QUESTION OF THE WEEK: IF YOU COULD FORM A HEAVY METAL SUPERGROUP WITH ANY 4 – 6 METAL MUSICIANS, ALIVE OR DEAD, WHO WOULD BE IN THE BAND AND WHY?
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Welcome to “Question of the Week,” a (sometimes) weekly debate amongst the MetalSucks staff regarding a recent hot button issue.
There weren’t any real hot button topics this week, so we decided to just play a fun game that used to keep Vince and Axl occupied for many a lunch period when they were kids:
The MS staff’s answers after the jump.
I didn’t include any dead guys because even though that was always allowed in the game, I have forever felt that it was cheating. So: Axl Rose on vocals (this selection should surprise and anger only those who think I chose my pen name for ironic reasons), Jerry Cantrell and Adam Jones on guitars, Billy Gould on bass, Trent Reznor on synths/samples/general weird electronica shit (yeah, I went there), and Will Calhoun on drums. And it should go without saying that Reznor and Cantrell handle all backing vocal duties. I have absolutely no friggin’ idea what that band would sound like, but I’d be really, really curious to hear it.
Wow, this QotW is goddamn nerdy. Well, if I were some Beetlejuice-style pan-dimensional A&R guy, I’d contract an afterlife-shattering classic metal album from the quintet of Ronnie James Dio (vocals), Peter Steele (bass/vocals, Type O Negative), Denis “Piggy” D’Amour (guitars, Voivod), Criss Oliva (guitars, Savatage), and Cozy Powell (drums, Rainbow). Or, let’s say it were my job to book the afterlife’s big summer arena concert, I’d assemble the ultimate overqualified party band of Bon Scott (vocals, AC/DC), Dimebag (guitars, Pantera), Randy Rhoads (guitars, Ozzy Osbourne), Cliff Burton (bass, Metallica), and John Bonham (drums, Led Zeppelin). If we’re keeping to the realm of the living — and we’re not considering player chemistry or budgets or schedules — then I’d expect the heaviest, catchiest, brightest, awesomest metal record ever from superstuds who can play, write, and produce: Danny Carey (drums, Tool), Jerry Cantrell (guitars/vocals, Alice In Chains), Devin Townsend (guitars/vocals, Strapping Young Lad), Magnus Osfelt (bass, The Crown), and Mike Patton (vocals, Faith No More). Watch your ass, Damn Yankees!
I would say you start with Glenn Tipton and KK Downing from Judas Priest, but they can only play 8-string guitars. On bass, you’d have Scott Hull from Pig Destroyer/Agoraphobic Nosebleed (because you know he has a bass setup somewhere, if not just for novelty’s sake). On drums, Rich Hoak of Brutal Truth and Total Fucking Destruction. On vocals… Phil Anselmo. Just because. When they all show up to rehearsal. I would hand them each an index card that has one word on it: “Deathcore.” Then I would leave. Now whether or not that’s what they wind up playing remains to be seen, but I’m pretty confident that whatever they produce would at least be interesting, if not life-changing. Maybe they’d do a pretty sweet version of “Cemetary Gates” where Phil’s Halford-aping could finally be justified. Or maybe Downing and Tipton would be really uncomfortable and realize they’re making more than enough money doing Priest. But I think there’s potential there.Their name? The Best Fucking Thing You’ve Ever Heard. Hoak is already in a band with “fucking” in the title, so I don’t think it would be a problem.
I honestly don’t know. Supergroups have let me down so many times. Let’s go with Bon Scott (AC/DC), Andy McCoy (Hanoi Rocks), Markus Toivonen (Ensiferum), Niilo Sevanen (Insomnium), and Nicko McBrain (since we’ve got Maiden on the mind) . I think a mix of glam, viking folk, melodic death, classic metal, with Scott’s screechiness thrown in there would be a train wreck I’d probably listen to.
I haven’t done anything like this since 8th grade study hall, which is appropriate, since when I was 13 I believed in two ultimate truths: 1) I was going to get tons of action with the ladies when I got older, and 2) Steve Harris was the best bassist going. I still believe in Steve Harris. Tom Araya and Lemmy were the only others meriting consideration. On guitar, I resisted obvious late greats (Randy Rhoads, Dimebag) a pioneer (Tony Iommi) and a dark horse (Glenn Branca) to select Max Cavalera and Tom Warrior. Nice balance, right? A politically-charged Brazilian and a death-obsessed Swiss. Also gotta like the fact that either can front the band if Glenn Danzig turns us down. Deth Red Sabaoth is spotty, but in my humble opinion, you can’t touch the Lucifer of Lodi as a singer or frontman. But just in case, I’d like to have Phil Anselmo on speed dial. Behind the kit I’m going to go with a wildcard, Dave Grohl. The guy can get along with anyone (see his endless collaborations) can easily jump styles (again, see his endless collaborations) and is a rabid and knowledgeable metal fan (Probot anyone?). His success with the Foo Fighters has overshadowed the fact that he is one great devil of a drummer. Oh yeah, he sings too. Finally, I’m going to push my luck and suggest that late German composer Richard Wagner be employed on keyboard. Now before you start shooting off about him not being “metal,” we’re talking about the guy who composed The Ring Cycle, a fifteen hour opera that includes the two prototypes for heavy music, Ride of the Valkyries and Götterdämmerung. He was an extremely controversial figure during his lifetime and his music so powerful that it was appropriated by the Nazis for “reeducation” during the Second World War. Wagner was arguably the great, great grandfather of metal, and one heavy dude.
Okay, kiddies, now it’s your turn! Weigh in with your answer to the question of the week below.