DOWN vocalist PHIL ANSELMO (ex-PANTERA) is featured in a new interview with Aniruddh “Andrew” Bansal for Metal Assault discussing his new solo album, Walk Through Exits Only. An excerpt is available below:
Q: Firstly, I want to ask you about your new solo band. You’ve already had Down for a number of years and you also have your own label Housecore. What was the reason and the inspiration behind starting this solo band of yours?
Phil: “Well, it came about very naturally and organically in my opinion, because there was nothing that set me off. When I get inspired, I have to act. So it started simply like any other record, really. Me, a guitar, an amp and recording apparatus. I wrote the songs, specially the songs that are actually on Walk Through Exits Only, really in one sitting. Not one night, but just one session of writing within myself. And then I picked what I think are under-the-radar excellent musicians that executed the songs very, very well. I’m a music fan first and foremost, and that’s what I consider myself, like anyone else. If I’m into extreme music, it’s something that I’m going to at least educate myself on and look for stuff, like I always have done. I’m an old tape-trader from back in the 80s, man. So the more music you can find about, the more you know about it and the more conscious of it you are. And honestly, I wanted to make a record that could sit next to any extreme genre out there or any other extreme album out there but I wanted to make the record very very hard to slide into a very safe slot or put into any sub-genre, really. I wanted to make a different sounding record, a different type of record. So those were my goals and that’s really how it came about.”
Q: I listened to the record, and I think you’ve expressed yourself fully in terms of your aggression. You’ve done that with other bands as well in the past, but do you think you’ve expressed yourself more on this album than what you’ve done in the past?
Phil: “I don’t know about ‘more’, I just think it’s in a different light, in a different way and from a different perspective because there’s a lot of what I would call sarcasm that I have. I also have an absurd sense of humor that people don’t really know about. Everybody thinks I’m this serious guy and whatnot, but really I’m full of shit, man. I’ve got jokes, you know (laughs). I have a fucking sense of humor. I don’t like comedy in my music, that’s not what I’m getting at. But my point is, lyrically I wanted things to be simple, I wanted things to be straight to the point and very very real. I didn’t want to spoon-feed the reader saying this is exactly what it’s about. If you look at even the title track and the name of the record Walk Through Exits Only, I picked that because first of all, it was in my opinion just a strong line within a song. When I was first writing that song, that line just stuck out for me and I decided to call the song and the album that because it could mean a million different things to a million different people. I’m not going to place an absolute concrete meaning upon it. It’s something that people are going to have to take themselves and apply it to their own lives. So, I wanted to be an architect but let people finish the building, so to speak.”
Click here for the complete interview.
Produced by Philip Anselmo and Michael Thompson, and recorded over the past couple of years at his New Orleans studio, Nodferatu’s Lair, with his band The Illegals – Marzi Montazeri/guitar, and drummer Jose Manuel “Blue” Gonzales, Walk Through Exits Only is abrasive, aggressive, anthemic and 100% Anselmo. The album’s eight songs are as unstrained as it gets, from ‘Battalion Of Zero’ to ‘Usurper’s Bastard Rant’, to the album’s title track that goes against the grain and right through the exits. Brash, brutal guitars cut through punishing percussion as Anselmo screams with uncompromising ferocity and uncontainable fire.
‘Music Media Is My Whore’
‘Battalion Of Zero’
‘Usurper Bastard’s Rant’
‘Walk Through Exits Only’
‘Irrelevant Walls And Computer Screens’
“It wasn’t about doing a paint-by-numbers thrash or heavy metal record,” Anselmo explained about the project. “It’s an angry album that only I could do. I don’t see anybody else out there screaming about the same shit I’m screaming about. On this album, there isn’t any wordplay, there isn’t any hidden message, it’s all right there in front of you.”
Anselmo and the Illegals will support the new album with a major North American tour planned for this summer.
On Walk Through Exits Only and over his entire career, Anselmo hasn’t just paved his own path, he’s bulldozed it with his bare hands.
Philip H. Anselmo & The Illegals will take to the road for their first-ever tour, dubbed Technicians Of Distortion, which will kick off July 31st in Tulsa, OK. Support on the tour comes from AUTHOR & PUNISHER.
Tickets are on sale now at this location.
31 – Cain’s Ballroom – Tulsa, OK
2 – Wooly’s – Des Moines, IA
3 – First Avenue – Minneapolis, MN
4 – House of Blues – Chicago, IL
6 – House of Blues – Cleveland, OH
7 – The Intersection – Grand Rapids, MI
9 – Royal Oak Music Theatre – Royal Oak, MI
10 – Danforth Music Hall – Toronto, ON
11 – Heavy MTL Festival – Montreal, QC
13 – The Palladium – Worcester, MA
14 – Upstate Concert Hall – Clifton Park, NY
16 – Best Buy Theatre – New York, NY
17 – Union Transfer – Philadelphia, PA
18 – The Fillmore – Silver Spring, MD
20 – The Masquerade – Heaven Stage, Atlanta, GA
Philip H. Anselmo & The Illegals lineup:
Philip H. Anselmo – Vocals
Marzi Montazeri – Guitars
Bennett Bartley – Bass
Jose Manuel Gonzales – Drums