"We are always working on the next steps" - hmv.com talks to Mark Tremonti
Mark Tremonti is a very busy man. As well as being the guitarist and lynchpin in Alter Bridge, he's also spearheading a solo career with Tremonti, the band built around him. After coming home from an exhausting tour in support of Alter Bridge's album Fortress, Tremonti moved straight on Cauterize (which you can preview on the right-hand side of the page), the second album with his solo band which is now on hmv shelves. We sat down with Tremonti talk about recording Cauterize and its partner album Dust (that'll be out next year) and how he balances out his many projects...
When did you start work on what would become Cauterize?
"We all got together in April 2014 for a few weeks and began writing what would become Cauterize and Dust."
Do you collect songs as you go? Or do you purposefully sit down and write for one project?
"I am always writing and they all go into a big bank of songs I keep. Some songs stand out as a Alter Bridge song and others as Tremonti songs but there are a lot that develop while jamming with the guys."
How many songs did you have to choose from for this album? Do you write lots and trim it down? Or do you write what you need for an album?
"We went into the studio with 25 songs and ended up doing 20 - which are split between Cauterize and Dust."
This is your second album with Tremonti, how did you want it to move on from All I Was?
"The only goal was for it to be better than All I Was. All I Was came from older songs that I loved but didn't have a home in Alter Bridge or Creed. All of the songs on Cauterize have been written since the release of All I Was."
This is your first time recording with Wolfgang Van Halen (son of Van Halen legend Eddie) as part of the band, what did he bring to the process?
"Wolf is an incredible bass player and is second to none! He can play anything and has amazing ideas."
What kind of album is this lyrically?
"All of the lyrics come from either personal experiences or the lives of my friends and family."
Do you find yourself writing about different things as you get older? Or do the same subjects tend to inspire you?
"I write about whatever is going on at that time in my life."
What inspired the title?
"The lyrics to Cauterize just stood out to me from the start - as I wrote the lyrics, that song just stood out to me."
The cover art is very striking indeed, what inspired that? What do you look for in a cover?
"I want the cover to tell a story and have meaning - the creature on the cover is a science fiction character we came up with, coming to earth to burn out the human race."
How much touring do you have lined up for this album?
"This band loves playing live and we plan to play out as much as we can!"
After you wrap up touring in support of this album will you be having a bit of a break or getting straight back to work with Alter Bridge?
"No breaks, we are always working on the next steps. As soon as the Cauterize album cycle is done we will gear up for the release of Dust and I will also be back writing with Alter Bridge."
Tremonti's new album Cauterize is out now in hmv stores and can be previewed on the right-hand side of the page.