The all-star metal cast re­assem­bles for an­other round

Metal Hammer (UK) - - Hammer Contents -

Alex Skol­nick and Mark Menghi round up the big guns for an­other all-star al­bum. Al­le­giance, as­sem­ble!

the marvel cin­e­matic

Uni­verse may be the big­gest crossover in cin­e­matic his­tory, but when it comes to heavy metal, that ti­tle fit­tingly be­longs to Metal Al­le­giance. Three years af­ter the re­lease of their de­but, which fea­tured a host of some of our most beloved names, Ham­mer catches up with project mas­ter­mind Mark Menghi to get the in­sight on what we can all ex­pect from phase two.

so, the neW metal al­le­giance al­bum! What’s the lat­est? you’ve just fin­ished in the stu­dio, haven’t you?

“Yeah, we’re done! The record is done and sub­mit­ted and it went great.”

Would you say the record­ing and cre­ative process has been more straight­for­Ward this time round?

“We did this one a lit­tle dif­fer­ently.

Alex [Skol­nick, Tes­ta­ment gui­tarist] and I started writ­ing to­gether on New Year’s Day of Jan­uary 2017 in Brook­lyn, New York. We wrote the first two songs that day, then he and I went down to Mike Port­noy’s house and we wrote the song Down By Si­lence (which John Bush [An­thrax/Ar­mored Saint] is on), plus Mother Of Sin (the track Bobby Blitz of Overkill is on), Ter­mi­nal Il­lu­sion (which fea­tures Mark Tornillo of Ac­cept), plus Power Drunk Majesty parts one and two, which is one long song!”


“Yeah! We wrote all that and The Ac­cuser. That was all done in just four days. Cre­atively, we just gel and it all fell into place – there was no strug­gle writ­ing mu­sic. These singers, they just kill it. I re­mem­ber when I gave the lyrics to John Bush and I told him the story be­hind them, he sent back his first demo and I was com­pletely blown away! I didn’t even have to tell him what to do – he sang the song ex­actly how I’d en­vi­sioned it. There was never any ar­gu­ing, never a sin­gle fight, it was very easy work­ing with all the vo­cal­ists, it was a plea­sur­able process. No is­sues at all. And I like to think we have de­liv­ered the best pos­si­ble re­sult work­ing with all these mu­si­cians.”


oN ThE sAME rECord!”

With such an ex­ten­sive list of guests on this record, hoW dif­fi­cult Was it to bring them in to the stu­dio?

“Be­lieve it or not, get­ting the guest vo­cal­ists is the eas­i­est part of the process. With me be­ing the lyri­cist – I guess you can call me the ‘chief lyri­cist’, if you will – I wrote about 80% of the lyrics on the al­bum. The hard part is ac­tu­ally find­ing the right phras­ing that fits these singers’ vo­cal styles. For ex­am­ple, Bobby Blitz and

Troy San­ders from Mastodon – two com­pletely dif­fer­ent singers, com­pletely dif­fer­ent vo­cal­ists – and yet I’m writ­ing the lyrics for both of them. I kind of had to stop and think, ‘how would

Blitz sing this? how would Troy sing this? how would Trevor [Str­nad, The Black Dahlia Mur­der] sing this? how would Mark sing this?’ So, that’s re­ally the hard­est part. I know what the story is, I know what the lyrics are be­cause I wrote them, but how is it go­ing to fit their vo­cal ca­pa­bil­i­ties? To me that’s the hard­est part of the process.”

do you have a bucket list of peo­ple you Would re­ally like to bring into the metal

al­le­giance fold one day? Who’s at the top?

“I al­ways say James het­field. If he is read­ing or lis­ten­ing, give me a buzz! he is the one guy we would love to have. him or some­one like rob hal­ford, but it comes down to tim­ing. With this record, we didn’t even think about reach­ing out to peo­ple like that be­cause they were ei­ther in the stu­dio or on tour so we knew who would be im­pos­si­ble. When we’re writ­ing we don’t know who is go­ing to do what so it’s just a mat­ter of who do we think would sound best for the song. One of the peo­ple that we re­ally wanted but thought would be im­pos­si­ble was Max Cavalera, and it worked out! For me, that’s a big one – I’m a huge Sepul­tura and Soulfly fan, and to have Max and An­dreas Kisser on the same record, to me, that’s a step in the right di­rec­tion!”

so When can We ex­pect this neW al­bum to see the light of day?

“It comes out Septem­ber 7! The re­lease date is set. We’re ex­cited about what peo­ple are go­ing to think.”


Death An­gel’s Mark Osegueda, Ar­mored Saint’s John Bush and Me­gadeth’s David Ellef­son thrash around some ideas

An ob­scene amount of ta­lent in one room!

Mike Port­noy and Mark Menghi ruff­ing it

Mark Menghi and Bobby Blitz get lyri­cal

Mike Port­noy, Alex Skol­nick, Mark Osegueda, An­dreas Kisser and Mark Menghi prove you’re never too big for a bed­room jam ses­sion with your mates

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