HELLYEAH's VINNIE PAUL: European Fans Live, Love And Breathe Metal And Hard Rock

HELLYEAH's VINNIE PAUL: European Fans Live, Love And Breathe Metal And Hard Rock

Mick Birchall of Manchester Rocks recently conducted an interview with former PANTERA and current HELLYEAH drummer Vinnie Paul Abbott. A couple of excerpts from the chat follow below.

Manchester Rocks: Would you say there any noticeable difference between the American hard rock/metal scene and the British, from your perspective?

Vinnie: Back in the day, there really wasn't much of a difference. However, these days, Europe and the U.K. still lives it, loves it and breathes it. You know, it's a part of their culture and their lifestyle. If you dig metal, you can still have that faith and belief in it in Europe, and the metal bands will always have a place to play here, because the people will never forget. Whereas in the U.S., it's very much "here today and gone tomorrow." Here today, gone this afternoon. It's just so driven by the people trying to get that one song they want off the Internet, instead of buying a record and following a band. So the fans in the U.S. still "get it," but I don't think they touch what goes on over here in Europe and the UK.

Manchester Rocks: [HELLYEAH's new album] "Blood For Blood" has dropped recently, I think it's a brilliant album. How has the response been to "Blood For Blood" since its release?

Vinnie: It's been getting a decent response. We've had some great reviews and acclaim, even from the critics who would usually have it in for you as a band. That was a great start, and then we did a tour all over the U.S. with AVENGED SEVENFOLD, and it went down great with their fans. We're now here in Europe and we're playing almost the whole record — I think, like, seven songs — and it's been going down great every night. Also, a lot of bands, when they come out with a new record, they only want to play one or two new songs and only want to focus on their past, with their hit singles. However, with this album and with this version of the band, we've wanted to focus on the new stuff. I mean, we'll still play songs off the previous records, but this album has been our favorite to play.

Manchester Rocks: I've noticed that "Blood For Blood" is a lot more darker and heavier than your previous records. What was the mindset going into this album? As I realize that two members (bassist Bob "Zilla" Kakaha and guitarist Greg Tribbett) have left.

Vinnie: Well, they didn't leave; we asked them to leave, so let's get that straight. [Laughs] Well, the bottom line is, we made those party records and we got that out of our system with the first couple of records. Then, with "Band Of Brothers", we got back to being a heavy metal band. We just wanted to play what was inside us and the experimentation phase was gone. So when we came to "Blood For Blood", the focus was on just making a heavy record; we didn't want there to be any boundaries on it and just be ourselves and that's what we did with this album.

Manchester Rocks: You've been with HELLYEAH since 2006 and had four albums now. What do you feel is the one thing you've learned with this band?

Vinnie: That with each record we get stronger, better and become more focused as a band. It was really scattered when we started. Some songs were southern rock, some songs were almost country, some were straight-up rock and roll and some were heavy metal. It felt good to do that after being in PANTERA, which was just heavy metal. However, as it's grown, it's gotten better and become more focused and it really is a brotherhood, even though we've had the two member changes, and I look forward to whatever comes next.

Read the entire interview at Manchester Rocks.


To comment on a BLABBERMOUTH.NET story or review, you must be logged in to an active personal account on Facebook. Once you're logged in, you will be able to comment. User comments or postings do not reflect the viewpoint of BLABBERMOUTH.NET and BLABBERMOUTH.NET does not endorse, or guarantee the accuracy of, any user comment. To report spam or any abusive, obscene, defamatory, racist, homophobic or threatening comments, or anything that may violate any applicable laws, use the "Report to Facebook" and "Mark as spam" links that appear next to the comments themselves. To do so, click the downward arrow on the top-right corner of the Facebook comment (the arrow is invisible until you roll over it) and select the appropriate action. You can also send an e-mail to blabbermouthinbox(@)gmail.com with pertinent details. BLABBERMOUTH.NET reserves the right to "hide" comments that may be considered offensive, illegal or inappropriate and to "ban" users that violate the site's Terms Of Service. Hidden comments will still appear to the user and to the user's Facebook friends. If a new comment is published from a "banned" user or contains a blacklisted word, this comment will automatically have limited visibility (the "banned" user's comments will only be visible to the user and the user's Facebook friends).