Tag: Pink Floyd
Tomorrow, February 28th, marks the release of PINK FLOYD‘s The Wall Immersion Boxset.
Immersion Editions present the complete artistic experience. Lavishly packaged in a sturdy 29cm square box, the sets contain remastered, previously unreleased and audio-visual material, plus much additional content – reproduced memorabilia, brand new graphics, art prints, collectors’ items, lavish booklets and more.
One of the most acclaimed concept albums of all time, The Wall from 1979 is renowned as Roger Waters’ Rock Opera dealing with abandonment and personal isolation. Adapted for cinema by Alan Parker featuring Bob Geldof in the lead role, and featuring the unique artwork of Gerald Scarfe the album also yielded the hit single Another Brick In The Wall Pt2.
The Immersion version features:
The classic Studio album digitally remastered and presented as a limited edition high quality boxset featuring rare and unreleased audio and video material, plus a new 44 oversized perfect-bound booklet, a book of original photographs, exclusive merchandise and facsimile collectables.
DISCS 3&4 – CDs 3&4
The Wall album demos (previously unreleased)
DISCS 5&6 – CDs 5&6
Is There Anybody Out There: The Wall Live (digitally remastered in 2011 by James Guthrie)
DISC 7 – DVD, AUDIO VISUAL
Another Brick In The Wall pt2 promotional video – restored in 2011
Behind The Wall documentary
Gerald Scarfe Interview
Short filmed extract of Earls Court concert featuring animation
44 page 27cm x 27cm booklet designed by Storm Thorgerson
Exclusive photo book
27cm x 27cm Exclusive Storm Thorgerson Art Print
5 x Collectors’ Cards featuring art and comments by Storm Thorgerson
Replica of The Wall Tour Ticket
Replica of The Wall Backstage Pass
Prints/Cards of Mark Fisher’s stage drawings
3 x white marbles with design of bricks
9 x Coasters (unique to this box) featuring early Storm Thorgerson design sketches
4-8 page credits booklet
To purchase PINK FLOYD‘s THE WALL IMMERSION Box set click here.
Pink Floyd Music and EMI are to release an absolute torrent of CDs, DVDs, SACD’s and Blu-ray discs starting from 26th September 2011 in a three phased distribution.
The releases detailed below will come in three editions: Discovery, Experience and Immersion as well as a new best of called A Foot In The Door.
There will also be some new vinyl, iPhone Apps and various digital releases with details on those coming shortly. A new Pink Floyd website is also on the way.
September 26th 2011: All 14 remastered studio albums ‘Discovery’ editions, Box-set of all 14 albums with photo book, Audio downloads of ‘Discovery’ albums and box-set, The Dark Side of The Moon – ‘Immersion’ and ‘Experience’ editions, Vinyl LP and digital editions
November 7th 2011: A Foot In The Door -The Best of Pink Floyd, Wish You Were Here – ‘Immersion’ and ‘Experience’ editions, Vinyl LP and digital editions
February 27th 2012: The Wall – ‘Immersion’ and ‘Experience’ editions, Vinyl LP and digital editions
The Discovery Collection – Remastered Albums:
All of the studio albums will be getting remastered using the latest modern sound technology to add extra depth to the original recordings.
These albums will be available to purchase separately, or as one large boxset called The Discovery Collection and will be available from 26th September 2011.
All re-engineering of the sound has been completed by long-time Pink Floyd associate James Guthrie and artwork is by Storm Thorgerson.
If you are fairly new to Pink Floyd and only have a couple of albums, then this discovery range will be ideal for you. The purchase price will be a lot less to buy the boxset rather than every album individually. Hence you will be able to complete your studio album collection rather quickly!
Experience and Immersion Editions:
In addition to all the remastered studio albums, there will be three albums released as Experience and Immersion editions with varying amounts of new material on them. The Dark Side of the Moon, Wish You Were Here and The Wall will all be released as Experience boxsets which include lots of new goodies for all FLoydians!
Experience editions are expanded versions of classic albums in a Digipak bonus disc format. Included are the original remastered album, a disc of additional material and an expanded CD booklet.
Dark Side of the Moon (September 26th 2011) has on disc 2 a live concert recording from the BBC Archives from November 1974 at Wembley.
Wish You Were Here (November 7th 2011) has on disc 2 Shine On You Crazy Diamond (parts 1-6) live at Wembley November 1974 (2011 mix and previously unreleased), Raving & Drooling live at Wembley November 1974 (2011 mix and previously unreleased), You’ve Got To Be Crazy live at Wembley November 1974 (2011 mix and previously unreleased), Wine Glasses from the unreleased ‘Household Objects’ project, Have A Cigar alternative version (previously unreleased), Wish You Were Here featuring Stephane Grappelli (previously unreleased)
The Wall (February 27th 2012) has on disc 2 and 3 have content that is still to be announced. I believe Roger Waters et al are working on this release.
Present the complete artistic experience. Lavishly packaged in a sturdy 29cm square box, the sets contain remastered, previously unreleased and audio-visual material, plus much additional content – reproduced memorabilia, brand new graphics, art prints, collectors’ items, lavish booklets and more. All material from the experience editions is included as well as all of the amazing goodies belwo. This is what fans have been calling out for during the past many years!
Dark Side of the Moon – Immersion Boxset – September 26th 2011
DISC 3 – DVD 1, ALL AUDIO: The Dark Side Of The Moon, James Guthrie 2003 5.1 Surround Mix (previously released only on SACD) in standard resolution audio at 448 kbps / The Dark Side Of The Moon, James Guthrie 2003 5.1 Surround Mix (previously released only on SACD) in high resolution audio at 640 kbps / The Dark Side Of The Moon, LPCM Stereo mix (as disc 1) / The Dark Side Of The Moon, Alan Parsons Quad Mix (previously released only on vinyl LP/8 track tape in 1973) in standard resolution audio at 448 kbps / The Dark Side Of The Moon, Alan Parsons Quad Mix (previously released only on vinyl LP/8 track tape in 1973) in high resolution audio at 640 kbps
DISC 4 – DVD 2, ALL AUDIO VISUAL: Live In Brighton 1972: Careful With That Axe, Eugene (previously unreleased on DVD) / Set The Controls For The Heart Of The Sun (previously unreleased on DVD) / The Dark Side Of The Moon, 2003 documentary (25 min EPK) / Concert Screen Films (60 min total): British Tour 1974, French Tour 1974, North American Tour 1975. Screen films play in stereo and 5.1 Surround Sound
DISC 5 – BLURAY, AUDIO+AUDIO VISUAL: The Dark Side Of The Moon, James Guthrie 2003 5.1 Surround Mix (previously released only on SACD) in high resolution audio at 96 kHz/24-bit / The Dark Side Of The Moon, Original stereo mix (1973) mastered in high resolution audio at 96 kHz/24-bit / Live In Brighton 1972: Careful With That Axe, Eugene (previously unreleased on DVD/BluRay) / Set The Controls For The Heart Of The Sun (previously unreleased on DVD/BluRay) / The Dark Side Of The Moon, 2003 documentary (EPK) / Concert Screen Films (5.1 Surround Mix): British Tour 1974, French Tour 1974, North American Tour 1975 / Concert Screen Films (High Resolution Stereo Mix): British Tour 1974, French Tour 1974, North American Tour 1975
DISC 6 – CD3: The Dark Side Of The Moon 1972 Early Album Mix engineered by Alan Parsons (previously unreleased) / The Hard Way (from ‘Household Objects’ project) / Us And Them, Richard Wright Demo (previously unreleased) / The Travel Sequence, live from Brighton June 1972 (previously unreleased) / The Mortality Sequence, live from Brighton June 1972 (previously unreleased) / Any Colour You Like, live from Brighton June 1972 (previously unreleased) / The Travel Sequence, studio recording 1972 (previously unreleased) / Money, Roger Waters’ demo (previously unreleased)
This all comes with a 40 page 27cm x 27cm booklet designed by Storm Thorgerson, an exclusive photo book edited by Jill Furmanovsky, an exclusive Storm Thorgerson Art Print, 5 x Collectors’ Cards featuring art and comments by Storm Thorgerson, replica of The Dark Side Of The Moon tour ticket, replica of The Dark Side Of The Moon backstage pass, scarf, 3 x black marbles, 9 x Coasters (unique to this box) featuring early Storm Thorgerson design sketches, and a 12 page credits booklet.
Wish You Were Here – Immersion Boxset – November 7th 2011
DISC 3 – DVD1, ALL AUDIO: Wish You Were Here, James Guthrie 2009 5.1 Surround Mix (previously unreleased) in standard resolution audio at 448 kbps / Wish You Were Here, James Guthrie 2009 5.1 Surround Mix (previously unreleased) in high resolution audio at 640 kbps / Wish You Were Here, Original Mix (1975) LPCM stereo / Wish You Were Here, Quad Mix (previously released only on vinyl LP/8 track tape) in standard resolution audio at 448 kbps / Wish You Were Here, Quad Mix (previously released only on vinyl LP/8 track tape) in high resolution audio at 640 kbps
DISC 4 – DVD 2, AUDIO VISUAL: Concert Screen Films: Shine On You Crazy Diamond Intro / Shine On You Crazy Diamond / Welcome To The Machine animated clip / Storm Thorgerson short film. Concert Screen Films play in stereo and 5.1 Surround Sound
DISC 5 – BLURAY: AUDIO: Wish You Were Here, James Guthrie 2009 5.1 Surround Mix (previously unreleased) high resolution audio at 96 kHz/24-bit / Wish You Were Here, Original stereo mix (1975) mastered in high resolution audio at 96 kHz/24-bit / Concert Screen films: Shine On You Crazy Diamond Intro / Shine On You Crazy Diamond / Welcome To The Machine animated clip / Storm Thorgerson short film
This set comes with a 40 page, 27cm x 27cm booklet designed by Storm Thorgerson, an exclusive photo book edited by Jill Furmanovsky, an exclusive Storm Thorgerson Art Print, 5 x Collectors’ Cards featuring art and comments by Storm Thorgerson, replica of Wish You Were Here tour ticket, replica of Wish You Were Here backstage pass, scarf, 3 x clear marbles, 9 x coasters (unique to this box) featuring early Storm Thorgerson design sketches, and a 12 page credits booklet.
The Wall - Immersion Boxset – February 27th 2012
In the Immersion edition there are a grand old total of seven discs! The contents of two of the discs is yet to be announced but what we do know is that the Immersion edition comes with the previously released but now remastered two-disc Is There Anybody Out There, the live album from the original Wall shows and a seventh disc (a DVD) with the following:
Another Brick In The Wall part 2 promo video, restored in 2011
Behind The Wall documentary
Gerald Scarfe interview
Short filmed extract of Earls Court concert featuring animation.
This set comes with a 44 page, 27cm x 27cm booklet designed by Storm Thorgerson, an exclusive photo book, an exclusive Storm Thorgerson Art Print, 5 x Collectors’ Cards featuring art and comments by Storm Thorgerson, a replica of The Wall tour ticket, a replica of The Wall backstage pass, a scarf, prints/cards of Mark Fisher‘s stage drawings, 3 x white marbles with design of bricks, 9 x Coasters (unique to this box) featuring early Storm Thorgerson design sketches, and a credits booklet.
For more PINK FLOYD click here.
Slim Jim’s Top Ten of 2010
SHOOTER JENNINGS – Black Ribbons
The 70’s big classic rock – ball trippin’ – brain smokin’ – ear melting heavy tuneage of old is not dead. Shooter Jennings has created the heaviest album of 2010. In pure sonic fury, huge epicness, and massive songwriting. This isn’t Outlaw Country, This isn’t your daddy’s classic rock, this is Shooter Jennings and Hierophant (his band) racing along your brainwaves, fucking with all you thought you knew about music, and tainting what may come in the future. Take a little WHITE STRIPES, sprinkle some MUSE, add a dash of BLACK KEYS, smoke it with some Pink Floyd and dose repeatedly with Shooter himself, and you’ll get Black Ribbons. While the music will kick your ass, the lyrics will fuck with your brain, and the whole experience will make you think this whole fucked up industry could simply be saved if they’d just put out more solid music like this. This album should propel Shooter into Arenas and onto your grid faster than the clap takes hold of your sad tiny withered cock. But it seems the world would rather listen to the likes of sluts like Ke$ha, or 16 year old pubescent boys like Beiber than embrace the monster that is Shooter and Hierophant. WAKE UP people… If you haven’t experienced Black Ribbons… GO NOW. Do it here. You’ll thank me later. Oh, yes, Don’t Feed The Animals… And… FUCK YOU I’m FAMOUS. Did I mention there are 20 songs on this disc? 20! All of them will fuck with you, tie you in psychedelic knots and drip musical ecstasy semen out of your earholes. And don’t forget the indelible STEPHEN KING. Oh yeah, how could I forgot the title track Black Ribbons? It is quite simply the best Bruce Springsteen song that he never wrote.
ELEPAHNT MOUNTAIN – The Last Days of Planet Earth
Joe Altier and Slider from BRAND NEW SIN reunite to form ELEPHANT MOUNTAIN. The best Southern tinged Hard Rock album of the last year or three, and they hail from SYRACUSE, NY! If you’ve heard of BRAND NEW SIN, and have heard their first two records, then you’ll know exactly what ELEPHANT MOUNTAIN sounds like. And you’ll love it. You can spread the herd here.
THE BLACK KEYS – Brothers
Raw. Stripped. Deeper grooves than the ones fading on your wrist. Monochromed Stereophonically challenged. Bluesier than 20 quarts of Papa’s Jambalaya. More soulful than the most devout Methodist. The more I listen to this the more I want to go find all my ex’s. And slap the unloving chaos addicted shit out of them. The ultimate break up album. As it spins right now, I’m thinking it should move UP my top ten list. Fuck it. Ten Cent Pistol just reinforced the fact. And this is now my #3 best album of 2010 (As I originally wrote this, it was set at 7). You can join the Brothers here.
FILTER – The Trouble with Angels
An amazing return for FILTER. Raw, punishing, beautiful. Read my original review here.
ACCEPT – Blood of the Nations
Another reunion of sorts for ACCEPT. A new singer and a new lease on life. A great album that reminds us all why ACCEPT are Fast as a Shark. Read my original review here.
DISTRUBED – Asylum
More melodic than the past albums. More straight forward guitar solos than before. And more David Draiman. What more could you ask from a DISTURBED album? You can join the Asylum here.
SLASH – Slash
Slash gets a bunch of singers to sing on his album instead of going around singing on theirs. Great songs, great singers like Myles Kennedy (ALTER BRIDGE), Lemmy (MOTORHEAD), Ian Astbury (THE CULT), Ozzy, Chris Cornell (AUDIOSLAVE, SOUNDGARDEN), and many more. The most notable standout track and singer is Fergie (FERGIE, BLACK EYED PEAS) on the track Beautiful Dangerous. The woman should be singing balls out Rock N Roll all the time, not this pop pap shit with BEP. She has a great voice and holds her own amongst the more traditional and legendary vocalists on this album. You can get Slashed here.
AVENGED SEVENFOLD – Nightmare
Never a big A7X fan. But after seeing them this year at the Rockstar Uproar Festival with Disturbed I found a new respect for them as a live band. I figured out my problem with the band. M. Shadows has a good voice, but as he sings about dark lyrics, and leads the crowd into chants of ‘fuck you’ his voice has a rather high range to it. Making the music seem lighter and more lilting than the lyrics therefore belying the heaviness of the music. At times making it seem rather jokish or tongue in cheek. However after seeing their amazing performance live, I now get it. And can move past the vocal issue. The album is their best by far. Blazing guitars you’ve come to expect, full stream riffs crunch and chunk along getting your head and feet involved tapping along. Definitely deserving of anyone’s top ten list. You can become the Nightmare here.
EXODUS – Exhibit B: The Human Condition
EXODUS simple continues to pummel you into submission with their latest album. It is the fourth album in their return that does not fail to impress. The one drawback may simply be Rob Dukes‘ dry vocal style. But the brutal beating that you endure while listening to the album more than makes up for the lack of dimensions in his voice. Albums 6 – 10 will continue to beat the ever loving fuck out of your brain and spleen. I have no doubts about this. The band has never sounded better, tighter, or more focused than here. Which can only mean great things on the horizon for us fans. You can witness the Human Condition here.
DEATH ANGEL – Relentless Retribution
Any year is a good year when DEATH ANGEL releases a new album. The most important part of this is that the band promises to tour endlessly for this release. So that means we get more live Death Angel than ever before. And this boys and girls is a good thing. You can read my original review here.
Rock producer and historian Denny Somach today announced the establishment of the Classic Rock Society of America. The organization will be devoted to the preservation, promotion and celebration of classic rock music by the artists, musicians, producers and fans of the most popular musical category of the past fifty years.
Somach is a recognized expert on Classic Rock and considered one of the architect’s of the Classic Rock radio format, which has become dominant in broadcasting and attracts millions of listeners. He has produced over 7500 hours of classic rock programming and maintains one of the largest archives of audio, video and data related to the topic. Somach has also authored numerous articles and books on the subject and appeared as an authority on shows including Today, Larry King , CBS Early Show, Dateline NBC, CNN, CNBC, MTV and others.
“The appeal of classic rock artists like the Beatles, Rolling Stones, the Who, Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd, the Doors, Moody Blues, Yes, Grateful Dead, Jethro Tull, Aerosmith, Styx, Deep Purple, Queen, the Allman Brothers and many, many others has never been more popular,” said Somach. “Classic rock has become cross-generational and is the most popular rock music format not just in the US and Canada, but around the world.”
The Classic Rock Society of America (CRSA) is an organization where people from all over the world can experience and commemorate their favorite music. Many colleges and universities have classes about this music and it is being taught everywhere. The CRSA will act as a resource center for students and teachers, enabling them to further enhance their study of classic rock.
CRSA was inspired by the UK’s Classic Rock Society, with a membership of thousands, and Classic Rock magazine, a publisher, recording label and music promoter. Both organizations are dedicated to the growth of all classic rock music. The UK’s Classic Rock Magazine presents a number of live shows, including the recent High Voltage Festival, which featured ZZ Top, Foreigner, Asia, Bachman-Turner, Uriah Heep, Argent and a reformed Emerson, Lake and Palmer to celebrate its 40th anniversary.
Rick Wakeman is the honorary Chairman of the U.K. Classic Rock Society. “When I contacted him about the Classic Rock Society of America we were launching, he immediately lent his support and thought it was about time something like this was established in America.” Subsequently the other founding board members including John Wetton of Asia and Dave Cousins of the Strawbs have publically announced their support.
“I have also spoken to over fifty musicians, producers and managers who are more than happy to not only lend their name but become actively involved in the Classic Rock Society of America,” stated Somach.
The Classic Rock Society of America will debut as an interactive web site and its own radio channel. It will also include marketing and promotion entities. The virtual society will eventually have a physical location where musicians and fans can visit and enjoy the many facets of the musical genre. Somach said, “We have already been contacted by a couple of municipal development organizations about locating a facility in their communities.”
For more CLASSIC ROCK SOCIETY OF AMERICA click here.
In January Pearl Aday released her first album Little Immaculate White Fox to critical praise. No stranger to the stage Pearl started out at a young age running handkerchiefs out to her well known father Meatloaf during his performances. After spending nine years in his band as a backup singer, she then toured with Motley Crue as a ‘Crue Slut’ in 2000 where she met her now husband Scott Ian of Anthrax. Her band is none other than Mother Superior and her guitarist husband performs with her. We recently spoke about growing up the daughter of a Rockstar, why women who rock today are not necessarily Janis Joplin or Pat Benetar clones, how Rock & Roll still exists and is not simply 70’s riffs rehashed, as well as leopard print outfits and g strings. Pearl took the time to explain why she felt now is the time to release her first album, how Slipknot is not a guilty pleasure but just good music, and how difficult it can be stepping out of the shadow of the legendary Meatloaf.
AWAY TEAM: This is Slim Jim with Away-Team.com, and I am speaking with Pearl Aday. Congratulations on the release of your first album Little Immaculate White Fox. It came out in January, and how have the sales and reception for it been so far?
PEARL ADAY: Both really good considering that we’re just a tiny little baby band. But reception all around has been really great. The response we’ve been getting it’s just really been positive. People either know about me and they really love it because they’re so set already, or they’re a lot of the time pleasantly surprised because a lot of people don’t know who I am. They hear the references for Meatloaf and they hear the reference for Anthrax and they’re like ‘well it’s a girl’, and it’s ‘what is this?’ And then they hear it and they go ‘oh ok this is rock and roll and it’s good, I really dig this’ you know? And this is like usually, I’ve heard a lot too ‘this is like something that I miss and didn’t even know I missed it because it’s not around anymore’ you know what I mean? This is pretty simple; this is rock ‘n’ roll! It’s a girl kicking ass singing rock ‘n’ roll so I mean if it’s good you can’t really go wrong with that.
AWAY TEAM: Well I’d heard about you several years ago basically through following Anthrax and your husband Scott Ian (guitarist for Anthrax), and when the album came out I was looking forward to checking it out and I was very impressed. Not that I didn’t expect anything from it but it exceeded my expectations it was very good! And you’re absolutely right it’s a straightforward rock ‘n’ roll album. A lot of people I’ve heard kinda compare what they call today straightforward rock ‘n’ roll they’re kind of saying it’s a like a ‘70s rock revival and I’m like no, this is what rock ‘n’ roll is! I think people just forgot.
PEARL ADAY: Exactly! You know I’ve been getting that story of like throwback, those comments about being a throwback to the ‘70s. It’s like well, has it not been around that long? Like is that the last time you heard really like good true simple rock ‘n’ roll done like this? I guess maybe it is, but it’s kinda funny that people consider it a throwback. This is rock ‘n’ roll! This is classic you know what I mean? Classic in the sense that it never goes out of style. People seem to think that it’s like a retro thing. Not everybody, but a lot of people. I guess I get that but I don’t necessarily agree with it
AWAY TEAM: I’ve always found it amusing that straightforward male rock ‘n’ roll bands like say Jet or whatnot, they get compared to AC/DC. If you’re a straightforward male rock ‘n’ roll band oh well you’re like AC/DC. And if you’re a female fronted or female rock ‘n’ roll band, oh, well you’re Janis Joplin, or you’re Heart or you’re like Pat Benetar. But you’re not necessarily like anybody else. It doesn’t have to be that throwback. It’s new, it’s modern, its straightforward rock ‘n’ roll. Period.
PEARL ADAY: Right. Thank you!
AWAY TEAM: Absolutely! And I promise that will be the only Janis Joplin reference in the interview.
PEARL ADAY: Cool! Well I love Janis! I mean people bring up her name with mine in the same sentence all the time. And I think that she’s amazing, but I don’t think that I sound like Janis. I don’t think anyone sounds like Janis you know what I mean? It’s flattering but at the same time that’s not true. I would say that anybody, nobody, was like her before and or ever will be after her! So it’s good you and I are on the same page.
AWAY TEAM: A little quick history of yours, you are Meatloaf’s daughter. Growing up backstage, at home, and on the road did you realize who your father was? I’ve heard stories or read interviews where when you were very young you would run out in between songs on stage and change out his hankies for him or his handkerchiefs. But did you understand how big he was? Who Meatloaf was and what he had done with Bat Out of Hell?
PEARL ADAY: Well no I don’t think when I was 4 years old I was understanding the whole scope of what Bat Out of Hell had done. The sort of the walls that he had broken down, especially being a big guy, and fronting a band which is what initially gave him a lot of trouble trying to get into the business. Because they’re like you’re a big guy that sings rock opera what the hell is this? And he just kept going and going and going until it worked and it was massive. So no, when I was 4 years old of course I didn’t understand the scope of that. I don’t quite remember how I thought of it. I did understand that that was his job and that he would go to work and go up on stage and sing, and there would be packed arenas of thousands of people singing his songs and screaming for him and adoring him. So how a child gets that or how to processes that concept I don’t really remember, But I remember understanding that that was what he did, that was his job. There’s a story that my mom loves to tell when, we always had an apartment in Manhattan, we I grew up in and I went to school in Connecticut. We had a house in Connecticut and an apartment in Manhattan, we don’t anymore but growing up I did. We had a place that was right across the street from Central Park and my dad had a day off and it wasn’t a day when he was playing softball in the park cuz he used to do that a lot too. And it was like daddy-daughter day and he took me to the park right by the softball fields where there’s swings and stuff like that. We just got swarmed by fans! I’m on the swing and he’s pushing me and I remember this, I was like 5 years old I think, and he’s pushing me on the swing and then I go forward and I come back and I turn and he’s not there to push me again! But he’s signing autographs. And after that we went back the apartment and my mom asked ‘so how was the day Pearl?’ and I just went ‘Meatloaf, Meatloaf, Meatloaf that’s all I ever hear is Meatloaf’! That was around that time of Bat Out Of Hell. And then it happened again in the 90’s, we couldn’t go anywhere without him just being swarmed. So as a little girl I don’t think I totally got that. I think that it was just like people are annoying and taking my dad away from daddy-daughter day, I didn’t totally get the autograph thing. Growing up, when I was 19 that’s when I started singing in his band. I sang in his band for 9 years so at that point I understood what was going on. But when I was real little I think it was more, ‘ok this is what dad does and people like to talk to him when we’re out.’
AWAY TEAM: So at what point did the music bug bite you? At what point did you say hey either I’m good at this or this is what I really want to do?
PEARL ADAY: I don’t know, I always remember singing around the house and making little girl groups with my girlfriends and performing in the living room for everybody. We had a girl group called the Bottle Caps I remember. We would put on tutus and lip sync to Leader of the Pack, I don’t know why Leader of the Pack but that we liked that song when we were 10. In elementary middle school I was always in plays and musicals and high school I was the lead in all the musicals and in a band, and in college I was in a band. So I think it was just always just something that I was gravitating towards, always singing in the house, and writing in high school. I started writing poems and putting them to music; stuff like that. I think always I always wanted to be a singer. Always!
AWAY TEAM: You were, as you already stated, Meatloaf’s backup singer for many years and you were a backup singer for Motley Crue for awhile, so what took you so long to step out front and do your own album?
PEARL ADAY: It’s funny when people say “what took you so long?” But I think that if I tried to do this 10 years ago this wouldn’t have come out. I think that it needed to happen naturally and organically and I had to live the life that I’ve lived up to this point in order to make this music and write these lyrics. You know I had to I had to experience it first, Well I experienced a shitload my entire life, but I also had to get the experience of performing and I think build up my gut. It’s quite an intimidating thing to have a parent who is such a megastar and that is what you want to do too and sort of…
AWAY TEAM: Oh I can’t imagine! I can’t imagine trying to step out of that shadow.
PEARL ADAY: Forget about it! It’s really scary and unless…you know a different personality might have gone ‘blaahhhh here I am! I’m ready!’ but I’m sort of more like I’ll hang out until I’m ready because I don’t want to come out and do it half assed or go out and look like I don’t know what I’m doing. I want it to be the best that it’s gonna be and I think that’s what this is for right now. You know the next album that we write might be better. I don’t know. It will be different in the sense that it’ll be different songs and I’ll have lived that much longer and learned that much more through the cycle of this album, performing and finding my feet onstage as a front-person in a band which is something that I’ve become really comfortable with right now. But I still don’t know everything that there is to know. Every time I go onstage I learn something new about myself and as a performer. In terms of what you said ‘why did it take you so long’ and I don’t think… I don’t see it that way. I see it as this is happening now. This is what’s happening now it wasn’t going to happen before. I used to do some interviews with my dad through those 9 years when I was performing in his band with him and he would introduce me sometimes as ‘yeah this is my daughter the amazing singer who’s afraid to sing’ because it was true. I was comfortable in my niche being a backup singer which, don’t get me wrong, that’s an important job especially with Jim Steinman and Meatloaf songs! Those parts are not easy. Those are complicated songs. I wasn’t fronting it though, I was back there and my voice was blending in with lots of other voices with the other people who were singing on stage too. I don’t think I was ready then to step out, I needed to observe a little longer and I needed to find it in myself.
AWAY TEAM: You’ve done a few dates for the release of the album. I actually saw your performance on Jimmy Kimmel Live which is so far the only chance I’ve had to see you perform. I know your band is opening for Meatloaf on his tour starting next month. When will we see you out doing a full fledged tour on your own?
PEARL ADAY: Hopefully we’ll be able to get back out and do that again. We actually did that in the spring for a month. We went all around the U.S. doing headlining club dates. First time we ever did that in the States and that was great. So hopefully we’ll be getting to do that again soon. I’m always ready to perform whenever, wherever, because I love it so much. But I always say the money fairies have to visit us because we don’t have a machine or a record label or stuff like that. So every tour everything that we do comes from our pockets and it’s not cheap! Contrary to what most people think my dad doesn’t give me a penny. My dad is a very wealthy man but it doesn’t mean that I am you know what I mean? Definitely letting me forge my own path find my own way with this. He’s not buying me tour buses and shit like that. Actually these opening dates for him we were told no! no! no! no! no no no no no no… forever and ever and ever. Then at the last minute I got an email from him saying, ‘what are you doing from Aug 12th on?’ I’m going ‘I thought you told us no, what are you doing?’ so though we’re thrilled I mean are you kidding me? We start here in LA at the Gibson Amphitheater so you know it’s much better than the Cheyenne Saloon, it’ll be a really, really good run for us. We’re just stoked.
AWAY TEAM: How do you go from being a backup singer for Meatloaf to becoming a Nasty Habit for Motley Crue?
PEARL ADAY: You audition! (Laughs) Yeah, I auditioned. In 2000 I heard they were auditioning girls but we weren’t the Nasty Habits we were the Crue Sluts. The Nasty Habits were from the Girls, Girls, Girls tour. They were before us that was Donna and Amy. We were called the Crue Sluts from the Frank Zappa song. You know there’s a song called the Crew Sluts. Actually that’s how they would open the show before the band would come on, there would be sirens and a light show and they would play Zappa’s Crew Sluts so it was cool.
AWAY TEAM: I actually saw the Maximum Rock Tour in 2000.
PEARL ADAY: Yeah in 2000 that’s the one I was on.
AWAY TEAM: It had you and who was the other singer?
PEARL ADAY: Well where did you see it? Cuz we had one girl who started and then she quit two weeks in and we got another girl. The first girl had short dark hair and the second girl had long red hair.
AWAY TEAM: Ok, this was in Sacramento and I think it was almost halfway through the run if I’m not mistaken.
PEARL ADAY: I think Sacramento was towards the beginning.
AWAY TEAM: Was it towards the beginning? Ok.
PEARL ADAY: Yeah we started like June 25th or something up in Sacramento actually.
AWAY TEAM: Ok yeah cuz I know that Anthrax was still on the bill and unfortunately they didn’t last throughout the whole tour.
PEARL ADAY: Right, right yeah so you saw me and Marty her name was.
AWAY TEAM: Ok, and then Samantha Maloney (HOLE drummer) was doing drums at that point too for Motley Crue, so you had as much estrogen onstage as testosterone from the Motley Crue boys…
PEARL ADAY: (Laughs) I guess so! Well they always had girls. They’d never had a female drummer before, so that was super cool. Yeah I think even with those guys the testosterone definitely outweighed the estrogen!
AWAY TEAM: How did your dad handle your touring with Motley Crue? The infamous Motley Crue…
PEARL ADAY: Fine! It was fine. I mean he’s a performer he understands performance and costume… and I mean we had 5 costume changes. I don’t know if you remember, there was the rubber dress and the nurse outfit, the nasty nurse, and then there was the Wild Side with the leopard and the g-string. I mean it was great, with a cat ‘o’ nine tails yeah! I think we actually came and played Gibson Amphi- it was Universal Amphitheater back then but my dad came to the show. And he was backstage beforehand and the first costume of the show was a like a blue rubber mini cop dress with a zipper down the front. And I had a long, long wig like a long blonde wig with blonde bangs and blue eye shadow from my lashes to my eyebrows. A push up bras like 3 of them and platform boots, thigh high platform boots. I walked out and I walked right up to him and he looked at me like I was a stranger. He didn’t recognize me! I went, ‘dad it’s me’ and he was like ‘WHOA’! He never expected to see me like that. And Girls, Girls, Girls when we come out up we would like walk down the catwalks and come up to the front and dance on a little platform I think I saw him peeking through his own fingers out in the audience like that yeah. He wasn’t I mean you can’t really freak out a Rockstar you know? He gets that its performance, so it’s all costume and lights and loud music.
AWAY TEAM: So you did a lot of writing for Little Immaculate White Fox with the boys from Mother Superior, which used to be Henry Rollins‘ Band or for the Rollins Band they performed with him. How’d you get connected up with them?
PEARL ADAY: Actually Scott knew them. When Scott and I first started dating I was a fan of Mother Superior and Scott happened to know them and introduced me to them. I think it was one of my birthdays and he invited them to my birthday party. I was really like just a dorky fangirl and I had a couple of drinks and I walked up to them and I said ‘hey I’m Pearl’ and they were like ‘yeah happy birthday’. After awhile of talking I said ‘hey what do you guys think about having a chick sing with you maybe a little bit?’ I don’t know what am I saying! (Laughs) They kind of like stopped and looked at each other and I was like ‘oh god what did I just say’! Then they turned around and went ‘ok’. So from that point on they’d say well we got we have a riff or melody we have song idea, so I’d go over to their… this was when they still shared an apartment Jim and Marcus. And I’d go over to their place and they’d play it for me and I’d record it and then I’d take it home and start plugging in lyrics. We’d get together after that and flesh it out but that’s pretty much how we worked with all the songs. Later Scott started getting more involved with helping with the arrangements and melody ideas and lyrics and stuff. So there are a few songs where Scott’s in on the writing credits as well. It’s a really, really great process actually because I just clicked with those guys immediately in terms of style and vibe. We were just totally on the same page when it came to all that stuff. It’s like ‘Ah that’s exactly what was in my brain!’ So it was just an organic and natural thing. I met these guys and then fell into writing with them and because it’s not easy to find a writing partner, not everybody can write together. And this just happened to be a perfect match, so it’s really good!
AWAY TEAM: How long was that writing period from the time you approached them at your birthday party until the release of the album or at least the starting of the recording of the album?
PEARL ADAY: Well it was a few years because we initially got together and got a bunch of songs and went in and recorded a demo album at Cherokee Studios here in LA. It’s actually flattened now, which is sad because it was a really cool old studio full of lots of history. But we did that and played… I got a band together I didn’t initially play with the guys from Mother Superior they just played on the demo. I played around town with those songs that we recorded. I had like a 9 piece… I had like a horn section and a B3 organ and guitars and drums and like a huge band which is kinda tough when you’re playing the Viper Room you know cuz its tiny. We sorta lived with those songs and noticed that some of them weren’t quite as good as others and some of them were pretty weak so we got rid of the shitty ones and wrote new ones. Then started rehearsing the new ones and freshening up on the older ones and called Scott (Ian) and Joe Baresi, the producer, and gave him a call and he came down to one of our rehearsals and agreed to produce the album. Which is now Little Immaculate White Fox with the exception of Broken White, and the cover of Ike & Tina’s Nutbush City Limits. Those two we tacked on at the end. Broken White was the last song that was written, that’s like the newest one and that one includes writing credit for my guitar player Anale Cult who actually wrote the last song on the album called Anything. Those were recorded at Matt Sorum’s studio and produced by our friend Jay Rustin who does The Donnas and Steel Panther. Joe Baresi did the bulk of it and then Jay did the last two. But it’s a good collaboration.
AWAY TEAM: Is your current touring band is that different from the recording band?
PEARL ADAY: Well it’s funny you say that because my recording band was Mother Superior, the drummer, the bass player and the guitar player and Scott Ian and I have been touring with a different band. Right now my bass player is Marcus Blake from Mother Superior who’s just done the last tour with us and now it’ll be Jim Wilson from Mother Superior on guitar Scott Ian on guitar and our drummer will be filling in for us because my drummer just quit on me at the last minute right before the big tour but the drummer filling in for us on these dates will be my friend Andy Hurley who actually plays with Fall Out Boy.
AWAY TEAM: What was Mother Superior doing? Henry really hasn’t done anything musically for quite awhile, have they been playing around with other people, doing their own thing because I hadn’t really heard their name until you…
PEARL ADAY: You gotta check them out! Mother Superior is a kick ass rock trio! They’re amazing! I was a huge fan of theirs. When I said I was a fan of theirs I’m a fan of Mother Superior I wasn’t talking about Rollins, even though I do like Rollins. They were only the Rollins Band for like 6 years but they’ve been going on their own. They have 12 out, 10 albums, or something like that. They’re not super well known… they’ve got a lot of fans out in Spain and France too. Look ‘em up they’re pretty kick ass! I mean they’re really kick ass! When they’re not doing their own thing they also are uh Daniel Lanois’ touring band.
AWAY TEAM: So how do you go about writing a song? Do you journal everyday, write poems, and then when your collaborators kinda get a song structure down you modify the words or the timing to fit the music? Or do they write the music around your words?
PEARL ADAY: No the music comes first. They’ll send me ideas for melodies or song ideas, the music, and then I’ll sit down and put the words in. so whatever the music is, depending on if it’s upbeat or if it’s mid tempo or slower, and I’ll just sit down with it and let the words come, ideas just come into my mind and the words just come out that way.
AWAY TEAM: And who are your influences musically?
PEARL ADAY: Aw how much time you got? For writing or for lyrics? I’m a huge; god I gotta make a list! This is when you’re a kid and someone asks you what you want for Christmas and you know everything you want and then when you get asked your mind goes blank! As far as lyrics go there are certain songs cuz not every song from a particular artist is my favorite. Of course there’s the regular… there’s Bob Dylan, there’s Joni Mitchell, who are great poets and I love their lyric style. I’ll actually sometimes sit down and if I get stuck writing lyrics I’ll sit down and listen to them because they’re so colorful and visual and they’re such storytellers, that it kind of opens up the room for you. Having writers block for me, it’s like the room’s sort of narrowing down to a pinpoint and you can’t see beyond anything. So listening to those writers or somebody else who I admire the writing style of, it opens it back up again. A friend of mine Leona Ness she’s a singer/songwriter I really admire her songwriting style. You know something like Wish You Were Here by Pink Floyd! I think that is an amazing song lyrically. It’s just an amazing song but the lyrics in that are like “oh my god I wish I wrote that”!
AWAY TEAM: Which leads into my next question: What’s one song that you listen to and you’re like god if I could have written that, or I should have written that song?
PEARL ADAY: I don’t know if I have just one because they’re all special for different reasons. They’re all amazing you can’t really put one on top because there’s so much amazing stuff. But that one that would definitely be on the list maybe A Song For You Donny Hathaway, you know that one?
AWAY TEAM: It sounds familiar yes, I’d have to go back and listen to it but the name sounds familiar.
PEARL ADAY: I don’t know I’d have to get back to you on that one, that’s a tough one.
AWAY TEAM: And guilty pleasure-wise you know you being the rocker chick with the Meatloaf bloodline and the heavy metal guitarist husband… What’s your guilty pleasure that you’re listening to these days that you’re almost embarrassed to admit or people would be surprised to know?
PEARL ADAY: It’s funny, I talk with Scott and my friends every once in a while about guilty pleasures because it’s fun to ask people what their guilty pleasures are. But it’s funny what other people consider guilty pleasures to be. As far as what people would be surprised to hear me listening to? I guess because my musical tastes are all over the place so I’ll listen to Slipknot. I love Slipknot! And then I’ll put on you know Joni Mitchell Blue or something. I love them both.
AWAY TEAM: It’s quite a dichotomy, quite diverse.
PEARL ADAY: I mean somebody else asked me a question similar to that and I said that I love Slipknot, and they’re like ‘Really? You listen to Slipknot?’ Why is that weird? I don’t get it. Because I’m a girl or? Anyway so people are usually surprised to hear that I like Slipknot I don’t know why.
AWAY TEAM: Seems to me to make perfect sense having the husband you have but you know…
PEARL ADAY: Yeah well it doesn’t mean that I like everything he likes! Even though we kind of do like the same stuff, but it’s funny because when I got with Scott he introduced me to the metal world and then I introduced him to stuff that he loves now. Like Otis Redding and Donny Hathaway and stuff like that which he was aware of but I don’t think he ever really listened to it before. Now he’s really into it so it’s cool!
AWAY TEAM: Well I thank you very much for your time ah good luck on the upcoming tour and hopefully we will see you guys out on your own headlining! And help get the word out there as much as possible for a very good album Little Immaculate White Fox. I wish you all the luck and much success to you!
PEARL ADAY: Thank you, thank you and I thank you for your time because it’s really important to us to have people like you to help us spread the word so thank you back to you
AWAY TEAM: I appreciate it Pearl thank you very much!
PEARL ADAY: Cool alright have a good day!
Pearl starts her tour tomorrow August 12th. Here are her current dates:
Aug 12 2010 Gibson Amphitheatre Los Angeles, CA
Aug 15 2010 Snoqualmie Casino Snoqualmie, WA
Aug 18 2010 Humphrey’s San Diego, CA
Aug 20 2010 Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Las Vegas, NV
Aug 22 2010 Celebrity Theatre Phoenix, AZ
Aug 24 2010 River Spirit Casino Tulsa, OK
Aug 26 2010 House of Blues dallas, tx
Aug 28 2010 House of Blues Houston, TX
Aug 30 2010 Hard Rock Orlando, FL
Sep 1 2010 Hard Rock Hollywood, FL
Sep 4 2010 Fantasy Springs Indio, CA
Sep 5 2010 Silver Legacy Casino Reno, NV
My thanks to Pearl for taking time out of her busy schedule to do the interview, Kymm at 60 Cycle for setting it up, and Melissa Dolak for her wonderful transcription services.
Two time Grammy Nominees Shadows Fall has been shredding the Massachusetts’ metal and hardcore scene for the last 15 years. In 2005 they joined the Ozzfest tour and began their much deserved rise from kings of the underground to a house hold name around the world as the leader’s of the new Thrash Metal movement. Their style has been discussed and dissected ad nauseam. Are they metal? Hardcore? Post core? Metal core? Reggae metal? Hippy metal? Who cares… They rock; they’ll kick your ass given the chance. They’re touring the world in support of their latest CD Retribution, which they released on their own label Everblack Industries.
Shadows Fall is currently on the road with the Rockstar Energy Drink Mayhem Festival and I had the chance to sit down with their singer Brian Fair and talk about his views of the current condition of the music ‘industry‘, what the pros and cons are in having your own label inprint, the dangers of slamming a vert ramp with your skateboard after a few bowls of your favorite herb, and how it feels to be metal’s dirty hippie.
AWAY-TEAM: This is Slim Jim with Away-team.com talking with Brian Fair from Shadows Fall. So let’s see, first off you guys just kicked off the first show of the Rockstar Energy Drink Mayhem Festival. How did that….
BRIAN FAIR: Yes indeed man. San Bernardino yesterday man, it was killer man, it was a great first show where there was none of the normal equipment break downs or things – just there were regular speed bumps. It went pretty smooth. Everything really worked out well. The show was killer, the crowd was killer! But I’m a little afraid today because since nothing went wrong yesterday we’re assuming it all happens today you know !(laughs)
AWAY-TEAM: Right yeah absolutely. So where are you today?
BRIAN FAIR: You gotta run into the gremlin somewhere. Shoreline which is a little south of San Francisco in Mountain View, California.
AWAY-TEAM: Mountain View, California I’m very familiar with it, I’m from the Bay Area originally myself.
BRIAN FAIR: Oh nice nice. I love Shoreline. It’s one of my favorite venues there is. We’ve done an Ozzfest here before so it’s good to be back. Yeah and bein’ a hippie Deadhead myself I just feel that holy ground you know.
BRIAN FAIR: Yeah you know honestly I went to as many hardcore and metal shows growing up as I did to Dead shows and Reggae shows and stuff. So I think just kinda keeping that open mind is what’s really allowed us to really kinda push things in directions that other metal bands may not kind of approach. Or just not have the subconscious for the influences that would be there. I’m definitely the dirty metal hippie so it’s… I’m a Gemini, so I gotta have the twin side anyway you know.
AWAY-TEAM: There you go, the ‘dirty metal hippie‘ I like that! (laughs)
BRIAN FAIR: Yup! (laughs)
AWAY-TEAM: So for most people your band Shadows Fall kinda got name recognition within say the last five years. Probably Ozzfest 2005 it is kinda what opened a lot of doors for you, and you became if not a household name, the people outside of the underground really found out about you. But the reality is you guys have been around for 15 years. Your first album came out in 1997. So what do you think took so long…
BRIAN FAIR: Yeah it’s crazy!
AWAY-TEAM: You even have two Grammy nominations in the last three years!
BRIAN FAIR: Yeah it’s pretty crazy cuz you know, we started as like a small little Massachusetts metal band kinda just doin’ our own thing in a very small scene. But it really started to just kinda get back on the radar and blow up. When it seemed like a lot of bands kinda came up at the same time, us, Killswitch Engage, Lamb of God, and it just kinda put the U.S. metal kinda back on the map. Metal never goes away. It just may go a little bit underground, but it’s always pretty much full on happening in the scene. So it’s kinda cool that the industry started paying a little attention. I think just even towards like Ozzfest being so successful kinda just put metal in general back on the radar and then us getting in front of those audiences definitely helped.
BRIAN FAIR: Well you know it was just a really kind of close knit scene back in the day. Where there was a lot of small hardcore shows and the bands all knew each other and all kind of grew up playing in bands together before that. It was a very open minded scene that was the other thing. People weren’t like limiting themselves to ‘oh we only play traditional hardcore’ ‘we only play straight up death metal’, people were really experimenting melodically and I think that led to bands kind of branching out in different directions and really kinda catching a lot of people’s attention. But it is really funny cuz I mean when we all started, we, the bands, played to each other! There was no crowd you know it was just us. You’d have 10 bands on the bill and that would be 10 bands in the audience. So it’s funny now that it’s kinda like a worldwide thing where we tour Australia and Japan with Killswitch Engage or something like that. It’s just crazy to think about. So….
AWAY-TEAM: You’ve actually got a former member that’s in Killswitch and one that it’s in All That Remains and you guys did a tour together where the three bands were on the same bill or on the same tour together. How does that work backstage? Is there any kinda animosity or does the fact that you guys…
BRIAN FAIR: Aw no! Everyone’s still friends. It’s all good. Like everyone’s just friends. As all the bands were starting…that members were just kinda plucked…When your high school band would break up, you’d meet up with the other two guys. And when their band broke up; then start a new band. So we all we all toured together and played shows and everyone still hangs out. Everyone still lives in the same area pretty much where they grew up so everyone still kicks it.
AWAY-TEAM: So having that close knit familiarity when you guys do tour together, do you guys get real competitive? Does it make you turn it up a notch onstage? Not necessarily to outdo them but to you know…
BRIAN FAIR: I think in general whenever we play with good bands it just motivates you. It’s not necessarily a competition thing, but you just realize, ‘We gotta go out and crush it!‘ But metal lines in general you can’t really half step anyway. They’re gonna let you know. You gotta come out and just kill it anyway. Especially on a tour like this one with so many great bands, you gotta just do something to kinda stand out. Especially in the festival scenario where people are getting little 20 minute shots of you. You gotta make the most of your time and then leave ‘em remembering who you were. So it’s kinda like that when we go out with those bands. It’s the same way you see them go out and crush and you’re like, ‘alright, now we gotta at least hit ‘em just as hard if not harder.’
AWAY-TEAM: Absolutely! You’ve done a lot of label switching over the years. You started out with Century Media, went up to Atlantic, and your last album which was released last year, Retribution, you’ve released on your own label. Is this because there’s more freedom for you to do it how you want it, more creative control, and more monetary control? Or what are the advantages of a do-it-yourself label?
BRIAN FAIR: You know honestly it’s not necessarily the artistic control because Atlantic and Century Media… we would make the records and then play it for them when they were done. So they didn’t really have a whole lot of input that way. But what is great is by doing both the indie label thing for years and then being with Atlantic for a little while, we’ve learned a lot about what works for us as a band and the best way to promote ourselves. And took lessons from both of those experiences to kinda be able to renegotiate our Atlantic deal into a distribution deal with their parent company Warner Music. Where we took the monetary control is the biggest thing too, like budget wise, we were able to spend money in the right places and make those decisions ourselves as opposed to some major labels just want to throw a bunch of money into a video or radio. And hope it hits. With us that’s just not really the way it works. So there’d be a lot of not necessarily wasted money, but money that could’ve been directed in a better direction. So that’s what’s great now, and also there’s no more excuses. Like, ‘oh I didn’t know we were doing this, I didn’t know we were doing that.’ Everyone’s involved so you can all be on the same page and really just try and make the best decisions. But also with the music industry struggling so much, record sales dropping so drastically, it was time to make a new business model anyway instead of getting 10% royalty rate on records. On declining record sales now we at least get an 80%. So we are at least working to put money in your own pocket as opposed to the bottom you know for someone’s car payment on their Porsche.
AWAY-TEAM: Exactly and that that was basically my next question, do you think having the control of your own label will help secure you in, by most people’s estimates, 3 years the major labels will all collapse if they don’t immediately change their business model?
BRIAN FAIR: Yeah that’s the thing you know. It was all about being proactive instead of waiting to see where the chips fell as is the fallout from the downloading mess of the internet… We didn’t want to wait and see what… Cuz you could tell labels were in panic mode. We were lucky when we signed with Atlantic because things were a little more stable. And we were able to get a really good advance and sign a great deal. But those days are gone. Now it’s all 360 deals or they’re trying to take a percentage of your merch, your publishing, your touring, everything! So instead of waiting around to see what was the last of the industry, we figured we’d start our own little business model. I have a feeling that even the CD itself might be gone soon, just the way cassettes and vinyl were before. It’s better to learn as much about the business side and handle as much personally, band for band, as you can. When it gets down to that your gonna have to… if you don’t know what to do then… you know you’re just gonna be sitting there just kinda stuck in limbo so we figured we’d get ahead of the game.
AWAY-TEAM: What I think a lot of people don’t realize is… you mentioned the 360 deals. Most people think that bands make a ton of money off album sales. And in the 80s and 90s there was good money to be made there. But today, and the last 10 years if not a little more than that, your artists and your bands make their money on the road. Selling the t-shirts, selling the tickets, selling all kinds of merch. That’s where you make the most amount of your money. So now labels are doing what they’re calling the 360 deals and they’re taking a little bit of your merch, they’re taking some of your guarantees at the door and your ticket sales just so they can try to survive themselves, and like you said make their Porsche payments.
BRIAN FAIR: Yup and it’s unfortunate for a lot of younger bands. Those are the only options they are being presented with. In a young band and you’re a teenage kid and you just want to get out of the practice space and get on the road. And you think that’s your only option and it may be ok when you’re on a small level. But if you start blowing up all of a sudden you realize you’re like, ‘we’re giving these people money for nothing you know? They’re not even here selling our t-shirts yet they’re getting 10% of every one we just sold!’ It’s really an unfortunate thing; cuz like you said that really is where you make your money. You know touring, merchandising, as well as publishing! Getting yourself onto video games or movies or just random soundtracks and things like that. And as soon as you let the label start dipping into that you’re gonna really be left with nothing else. So it’s really about trying to protect your assets if you can. It’s unfortunate; I remember when we just wanted to rock, now we gotta study tax laws and stuff. It’s terrible but if you want to do it full time, it’s something you gotta really take seriously.
AWAY-TEAM: Absolutely, musicians have never as a rule been great businessmen. That’s what they have the managers for. And now unfortunately you’ve gotta be your own businessman, your own lawyer, your own manager, you’ve gotta take care of yourself because everyone’s getting a piece, or trying to.
BRIAN FAIR: Exactly that’s the other…we’ve seen enough of those Behind the Music’s to know all the things that could go wrong. So now you can’t pretend ignorance anymore. We’ve all watched what happened to Grand Funk Railroad, and all those bands on all those great VH1 Behind the Music’s so (laughs) no excuses anymore.
BRIAN FAIR: Yeah, right now it is just to push Shadows Fall. We wanted really to just see how things worked out. We’ve suggested to other bands to kinda look into a similar deal with the parent company and you know or the independent label group. But in the future if we thought we could help a band in a way without becoming the evil label side of it then that would be awesome. And if they could use our imprint just to help them get like a leg up that would be great. But we would want them to really be running it. It would be more, ‘here’s a platform, here’s a distribution center, now you guys gotta go out and you know run with the ball.’ Otherwise we would just be becoming a regular record label and that business model just doesn’t work. At that point you’re just a loan shark you know?
AWAY-TEAM: So to the bands that are still in the garage or the practice space … What kind of advice can you give to the garage band, they’re trying to make it, how to set themselves apart and get noticed today?
BRIAN FAIR: I would tell them to study hard and get a degree that will get ‘em a real job! (laughs) Honestly I would tell you to really, just get to the point where you just are so comfortable with your sound before you’re just throwing it out there. Really use advantage of all the free networking that’s available, whether it’s putting up songs on MySpace or just staying in touch with bands through Twitter, use all those as much – all the free outlets – as much as possible. Whether it’s YouTube or anything you know, those things weren’t available to us as a young band. We had to just go out on the road and just hand out demos physically as opposed to now, you can just give someone a little flier with all your info and they can hear your music as soon as they get home. It’s such a difference. Shit, they can probably hear it on their phone you know? Like really take advantage of all that and learn as much as you can about how the business side works. Because you’re gonna end up running it yourself at some point if it gets successful. So really, just absorb as much as you can. And also just really get out there and play as much as you can. Cuz the live show is the one thing that can never be downloaded or taken away from the band. The live performance is such a unique experience it really just where it’s all about focused energy, on going out there and kicking ass onstage!
AWAY-TEAM: Ok, enough of the business side, let’s get back to the music. Most of your albums have a cover or two on them from Pink Floyd to Dangerous Toys and even Leeway, how do you guys go about picking a cover? Are these nods to your influences or just songs you want to play putting…
BRIAN FAIR: They’re definitely always an influence you know but there’s two kinda schools we choose from there’s the bands like Leeway and the Cro-Mags that are for us kind of paying tribute to a band that helped kinda shape our sound, but they may not be known by a lot of our either younger fans, or more like not as the underground kids. So that’s where we choose to do a Leeway song or something like that. The other ones like Dangerous Toys and Bark at the Moon, those are just fun. That’s for us to enjoy the studio time and be able to just record a kick ass tune, and for me to be able to sing about werewolves or Teasin’ and Pleasin’. Like I’m never gonna say, ‘I think I got the wrong house’ you know? Like that will never fit into a Shadows Fall song. So for me it’s just a fun experience to just have a little party anthem.
AWAY-TEAM: What were your influences when you started? What made you want to sing to begin with?
BRIAN FAIR: You know I really got into early rock like KISS and Aerosmith and Black Sabbath at a pretty young age. I had a cool older brother and a cool neighbor who turned me onto a lot of good music. But then I got really into punk rock through skateboarding when I was probably like 12, 13. I was listening to Black Flag and the Sex Pistols and stuff, and that led me to going to local Boston hardcore shows and stuff. But the entire time I was going to hardcore shows I was also listening to a ton of thrash metal you know the Bay Area bands – Testament, Death Angel, Metallica as well some of the early death metal so I think that’s really where the kind of combination of sounds of just death metal and old school hardcore and the classic metal kinda all came into Shadows Fall. I think all 5 of us at least shared those kind of common backgrounds even though I was listening to a lot of reggae and jazz, whereas some of the other guys listened to a lot of glam metal and we all had our different stuff. But the common ground we shared the old school metal as well as that kinda early crossover metal hardcore stuff.
AWAY-TEAM: I’ve seen this asked of you before, and reading reviews of various CDs of yours, and when people ask me how to define your sound it’s really impossible to do. I guess it’s because of the various influences but how would you describe the Shadows Fall sound?
BRIAN FAIR: You know just call us a metal band! Because we really do take things from the entire sort of metal history, because we just grew up as fans of all types of heavy music. And you can hyphenate it a million times you can call it like neo-thrash-melodic-death-blah blah blah, and then add metal at the end, but to me it’s just its just metal.
AWAY-TEAM: Ok, fair enough. Retribution sees you guys delving into a bit heavier more aggressive tighter sound than previous efforts. Like almost more focused on a set sound for the feel of the entire album. Was this a natural progression or was it thought out and planned?
BRIAN FAIR: You know it wasn’t really planned but we knew with Threads of Life, the previous album, we definitely pushed the kind of melodic arena rock side of our sound probably as far as it could go so with this record. It was probably subconscious but we definitely started right out the gates writing really aggressive songs. Public Execution was one of the first tunes we were working on, as well as My Demise and War came about pretty early on. And that sort of set the tone where we’re like alright this is going to be a heavy fast record. And there’s still melodic moments like Picture Perfect is a very melodic song with acoustic moments and then a big chorus but overall I’d say it’s definitely probably maybe besides Of One Blood it’s probably the most aggressive record we’ve done from beginning to end.
AWAY-TEAM: I’d described it as tighter, more cohesive, more defined, and straightforward.. just balls out album.
BRIAN FAIR: Yeah there’s definitely a lot of that. We really wanted to balance all of the influences and make them cohesive. As opposed to some bands these days want to fit so much in that they’ll almost cut and paste, ‘alright here’s the death metal part, here’s the breakdown, here’s the big melodic chorus’ and they almost feel sorta just stuck together and forced. We wanted it to be if it was going to be a thrash song and fast it was going to be that way from beginning to end. There wasn’t going to be some weird left turn you know? If it was going to be a melodic hard rock song it was going to stay that way from beginning to end. And I think that’s just us getting more comfortable as song writers. I think song writing is the most difficult thing to progress and learn over time. Everyone gets better as a musician but that still doesn’t mean you can write a song.
AWAY-TEAM: So does the title Retribution reflect the music on the disc or does its meaning lie elsewhere?
BRIAN FAIR: Well you know we wanted a one word title for the first time. Something that just had an aggressive vibe to it, but also we’d kinda been off the radar for about two years between records and we kinda wanted to just stake our claim again. Let people know we were back. There’s just so much metal these days, and there’s so many bands, and it’s so easy to put a record out that we just were like…this was our sort of our coming back atcha thing. Going for the throat sort of record and we just felt like Retribution kind of fit that.
AWAY-TEAM: So how do you as a band go about writing a record? Is it collaborative musically? Do you all sit around and hammer out a song or do you take the riff tapes and piece a song together?
BRIAN FAIR: Our guitar players usually bring a very rough outline of the song or even just a few riffs, and we would just jam on them in the practice space full volume together. And I think that also led to it being an aggressive record, cuz we were actually playing a lot of it live right out of the gates. So it really led to that energy and we were thinking about how they would be onstage as opposed to just thinking of them as just studio pieces. So there and a lot of weird transitions that never would have happened if we would have just emailed back and forth MP3s. Some crazy little wacky idea would come out of nowhere while we were jamming, so I think that really helped make it a cohesive and also just a little more aggressive record. Just crankin’ it and going for it.
AWAY-TEAM: So does the music affect or influence the lyrics or does the writing of the lyrics influence the way the music is written?
BRIAN FAIR: For me, I usually wait til not necessarily the finished instrumental version, but pretty well defined. And I get a vibe from it that will affect the lyrics. If it’s a head crushing heavy song the lyrics have to reflect that. If it’s a long epic kinda song I may get more into a grand storytelling vibe. I definitely usually wait to get that from the music itself.
AWAY-TEAM: As we said before, you’re currently out on the road with some great bands on the Mayhem Festival, what would be your ultimate bill for a show?
BRIAN FAIR: You know we’ve played a festival with them before but we would love to tour with Metallica cuz that’s the one band that I grew up worshipping that we’ve never gotten to do extended time on the road with. And there’s only one Metallica man! They’re the kingpins, so that would be pretty amazing.
AWAY-TEAM: So are you guys sitting around waiting to do the opening for the Big Four then? Is that what you’re asking? To throw in your hat….
BRIAN FAIR: Oh that would be as cool as it gets! But honestly that would be a tough opening spot even to begin with. People would be like ‘yeah great we don’t care, get to the Big Four’!
AWAY-TEAM: Absolutely I can definitely see that. Which hearkens back to the old Bay Area days when if you weren’t Exodus or Metallica onstage everyone would stand with their backs to you and just wait for the band they came to see get onstage…
BRIAN FAIR: Totally it’s just like the opening band getting “Slayer” chanted at them for the entire set. It is definitely some tough spots…Those are the shows that when you do come out and win a crowd over like that, those are some of your best successes. We must have kicked ass tonight because these dudes don’t give a cr-… they don’t care about anybody!
AWAY-TEAM: So I see you guys are performing some off dates while you’re on this festival getting back into the clubs up close and personal with the audience. Everybody wants to be a rockstar, everybody wants to play in front of 60,000 people every night, but which is the better show for you? In the club in front of 300 people nose to nose and fist to fist or something like Mayhem playing for 10 20 30,000 people a night?
BRIAN FAIR: You know for me it really goes both ways. But I definitely grew up playing small, small shows and going to a lot of small, small shows. So to me that’s really probably my comfort zone. The people are there to see you and are right up there supporting and in your face. But there’s something about like… we played a festival in Columbia last week where there was 150,000 people. And just seeing that, there’s really nothing cooler you know? There’s just so much energy and it’s so overwhelming you can barely even focus on one point out in the crowd. Its just so huge and it really can go both ways, but we played a packed club show in Brazil the day before and it was insane! There was so much energy, so much sweat, kids up on the stage and that vibe it brought me back to why I started doing this to begin with. So they both really have a place in my heart but I’d probably always feel more comfortable in a club.
AWAY-TEAM: So how does that change your approach to the show? I mean if you look out from the stage and you see 150,000 people out there how do you connect with that 150,000th person?
BRIAN FAIR: You do have to change the way you do it cuz in the club show you can be standing on the barricade and getting the crowd physically involved in the show so there’s not as much of just a focal point on you. At the big festival there’s a giant security barriers so the focus is just on you, every gesture is a little bigger and you do have to remind yourself to keep connecting with the crowd cuz it is so big. You try to involve them as much as possible, cuz it is really it is a completely different animal. The crowd isn’t part of the show at those big festivals until you make them part of it. Whereas in the club there’s no escape, they’re shoved right up in your face.
AWAY-TEAM: You recently completed your first headlining tour of Canada. Where haven’t you played yet that you really want to?
BRIAN FAIR: You know after doing South America, that was a big checkmark! We went down just recently and did Columbia, Chile, Argentina, Brazil and Mexico. That was amazing! I can’t believe it took us almost 15 years to get down there. For now we have an offer for a festival in China that we hopefully can work out cuz that to me, the fact that we’ve already gone to the Philippines, Korea and all these places I never thought metal would take me, if we can get to China I’m like, ‘Alright now we’re just really we’re runnin’ out of places we’re going to have to play for the penguins down in Antarctica next’.
AWAY-TEAM: That would be really cool, a festival in China wow!
BRIAN FAIR: Yeah that would be amazing!
AWAY-TEAM: So how do you personally get through the monotony of a day on the road without a show?
BRIAN FAIR: That’s why we sold so many off dates. I hate downtime on the road! You usually end up at a Wal-Mart wasting money on DVDs or looking for a movie theater.
AWAY-TEAM: What’s the one thing you can’t live without on the road?
BRIAN FAIR: Let’s see, I’d probably say my pipe but I’d also include my skateboard in that too so…
AWAY-TEAM: And not necessarily in that order right?
BRIAN FAIR: Yeah yeah yeah! And I usually try to keep them separate too!
AWAY-TEAM: That’s probably smartest.
BRIAN FAIR: Choppin’ it on a vert ramp all day can be end up really ending tragically. Although it does still happen from time to time.
AWAY-TEAM: What’s your favorite song to perform live and why?
BRIAN FAIR: You know right now it’s actually been the song War which is sorta, I can’t call it a Bob Marley cover, I adapted some of the lyrics from his version of the Haile Selassie speech that he used in his song, War, but it’s just balls out like definitely the fastest Marley cover ever. And for me the crowd is just like a nonstop circle pit. So it’s a great one to just throw out there and it’s also one of those 3 minute just punch in the throat and then you’re out.
AWAY-TEAM: What’s the one song you didn’t write that you wish you did?
BRIAN FAIR: Pretty much anything on Master of Puppets!
AWAY-TEAM: And my last question for you, what’s the worst name of a band you’ve ever been in?
BRIAN FAIR: Worst name of a band I’ve ever been in? Social Violation. It was a punk rock band when I was literally like probably 12 years old. At one point my whole thing was hitting the guitar with all the distortion up with drumsticks, thinking it was some art scene noise thing. It’s like no, you just don’t know how to hold it!
AWAY-TEAM: Well Brian I appreciate it man good luck out on the road with the Mayhem Festival. You’ve got a DVD coming out ‘Madness in Manila’ next month on the 24th of August good luck with that!
BRIAN FAIR: It’s actually getting pushed back, it’s actually getting pushed back a little bit. We just found a bunch more footage that we had to include so we’re going to actually push the date back a little bit to the fall but ‘Madness in Manila’ is coming.
AWAY-TEAM: I look forward to it! I’ve seen you guys 2 or 3 times, I’ve produced a couple of shows with you and Lacuna Coil in the North Carolina area and I’m looking forward to seeing you guys August 3rd in Raleigh , NC.
BRIAN FAIR: Indeed man it’s going to be a good time! I remember those shows those were good shows! Man, that’s killer!
AWAY-TEAM: Good luck, be safe, and we’ll see you soon.
BRIAN FAIR: Indeed man thanks for spreading the word, we appreciate it!
My thanks to Natalie at Adrenaline PR for the hook up, my transcriptionist extraordinaire melissa for the 15 pages, and Brian Fair for taking the time out of a busy schedule to throw down a great interview.
For more on Shadows Fall click here.
For Rockstar Energy Drink Mayhem Festival dates click here.
ATO Records is excited to announce Rodrigo y Gabriela‘s upcoming US Tour Dates and new music video for the single “Hanuman” from their recent release 11:11. This summer Rodrigo y Gabriela headline remarkable venues including the Red Rocks Amphitheatre outside of Denver/Boulder, CO, and Greek Theatres in LA and Berkeley, cementing them as one of the top touring acts in the nation.
The duo’s beautifully-shot, larger than life new video for “Hanuman” was directed by Olallo Rubio and shot in Mexico near Zihuatanejo. The video hearkens back to a particular Pink Floyd performance amidst the ruins of Pompei.
It has been an amazing year for the duo as they have reached new heights and audiences across the United States and even within the White House – on May 19th, Rodrigo y Gabriela shared the stage with Beyonce as the musical guests for The President’s State Dinner with Mexico.
In 2010 they have played The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, Lopez Tonight, The Today Show, and Tavis Smiley. In April they reached another milestone with a Sold Out performance at historic Radio City Music Hall where they were joined on stage by many musicians including their heroes Robert Trujillo Metallica and Alex Skolnick of Testament/The Alex Skolnick Trio. To date Rodrigo y Gabriela have sold over 1,000,000 albums world wide. They look forward to playing for fans in the United States this August and September.
Upcoming US Tour Dates:
13 – Redmond, WA – Marymoor Amphitheater
14 – Troutdale, OR – Edgefield
16 – San Diego, CA – Humphrey’s
18 – Los Angeles, CA – Greek Theatre
20 – Morrison, CO – Red Rocks Amphitheatre
21 – Berkeley, CA – Greek Theatre
24 – Vienna, VA – Filene Center at Wolf Trap
26 – Boston, MA – Opera House
28 – Highland Park, IL – Ravinia Festival
30 – Baltimore, MD – Pier Six Concert Pavilion
31 – Knoxville, TN – UT Knoxville
02 – Houston, TX – House of Blues
03 – Austin, TX – Stubb’s Waller Creek Amphitheatre
For more information on RODRIGO Y GABRIELA click here.
Overwhelming demand has enticed Roger Waters to add more concert stops in Boston, Chicago, Oakland and Los Angeles.
Waters’ upcoming tour featuring a complete beginning-to-end rendition of the classic Pink Floyd album The Wall begins Sept. 15 in Toronto. Having already added extra shows in several markets, the tour is upping the ante once again, as it adds Sept. 24 in Chicago at United Garden, Oct. 3 in Boston at TD Garden, Dec. 3 in Oakland at Oracle Arena and Dec. 5 in Los Angeles at Staples Center.
Fan pre-sales for Boston, Oakland and Los Angeles begin June 14 while Chicago’s presale begins June 21. The public onsale for Boston begins June 19, Oakland and L.A. go up June 21 and Chicago goes on sale to the general public June 28.
For more information check out ROGER WATERS’ website here.