May 20, 2019

"BODS Mayhem Hour" recently conducted an interview with guitarist Michael Wilton of progressive metal veterans QUEENSRŸCHE. You can listen to the entire chat below. A few excerpts follow (transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET).

On whether he's surprised QUEENSRŸCHE is still able to tour and release records in this climate:

Michael: "Yeah, that's the way you do it these days. Everybody's streaming and not buying CDs anymore, so bands are touring a lot and putting out albums, so that's what we're doing. We have 85 shows this year and love the touring, love seeing the fans, love playing the music and being on the stage live is something I've been doing for so long that I love to do."

On what excited him the most about making their latest studio album, "The Verdict":

Michael: "It's just something that's great because we are musicians and we have to take a break from the touring and put out an album, and this was such a great thing to do because the band gets together and writes the music as a band and there's no dictatorship, so everybody gets in there, spontaneity, live solos, everything is just great. It's so much fun for me, just like when I was a kid in the '80s."

On what goes through his head when he sees multiple generations of QUEENSRŸCHE fans at their shows:

Michael: "I think the way we're writing the music, it has an edge and also has the roots because of my guitar playing. It goes back to the early '80s. People hear it and go, 'Hey, it sounds like QUEENSRŸCHE. I recognize the roots there. I recognize the riffs.' With the band now, we're at a point where people love [vocalist] Todd La Torre and [guitarist] Parker Lundgren and it's something that a lot of younger generation kids are coming to the shows now. And, they say they love the music because it has an edge and it sounds current. So, we're just kind of bridging the generation gap with the hardcore fans that have been there since the early '80s now, to the new fans that have been following us for seven years now. It's just great to play live, to see such a variety of people in the audience and see them just enjoying the live presentation of QUEENSRŸCHE."

On working with veteran producer Chris "Zeuss" Harris (ROB ZOMBIE, ICED EARTH, HATEBREED):

Michael: "It was great because he just knows the band, he knows how the band should sound, he knows our personalities, he knows how to get the best performances out of us and he's just an amazing producer, engineer, and someone that really understands QUEENSRŸCHE and really understands our music and the way it should sound and be produced."

On QUEENSRŸCHE's musical development and growth when La Torre joined in 2012:

Michael: Obviously, once Todd came into the fold, it was a band again. It was everybody writing and everybody being creative. That in itself everybody loves to do because being in a band, it's a hard thing to do, but it's also one of the funnest endeavors to ever have as you become brothers and really just bring to the fans the creativity and the sound of QUEENSRŸCHE."

On the band's current approach to writing and recording albums:

Michael: "I think with QUEENSRŸCHE and the music, it's just about kind of letting the ideas flow and let the songs write themselves. I think you really have to trust yourself and that's something that takes experience and obviously, I've been doing it for a long time. You just have to let things go and not worry about what's the trend, what's everybody doing? What's on the radio? We don't care. We're about writing what's in our hearts and that's the main focus and once you believe in that, it translates. That's why the fans keep wanting us back and it's all about for us, just keeping it real."

"The Verdict" was released March 1 via Century Media Records. The disc was produced, mixed, and mastered by Harris at Uberbeatz in Lynwood, Washington; Planet-Z in Wilbraham, Massachusetts; and Watershed Studio in Seattle, Washington.

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