplished musician, Pitts' mother taught her son guitar and was his greatest advocate.
"There's not a day that goes by that I don't think about what happened, like, what the fuck?" Pitts says. "After that happened, I went off the rails partying to try to cope with losing her. I did that for about a month, but it didn't make me feel good. I decided I needed to do something else. Writing songs for this album was a big part of that."
The rest of the group rallied behind him in that process. "As a band, we were pretty distant on the last record," says Jinxx. "This record was more collaborative and brought us closer together."
While Pitts was working out his grief as BVB wrote and recorded, Biersack was battling a dangerous blood infection that he contracted from an impacted tooth duct. The condition was diagnosed on tour in Germany last December. Doctors drained Biersack's swollen lymph nodes and prescribed him antibiotics, but the infection didn't go away, and by April, he was in bad shape.
"I was turning yellow because my whole body was getting infected," Biersack reveals. "All my organs were swollen, and when I was in the studio, I felt like I had a boulder in my stomach." His sickness infected his vocal performance on Black Veil Brides, which aches with raw sincerity.
"Being in constant pain lent itself to a more angsty delivery," the singer says. Having supported each other through some of the most agonizing experiences in their lives, Black Veil Brides are more of a true band than ever, one that is dead-set on "taking over the world," as Jinxx describes their mission, and doing so together.
"I am a completely socially awkward person, and there have been times when that has been a real drawback," the guitarist says. "I was shunned and made fun of. But now with the support of these guys, I look at that as an advantage. I say what I want to say through the music and I still have so much to say."
Veteran horrorcore hip-hop duo Twiztid are in the mood to celebrate. Not only did rappers Jamie Madrox and Monoxide recently finish recording their 11th studio album, The Darkness, they've just confirmed it as the debut release for their own label, Magik Ninja Entertainment.
"It's a very dark, spooky record," says Madrox. "There are scary overtones, and when hear it, you will feel it."
Though they started out as members of Detroit's House of Krazeez, Madrox and Monoxide have come a long way since they left the House in 1997 and formed Twiztid. Soon after, they were signed to Insane Clown Posse member Joseph Bruce's label, Psychopathic Records. The Posse took Twiztid under its taloned wings and introduced them to a new crowd of rap, rock, wrestling, and Faygo fanatics.
"Those guys are awesome," Madrox enthuses. "They showed us the ropes and taught us the business. We were their protégés. In the words of Star Wars, we were their Padawans. We learned a great deal and then we moved on."
Revolver sat around the campfire with Madrox and Monoxide and discussed fictional and real-life horrors, crazed crowd members, childhood gang stories, and modern-day motivations.
Do you think metal fans will dig The Darkness?
JAMIE MADROX If you take it with a grain of salt and an open mind, you will find something in it you like. It's not Sepultura, but it's dark.
MONOXIDE A lot of the producers we worked with played live guitars, so there are some heavy riffs on there. One song called "FTS" stands for "Fuck This Shit" and it's instant anarchy.
Do you surround yourself with actual darkness?
MONOXIDE We watch the darkness from above and look down on it. We take out the things that are relevant, but we're not killing babies or sacrificing goats.
MADROX We're blessed to have a good enough vantage point that we can see it for what it is and we're intrigued by it. Everything you see that you don't understand, you want to know more about. You want to find out why if someone passes away they become a ghost and get trapped in this world. Why don't they just move on to Heaven or Hell? Is the world purgatory? This is the shit that we think about while everybody else is trying to pull hos.
One of your new songs is called "Séance." Have you ever been part of a real séance?
MADROX No, but we've had several paranormal experiences. Me and Monoxide used to be into some very weird shit. We used to tell ghost stories in very spooky places. We used to go to this place called Knock Knock Street, and when you'd drove down it at a certain time of night you would hear this banging on the side of your car door. That was supposed to be the sound of somebody that got hit by a car and their body got caught in the wheel well and their head and their arm kept hitting the door. We brought friends there to prove the story's real.
The following is an excerpt from our latest METAL HEALTH issue, in which DOYLE WOLFGANG VON FRANKENSTEIN and ALISSA WHITE-GLUZ and more share their experience, advice, secrets, and tips for any fellow headbanger looking to get shredded. Get your copy here. Alissa White-Gluz photo by Dale May. Interview by Sammi Chichester.
When a muscle monster like Doyle admits that you kick his ass during joint workouts, you're clearly in pretty killer shape. Such is the case for Arch Enemy frontwoman Alissa White-Gluz, Doyle's girlfriend who he dotingly—and fittingly—refers to as his "queen beast." This queen beast works out regularly and, as a vegan, definitely watches what she eats.
Her health was a particular concern recently when earlier this summer, at the one of the first shows supporting the melodic death metal act's new album, 'War Eternal,' a stage riser broke during "No Gods No Masters," and White-Gluz fell—causing a compound break to one rib and severe bruising on a few others. "At the time, I didn't feel it because I was full of adrenaline jumping around," she explains. Despite the pain, she didn't skip a beat and continued the tour.
REVOLVER How did you rehab and recover while on the road?
ALISSA WHITE-GLUZ It was harsh. Singing is a lot of breathing and ab-clenching, but it would really only hurt after the show when the pain would accumulate. I would put ice on them during guitar solos. When I would headbang, I would have my left arm clenched in close to act as the clutch to support the rib area.
Now that you're healed, what kind of fitness activities do you do?
I think jogging is incredible because I get to explore whatever city I'm in. It's cool because maybe you do 10 minutes and it exhausts you, then the next day 12 minutes. Your body is very quick to adapt when it comes to cardio endurance. Otherwise, I lift weights. I've been getting into this idea of lifting really heavy for bench-presses, deadlifts, and squats.
You have advocated for veganism for years. How did you get into it?
I have been vegetarian my whole life and vegan for 15 years now. Veganism is really a lifestyle. It involves making a conscious effort to make sure I don't purchase products whether it be food, clothing, makeup, shampoo, or shoes that has animal product on them—suede, fur, leather, wool, silk, or is tested on animals. So I'm vegan because I know it is very possible for me to live a fully happy and healthy lifestyle without harming anyone else.
The following is an excerpt from our latest METAL HEALTH issue, in which DOYLE WOLFGANG VON FRANKENSTEIN and ALISSA WHITE-GLUZ and more share their experience, advice, secrets, and tips for any fellow headbanger looking to get shredded. Get your copy here. Doyle Wolfgang Von Frankenstein photo by Dale May. Interview by Sammi Chichester.
Who is the fittest musician in heavy music? The answer seems clear to us: Former Misfits axman and current solo artist Doyle Wolfgang von Frankenstein. He started working out as a kid playing football and he pumps iron to this day at the age of—you'll never guess it—50. The ripped guitarist recently transitioned to veganism, a move that was partially inspired by his girlfriend, Arch Enemy frontwoman Alissa White-Gluz.
"I admire Alissa," Doyle says. "When I work out with her, she kicks my fucking ass and makes me want to cry. She does these things that I don't do, and when I do them, it's really hard for me. But it's really great to be with someone who is very similar to you in job and fitness and health."
Doyle's job is, of course, rocking the fuck out, as he has been doing, blazing down venues all across the world sometimes with Danzig, for a set of Misfits classics, and sometimes in support of his most recent solo album, 'Abominator' (a follow-up LP is due this spring). And he's been doing it all, as always, topless and proud—in fact, he's confident that even 10 years from now, he'll still refuse to wear a shirt.
REVOLVER Do you feel like Conan?
DOYLE No. [Laughs] I've been working out for 40 straight years and I only missed one year when I had a back operation and couldn't walk. It was 1993 when I had a disk removed because it was exploding. It hurt. It was years of abuse on my body, football and shit like that.
Any highlights from playing football?
No. My coach hated me because when I was in eighth grade. I had pink hair at graduation and they wouldn't give me my diploma. So he didn't play me much.
Since you were on the football team, was it weird when you got into music?
Glenn [Danzig] used to call me a jock when we were little. [Laughs] Then he started working out. I guess it rubbed off on him, and you know what? It rubs off on everybody I come in contact with.
Why do you think you have that effect on people?
I guess they see me and the way I look doing what I'm doing, and they look at themselves and go, "Oh, what am I doing?" [Laughs]
All That Remains are on the subscriber cover of the 2015 January issue of Revolver. The following excerpt is taken from that feature. Pick up the new issue on newsstands tomorrow or get your copy here. Interview by Jon Wiederhorn and photo by Justin Borucki.
REVOLVER Did you want 'The Order of Things' to be more commercial than 'A War You Cannot Win'?
PHIL LABONTE No. As lame as it sounds, we just wanted to write what we like to hear. There's some really heavy stuff on this record. We're not the kind of band that ever wants to say, "Does this sound like us?" If you're looking at music as something you do because you enjoy it, then what- ever you write can't help but sound like you. And I really don't care what people call us. As long as the songs are good, that's all that matters—whether they're poppy or heavy. The fact that we've had a career this long and come from a genre that's seen its fair share of bands come up and go down, speaks for a good outcome of that philosophy.
In recent interviews you said 'A War You Cannot Win' "sucked." Why?
It was mostly me, I think I could have done better. I could have had stuff that was a little more compelling, especially in some of the heavier songs. So I wasn't super-pumped about it. This record, I think, will make a significant statement about what we can do as a band and I think it's going to do really good things for us.
In addition to producing the album, Josh Wilbur co-wrote many of the lyrics. How did that happen?
We hit it off right away. There was a point where he said, "Hey man, if you come across a stumbling block, I'm open to helping out."
I thought that was cool and as our working relationship grew,I was like, "I trust this guy's opinion. Let's give this writing thing a shot." It wasn't a labored decision. If it hadn't worked, I would have gone home and worked on the lyrics myself like I did on the other records. But it was more fun writing them together. Some of the lyrics are about self-empowerment and overcoming adversity. Did you have discussions beforehand where you told him what was going on in your life? Fuck, no. It wasn't [Metallica's] 'Some Kind of Monster.' I never sat down and bemoaned my life. Honestly, the record's far too sarcastic for that. People think I'm a jerk on the Internet and they don't see it in the songs. On this record I'm a dick. I just figured right now, at this point in my life, there are a lot of good things going on so I don't have a lot of pent-up anger. So I figured, "Alright, I'll just be snarky."
Much of the snarkiness is directed at elitist metal fans and trendy bands. On "Tru-Kvlt- Metal" you sing, "Same time, the exact same place/ You've got the uniform on, so cliché/ what a waste of my time/ You all look the same, destroy the name."
I just get a kick out of being an antagonist. When it comes to rubbing people the wrong way, I don't care who I offend. There are no more bad guys in rock and roll and metal. It has become so competitive and so hard to actually be a band that can make a living, there are no more people that are bad guys. Everybody's got the right opinion and they say the right things or they don't say anything at all. There's nothing edgy about metal anymore. You're not edgy because you listen to music that sounds abrasive. That doesn't make you a forward thinker, that doesn't make you controversial and it doesn't make you edgy just because you're in a band that plays that stuff. Especially when you're dealing with bands that aren't trying to play the heaviest music in the world, the music that you play is not really edgy. Ideas are edgy. So if the metal world is looking for a bad guy, I'll be that guy.
The following is a preview of what's in the January 2015 issue of Revolver. You can pick up the new issue on newsstands December 30 or at the Revolver Online Store.
GOING POSTAL: MAX CAVALERA
The Soulfly and Cavalera Conspiracy frontman loses his mind answering your letters
ALL THAT REMAINS
Metalcore's biggest antagonist won't go quietly
Strength beyond strength with heavy music's strongest stars: Doyle, Arch Enemy's Alissa White-Gluz, Five Finger Death Punch, Zakk Wylde, Pop Evil, Trivium, Halestorm, Bleeding Through, Cro-Mags, The Devil Wears Prada, Job for a Cowboy, and Tombs.
When they were broken, beat & scarred
Frontman Fronz tells you about that life
IN THE NEWS
We remember Wayne Static of Static-X
Plus : Morbid Tales of Celtic Frost, Bad Brains get crafty, At the Gates slaughter pizza, Vinnie Paul and Lzzy Hale dish out advice, and more!
THE BRUTAL TRUTH: Tough questions for Pap Roach, Emigrate, and Twiztid
BANDS TO WATCH Krokodil, Fit For a King, and more!
IN THE REAR
We review Periphery, Alien Ant Farm, Lord Dying, Napalm Death, Sweet & Lynch, and more!
The Final Word: Volbeat's Rob Caggiano shares a tale from the pit
Thirteen years after being steeled in the crucible of Ozzfest, and millions of record sales later, Linkin Park have grown into one of America's biggest rock bands. Their new album, The Hunting Party, is not only the hardest and heaviest thing they've ever released, but it's also their first album to pack the sort of guitar firepower that would actually appeal to your average headbanger.
Here, band members who played on 1999's Slipknot–including deceased bassist Paul Gray and ex-drummer Joey Jordison–look back on the now-classic record, which includes songs like "Spit It Out," "Wait and Bleed," and "(sic)."
The band members who played on 2001′s 'Iowa'–including deceased bassist Paul Gray and ex-drummer Joey Jordison–look back on the now-classic record, which includes songs like "People = Shit," "Disasterpiece," and "Left Behind."
Linkin Park's new album, The Hunting Party features cameos from Helmet's Page Hamilton, Daron Malakian of System of a Down and Tom Morello of Rage Against the Machine. Here's what Mike Shinoda has to say about the contributions of their illustrious guests.
M. Shadows is chilling in his home in Huntington Beach, California. His band is about to embark on five weeks of headlining slots on the Rockstar Energy Drink Mayhem Festival.
But before he can skip town, Shadows happily fills us in on the occupational hazards of playing big summer tours and the mayhem that it can bring.
Like most everything Faith No More have done, the new album–which is due for release in April 2015–will follow the group's own singular vision, regardless of what fans and critics may want or not want it to be. "It'll be much different than everything else out there—but that's sort of the point," says bassist Bill Gould. Read the rest of his dispatch here.
7. Guns N' Roses Frontman Axl Rose Talks Winning the Golden God Lifetime Achievement Award & Performing with Duff McKagan
"The Duff that played these shows with us isn't really the Duff that I knew from what I'd call 'Old Guns'."
8. Interview: Avenged Sevenfold's Zacky Vengeance Talks 'Waking the Fallen' and Early Days of the Band
Here, Avenged Sevenfold guitarist Zacky Vengeance–one of the founders of the band–looks back on the group's early days, A7X's evolution, and the impact of 'Waking the Fallen.'
9. Interview: Corey Taylor on Acting in 'Fear Clinic' and Making Slipknot's New Album
Slipknot singer Corey Taylor makes his acting debut in the horror film 'Fear Clinic.' Taylor appears out of the mask, playing an orderly named Bauer.
10. Interview: M. Shadows on Avenged Sevenfold's New Video Game 'Hail to the King: Deathbat'
Created by Avenged Sevenfold in conjunction with Subscience Studios after nearly two years of development, and inspired by the group's artwork and lyrical imagery, the complex action-adventure mobile game features classic hits from A7X—players can also unlock eight new instrumental tracks—and includes player characters based on the band members themselves, including late, great Avenged drummer Jimmy "The Rev" Sullivan.
SiriusXM's Jose Mangin recently chatted with Chris Broderick on Liquid Metal's 666-LIVE call-in show. Read what the guitarist has to say about leaving Megadeth, new projects, and more below (which was transcribed by Josh "Shitkill" Musto), and let us know what you think in the comments!
Jose Mangin: Chris, thanks for calling up Liquid Metal. This is, I believe, your first time talking to anybody publicly [after leaving Megadeth], right?
Chris Broderick: Absolutely, yeah. I wanted to make sure that there was a little downtime and to just kind of relax a little bit, give it a little time to sink in.
Mangin:Of course, man. So if you're listening right now, Chris was a part of Megadeth since 2007.
Broderick: 2008 is when I officially joined, right at the beginning.
Mangin: And recently he left the band along with Shawn Drover, who had been with the band for ten years, and this was announced about three weeks ago. Chris…I guess...I mean what do I say?
Broderick: Come on, Jose—don't be so tongue-tied!
Mangin: No, I'm just, you know—why?
Broderick: Well, it's not gonna be as exciting as anybody would want, it's not gonna be some huge drama thing or anything like that. It was simply time. I'd been in for seven years and I really wanted to just have that kind of creative freedom to write anything I wanted to, to go anywhere with it that I wanted to, and just kind of direct my own course. The way I think of it is it's not unlike a chef that works at a restaurant and decided he wants to open up his own restaurant or maybe a lawyer that wants to start his own firm or something like that. It was a great time to move on and I think talking with Shawn, he was in the exact same place. We had talked and thought about it for a little bit, so when Shawn quit it was like, "Whoa, what happened?" I mean I knew that we had talked about it but he did i— he actually just left the band.
Mangin: He didn't tell you, "I'm doing it tomorrow?"
Broderick: No. Like I said we talk all the time so I knew that he had thought about it and I had been thinking about it but as soon as he quit I knew he had made the right decision because Megadeth is going to be ramping up for their next CD recording cycle and if you've got trepidation about being a part of something you don't want to commit to the writing process and then bail on them. When Shawn quit, that instantly became clear to me. I had talked to [Dave] Ellefson and then I went and I talked to Jackson guitars, my endorsement, and Fractal audio systems, and they were so supporting, they were like, "Dude we've got your back, you do what you've gotta do." So I decided that night after Shawn did it that it was the right time because Megadeth is getting ready to move into their next recording cycle. So if there was a good time to leave, that was it.
Mangin: It makes sense. How was the reaction from Dave [Mustaine] when you told him?
Broderick: He was definitely disappointed. It was obviously not something that he wanted to hear or anything like that.
Mangin: He didn't know it was coming?
Broderick: No, not really. I mean, the one thing that you want to know is that in a way we're hired guns.
Mangin: I was gonna ask you, Chris—when you first joined Megadeth did you feel like you were gonna be in it for a long time? Because Megadeth has a history of having so many different guitarists and musicians come in. What did you expect when you first started?
Broderick: When I first started I didn't know what to expect, I mean you're going into something with fresh eyes and fresh ears and just going for it. It was great, it was awesome, it was great for my career. I got to play Big 4 shows, I played across the world, it was an awesome thing at the time, but there comes to be a point where I want to be musically creative for me, and that's really where I wanted to go.
Mangin: Well you've been a part of the metal scene for so long, you've been in established awesome bands before. What were some of your favorite bands before you joined Megadeth that you were in?
Broderick: I mean obviously I have a huge affinity for Nevermore and Jag Panzer, those were the main bands that I was in. In Nevermore I was more of a touring guitarist, but Van [Williams, drums] and Jeff [Loomis, guitar] are great friends of mine and I love playing with them, great musicians. And Jag Panzer, they were all so level headed, everything was so democratic in that band and they welcomed me instantly with open arms, which was a cool thing because at that time when I joined them I was totally naïve to the whole process. I just thought I'd walk in and be an equal member in everything they had already established, but they allowed me that freedom. Those were the two main killer bands.
Mangin: I know you're also a guitar teacher and you're doing a bunch of cool stuff. What is happening for you in the future? I know you're taking part in the Metal Allegiance all-star tours that are happening, Shiprocked in February and we're doing the big one January 21st at the House of Blues in Anaheim, California, I'm very proud to be hosting that show with you guys and rocking that show out with you dudes. So tell us about your involvement with the Metal Allegiance, formerly Metal Masters.
Broderick: Yeah, so we're just coordinating these next two shows, like you said it's at the House of Blues on January 21st, and Shiprocked starting on the 2nd of February in 2015 should be killer as well. It's gonna be a fun night, I'm not sure if I can talk about all of the people that are gonna be playing with us because I think some of them are surprises. But I think some of them that you know about are Alex Skolnick, Chuck Billy..
Mangin: I have a list here too Chris that I can show you—Frank Bello, Charlie Benante, Chuck Billy, you, Dave Ellefson, Scott Ian, Andreas Kisser from Sepultura, Mark Osegueda from Death Angel—those two dudes are new—Mike Portnoy, Troy Sanders from Mastodon, new to the Metal Allegiance lineup, Alex Skolnick, John Tempesta, and Scott Ian is gonna be doing a spoken work thing before the show starts. I hear there's another band that's gonna be opening but we're not gonna tell you until it's official and it's all said and done, but I know there's a lot of cool things in store for that. Chris, so looking forward to your next mission as a musician, what do you want to do? I know you're an avid music dude and a guitar teacher and student, what are you looking to do besides the Metal Allegiance stuff?
Broderick: Well, you know one of the things that I've always wanted to do is a solo CD, so I'm definitely gonna be working on that in 2015, but one of the things I've really very recently become excited about is through talking with Shawn Drover, we had talked about how we had all this material that was never gonna get released, all these killer heavy riffs that we had written, so we just decided, why don't we put this stuff out? Why don't we form a band and get out these killer riffs and see what people think? So actually we formed a band, we're working with a killer singer and he's awesome, and we've got record labels that have made some good offers on the table and we're really excited about where that's gonna go.
Mangin: Wow! Is there a name for the band?
Broderick: Well here's the funny thing, we have many names. The problem today is that there are so many bands out there that the first thing we've gotta do is run them by a trademark. You know, we don't want to run into the Ghost and Ghost B.C. issue, right? So we're looking into trademarks on the name and I would love to tell you, but we want to save some of it for our official press release and we'll talk about the singer then and we'll have the record label then.
Mangin: Is the singer someone that we know?
Mangin: [Laughs] American, Canadian?
Broderick: He's a member of planet Earth.
Mangin: Hah! I like that place, it's pretty cool man.
Broderick: It's a good place and there are a lot of good singers there.
Mangin: So with some of these riffs that you've collected between you and Shawn Drover, were these things that you presented to Megadeth and were turned down, or you didn't feel like it was even worth it or even would work?
Broderick: I think some of them work presented but then some of them also I'd be like, oh this isn't appropriate for Megadeth's sound. I have a tendency to write very complex stuff, so I've got to watch it when I write and submit for Megadeth. I want to make sure it's not too complex or too crazy or too all over the place, so those are the things that I would have held back.
Mangin: So I know you're a boat veteran. I get queasy just talking about boat stuff, man. Are you like that or are you pretty pro about this stuff?
Broderick: No, you know, I wakeboard all the time. It's a very different feeling to be on a wakeboarding boat as opposed to a cruise ship because on a wakeboarding boat you see the waves coming at you, you understand why the boat is moving and why it's rocking. A cruise ship you just feel like – at least on the Motorboat cruise – you just feel these little pulses in the floor and I thought that was weird, but it's not like I was leaning over the side puking my brains out or anything. But it was killer and I had a great time, and I think Shiprocked will be equally as killer.
Mangin: That's awesome man. Any new hobbies that you plan on starting in your time off in this new life of yours? Anything you might want to pick up like maybe crochet?
Broderick: Yeah, I'm an avid knitter man. I could knit you a sweater from hell.
Mangin: It is Christmas, 'tis the season to give Chris! Maybe you should make a cool Liquid Metal sweater for us and we'll give it out to a lucky winner.
Broderick: I hope they are not in a cold climate, that's all I'm saying.
Mangin: What about hobbies, are you gonna pick up anything new in your life, just as a dude?
Broderick: No, like I said in the summer time I love wakeboarding. In the winter time, I just got back, I did a couple of days up at Mammoth Mountain doing some snowboarding and stuff like that, it was good to get away from recording. So those are the hobbies I have.
Mangin: Of course playing guitar.
Broderick: Of course, that's not a hobby though.
Mangin: That's life and love!
Broderick: I'll be under a bridge playing the guitar, it wouldn't matter.
Mangin: People can follow Chris in all of his adventures, it's @Chris_Broderick and he's on Twitter and Instagram as well. And of course we've got your back brother. I look forward to seeing you in a few weeks in California, and like I said we always have your back and thanks for supporting what we do here for all these years.
Broderick: Hey, thanks a lot, Jose. Thanks to everybody out there that's helpful and supporting, and actually thanks to all the heavy metal fans in general for just horns in the air.
Mangin: Hell yeah, Chris dude, you had a fuckin' awesome run brother, congratulations on everything you did with Megadeth and we look forward to your future.