STEVE HARRIS Says BRITISH LION Is 'Getting Heavier And Heavier'

December 31, 2016

Sam Sheppard of Mammoth Metal TV recently conducted an interview with IRON MAIDEN and BRITISH LION bassist Steve Harris. You can listen to the full chat below. A few excerpts follow (transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET).

On if any of the songs from BRITISH LION's 2012 self-titled debut album were written in the early '90s when Harris was mentoring the band:

Steve: "A couple were written from back then. 'A World Without Heaven', 'Eyes Of The Young' and 'The Chosen Ones' were from that era. They were really good songs; that's kind of the reason why I ended up doing this. I thought the songs were too good to not see the light of day, really. They go down really well live. They are really good live songs. We've evolved as a band in the last two or three tours that we've been doing, they've just evolved into really good live songs, not that they weren't before. I think, if anything, we're probably getting heavier and heavier."

On the '70s influence on the band's debut album:

Steve: "The first album [has it], the second album will be different. The band has been evolving anyway, just live naturally. The second album will be a lot more like we are now. It's just the vibe, the sounds, the guitar stuff, some of Graham's [Leslie] guitar sounds on a couple of songs were that sort of sound. I'd still like to keep that element in there because the band is evolving. It's what we started with, so it's important."

On if BRITISH LION is recording shows from their recent tour for an eventual live album release:

Steve: "Yeah, we're recording them all. We've got a few recorded from before, too, but we got all of these recordings, so it's going to take a while to go through them all. We've got some good stuff. We've had some really good shows and hopefully in the cold light of day, they are good performances. You go back and listen to the stuff, it can only be better or worse, depending on what we find. But the band is feeling tight, feeling powerful, and good, so I think we'll have some good stuff."

On when the second BRITISH LION album will be recorded:

Steve: "By the end of next year, because I'll be really busy with MAIDEN for a good part of next year. We'll be playing a few European festivals with BRITISH LION also, so there's not loads of time to sort the live album and record as well. Because we have been playing quite a few new songs live anyway, I don't think it will take as long. Having said that, we're just trying to find a window of time to do it. I think because we have been playing a lot of the songs live, we should be able to bash most of those songs out very quickly. I think it will be more of a traditional way of recording, really."

On playing shows in smaller venues with BRITISH LION:

Steve: "Playing live in all of these small places, I really enjoy it, and it keeps me fit for MAIDEN as well. It's all good. I'm really enjoying it."

On traveling in a bus versus airplane:

Steve: "I've always liked the bus anyway, but the biggest downside I have to deal with is all the bloody snoring. It's a bit of a nightmare. Other than that, when you're going along, it's alright, you can't really hear it, but when you have a shorter drive and you stop, then it comes into play. I try to use earplugs, but they don't work too well."

On the vibe of the new BRITISH LION songs:

Steve: "There's a difference going on. It's hard to say. I think 'Bible Black' in particular, is pretty heavy, even though it has very melodic verses. I don't think there's too many bands out there at the moment playing this kind of stuff that is heavy and with this much melody in it. Maybe there is, but I don't know about it. We've played on some festival-type bills and we've been very different as to who else is on the bill, which I think is quite interesting."

BRITISH LION's debut album sold around 3,000 copies in the United States in its first week of release. The CD landed at position No. 3 on the Top New Artist Albums (Heatseekers) chart, which lists the best-selling albums by new and developing artists, defined as those who have never appeared in the Top 100 of The Billboard 200.

"British Lion" was released in the U.S. on September 25, 2012 via Universal Music Enterprises (UMe). Mixed by Kevin Shirley — whose credits include IRON MAIDEN as well as LED ZEPPELIN, JOURNEY and RUSH, among many others — the CD features Harris alongside singer Richard Taylor, guitarists Graham Leslie and David Hawkins and drummer Simon Dawson.


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