Kerrang! magazine (web site) recently conducted an interview with KORN members Jonathan Davis (vocals) and Reggie "Fieldy" Arvizu (bass). A few excerpts from the chat follow:
On the band's days of rock 'n' roll excess:
Davis: "We were fighting constantly. All bands do that. And, at the end of the day we'd all laugh and hug each other and it was cool. The way it's portrayed in the media is always totally different to how it is. KORN were never on the brink of destruction, it's just that David [Silveria, drums] kept going missing and Head [Brian Welch, guitar] was fucked up on meth amphetamine...
"We just descended into this bullshit soap opera. I regret acting like an idiot with the drug abuse and the alcoholism. I was a fucking fuck-up, living out my Jim Morrison fantasy of what I thought a rockstar should be. I was fucking stupid. But that's how you think you're supposed to act when you're a kid."
Fieldy: "I definitely lived the bling lifestyle, buying lots of jewelry and fancy cars. I look back on it and I think those things were a waste of money. I bought a £15,000 watch. What was I thinking? I think a lot of the reasons why I did those things was because I was high. I wasn't thinking straight. I was caught up in this vicious circle. It was like I was a rockstar so I was untouchable, you know? But the thing is, you don't have to do those things to be a rockstar. I don't do any of that stuff any more and I'm still here, I'm still rocking."
Davis: "In the band we called him 'Mouth'. We had to stop him doing press because he'd just blurt out such random shit in interviews. I know he didn't mean any harm by it. I love Reggie and I hate talking bad about him because he's just so nice now he's sober. And that's the side of him I've always seen, that's how he was in private... But as soon as he got an audience, he acted like a fucking dickhead!"
On guitarist Brian "Head" Welch's departure from KORN to dedicate his life to Christianity:
Davis: "It was bizarre. We knew something was wrong with him but no one could have predicted that.
"I tried everything possible in my power to help him but he was just in hell. And so we just had to watch him crumble. Then he said he didn't want to be in the band anymore and we were like, 'Good. Go be with your daughter, stay home, be a dad and we'll get a touring guitar player.' We didn't know the extent of his drug bullshit at the time, so at first he seemed to be getting better. It turns out Head was fucked up on methamphetamine from the time I joined the band to the time he fucking left."
On the war of words between Welch and his former bandmates over the Internet and in the American press, branding KORN "wicked" and "sinful":
Davis: "We were just spewing shit back and forth and it was just stupid. He just didn't have to attack our band that we've all put our hearts and souls into. He just didn't have to say all that shit about us being 'evil' and 'negative'. He felt God was telling him to do this and do that and you know what, maybe he was. But there was no need for some of the things he said. We were getting attacked for no reason and it really hurt my fucking feelings."
On what he thought of Welch's book "Save Me from Myself: How I Found God, Quit Korn, Kicked Drugs, and Lived to Tell My Story":
Davis: "It didn't turn out as bad as I thought it might. The stuff he wrote about us was okay I guess. It could have been a whole lot worse. But it is what it is. At least now he's in a better place. Good for him, I'm glad he got the help he needed."
On drummer David Silveria's "enforced hiatus" from KORN:
Davis: "It was a mutual decision between the band. But on a basic level, David's playing and his technique were just gone. We were quite worried when we were getting ready to make our new album. We'd set up rehearsals and David was like, 'No, I can't make it' and then we'd arrange another one and he'd be like, 'No, can't make it'. So I said to him, 'I think you need to take a break,' and I haven't heard from him since."
On whether David is still a member of KORN:
Davis: "Yes, and I'm sure he'll be coming back, when he's ready. At the moment he's happy running his businesses, but his heart and passion have just gone. I love him and wish he was in my band, but his heart isn't in it right now. I'm torn apart. He's my brother and he's hurting, but sometimes people have to lose everything before they see that."