Guitarist Phil Demmel of reunited San Francisco Bay Area thrashers VIO-LENCE spoke to Portugal’s Underground’s Voice about the progress of the songwriting sessions for the band’s new EP, tentatively due in 2021 via Metal Blade Records.
“We are recording a five-song EP,” he said. “And we just finished song number four last night, and I’m pretty excited about it. It’s fast. The songs are hard to play. Sean [Killian, vocals] sounds great, man — his vocals sound so great. Perry‘s [Strickland, drums] playing crazy, like [‘Muppets’ character] Animal, back there. And the riffs are hard — I’m pushing myself with the riffs. I don’t want you to just be able to pick up a guitar and play the riff; I want it to be pretty tough. And it’s hard on me — I’m pushing myself. So, four songs are ready. We’ll probably start recording in a couple of months, maybe, and get it out next year.”
This past August, VIO-LENCE released a new digital single, “California Über Alles”, a cover version of the DEAD KENNEDYS classic. The band also filmed a music video for the song with director Scott Kirkeeng.
In January, VIO-LENCE parted ways with guitarist Ray Vegas and replaced him with Bobby Gustafson (ex-OVERKILL). The band’s current lineup also includes bassist Christian Olde-Wolbers (ex-FEAR FACTORY).
VIO-LENCE released three studio albums between 1988 and 1993. The group reunited soon after Demmel left MACHINE HEAD in late 2018.
VIO-LENCE performed its first comeback concert in April 2019 at the Oakland Metro in Oakland, California and spent the last year playing select shows in the U.S. and Europe.
Although MACHINE HEAD frontman Robb Flynn was part of VIO-LENCE‘s classic incarnation and played on the band’s debut album, “Eternal Nightmare”, he wasn’t approached about taking part in any of the comeback shows.
Killian underwent a successful liver transplant surgery in March 2018. The year before, Killian was diagnosed with stage four liver cirrhosis, which was caused in part by a genetic condition called hemochromatosis.
Photo credit: James Willard