Meltdown of Detroit's WRIF radio station recently conducted an interview with GODSMACK frontman Sully Erna. You can listen to the chat via the widget below. A few excerpts follow (transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET).
On GODSMACK's upcoming album, "When Legends Rise":
Sully: "We've really been anticipating this one coming out, because, as you know — you've heard the ['Bulletproof'] single, I'm sure — it's a bit of a departure for us. But people need to hear the rest of this record first; I don't want them to assume that the whole record is just built off of this kind of thing. But it's just a song that, for me, came out and sounded really big for me — melodically. The record has a lot of power to it still. But there's a little bit of everything on this record for everybody. There's certainly GODSMACK songs that are gonna cater to the core audience, and there's stuff that just kind of pulled us in a little bit of a new direction. It's a real eclectic mix of stuff, but, again, it all ties together and it makes sense. It's not so departed from what we've done in the past that it's gonna make people be, like, 'Wow!' I think 'Bulletproof' is probably the biggest departure, but there's certainly some other textures and songs on here that people are gonna be going, like,'Wow! That's new GODSMACK? That's crazy.' But it's set up kind of with a Side A and Side B, like vinyl would be. The first side is certainly the newer, more unique side of our writing, and then the back half of the record is a little bit more traditional."
On the "When Legends Rise" title track, which opens the record, and why it was used as the album title:
Sully: "Well, it just made sense [as the album title], because as I was kind of thinking about what lyrical content I was gonna use on this record… I mean, if anybody knows me right now, they know that I never write fictional stories; I usually write about something that affected me on an emotional level somehow — good or bad. And a couple of years ago, I went through a real transition where I eliminated a lot of people and negative things from my life that were there for the wrong reasons, and it just kind of opened up a can of worms for me to flush out everything that was a bit negative and rebuild. And 'Legends' is about that — it's just about kind of burning it down to the ground and rebuilding it one step at a time and reaching inside yourself to find the inner strength to rise above. So the whole theme that runs through the record is kind of along those lines, about just rebirth."
On whether eliminating negative things and people from his life has paid off:
Sully: "[It was the] best decision I've ever made in my life — never regretted a day of it. And if anyone knows me, you'll know I'm all about loyalty. It's not that I try to sidestep people that have been in my life for a while, but when you start realizing that people are there for the wrong reasons or they have a different agenda… The loyalty has to be mutual; it has to work both ways. It isn't even about the people so much — it's about wanting to live your life and not lose your life trying to carry the cross for everyone else and finding yourself consumed in people's bullshit. There's a time where you've just gotta move on with your own life and expect people to grow up themselves and not have to carry 'em. So that was the decision I made. It's been great, and things have grown a lot. And it's also a reflection on this band and where we're at as individuals. We really feel like this record is the first record of the new GODSMACK — there's a rebirth happening here — and we're really excited about trying to get another 10 or 15 years out of this band."
On the key to GODSMACK's longevity and success:
Sully: "Just, I guess, endurance. And being smart about the decisions we made, or make, as a band. And being careful with each other to make sure that we keep an eye on each other and stay grounded; that's really important. But more importantly, to be able to get over those really challenging obstacles and moments that most bands break up over. And we had plenty of them. There was times I didn't think this band was gonna make it after [2006's] 'IV' record. It's a complicated business sometimes and it's a complicated relationship when you're trying to learn four different personalities, but eventually, if you survive it, you get past it. And things are better than they ever have been now. The band is in a great place personally, health-wise, and we're really motivated to work again, and we're just really grateful that, 20 years later, there's still an audience there that cares about the brand."
GODSMACK's first album in four years, "When Legends Rise", which will be released on April 27.
The new disc is GODSMACK's seventh studio effort and follows up 2014's "1000hp". It's also the band's first release through BMG after splitting with its longtime home, Republic/Universal.
"When Legends Rise" was recorded at GODSMACK's headquarters (GSHQ) in Derry, New Hampshire and produced by Erik Ron and Erna.