KORN singer Jonathan Davis was interviewed on the March 12 edition of "Whiplash", the KLOS radio show hosted by Full Metal Jackie. You can now listen to the chat using the widget below. A couple of excerpts follow (transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET).
On the KORN songwriting process:
Jonathan: "I have one common thing I wanna do throughout all the albums [and that is to] try to experiment and do things differenty. I don't like repeating myself. We've always pushed boundaries. What we've always wanted to do is experiment and try to do new things and challenge ourselves — all of us. Me, singing or writing music, it's always something different. And the rest of the guys, sometimes we take a step back and embrace some of the old-school stuff, but the common goal in our head is to push forward and try and do some new things. And that's challenging for us. If we just did the same old thing, that would be great too. I mean, there's bands that can do that; one of 'em is AC/DC. I love that band and they make the same record over and over, but that's AC/DC; that's what they do. For us, we like to switch up, because it gets boring to do the same old thing."
On KORN's latest album, "The Serenity Of Suffering", representing a "return to roots" for the band:
Jonathan: "Yeah, it was. I think it was the real return of [KORN guitarists] Munk [James 'Munky' Shaffer] and Head [Brian Welch] getting in a room and writing and making a record. I think with [2013's] 'The Paradigm Shift', we were just knocking the dust off the wheels and getting into writing again. But I think with those two in a room together and the way that [producer] Nick [Raskulinecz] recorded, making them sit there and do all the guitar tracks face to face and everything that happened, it was kind of a return, but there was a lot of new-school stuff. We took all the experiences we had and just mashed them together. 'Cause you've gotta remember — Head was gone for almost eight years, so all the experimenting we did, he came back and he was still in that same mindset he was eight years ago. So I think all of it just came together the way it should be, and we came up with this amazing record."
On the musical ingredients that make KORN different from other heavy bands:
Jonathan: "I've always had a problem with the term 'metal.' We never were that. I mean, just go back to the beginning when KORN started out. We came out of Huntington Beach, California, and they didn't know what to do with us. The first tour we went out was with BIOHAZARD and HOUSE OF PAIN. Second one was, I think, SICK OF IT ALL, ORANGE 9MM and us, and then we went out with, like, KMFDM. And we played shows with NO DOUBT, CADILLAC TRAMPS and PENNYWISE, and just stuck us all over the place. So I think that we went out and did all that stuff, and it seems like the metal community took us in. We were like the black sheep — we had no place to really go — and I really appreciate and I love the metal community. But as far as us being a metal band, a metal band, to me, is, like, JUDAS PRIEST or IRON MAIDEN — that's a metal band. I don't think KORN does that. I know it's something we do that's different. But I love the scene and there's some passionate people in it— really diehard fans. They don't care. If they don't like what you're doing, they'll let you know it, and I respect that about them and that scene."
On how he would classify KORN's music, if he had to:
Jonathan: "I think we're just heavy rock. I mean, I don't like categories, period, but we're more of a heavy rock band than just straight metal. I'm coming from when metal was, like I said, PRIEST and that era… DIO and those [bands]… singing about swords and dragons, and I love that. You know what I mean? To me, that was real metal music, and I love it. Don't get me wrong. But when it comes all down to it, it's music, and who cares what the hell it is? If you like it, you like it; if you don't, you don't. At the end of the day, that's all that matters."
"Whiplash" airs every Sunday night from 9:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m. on the Los Angeles radio station 95.5 KLOS. The show can be heard on the KLOS web site at 955klos.com or you can listen in on the KLOS channel on iHeartRadio. Full Metal Jackie also hosts a nationally syndicated radio program, which can be heard all over the country. To see a full list of stations carrying Full Metal Jackie's show and when it airs, go to FullMetalJackieRadio.com.