Joe Hottinger says HALESTORM is currently assembling a "special package" to celebrate the tenth anniversary of the band's self-titled debut album. Released in 2009, the LP was produced by Howard Benson (MY CHEMICAL ROMANCE, P.O.D.) and featured the single "I Get Off". The band went on to release three additional studio albums, becoming a mainstay on rock radio.
In a recent interview with Ned from Waterloo, Iowa radio station KFMW Rock 108, Hottinger reflected on the last decade for HALESTORM, which saw the band emerge from the small Pennsylvania town of Red Lion. "It's a trip, man," he said. "It's the ten-year anniversary of our first record and we're putting together a special package for that first album right now. Lzzy [Hale, guitar/vocals] and I just went through all these demos we made from 2005 to 2008 when we were making that first record. I had forgotten all about them. It's like hearing these songs for the first time again. They weren't terrible. There's a reason they didn't make the first record. The thing was there; the magic was there, that we fight for even today. I kind of realized that we're doing what we've always done. We're lucky. I get to do what I love with the people I love and travel the world doing it. What more could you ask for in a life? That's what we were doing back when we were playing bars around Pennsylvania. Just doing what we love with people we love. It was on a much smaller scale. But what a trip. I think we're going around the world twice this year. We end in Australia and Japan again before the end of the year. It's awesome. It's tiring, but awesome."
The guitarist also spoke about HALESTORM's 2019 touring schedule in support of the group's latest release, "Vicious".
"We're doing what used to be Rock On The Range, we're doing Sonic Temple, which is now in Columbus, Ohio," he said. "That's our one spring U.S. festival. That's our last show on this tour. We're playing with GHOST and SYSTEM OF A DOWN, which totally rules. I'm such a huge fan of both of those bands. Then, we're home for like a week or two, then we head to Europe and play all the big festivals over there, which is going to be a trip. I know we're doing these two German festivals with TOOL and ALICE IN CHAINS, SMASHING PUMPKINS. There's a bunch of other bands on the same day we are. How cool is that? We're doing Copenhall in Copenhagen with STP [STONE TEMPLE PILOTS]. I'm just going to be a kid in a candy shop over there. It's going to be a fun year for old HALESTORM."
HALESTORM's month-long North American tour kicked off April 12 at Ladson, South Carolina's 98 Rockfest and runs through Columbus, Ohio's Sonic Temple, with dates across the continent, including a stop at Mexico City's Domination festival in early May. PALAYE ROYALE and BEASTO BLANCO will open for HALESTORM on the run of dates, which follow HALESTORM's trek abroad in March with performances at Download festival in Australia and Japan.