On September 14, Rock Hard Live conducted an interview with HELLYEAH guitarist Tom Maxwell at the Aftershock festival in in Sacramento, California. You can now watch the chat below. A couple of excerpts follow (transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET).
On what it's like being in a band with former PANTERA drummer Vinnie Paul Abbott:
Tom: "It's fucking great. I mean, I remember back, my old band NOTHINGFACE, one of our goals was to just tour with PANTERA, and we got that opportunity. And then I became friends with those guys, but I never thought that I'd ever be in a band with Vince. So, you know, you fast forward to where we are today, we're best friends and I love the guy. He's one of the most humble people, most giving people I've ever met, and he's a fucking animal on the drum kit, man. He's got the perfect meter… I'm a big drum guy, so it's, like, being able to play with somebody that I can just lock in with every night is just fucking great. And he's awesome."
On the rumor that hard rock music is being pushed out of video games in favor of pop:
Tom: "[Hard rock] never die, dude. No matter what they do. You know what?! Just look out there in that crowd today. These fans want music and… Hard music has always stood the test of time, and it's something that people hold dear to them. Listen — you've got all these pop bands and all these fly-by-nights, they don't have grassroots following, they're not gonna be able to ride that wave at the end of their career and be… You know what I mean?! They're like fast food. It's fast food; it's all it is. They're eaten up and they're craved while they're eating it, but they're shit out later on. The thing about rock and roll and metal and all that, these fans are die-hard and they'll stick with you your entire career, as long as you're being honest."
On the rumor that HELLYEAH singer Chad Gray will reactivate his other band MUDVAYNE:
Tom: "That's the rumor. Listen, man. Who knows what's down the line, you know what I mean?! I don't think he put a tombstone on that band. Right now, [HELLYEAH] is what we're doing, and we're doing this until we wanna take time away from it. We're enjoying it, we're having fun, and there's no end in sight."
HELLYEAH's fourth album, "Blood For Blood", sold around 17,000 copies in its first week of release to land at No. 18 on the Billboard chart. The band's previous effort, 2011's "Band Of Brothers", opened with 19,000 copies back in July 2012 to debut at No. 19.
HELLYEAH is currently touring North America as guests of FIVE FINGER DEATH PUNCH and VOLBEAT.