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  • MARTY FRIEDMAN On Classic Live Albums That Inspired His 'One Bad M.F. Live!!'
    on November 17, 2018 at 16:35

    Guitarist Marty Friedman (MEGADETH, CACOPHONY) recently spoke with Metal Wani about his new live album, "One Bad M.F. Live!!". The full conversation can be streamed below. A few excerpts follow (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET and Metal Wani). On the classic live albums that inspired him: Marty: "I would definitely prefer live albums when I was in my young teens. Even though I would get the studio albums and I enjoyed those too, but live albums were just the shit, man. I loved KISS 'Alive!', the RAMONES' 'It's Alive', 'Frampton Comes Alive!', BLUE ÖYSTER CULT, UFO, FOGHAT, Robin Trower. Live albums were an awesome thing back then. I guess they might have fallen out of fashion after that, but at the time, especially the Frampton and the KISS ones, they were the biggest sellers of anything back then. I think it's because they make you feel like you're at the concert without seeing it. I guess because video got really popular after that, people wanted to watch the videos of the concerts. But before then, you really to present it in just an audio format. And boy, it got me, man — [it] made me want to go to concerts so bad." On being a band leader: Marty: "I think the preparation for me is to make sure that what they're doing is going to make it easy for me to do my job, which is to basically be a singer on guitar. The bass and drums, the way that they lock... it's because we've been playing together for a long time, but I think even more, it's because of the way that they play naturally. They're both very super-aggressive players, but firmly into not overplaying, and always playing to each other... We played pretty much the same thing every night, but the band is really tight in such a fashion that if we were to ad-lib something, even that would be locked up the same way." On his song "Dragon Mistress": Marty: "That comes from my first solo album, which was like a billion years ago. At the time, believe it or not, I was trying to make the poppiest song on the record. It was a really simple type of groove, and I dropped the guitar to a drop-D tuning for it, which back then, wasn't really done at all, hardly. There were probably some guys doing it, but it didn't really become fashionable until much later. It kind of gives you that heavy sound... Playing it now, it kind of makes me really appreciative that people still care about that record now. It's just kind of flattering that people care about it and they like that song from that album. It also gives us a chance to do something different every night. We ad-lib it. Oftentimes, we bring a fan from the audience to play. There's a breakdown where it gets kind of slow and quiet, and it's just me playing on the record, but nine times out ten, we'll just drag somebody completely random out of the audience and do it. It's hit and miss. Nine times out of ten, the guys are really good and we have a lot of fun, but every once in a while... somebody wants to come up and they don't even know how to play guitar. [Laughs] That's always funny." On whether he misses living in America: Marty: "Up until I recorded [2014's] 'Inferno', I was really away from the U.S. a lot. I definitely missed it. Obviously, family and friends, but I really missed playing for American audiences. Then when I came back to play for 'Inferno' and did that tour, I was just so thankful that people supported me despite me being away so long and came out to the shows and had a great time and started to get into what I'm doing now, rather than what they knew me from before." Friedman's 14th solo record, "One Bad M.F. Live!!", was released on October 19. The album was recorded in Mexico City on April 14 during the final concert of Friedman's world tour in support of his 2017 album "Wall Of Sound", which debuted on Billboard's Heatseekers chart at No. 12. Joining Friedman on "One Bad M.F. Live!!" are his bandmates Kiyoshi on bass, Jordan Ziff (RATT) on guitar and Chargeeee on drums. Friedman will kick off an American tour in support of the album in San Diego, California on January 23. The Texas-based "super metal" group IMMORTAL GUARDIAN will open. […]

  • DEEN CASTRONOVO On Getting Fired From JOURNEY: 'They Did What They Had To Do'
    on November 17, 2018 at 16:21

    Former JOURNEY and current THE DEAD DAISIES drummer Deen Castronovo recently spoke with Andy Rawll of The full conversation can be seen below. A few excerpts follow (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET). On how he bounced back from his 2015 indictments for rape, assault, sexual abuse, unlawful use of a dangerous weapon and contempt of court: Deen: "For me, what I had to do was really focus on recovery. That was most important — that was job one — and gaining the trust and respect back from my family, my kids, my wife, my grandbabies, my father, my mother, everybody. I wasn't thinking about music at that time. I didn't even touch my drum kit. I'd walk by and go, 'Yeah, it's not time.' I just knew. There was a point when [the Italian record label] Frontiers asked me to do REVOLUTION SAINTS, and I went, 'Well, let me think about it.' I waited another year until it was time. It was like, 'Okay, I'm ready to do this. Let's go ahead and do this.' For me, it was really important just to really stay focused, because this disease beat me up for quite a while, and it's nice to be away from that. Being the person that I am today, it's a good thing." On drawing musical inspiration from that period in his life: Deen: "REVOLUTION SAINTS was really almost autobiographical. It was a lot of stuff about what was going on in my life, and I had to spill it. It was something that really needed to be taken out of me, so that was a huge thing. Now, THE DEAD DAISIES have fulfilled the recording/touring side, which is what I've been aching to do, but I knew I couldn't at that point... I'm working again, I'm playing, I'm loving it." On writing the REVOLUTION SAINTS song "Freedom": Deen: "That was the first song I've ever written. I came up with a guitar riff and I sent it to Doug [Aldrich], and I said, 'Can you do something with this?' He goes, 'Yeah. Let me mess with it for a little while'... Lyrically, it was funny. When I was in treatment, every day, we would have to journal. At the end of every one of my journals, I would say, 'Freedom, coming my way.' It was like, every day is a day towards freedom — freedom from drugs, alcohol, all the stuff that kind of has weighed me down in my life. Being able to purge on that record was huge for me. I needed it — I really did — and that [song] really kind of spills it." On not rushing his recovery: Deen: "You can't, especially in this industry. I spent 22 years on and off of drugs. For me to finally hit bottom, come back up and go, 'You know what? If I'm going to do this, I'm going to do this right this time. It's not going to be half-measures anymore.' I had to throw everything aside and put that first. It's still first — God and sobriety, family, job, in that order. That's my mantra now; that's what matters to me." On his performance on the latest DEAD DAISIES album, "Burn It Down": Deen: "Usually, I'm a very chops-oriented person. I'm a very busy drummer. I remember John Corabi coming up and he goes, 'Deen, put on your Bill Ward cap.' Once he said that, I saw the vision — it was like, 'I know what they need. I know what they want.' I did my best to deliver for them... Being in JOURNEY as long as I was, you learned how to play for the song, number one. There was a certain swing that Steve Smith has. I did my best to duplicate his stuff, but I noticed on this record, it just felt really, really swingy. It's still straight, but... you can feel what's going on. It's kind of a cool thing. I think I brought a little bit of that to the table – a little bit more of a swing, a little bit more of a bounce." On reconnecting with JOURNEY guitarist Neal Schon for a February 2018 benefit show: Deen: "Honestly, it's an honor. To work with JOURNEY at all was a blessing and a privilege and an honor. They did what they had to do, and I never fought them for that. That was the smart thing to do; that's the business thing to do. But Neal and I have always been really close. Neal found me; he discovered me in a little rehearsal place in San Rafael. I've always been tight with him. Even when all this went down, he always checked on me... We've always kept in contact, so I'm very loyal to him. Even though he had to do the tough love thing, he never gave up [on me]. I respect Neal for that. He's my big brother, and I'd do anything for him... I always wanted to be in JOURNEY. I had two bands I wanted to be in when I was young — KISS or JOURNEY. KISS, I look like crap in spandex, so we know that wasn't going to happen. JOURNEY was my [other dream], because I love Steve Perry, and I love what Smith brought to the table. To be able to fill that seat for 17 years was an honor. Now he's back where he belongs. He needs to be there. That is his band. I warmed the seat, but that's his gig. He deserves it. He's original — he's the best." On Steve Perry: Deen: "There's stuff that Mr. Perry's done that nobody can touch. To me, he is the greatest singer of my generation — he and Ronnie James Dio." On what's left on his musical bucket list: Deen: "I would love to play drums on a STONE SOUR record, but I love Roy [Mayorga]. I love Corey Taylor — I think he's a genius. The man is just brilliant, in my opinion. Great songwriter, awesome poet. I love SLIPKNOT to death, and I've always loved STONE SOUR. I'm a huge fan, so I would love to work with him if I could." THE DEAD DAISIES continue to tour in support of their fourth album, "Burn It Down", which was released on April 6 via Spitfire. In addition to Castronovo, the band features Doug Aldrich (WHITESNAKE, DIO), John Corabi (MÖTLEY CRÜE, THE SCREAM), Marco Mendoza (WHITESNAKE, THIN LIZZY) and Australian businessman-turned-rocker David Lowy (RED PHOENIX, MINK). […]

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