Deathbat News reader Nicole was kind enough to scan and translate the spanish issue of Kerrang! magazine featuring a new interview with Zacky Vengeance along with what he has to say about Pantera. You can read the entire interview by clicking the “More” link below.
How was it making this album without Jimmy?
– We composed all with him and it was amazing. We all wrote. When we finished, three days later, after everything was finished, he found his way. What came next was a really tough process. We all were pretty negative and, in my opinion, we had to do the worst job ever: we had to find someone who could play because we wanted to finish the album. It was a very hard task. The lyrics pretend to show all that sadness, all that frustration and that’s tough too but in the end I think we’ve all came out with a great album. At the end we were capable of dealing with all that situation.
He composed some songs right?
– Yes, he composed a lot of that material.
Are this songs more special for you guys than the rest of them?
– Yes, of course. I think that at a personal level all songs are very special and we are surprised to come up with the music we’ve made. I think its going to be part of history. We are happy with ourselves for being capable to write all that music and also being capable to edit the album so everyone could hear it.
There’s a gravestone on the cover with the word forever Is it for him? That’s your tribute?
– Yes. When Jimmy died we somehow wanted for him to be present and forever meant a very significant word to us. For me that was the perfect tribute. He’ll always we with us in spirit, on the stage and in our music and we believe he’ll always have a very special place in our hearts. That word fits perfectly.
Battery has been recorded by MP and he’s even going in tour with you guys. How was it working with him?
– Its been fantastic. He came to help us when the hole album was already written and finished and he only had to tape it. He’s a great drummer and he offered to help us in those dark moments. The first live was great. I’m very pleased and happy that someone who has been able to do what Mike has with his music wanted to be with us.
You know he left DT right?
– Yes, I was told and dint know anything about it but it shocked us all because he didn’t tell us anything before. We do not know what’s going to happen because we don’t know that band’s dynamic and if that choice is going to make him happier. When he told us he left DT we were really shocked because we are huge DT fans.
Talking about Nightmare, in the last record you had 38 music collaborations. How many are there this time?
– We compose everything but I don’t know how many people are involved in the record. We have string sections, wind-instrument section, chorus that helped us.. We write everything and once its written we tell the producer and it’s his job to find the appropriate people to do it. We bring the ideas like “we want a cello here” and he finds the person to do it.
And you have all that in mind when practicing?
– Yes, of course. For example: on Nightmare we wanted it to be a cradle song that in some point turned into a Nightmare and there for the slow opening. A lot of those things, like the pianos, are already demoded when we compose them and then people can have an idea of what we want them to do.
I bet you’ve answered this question a lot of times but, was it hard for you to find your spot in the music scene?
– Yes, because we’ve never fitted in one category and neither we wanted that but we’ve never fit in none of them. We’ve been on tour with Metallica, Iron Maiden, Guns and Roses.. Trying to prove everyone what we are capable to do and that’s one of our strong points, that our music is different. There’re lot of people out there trying to sound like Metallica, playing like them, making very alike riffs while we went out on stage and we did what we wanted, we played the music we wanted to play. We can play very heavy songs like “God hates us” and others pretty slow like “So far away”. That’s what we are.
This record has a very melancholy tone maybe ‘cause it’s got more ballads than “Avenged Sevenfold” (album). Do you have that impression?
– Oh, yes! Although in my opinion is also very dynamic. It’s true that, when we were recording and Jimmy passed away, we all felt very despondent, broken and you can feel that in the music. We think that everyone that listens to Nightmare can somehow know what we went throw at that time. What remained at the end were true feelings, some very human emotions.
I don’t know why but I’ve always thought that your music has a really theatrical feeling. It’s like a metal-opera, in a lot of ways, with many acts.
– I totally agree with you. I think there’re many theatricals things along our career. I think our music is like making a journey but not boring at all ‘cause it’s still kick-ass music.
And also, most of the hard-hitting tracks are very brutal. We have “God hates us” for example.
– We love doing hard-hitting music, very fast and we wanted to take them to an extreme level in this record and this song is quite an example of what we wanted to achieve. “God hates us” makes everyone go crazy and vocally Matt did an extraordinary job because it contains a los of frustration and rage.
You guys are big in the USA, what’s going on in Europe that you don’t get to fit?
– I don’t know. We are working on it. We’ve been there a couple of times but it’s getting hard for people to get to know a band like ours. We are working hard on that cause it’s not being easy. I think Europe fans are incredible, they are really into music and they are very loyal and we have to work on that. I think that at the end we’ll reach the level we have here.
On October 20th you’ll be playing live in Barcelona. What do you remember about the Spanish crowd?
– Oh dude. People there loose control. It’s going to be amazing. When we were on tour with Iron Maiden our concert in Spain got suspended ‘cause of the rain but even though people came to say hello and we could stay 2 days in Barcelona because we had some days off and it was amazing. I think it’s going to be one of the best lives on this tour.