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Rick Florino of ARTISTdirect recently conducted an interview with CHICKENFOOT guitarist Joe Satriani. A couple of excerpts from the chat follow below.

ARTISTdirect: Do you feel like CHICKENFOOT is more of a proper band on “III”? Did everything click more seamlessly than it did the first time around?

Satriani: Definitely! When I think back to that first album we did, we barely knew each other. We would get together for two or three days, record some songs, and say goodbye. We wouldn’t see each other for a few months. Then, we’d repeat the process. It took a year of that to compile a record. This time around, it was a little bit more normal. We had a history with each other now. We’d done a few tours. We’d learned about each other a little more. Certainly as I was writing demos for the record, I thought, “Now, I’ve got experience playing with Mike [Anthony, bass] and Chad [Smith, drums]. I know the kind of rhythm section they are. I’m going to write music that really brings out more power and finesse knowing what they can do.” I spent so many more hours with Sam [Hagar, vocals] writing, and I realized there are great things he does that no one has heard before. I wanted to write songs that brought that side of him out too. It feels like we knew each other more, and we were able to bring better performances out of each other.

ARTISTdirect: Your riffs and leads really entwine with Sammy‘s vocals. Do you feel like you two have a special interplay?

Satriani: It was something that I was specifically trying to achieve on the record. I’m happy that you noticed it. I don’t like when I hear other kinds of music and there seems to be a disconnect between the vocals and what the band is playing — even if the songs are ultimately good. It gives you the impression that someone simply wrote a track and didn’t think of what the song is about and somebody came in later and sang whatever they wanted to sing without thinking of the instrumentation. A lot of pop music is like that because of the nature of how it gets put together, who writes it, and who sings it. CHICKENFOOT is a band. We write and record all together. All of the recordings are done without click tracks or sequences. We’re basically making live recordings and overdubbing on top of that. CHICKENFOOT is an organic thing, and it’s so important we make that a hallmark of the recordings. That chemistry is always a part of what people hear. As I was writing for this second record, I wanted to take advantage of that as much as I could and write things that make me meld into the drums and bass and be part of a bigger unit rather than just play big guitar riffs and tell the guys to play a straight rhythm behind me. I never wanted to do that! I thought Sam and I should get together on our parts so sometimes we’re singing and playing the same thing. It’s all in the effort to make a big unified sound. I think Jimmy Page in LED ZEPPELIN was really good at that. Jimi Hendrix was as well. He brought his vocal lines, melody, and rhythm playing together on those early recordings. That added a very unique quality to that music. They didn’t know they were creating classic rock, but that’s what they were doing [Laughs]. It’s something which comes natural to everybody in the band.

Read the entire interview from ARTISTdirect.

FASTWAY earlier this month inked a European deal with Steamhammer/SPV. The band’s first studio album since 1990, “Eat Dog Eat”, will be released on November 14 (three days earlier in Germany). The CD, which features new vocalist Toby Jepson (ex-LITTLE ANGELS), is described by Clarke as “by far the best thing I have done since the first FASTWAY album. This is classic rock at its best!”

Commented Olly Hahn, A&R representative at Steamhammer: “It`s an honor to have Fast Eddie Clarke and his band on our label. He was THE guitar player in MOTÖRHEAD but also with FASTWAY he delivered awesome music. With ‘Eat Dog Eat’ he’s definitely back… probably better than ever!”

Formed in 1983, FASTWAY‘s self-titled debut album entered the U.K. charts at No. 43 and received very good reviews. One year later, “All Fired Up” was released and was a great success, thanks in no small part to high-profile support tours in the U.S. with SCORPIONS and RUSH. In 1985 “Waiting For The Roar” saw the light of day and was followed by dates with AC/DC on the “Fly On The Wall” tour. In 1986 FASTWAY wrote the soundtrack to the horror movie “Trick Or Treat” starring Ozzy Osbourne and Gene Simmons.

After 1986, FASTWAY released two more studio albums with a different lineup and issued several live and best-of LPs.

01. Deliver Me (4:41)
02. Fade Out (4:05)
03. Leave The Light On (3:55)
04. Loving Fool (4:30)
05. Dead And Gone (5:49)
06. Sick As A Dog (3:44)
07. Freedom Song (3:52)
08. Do You Believe (4:04)
09. Love I Need (4:37)
10. On And On (3:53)
11. Only If You Want It (4:06)

DISTURBED‘s first-ever collection of B-sides and rarities, “The Lost Children”, will be released on November 8. The set includes a previously unreleased track, “Mine”, and “3”, which was as a benefit track for the West Memphis Three. Other tracks on this B-side collection include “God Of The Mind” and “A Welcome Burden”. which appeared on the 2010 reissue of the band’s 2000 debut album, “The Sickness”; “Monster”, “Two Worlds” and “Sickened”, which were included as bonus tracks on the U.K. tour edition of “Ten Thousand Fists”; “Run”, which was featured on a limited-edition version of 2008’s “Indestructible”; and “Parasite”, which appeared on the Japanese edition of “Indestructible”.

“The Lost Children”track listing:

01. Hell
02. A Welcome Burden
03. This Moment
04. Old Friend
05. Monster
06. Run
07. Leave It Alone
08. Two Worlds
09. God Of The Mind
10. Sickened
11. Mine
12. Parasite
13. Dehumanized
14. 3
15. Midlife Crisis (FAITH NO MORE cover)
16. Living After Midnight (JUDAS PRIEST cover)

DISTURBED frontman David Draiman recently spoke out on the speculation regarding the band’s future, which he himself started in July when he hinted that the group’s current tour could be its last for a while — if not for good. Draiman confirmed to The Pulse Of Radio that DISTURBED plans to take an indefinite hiatus, and gave some hints about the “personal reasons” behind the decision. “Many of those reasons are have to do with the state of the music industry in general and, you know, the demise of hard rock and heavy metal right now, and I think it’s just a good time for DISTURBED, after 10 to 12 years straight of touring, to go away for a little while and kind of wait for the phoenix to rise from the ashes here,” he said. “It’s frightening times right now, and it’s just a good time for us to go away.”

But Draiman also admitted that DISTURBED may in fact never come back. “It could be a concern,” he said. “You don’t know. We don’t know. I can’t definitively tell you one way or the other at this point. We really haven’t gotten that far in our discussions. We all agree that we are going to step away for an indefinite period of time.”

Draiman told Billboard that one thing the hiatus is not about is any personal strife between the four band members, saying, “This is really not due to any animosity — I want to make that very clear. In fact, we just had dinner together last night. Believe me, it’s not like we can’t work with each other anymore or we don’t get along.”

The singer said that all four members of the group have other creative endeavors they’d like to pursue, with both he and guitarist Dan Donegan interested in producing other acts.

Draiman added that he doesn’t think a solo album is in his future. But he also told Billboard, “Depending on how far those individual interests end up taking us, and depending on how much we end up missing (the band) over the course of time — which, of course, at some point I’m sure we will — that will determine if and when we return.”


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