BLAZE Manager Speaks Out

November 1, 2004

BLAZE manager Neil Marklew recently spoke to about the group's recent lineup changes and the band's future, among other topics. Several excerpts from the interview follow: How would you describe the support SPV have given the band over the years?

Neil Marklew: "Difficult one this. In the beginning they were very supportive but since the release of 'Tenth Dimension' the support level has diminished especially in terms of album promotion and tour support. Unfortunately, most record companies even the smaller ones like SPV are now almost totally controlled by the accountants. They look for an immediate return on any investment made when advertising new album releases and giving tour support. There is no longer room for the build-up of a band name as you perhaps had 10-15 years ago. I really feel that SPV were misled in the beginning by Sanctuary Management in certain areas (which I do not want to bore you with today). In essence, this left us playing catch-up after the release of 'Silicon Messiah', financially with SPV. As a result there has been no room for speculative tours and promotional activity as we have had to work within a very tight budget. So, in my head I know that they have given us as much support as the accountants would allow, but in my heart I know that if they had taken that leap of faith then you probably would not be asking this question." Blaze was allegedly in a punch-up with Sean Peck (CAGE vocalist) after one of the European gigs is there any truth in this and if so how did it come about?

Neil Marklew: "Ah! Politics — started more wars and fights than religion. Basically, Sean took offence to Blaze's intro to 'Kill & Destroy' — where he mentions George Bush. After the gig (and probably a beer or three) Sean felt that Blaze was out of order and wanted to tell him so. Blaze pointed out that America is the home of free speech and that he would continue to introduce his songs how the f*** he liked because like Sean he would stand up for his free speech. This resulted in a little bear hugging, rolling around on the floor and a couple of punches thrown, in short 'Handbags at 2 paces.' After all this is rock & roll! Personally, I have to ask the question, IS IT DEMOCRACY or HYPOCRISY when someone takes offence to what you are saying?"

Read Neil Marklew's entire interview with at this location.

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