The mighty Red Fang are on the brink of releasing a brand new album and will be soon visiting Athens as headliners of Deserfest, These two are enough excuse for us to reach out to David Sullivan for a short round of Q&A. Enjoy the outcome below:
Rock Overdose: The gap between “Whales And Leeches” and the upcoming “Only Ghosts” is three years, the longest you've ever had. Why did it take you a bit longer this time around to get a new record out?
David Sullivan: We've been touring so much and we don't really write while on the road. So it took us a while to find time between tours to write enough material for a new album.
Rock Overdose: You also changed the production team for this one. From the familiar hands of Chris Funk, you've gone on to work with the legendary Ross Robinson. Why did you choose not to collaborate with Chris for the new record? Was it getting too familiar? How did you end up working with Ross and in what ways did he influence the final outcome?
David Sullivan: We worked with Ross Robinson at his studio in Venice Beach, CA on Only Ghosts. We love Chris Funk but wanted to try something new. Previously we recorded here in Portland, and we thought it would be nice to go somewhere else and focus solely on the recording. Initially Ross was a suggestion from our manager and I was hesitant because I didn't know much about Ross, but he came up to Portland and once I met him I knew he would be great to work with. Ross was much more involved in helping us arrange the songs than we've had from a producer before. It was intense and a lot of long days involved, we learned a lot from working with Ross.
Rock Overdose: The first official track from the album is “Flies”, which is a pretty straightforward track. Is it indicative of the direction of “Only Ghosts” or do you have any surprises in store for us songwriting-wise?
David Sullivan: Like we've always tried to do, we don't limit ourselves to one style, so the album has a mix of fast, punk, some melodic rock n roll, sludge, doom, etc... We like to mix it up.
Rock Overdose: I'm guessing there's going to be a promotional video. Is it going to be for “Flies” or another track? You're sticking with Whitey McConnaughy or are you going to shake things up a bit on this front too?
David Sullivan: We've completed another video with the amazing Whitey McConnaughy. I can't really release the details about it yet, but it may be our most ambitious video so far.
Rock Overdose: Are there going to be any guest musicians on “Only Ghosts” like on the previous record where you had Mike Scheidt and Pall Jenkins helping you out?
David Sullivan: Roger Manning Jr. (who was also a guest musician on Whales and Leeches) played keyboards on a song that will appear on the the deluxe version of the album.
Rock Overdose: Let's talk about the album cover for a bit. It has that weird psychedelic vibe. Who's the guy behind it and why did you choose this particular one?
David Sullivan: Orion Landau is the artist. He also did the cover artwork for our last two albums. The psychedelic pattern was the first thing he showed us and we immediately said 'yes!'. We liked it partially because it was a contrast to the previous two album covers which had tons of stuff going on. This one is much simpler, bold, and yet visually powerful.
Rock Overdose: As soon as you get the record out you'll start touring Europe this Fall. You'll also be headlining Desertfest Athens which is a big deal for the scene here since it's its inaugural version and everybody's pretty psyched about it. Are you looking forward to it? What's the setlist gonna be like? The new record's going to take up its fair share of the set obviously, but are you going to feature any deep cuts?
David Sullivan: We've played a couple of Desertfests before and always have a great time. Same goes for Athens, we always have a great time there. It's a special show for us. Not sure what we'll do for the set, but it will most likely lean heavily on the new album.
Rock Overdose: Thank you for your time guys. Leave a final salute to the readers of Rock Overdose.
David Sullivan: See you soon, Athens! Yiamas!