GODSMACK's SULLY ERNA: 'We're Not Metal; We Never Really Were Metal'

August 4, 2018

GODSMACK front man was recently interviewed by Andy Hall of the Des Moines, Iowa radio station Lazer 103.3. The full conversation can be streamed below. A few excerpts follow (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET).

On their current co-headlining summer tour with SHINEDOWN:

Sully: "Between us and SHINEDOWN, I really feel like we've put together a great package that really contrasts each other well, to give people two separate shows, two separate looks, but be able to exist on one stage. I think people are really going to love the show. It's fun; it's full of energy; it's loud; things blow up. It's just a really cool, fun time. We've always had the theory of just coming out and making it a giant party for everyone. I really feel, if I can be a little bold here, that this could be the best rock tour of 2018."

On new GODSMACK album "When Legends Rise":

Sully: "We wanted to spread our wings a little further. As the band grows and the audience grows and generations have grown — we've been around now 20 years — when that reality sets in, you start thinking, 'Wow, the fans that we had when we first came out that were 24, 25 years old or whatever they were now are in their forties or fifties and have 15, 16, 18-year-old kids of their own that are growing up with GODSMACK in a new generation. They're discovering us for the first time. For us individually, collectively, professionally, we've all grown quite a bit, and I think this new record is really just a reflection of where we're at, at this state of mind right now, in our lives."

On wanting to defy expectations:

Sully: "'Voodoo' was really a gateway for that. 'Voodoo' allowed us to do songs like 'Spiral' on the second record and 'Serenity' on the third one. It just always kind of left that door open. Even on the fourth record, we experimented with a lot more bluesier sound, and did 'Shine Down' and stuff like that. As we've grown, we really have tried to identify who we are and what we do as a band, and we really are just a hard rock n' roll band. We're not metal — we never really were metal. We rode the line at times in the past, but we've always kind of tried to stay neutral. [LED] ZEPPELIN had a great display of doing that, where they just came out with records and there was just so many different kinds of genres on there. It was real versatile. On this record, we just really wanted to paint some different colors and use some different textures and maintain the integrity of who we are and what we do, but introduce some bigger melodies and a few different things that our fans haven't heard us do yet."

On what he learned from recording as a solo artist:

Sully: "It was working with other musicians from different backgrounds, different inspirations. I worked with a lot of guys from jazz and blues and classical and rock, and it's no wonder that the solo material came out as eclectic and unique as it did, because there was a lot of different influences as we were writing. I wanted to take that method and that theory and bring it into ['When Legends Rise'], and go out and explore some different textures for the album. We're really excited about it. We really feel it's one of the best records we've put out since the first one."

"When Legends Rise" was released on April 27. The new album follows up 2014's "1000hp" and is the band's first release through BMG after splitting with its longtime home, Republic/Universal.

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