HELMET mainman Page Hamilton recently spoke to Chris Harris of MTV.com about his band's forthcoming sixth album, "Monochrome". The follow-up to 2004's "Size Matters" will be released by Warcon Enterprises, the label co-owned by Warped Tour founder Kevin Lyman and the founder and CEO of Concrete Marketing, Bob Chiappardi, on July 18.
"It's always that sort of nebulous ground of 'Do they not want you around anymore?' or 'Do you want out?' " Hamilton said. "[For major labels,] it's about hits," he said.
"I write and sing and play all the songs in HELMET, and there's no team of songwriters behind me. I mean, BEYONCÉ must have a thousand people involved in every album. It's just a different world. Sure, you feel the pressure occasionally of, 'You should think about your image,' or 'You should write a radio-friendly song.' That's not why I do it. HELMET will be what I'm known for, and at this point, it doesn't make sense to fit in with what's going on in order to have some sort of commercial success."
Read more at MTV.com.
For "Monochrome", Page enlisted "Strap It On" and "Meantime" collaborator Wharton Tiers to co-produce and return to the organic sound the band is known for. Tiers recorded the band's first two releases, "Strap It On" and "Meantime", the latter of which sold over a million copies and defined the brusque element of America's underground rock scene. The HELMET sound sparked a new brand of metal, crossing all traditional music boundaries, paving the way for bands like CHEVELLE, DEFTONES, KILLSWITCH ENGAGE, NORMA JEAN and SILVERCHAIR, among many others.
"Wharton was my only choice to co-produce this project with me," notes Hamilton. "Apart from the sounds he can get in his studio, he was also a major influence in terms of helping me shape my guitar playing."
HELMET's catalog also includes "Betty" (1994) and "Aftertaste" (1996), after which they broke up in 1998. In 2004, Hamilton rejoined with Traynor and two other established players to release and tour in support of the critically acclaimed "Size Matters".