Asking Alexandria Talk "Reckless and Relentless," Bruno Mars, Johnny Depp, Jack The Ripper and More
Thu, 07 Apr 2011 18:25:11
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For Asking Alexandria, Reckless and Relentless isn't just the title of their highly anticipated second album; it's a way of life.
Certainly, it describes the band's unbridled assault musically, forging airtight technical riffage to an infectious industrial stomp. The English quintet essentially bridge the gap between Master of Puppets and Pretty Hate Machine on Reckless and Relentless, and it's going to be a new haven for heavy music fans worldwide. "Morte Et Dabo" and "Dear Insanity" serve as further proof with hooks meant for arenas and grooves meant for beatdowns.
Asking Alexandria guitarist Ben Bruce sat down with ARTISTdirect.com editor and Dolor author Rick Florino for an exclusive interview about Reckless and Relentless, the Jack the Ripper tour in London, Blow, and so much more.
Have you read anything good lately?
Honestly, being on the road, it takes me awhile to finish books. The last book I read was called The Barflies by Paul Bruce. Funny enough, it's my dad's book. He sent it to me just before it got published to have me read it and see what I thought of it. I enjoyed that. No one else is going to know about that book until it comes out, but that was the last book I read.
Do you think about the live show when you're recording?
We are very much a live band. When I'm writing the music, I always think about how people are going to react to it live, how we're going to perform it live, if it's possible, and if it's going to capture their attention and keep their energy alive. There's nothing worse than seeing a great studio band on stage who can't pull it off live. We take our live show really seriously and think about it a lot. On this tour, we've spent upwards of one-hundred thousand dollars on stage production. We've got snare cases, ramps, and all of our own lights.
Is there one ethos at the heart of the album?
The title is something that we felt summed up the whole album and our two years of touring so far. It has been Reckless and Relentless. We haven't stopped touring since before the first album came out. We went on tour about a month before the first album came out and we haven't stopped since then. We took a break to go into the studio and had a week off for Christmas and that's it. It's constant touring. After we named the album, Children of Bodom came out with a record called The Reckless Relentless, and I was like, "That fucking sucks!" [Laughs] We weren't going to change it though because we felt like it was the perfect name for this album, and it tells the story we wanted to tell.
What are the biggest differences between American and the UK?
To be completely honest, as far as crowds go, there aren't too many differences at a rock show in any country. We've done Australia, Singapore, all of Europe, and America. Fans are fans everywhere. They're just as enthusiastic no matter what country they're in or what language they speak, which is awesome. There are cultural differences in every country we've ever been to though. Even in terms of things like the architecture, you can tell America is a much newer country than the European countries. A lot of the architecture is more modern and there's less history behind it, whereas if you go somewhere like Germany or England there are buildings that are really old. I look at them and picture all of the history and stuff that's gone in the buildings as well as all of the people that have passed through them for hundreds and hundreds of years. It's crazy.
Is the Sherlock Holmes museum on Baker Street in London worth checking out?
Dude, it's amazing! The other thing that's really cool is you can do this "Jack the Ripper" tour. It goes to all of the places where he used to stalk women. You walk the streets that he murdered all of those prostitutes on, and it's so crazy. I'm from London, and I still love doing all of the tourist stuff.
If Reckless and Relentless were a movie or a combination of movies, what would it be?
Have you seen Blow with Johnny Depp? [Laughs] If you watch the movie, you'll understand. The other movie would be Requiem for a Dream. That film is completely twisted and fucked up. It's pretty comparable to Reckless and Relentless in my opinion.
And you're still digging Bruno Mars?
He's flawless live. He looks good. He sounds good. He's a great performer. What's not to like? His songs are catchy but some of them are edgy. He's got everything he needs to become a rock star. He's awesome.
Have you heard Asking Alexandria yet?