RATT singer Stephen Pearcy was interviewed by rock journalist Mitch Lafon for a recent edition of the "One On One With Mitch Lafon" podcast (Facebook page). You can listen to the chat below. A couple of excerpts follow (transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET).
On RATT's plans to record the follow-up to 2010's "Infestation" album:
Stephen: "'Infestation' wasn't brilliant. It was good. We didn't hit our mark, and Warren [DeMartini, guitar] and I know that — because Juan [Croucier, bass] wasn't involved. This next thing we do, it's gonna be the same schematic I used with [my new solo album] 'Smash': time and effort. Something that we really didn't have a lot of back in the day, because it was, like, go on the road for two hundred dates, and then you have a few months off, and you're in the studio for three months, and then you've got a month off, and then you're on the road. And this time it's gonna be different. We wanna do something special. We want it to be brilliant, and we're gonna take the time and effort to do it. We just don't wanna go out there and… I mean, of course, we're gonna go out there and play the hits and do what we do, but at the end of the year, we wanna start on the record. It's part of the plan of us getting together in the first place — the three of us [me, Warren and Juan] — and going through the mess that we did to protect this entity, and to step up and finally say, 'Okay, this is big-rock time. This is 'stop the bullshit,' all this nonsense that's going on.' So, you know, expect the best… I mean, expect hopefully more than the best when it comes down to a new RATT record, because it'd better be a hundred times better than 'Smash'."
On the motivation for RATT to make new music instead of just touring the world and playing the hits:
Stephen: "Well, number one, the thing that keeps getting us back together is the music. I mean, we don't really always hang out. It's a business. Back in the day, we forgot about the music business — which some people did — and this time around, we want to make music. That's what we do, that's what I do, and that's what always pulls us back together. Of course, we go through this and that and all these complications that dysfunctional bands do to be successful. I mean, it's almost like if you're not dysfunctional when you have success, you've never really made it, unfortunately. You've gotta earn those stripes. But no, we want to write a record because we wanna prove to ourselves that we can bust some ass. And it's not about just going out and playing the hits. We know we're classic rock. We've been there, we've done it many times over. There's no point to make. But when it comes down to music, it's very important still. And to go out and even play performances now that we're gonna do — these festivals, the Rocklahomas and the Rock Fests and the M3s — the handful we have right now just to step up, we're gonna be playing the best you've ever heard us. I mean, it's a totally different sober environment for all of us. And it's gonna be a whole another world."
On the songwriting chemistry between him, Warren and Juan:
Stephen: "Well, first off, without Robbin [Crosby, late RATT guitarist], we're not really complete. All I can do is make sure he's channeled in there somewhere and his legacy lives on and he's not forgotten. I mean, even when I write my own music, I think about Robbin… So when it comes to the three of us now, we want the best… I don't know… It's like adding these strange chemicals and you get this something that only you can do together. Juan writes, I write, Warren writes… you put us all together — bingo. But without Robbin, it's not really the same, but all we can do is do our best and keep his spirit and his… or me, keep him in that mix, as I'm doing what I'm doing, 'cause he was a big part of what we did. So we're gonna do the best we can as far as putting something out."
On who will play drums for RATT at the upcoming shows and beyond:
Stephen: "As far as I'm concerned, that is yet to be seen or announced. I think Jimmy [DeGrasso] will be in on the first show, and then we'll see what happens. We're talking about something to where I think, and hopefully we all believe, that we want the best for what we're going to do for the next couple of years. And no disrespect to anybody, that's what's gonna happen, and we haven't decided, I haven't decided, and we'll see what happens. But I know who we pull in for the long term is gonna be special."
On RATT's future plans now that the band has regained the rights the name from drummer Bobby Blotzer:
Stephen: "The solo stuff is just… that turns me on, that fulfills my own trip, and that's not going anywhere. I'll do that for as long as I feel like doing it. RATT, like I said, is a whole different machine. I don't even wanna get into the whole thing of it… It was never lost; it was returned. I do write for TV and other things, and so, for RATT, all of us, I believe, would like to see a good two, three years… I don't wann do this… You know, I've got other things I wanna do. I wanna sponsor my race cars, I wanna, you know… Who knows? Walk my dog for a year. I don't know… [Laughs] But we do want to have a good few years out there. And nothing disturbs anything. The solo shows for 'Smash', they start next month and they wind down the Second of July. I just got a new agent, which is brilliant, for my solo [band]. And RATT's still structuring itself business-wise. Unless all the components are complete, we'll have to see how long we want to… It's up to us, you know. We'll do it as long as we can. But I know we wanna do a record. That's one thing. We do wanna accomplish a record. It'll be our tenth. If we can accomplish that, we've really done a lot for ourselves, believe me. So we'll see what happens."
Stephen's fourth solo album, "Smash", was released on January 27 via Frontiers Music Srl.