An exclusive interview with guitarist Joe Perry between tours...
by Sarah H. Grant
Try to define rock n’ roll without Aerosmith and you’re not going to get very far. After nearly four turbulent decades of breaking musical modes while struggling with severe addictions and internal dissent, the boys from Boston have proven themselves to be the quintessential American rock band. If there is any band that deserves to coast a little bit on their reputation, Aerosmith are certainly qualified. That said, legendary guitarist Joe Perry explains why it’s going to be awhile before Aerosmith put their feet up in this exclusive interview with Maximum Ink…
MAXIMUM INK: It must be interesting to experience the nature of your audiences changing over time.
JOE PERRY: Oh yeah. It’s not quite at drastic as it was 20 or 30 years ago. America has become more homogenized with all the malls and different things, national television stations and that kind of thing, so you have to dig a little further to see those kind of idiosyncrasies in each part of the country. That’s one of the reasons we stopped touring by plane and started touring by bus: You get more out of it, and it’s just amazing.
MAX INK: What is the best part of going on the road? Read More...
PERRY: Well, this is the most amazing country on the planet, and if you get to travel by bus, which we do, you get to see a lot of it, so we take advantage of that. I love all different parts of the country, because they’re just so unique because of the weather and the people, it’s just amazing. It’s never boring.
by Paul Gargano
In the past 25 years, Slayer have become more than a band; they have become a right of passage. From the first unholy alliance of frontman/bassist Tom Araya, guitarists Kerry King and Jeff Hanneman and drummer Dave Lombardo in 1981, through the release of their “Show No Mercy” debut two years later, and beyond the onslaught of last year’s “Christ Illusion,” they’ve embodied the very essence of heavy metal’s macabre roots, and become the lightening rod for bands that hope to prey on the genre’s unearthly future. It’s been a quarter-century, but even time can’t temper the band whose history has been set ablaze by such legendary releases as “Hell Awaits,” “South of Heaven” and “God Hates Us All.” Maximum Ink sat down with Araya on the eve of the band’s upcoming North American tour, a tour that promises more than just bringing Satan back… Read More...
by Sarah H. Grant
Escape. It’s why we crank the volume up to ungodly decibels when driving alone late at night. It’s why we have iTunes programmed onto every useless gadget that we lug around 24/7. It’s why we reach for the headphones, even when we’re about to pass out, just to listen to that song. Music is the lung of our spirit. It gives us a break from the Earth so we can breathe in the Milky Way. Four guys named Jared, Shannon, Tomo, and Matt are already there.
30 Seconds to Mars is a novelty of modern rock. Their self-titled 2002 album settled rumors that lead singer/guitarist, Jared Leto, was not some bored wash-up from Fight Club, but a multi-talented rock titan on the stage. With the blood-thirsty critics at bay, the group as a whole perfected their musicianship on 30STM’s sophomore album, A Beautiful Lie. The band does an impeccable job of keeping what their fans lovethe swirling, intricate guitar solos and a far-out rock vibewhile not shying away from deeper material. Read More...
an interview with Hamidou Bangoura
by Sarah H. Grant
Sarah went to the show to interview Hamidou and he tells her, “I don’t speak English”. Luckily, Sarah speaks fluent French, so she still got the interview, now that’s journalism! Read More...
an interview with Geezer Butler
by Jeff Muendel
Ah, the sordid and storied life of a rock and roll band; make it a heavy metal group, and the drama is always, for lack of a better term, amplified. Sometimes, it’s hard to even know where to begin. In this case, the beginning is somewhere in the middle…
When Ozzy Osbourne left Black Sabbath in 1979 (or was asked to leave, depending upon who you ask), the group replaced him with veteran vocalist Ronnie James Dio. Having recently parted ways with Rainbow, Dio was not only available, but also a known commodity, and his addition to the Black Sabbath ranks made it a sort of metal supergroup. Dio and original members Tony Iommi, Geezer Butler and Bill Ward went to work writing new material.
The resulting album was “Heaven and Hell,” both an instant classic and a return for Black Sabbath to the core of their musical style, a mode from which they had drifted significantly in their last years with Osbourne. Through heavy touring and the success of the album, Black Sabbath managed to avoid the drop in popularity that almost always follows the departure of a charismatic lead singer. If anything, their popularity grew.
Drummer Bill Ward left the band due to health problems after the “Heaven and Hell” tour, but Black Sabbath soldiered on and produced another amazing album, “Mob Rules.” The group toured again (with Vinny Appice behind the kit) and simultaneously recorded a live album on the tour. During the mixing of that recording, which would eventually be deemed “Live Evil,” problems began to grow amongst the band members. There were accusations between the new guys (Dio and Appice) and the remaining founding members (bassist Geezer Butler and guitarist Tony Iommi). Within months of the live album’s release, both Dio and Appice had left the group.
Ronnie James Dio went on to form his own band called, quite simply, Dio. Simultaneously, Geezer Butler left Black Sabbath to pursue other paths while Tony Iommi kept the Black Sabbath name alive with various and ever-changing lineups of musicians.
In 1992, Iommi moved to reunite the Dio lineup of Black Sabbath; Butler, Appice, and Dio joined the guitarist once again to record a new album called “Dehumanizer.” They hit the road again, finding themselves in front of huge audiences throughout the world, but it wouldn’t last long.
Toward the end of the “Dehumanizer” tour, Ozzy Osbourne – hugely successful as a solo artist – announced that he was retiring from rock and roll (that didn’t last long, either) and asked Black Sabbath to join the bill for his last two solo concerts in California. Dio refused to participate because he felt Black Sabbath shouldn’t be reduced to an opening act for Ozzy. The others disagreed, however, and appeared without him, recruiting Rob Halford of Judas Priest to sing. Ozzy ended up joining his old Sabbath mates on stage, and the four original Black Sabbath members decided to reunite. Dio , head held high, regrouped his solo band.
So, it is from this rich history that the Dio-era Black Sabbath now returns, some 15 years later, with a new album and a new tour under the band name Heaven and Hell. Maximum Ink recently had the chance to speak to bassist Geezer Butler about this latest incarnation of the band and get his take on all things Black Sabbath:
MAXIMUM INK: Back in 1979, when Black Sabbath first auditioned Ronnie James Dio, is it true that “Children of the Sea” was written in the first rehearsal? Read More...
GEEZER BUTLER: I think so, what I can remember of it, at least. Tony Iommi met Dio at a party and they originally talked about doing something together, you know, another project. They might have jammed some, but then Ozzy left the band. So Dio started to jam with us [Black Sabbath], and I think in one of those early jams, perhaps the first one, “Children of the Sea” came together.