It’s been less than 24 hours since he graced the main stage of Download and Mark Tremonti has returned to Glasgow with his solo band with the mighty new album Cauterize in tow. The mud already seems a lifetime away and it’s a nice sunny afternoon. Tonight, they headline my favourite venue, the O2 ABC. I’m introduced to Mark, welcomed with a warm smile as he relaxes on a comfortable leather couch. He’s in good spirits and clearly enjoying fronting his own band. We got the chance to have a quick chat with him and learned a few new things about his solo efforts and a hint at Alter Bridge’s future!
Thanks to Kirsten at Cosa Nostra for giving us the opportunity to chat with him.
Welcome back to Glasgow, it’s been quite some time. How’s the tour been going so far?
It’s been going great. We just played Download yesterday and that was the big highlight show of the tour. Now it’s all just easy. I’m really looking forward to tonight. I’ve told everyone that tonight’s show is going to be the most fun show of the whole tour. Every time we come here, it’s nuts.
The UK has only seen you yesterday and today. Should we expect a full tour in the near future?
Yeah, we’re coming back here around November 22nd through to Christmas. We’ll definitely be coming back to Glasgow and all throughout England and Germany, Portugal, Spain, Holland; everywhere.
Your new album, Cauterize, has only been out for a week. What’s the reaction been like?
It’s been insane! It’s been some of the best feedback I’ve ever received on an album so I’m real happy with it.
You’ve been playing with your band for a couple of months, how has the audience taken to the new material?
Great; certain songs go over better. I think the heavier the song is, the better it goes over. Heavy always wins live. Slow and unfamiliar doesn’t seem to work. You gotta let people digest the album first.
You recorded two albums at once. Was that the intention from the start?
I just wanted to record as many songs as possible. So Elvis [Michael ‘Elvis’ Baskette – long-time Alter Bridge producer] and I got together and came up with and came up with “Let’s do twenty songs”. Once we started recording, I decided to cut the songs in half and put out two albums. I didn’t want to do fourteen songs and six songs perceived as b-sides. I wanted them all to be a-sides; two solid records. So if there were two slow songs; one goes on the first, the other on the second. If there’s fourteen heavy songs; seven goes on the first, seven go on the second. They’re two evenly paced albums.
Can we expect it sooner rather than later?
Probably around Christmas.
Brian Marshall played bass on the first album but Wolfgang Van Halen went out on tour with you. Was he the natural choice when it came to new material?
Brian didn’t actually record on the first album, Eric did [my original source for the All I Was sessions was clearly wrong – apologies!]. It was just me, Eric and Garrett on the first album. We filmed a couple of shows to get some promotion out there; we asked Brian if he wanted to sit in and then we went out on tour, Wolfgang came out with us.
I have to ask, I’m a big Alter Bridge fan. Should we expect a follow-up to Fortress any time soon?
Yeah, definitely! 2016 there’ll be new music.