CHEVELLE drummer Sam Loeffler has revealed to the FM99 WNOR radio station that the band has secured a bass player for its upcoming shows in support of the recently released "Niratias" (Nothing Is Real And This Is A Simulation) album. "His name is Kemble Walters, and he plays in a band called ÆGES," Sam said (transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET). "And he's actually the guitarist-singer in that band, but he plays bass in another band as well. And we just asked him. He's a friend of ours; we've known him for many years and did lots of shows together. And we were, like, 'Hey, man, we love you. We love your hair. Do you wanna come and play some shows?' And he said 'yes.' So we're gonna do that. And we'll see how it goes. He's a rad dude, so I'm sure it'll be great — until he has to go and do his other projects again, or whatever he does. But it's cool. It's casual. And he's great. He's a great musician, and he's a great bass player, and he's a great guitarist. And he can sing. And he's got really tight pants. So, we really like him."
Sam also talked about the departure of longtime CHEVELLE bassist Dean Bernardini, who played his final shows with the band in December 2019. "He did it for 15 years and decided that he needed to be… His kids are now teenagers, and he needed to be home for a while," the drummer said. "So, because of that, we have only rehearsed with [Kemble] once — well, twice, really. So we're putting together setlists, working on that kind of thing, and sending music back and forth.
"It's kind of an interesting time, because with putting out this album, we've been really busy," he continued. "So starting probably next week, we're gonna get back into just playing music again.
"It's fairly depressing to play music knowing that you can't go and do it. It's one thing to go write music and play covers, but to play the music that you're used to playing out in venues for years and years and years, it's a little depressing — to know that you can't do it. So we haven't been doing that as much. Well, now we're getting back into that. We have some shows at the end of June that we're hoping happen — small festivals. So I think those will happen. That'd be good."
Bernardini had been with CHEVELLE since 2005, even though 2007's "Vena Sera" marked his first studio recording with the band.
"Niratias" was released on March 5. The disc was recorded throughout 2019 and 2020 with longtime producer Joe Barresi (TOOL, QUEENS OF THE STONE AGE), CHEVELLE. The cover artwork was created by Boris Vallejo. The famed and award-winning artist is responsible for the posters used for films like "Knightriders" and "National Lampoon's Vacation", as well as iconic 1970s and 1980s science fiction novel covers and magazines (such as Heavy Metal).
"The North Corridor" debuted at No. 8 on the Billboard 200 album chart and produced a No. 1 Mainstream Rock single, "Joyride (Omen)".
The band's album of rarities from 2002-2016, "12 Bloody Spies: B-Sides And Rarities", was released in October 2018 via Epic.
Photo credit: Joseph Cultice