Aniruddh "Andrew" Bansal of Metal Assault recently conducted an interview with ADRENALINE MOB guitar virtuoso Mike Orlando. A couple of excerpts from the chat follow below.
Metal Assault: Last year you released "Omertá" and you've been doing a lot of touring since then. It must have been a pretty busy year.
Mike: Yeah, it was great! After releasing the album we did some warm-up gigs in the States but then we went over to Europe for about four-five weeks and did all kinds of festivals, Sweden Rock, Graspop and all that. It was incredible. But basically, we didn't do a ton of touring. We took a little break as Mike [Portnoy, ADRENALINE MOB drummer] had to go out and fulfill some other obligations that he had to get to. So, this year we're playing a good deal, obviously. We've got a lot coming out in 2013. This is definitely the year of the MOB for us. [laughs]
Metal Assault: You mentioned Mike Portnoy's commitments. He's doing a ton of different projects. The man is literally non-stop! This year, is he more committed to ADRENALINE MOB touring?
Mike: I can't speak for Mike personally [laughs], but I do know that for ADRENALINE MOB, we do have a good amount planned right now. We have the first U.S. tour leg starting on March 12th, which is also the release date of our new "Covertá" CD, and we're going for about four weeks. Then we take a quick break for about 10 days and then we'll go out and do a second U.S. leg as well for another four weeks. And then I think we'll be off to South America, and, of course, we have to get back to Europe again. So we're definitely going to have a lot busier of a year this time around than we did in 2012.
Metal Assault: It seems like a lot of bands are releasing covers albums these days. ANTHRAX is going to release one, and the MELVINS are also doing it. How did the idea for "Covertá" come about?
Mike: You know, it got presented to us by management. From my recollection, we all had a big meeting with the record companies, and our new manager came up with this whole plan. It's not like we ever envisioned doing it, but what a great opportunity to get to pay tribute to some of the greatest rock bands out there! They're some of our idols and for me it's an honor doing Eddie Van Halen and all these greats like SABBATH, ZEPPELIN, DIO and HEART. There is so much great music and history, it was such a blast for me personally.
Metal Assault: The track listing is very cool. It has great songs from start to finish. How did you pick that? Did everyone get a say in it?
Mike: Some of them were no-brainers. Myself and Russell Allen [vocals] had been performing "High Wire" (BADLANDS) for years together before ADRENALINE MOB existed. He used to come up in my SONIC STOMP shows, my instrumental band, and he would close the night and just rip people's faces off singing that tune. [laughs] So we've been doing that for a while, and Jake E. Lee is one of my hugest influences, one of my favorite guitar players, and same goes with Ray Gillen for Russell. So that was a no-brainer. "Stand Up And Shout" (DIO) we've been doing in the ADRENALINE MOB set since the first show we ever did, and the same with "Mob Rules" (BLACK SABBATH), obviously. Mike came up with some really cool things from left field. "Kill The King" (RAINBOW) me and Russ had been playing as well, and it's one of our favorites as well. "Barracuda" (HEART) was from left field. Mike picked a great tune there that I wouldn't have envisioned us doing but once we got into it, it was great. "Break On Through" (THE DOORS) was a track picked it just because I'm a huge fan of THE DOORS. I grew up on them since I was a little kid and I'm still a big fan. I always wanted to record a slammin' version of it. "The Lemon Song" (LED ZEPPELIN) was Russell's. He's a huge Robert Plant fan and we're all huge LED ZEPPELIN fans. And "Romeo Delight" (VAN HALEN) was a great pick and I'm really glad Mike picked that one, but I wouldn't say no to any Eddie Van Halen/David Lee Roth track. [laughs] To me, that's like holy grail territory right there. Pick any one, go for it! I love Eddie.
Read the entire interview from Metal Assault.