Interviews anglais

ALTER BRIDGE (24/10/13)

Version française

A few minutes after their arrival at the Zénith, in Paris, RUL spent a few minutes with Brian Marshall, Alter Bridge’s bass player !

Hello Brian, how are you?

Brian Marshall (bass guitar) : I’m good, thank you.

How goes the tour so far?

B : It’s going very well; we played six shows in a week, so it’s a bit rolling, just came from the UK which was fabulous, playing arenas there. We’re been anxious to get back over here, it’s been quite a little while and there’s also the record out so, all that stuff.

So your new album “Fortress” is out since a few weeks now, how do you feel about it?

B : Awesome! I think it’s our best work today. We got together in Orlando, Florida, on three different occasions and wrote for about six weeks. We never got in the same room, on the same page, the same day, Myles was out with Slash, Mark did his solo project, but we got in the studio and worked on our music and really happy about the way it turned out. I think it’s our best yet.

What was, for you, the top difficulty around this specific record?

B : Like I said, just get everybody there, looking to schedules, that was the toughest thing. We normally didn’t recorded the album like we did in the past; first the drums, then Mark did some guitar second and I did bass on second too, so it was a little bit different for us but for all, we’re just really happy the way it turned out.


We interviewed Mark and Myles during their European promo tour. Mark said that your bass lines were unique; in your approach. How do you work when they bring some guitar riffs?

B : We all sit together, in a room and just jam. And once we’re comfortable with it, then I can really kind of emphasize more. I’m a bass player who didn’t really like to stick with formalism, standard bass player stuff; I like to float around the progression and try to make the song as interesting as possible without actually compromise it. I try to use my influences and my own technics; about my influences: Geddy Lee (Rush), John Paul Jones (Led Zeppelin), Steve Harris (Iron Maiden), these guys really had big impact on me. I just try to make the song as unique and interesting as possible, especially when you feel that something is missing here or there, that what I’m doing.

Do you work as duets? The guitar duet and the rhythm section duet with Scott; or you can interfere in the others parts too?

B : As a bass player it’s unique because I can with the guitars and in the same time with the drums. If I hear things here and there, all of this kind of have the opportunity when we’re writing to talk about things and get it out.

What did you feel when you recorded the album? Because it’s kind of an evolution from “AB III”, but it’s still very dark.

B : For this record, I think is probably more up tempo that in the past, it’s moving around a little bit. I think Alter Bridge in general, took a turn in “Blackbird” the song, that took us in a musical journey, it was a quite lengthy song but I think that’s kind of what we gravitated towards, musically it’s a complete work of art and I think that this record, where we show the evolution of Alter Bridge, is also where our fans gravitated too so it’s challenging for us to play, we keep things interesting and not really conforming to any kind, style or whatever. We just go in there and do what’s natural for us.


We know their three favorite tracks, which “Fortress” tracks will you pick?

B : My favorite track is “Fortress”, second being, I’m a big fan of “All Ends Well” that’s kind of a song that is more familiar for Alter Bridge fans and I’d say the third, hmm there’re many tracks, I like “Calm The Fire” a lot, we’re going to tempt it tonight, I can choose them all. (laughs)

Was the setlist hard to elaborate? Even if it’s a “Fortress” tour, there’re only a few tracks from it.

B : Yeah, it’s changing every night, the material is new and we are rehearsing it quite a bit. But there’s also three other albums to choose from and people are more familiar with. We don’t want to come in a venue and the people not knowing the songs but in the same time, the songs are new and exciting and we want to play them live so we’re working on injecting those songs in the set.

Well, Myles is working on the new vocals for Slash’s third album; Mark said that he will probably work on a second solo album. Will we see Creed back on the road one day? For a new record for example.

B : There’s nothing set in stone right now, last time we were together we did some writing but everybody has so much going on, we kind of put it aside for a little while, who’s to know? There may be something or may not, I’m not sure.


So Steve Harris is one of your major influences. Why him? What does Iron Maiden represent for you?

B : It’s very nostalgic, that was one of my first experiences with metal and that style of music. It spooked to me, I always was into the rhythm sections so Steve Harris and Nicko McBrain were big influences on me and I just liked the whole, it put me in a different place. 25 years later, I’d still put on “Somewhere In Time” and go back, it’s sound cliché but it like an old perfume, something that you smell that you’re familiar, that brings me all back to me.

How is it to tour with Halestorm? What do you like in their music?

B : They’re great, great bunch of guys and girl. She’s unparalleled talent; I can’t name any female vocalist out there with her power and charisma so. Myles really has to step it up performing after her every night.

What is your lifestyle while touring? On the tour bus etc. Do you guys write some music?

B : I don’t really take a guitar with me anywhere. I’ve kind of a healthier lifestyle. We usually, when Mark and Myles got an idea, we played it during the sound check, that’s what happen usually on the road together. But Mark always has a guitar with him. We’re actually a pretty boring rock band, we don’t really caused a big mess or destroying hotel rooms, we used too, but once you got kids I guess, and you wake up, in your thirties, it’s still to grow up maybe. (laughs)


You’ll celebrate the 10th anniversary of the band next year. Are you guys preparing something special? Special shows etc.

B : We haven’t talked about that that much but we have ask each other what they would like to do for the anniversary, I told them to break up from their side projects and concentrate on Alter Bridge. (laughs)

What did they say?

B : (imitating: Fuck Off) (Laughs)

Will we see you at Hellfest next summer?

B : There’s nothing on the books right now but we definitely are going to be over Europe for the festival’s season, next summer, that’s definitely a possibility.

Any message to your French fans?

B : Yes, we’re just glad to be back over here and each time we come it seems like we see our growth in the band and the fans, very passionate people and it’s a very beautiful country, I’d like to get much more over here, as possible in the future.

Finally, we are “RockUrLife”, so as a conclusion, what rocks your life?

B : What rocks my life? Having a clear mind, a clear conscience, honest people around me, love in my heart, food on my table, family, friends and… music!


Photo credit : Fanny Schneider

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