IN FLAMES guitarist Björn Gelotte spoke to Australia's Metal Mal about the band's latest addition, drummer Tanner Wayne. Best known for his work with UNDERMINDED, SCARY KIDS SCARING KIDS and CHIODOS, Tanner joined IN FLAMES following the departure of Joe Rickard, who played on the group's 2016 album "Battles".
Asked how it was replacing a drummer in the middle of recording a new studio LP, the just-released "I, The Mask", Björn said: "We didn't really do that in the middle. Joe said, before the recording, before we were coming over to the [studio in the] U.S., he said he can't play drums anymore, basically — his back is all messed up. I don't know if it's from an old injury or what it is, but he was constantly on pain medication. It's simply not good. And we were devastated, obviously, and figured, 'Okay, let's just go there. And we'll figure something out when we get there.' Everybody's a musician in L.A., right? But Joe really insisted. He said, 'I wanna do this. I want this to be what I do. I don't want anybody else to do it.' So we did all the music, recorded everything to programmed drums first. And then Joe just stepped in a couple of days and then did all the drums for all the songs but one on the record. And then we were done — we thought the album was done — but then we had some more time way later and recorded two more, and then Tanner did the drums on those. So it was never like in the process that it happened — it was way later. Since we weren't in any hurry to release the record — we wanted to release it together with some proper touring and just to be able to play the stuff like… When we did the record, 'I, The Mask', we were still on the 'Battles' touring cycle, so we were in no hurry whatsoever. So when we found this extra time, we just recorded them. Tanner is an amazing drummer and just went in and kicked butt. And it turned out great. So one of the songs [with Tanner] is actually on the record."
Tanner made his live debut with IN FLAMES in July 2018 in Brno, Czech Republic.
"I, The Mask" was released on March 1 via Nuclear Blast (worldwide, excluding North America) and Eleven Seven Music (North America). The disc reunites IN FLAMES with Grammy-nominated producer Howard Benson (MY CHEMICAL ROMANCE, MOTÖRHEAD) who also produced "Battles". Additionally, the album was mixed by Grammy Award winner Chris Lord-Alge (CHEAP TRICK, LINKIN PARK) and mastered by Grammy-winning mastering engeneer Ted Jensen (PANTERA, EAGLES, GUNS N' ROSES).