HALESTORM Has Already Recorded Two Songs For 'ReAniMate 4.0: The CoVeRs eP'

October 13, 2022

In a new interview with the "Thunder Underground" podcast, HALESTORM drummer Arejay Hale was asked if he and his bandmates are planning to release a follow-up to their third covers EP, "ReAniMate 3.0: The CoVeRs eP", which came out in January 2017. He said in part (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET): "Actually, we kind of already have started on it. We tracked two songs in Nashville before this tour started. But I don't think I'm allowed to say what they are. But, yeah, we've got some ideas in mind.

"I always love covering the modern pop songs," he continued. "Like we did Lady Gaga's 'Bad Romance'; we did 'Get Lucky' by DAFT PUNK; we did 'Heathens' by TWENTY ONE PILOTS. Those, to me, are the most fun. But also I do love the challenge of trying to replicate the brilliance of the classic METALLICA stuff, the SOUNDGARDEN stuff. So that was the most challenging, 'cause you have such a respect for that era that you don't wanna mess it up. You wanna pay respect to them and you don't wanna change anything.

"So, as far as '4.0' goes, I feel like it will probably be a nice balance of those things — paying tribute to the classics, putting our own little twist on it, but also kind of rocking up pop songs," Arejay added.

This past summer, HALESTORM shared its covers of Adele's "Hello" and Dolly Parton's "Jolene" via social media.

In 2011, HALESTORM released the six-track "ReAniMate: The CoVeRs eP", which saw them take on tracks by SKID ROW, Lady Gaga, TEMPLE OF THE DOG, GUNS N' ROSES, HEART and THE BEATLES. Two years later, the "ReAniMate 2.0: The CoVeRs eP" featured covers of JUDAS PRIEST, DAFT PUNK, AC/DC, Pat Benatar, FLEETWOOD MAC and Marilyn Manson.

The aforementioned "ReAniMate 3.0: The CoVeRs eP" saw HALESTORM covering classic songs by WHITESNAKE, Sophie B. Hawkins, JOAN JETT & THE BLACKHEARTS, TWENTY ONE PILOTS, SOUNDGARDEN and METALLICA.

Back in 2017, HALESTORM bassist Josh Smith spoke to RingRocker.com about how he and his bandmates go about picking which songs to record for their series of covers EPs. "We start out with basically everyone… Our team… Oh my God! My dad finds out that we're doing a cover album, all I get is texts: 'Oh, you should do this.' But anyone… anyone who finds out we're doing a covers album, all of a sudden you're just getting this crazy list," he said. "So it literally starts out with e-mails of lists and lists, and somehow, over months, we kind of whittle down our list until we get to a short list of maybe ten songs or less. And then we record 'em and see what works and see what we like."

He continued: "Now, after the first one, we sort of followed a similar formula with the second one in that it's very generational — we have a song from '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, a contemporary pop song… So that was a nice way to pick our songs. Really, that has been the template."

According to Josh, there is at least one added benefit to covering other people's songs when it comes to HALESTORM working on original material. He explained: "What's really cool is that when we do pick these songs, they really do influence us, because it's Songwriting and Performing 101. Where you have to deconstruct a song — a legendary song, essentially — you deconstruct it, and then rebuild it to how it works for us. And it really influences us in a lot of ways."

Added Arejay: "When we did 'Slave To The Grind' [from SKID ROW], we were, like, 'Oh, man! We need a song like this.' And then we wrote 'Love Bites', which is pretty much just off the feel of 'Slave To The Grind'. It's cool, 'cause we used to do that. We used to do three- or four-hour shows with covers and originals. And you're right — it is like training. And I always recommend that for newer artists, younger artists that wanna learn how to play drums or guitar. I always say the best way to really get good and learn how to develop your own style is to learn the styles of other people and learn other songs that you like or that challenge you. And it kind of makes you think differently. It's, like, 'Oh, this guy did these chords,' or, 'This guy played this kind of groove.' 'I bet I can do that in an original song.' So, yeah, it's kind of like training."

Arejay and his sister Lzzy (vocals, guitar) formed the band in 1998 while in middle school. Guitarist Joe Hottinger joined the group in 2003, followed by Smith in 2004.

In December 2018, HALESTORM was nominated for a "Best Rock Performance" Grammy Award for its song "Uncomfortable". Six years earlier, the band won its first Grammy in the category of "Best Hard Rock/ Metal Performance" for "Love Bites (So Do I)".

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