Let’s dive right in and talk about your history with Orange – do your remember your first ever encounter with the brand, whether it was playing it yourself or seeing someone else play one?

Danko: Yeah I totally remember, and the reason is why I play Orange. We went on tour with The Supersuckers, and the only way we could do that was if we could use their gear, and I used Ron’s Orange head, and I remember thinking “Holy fuck, this is just the best head I’ve ever played!”. That’s how I started with Orange, before that I’d seen other use it and I’d always liked it, but I was playing a variety of amps so it wasn’t until playing through Ron’s that Orange was really put on the map for me. When I then got the opportunity to work with Orange myself that just made sense.

You guys are known for touring relentle-
Danko: I mean – yes, yes we do, or at least have done that, and I guess we’ve been on the road a fair bit this year as well even though for me it feels like an off year. We opened up for Skindred in the UK at the start of the year, came back for festivals, made an album, and now we’re here again. The off years are always the year we make the albums, although looking back at it now it doesn’t really take us much off the road at all.

When constantly on the road, how does a day in the life of Danko Jones normally look like?
Danko:
You know, not that exciting to be honest. On a day like today, I pretty much just hang around near the venue. I need sleep for my voice, so that’s about it, lots of down time. The best thing is to not think about it too much, and especially when it comes to playing the show; the moment I start thinking about things, I fuck it up on stage. There’s also this banter between the band and the audience that you just can’t plan, I’ve seen bands do that, script their set – and whenever someone shouts something at them from the crowd, they have no reply and there’s just no way of bouncing back form it. Have the songs rehearsed and that’s it, whatever happens happens. The best thing to do most days is to just go at it with a blank head and brain. So many bands these days have backing tracks and vocals and everything just seems so pre-programmed that there’s little room for spontaneity, and I think the audience picks up on that. I don’t mind if the show goes off the track, cause at least it shows the audience that they’re getting whatever we can serve them on the night, and there is something to be said for that. We go out there pretty low key, play the songs, and see where they take us.

You mentioned off years are album years, do you still write when you’re on the road or do you save that for when you’re back at home?
Danko: No, we allow enough time at home to do the writing then. We spent some time this time last year as well as before and after summer digging deep into writing, and with those sort of writing sessions we were able to figure out what we wanted, and pick 11 or 12 favourites to go on the album. Ever since Rich Knox (drums) joined the band, I haven’t felt nervous before any of the releases, more than anything I’ve been excited and impatient for people to hear what we have been working on, which means I’m confident about the songs. This album we’re due to release is another one of those. I’ll admit there’s been some albums previously where I’ve been slightly nervous whether people would like it or not, and whenever I’ve had those sorts of doubts, those are always the albums that have had mixed reviews. I’ve always liked it, but it might not appeal to everyone else. The last two albums we put out, Fire Music (2015) and Wild Cat (2017) I wasn’t even nervous, and the reviews were really good, and our new album is just as good as both of them, if not better.

To dive back into Orange for this last question, what’s your setup for tonight?
Danko: I’ve got a Rockerverb 50 head, and you know what, I’m not a gear head, I’m a creature of habit – whatever I find and like, that’s what I stick with. I can’t give you any specks of what it is I like about the head, it just have to sound like this (makes riff noise), which is a sound I’ve been making since I was seven. If it sounds like that, great. I don’t go searching for new products, and usually if I switch to something else or try something new, that will have to be presented and put in front of me. To me, amps aren’t precious possessions or collectables, they are the tools of my trade, the tools I need to do my job, and I gotta be honest, Orange is the best tools I’ve ever used.

Glenn Hughes – bassist extraordinaire and singer from a different dimension, a musician who played a vital part in British heavy rock and introduced Deep Purple to funk, briefly fronted Black Sabbath in the 80s, released an album with Pat Thrall, and played with musicians such as Joe Bonamassa, Joey Castillo and Jason Bonham, to mention a few. Most recent, is his “Glenn Hughes plays Deep Purple” adventure, where he’s re-living what he did with MK III and MK IV over two extensive world tours. 

First of all, let me just say I think it is so wonderful that you’re doing this tour, not just for myself, but for a lot of people who maybe got to know Deep Purple through their parents, and also just for long time Purple fans from way back when – it’s a tremendous pleasure and even privilege to be able to hear these songs being brought back to life decades after being written – how has it been playing these shows, and bringing this music to a new generation?

Glenn: In 2017, I was asked by promoters around the world if I would be interested in doing these legacy shows with what I did with MK III and MK IV. If you know me, you know I have played some songs in my shows previously, as well as other songs from my past bands such as Trapeze. I’ve never done a complete two hour show of this music, which meant I had to go back and dig deep to figure out which songs, arrangements, how I’d play them and if I’d be able to do so with the same angst and energy as I did when I was 23.

When this tour became a reality, I had to get in shape, which I did, and you know, Ella, and you can tell me later after the show, I would not do this, if I could not deliver. This isn’t about some guy walking on, grabbing a guitar and just standing still, this is a man who’s gone into character. When I’m up there, I don’t want to be 23, but I feel effervescent, I feel young, and when I sing those songs, you can’t really tell the difference. I’ve grown my hair, and I’ve got the outfits. Not the original ones, as a lot of them were lost along the way, and some even displayed in the Rock ’n’ Roll Hall of Fame. Luckily, I’m friends with some incredible designers, and fashion is something I’ve also always had a keen interest in, which I got from my father. But of course, it’s music that is the centre of my universe, what I live for.

In recent years you’ve also been pretty busy releasing new music, latest being last year’s Black Country Communion’s fourth album BCCIV, have you got anything else lined up either by yourself or with others?
Glenn: The plan for now is to do this for two years, go around the world twice. I’ll be back again here in the  UK next May for more of this, and I’m doing three American tours, one of which I just completed two weeks ago. When the time’s right, I’ll figure out what’s next, but something will come up for me because I’ve sat around for too long – I mean, I have a great home in L.A and a great lifestyle, but I was becoming restless, and people who know me, knows that I am very much a live singer, I’m not someone who can settle for spending all their time in the studio, I need to be performing, live on stage.

Now, let’s get slightly more technical and talk amps, Orange Amps. Obviously, when you’re at this place in your career where you are now, you can pick and choose among all amplification manufacturers around the world, how did you end up using Orange?
Glenn: Let’s just say, before I started using Orange five years ago, I was with other companies. Big ones. As I was walking through NAMM in L.A I was approached by Orange who asked if I wanted to come try out some of their amps, which I had always wanted to do, genuinely. When I got to the stall, there was a P bass in front of me, and and Orange amp with four knobs. “That’s easy for me”, I thought. When I started playing, I was getting this sound that was very, very similar to what I had with Purple in the 70s, and it was something that I wanted to be a part of. That day, I forgot about everything else that wasn’t Orange. I want you to hear the sound I’ve got tonight, it’s such a dynamic sound, a dynamic, and really wild sound, that says Orange, and it says Glenn Hughes. Cliff Cooper, he believes in me as an artist, and he believes that I love his company, which I do.

I can’t speak for Cliff, but I feel like I can safely say on behalf of the company, it is very exciting to have you as one of our artists, someone that has played such a big part in British music history and heavy rock, and I dare say even bringing funk to British hard rock.
Glenn: The funk for me, will come from my love of Motown which I’ve had since I was a youngster. Growing up living in America, and knowing a lot of great black musicians. Then all of a sudden, I find myself being in Deep Purple, as a rock star, and icon, but also remembering that my background is from Detroit. Not only did I change when I joined the band, but the band changed. I came in, and they felt the movement of what I was playing and writing. I didn’t hold them and gunpoint, they went with me, and those pieces of work we did together, are very important to me.

Just before I let you go, back to the technicalities – what’s the set up for this Deep Purple tour?
Glenn: I’ve got a few set ups, maybe two or three, but the ones I’m using right now is two 8×10’s and the AD200. That’s primarily what I use, this is perfect for what I’m doing now, and the 8×10’s been working really well for me.

Strap on a life jacket and prepare for the angling trip of a lifetime as Richard Turner (Blackberry Smoke) hooks himself the biggest fish of all, the fabled Orange Amplification Terror Bass!

This renowned bassist features in the latest ‘Lure & Savior’ adventure to embark on the dirty mission of catching the legendary re-issue of the Terror Bass. Set in one the world’s most desirable angling locations with all the best gear from Orange Amplification, this intrepid bass expert reels in the most amazing catch. Brent Hinds (Mastodon) also appears from the depths with his signature Terror amp.

This is the kind of fishing Richard and Brent enjoy: lots of bites with the best tackle! To get tips on catching the sought-after Terror Bass using the OBC112 as the perfect lure go to https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9ouOKCgdMz4

Ye! No fingers, picks!

Hi, I’m Sergio Vega I play bass in Deftones and Quicksand and i’m sitting here with Orange and we are going to be talking about the Terror Bass.

So my general impression of the Orange brand is legendary! The first time I saw an Orange amp was with Sleep. Their sound is massive and seeing the wall of amplifiers and cabs, it made a big impression.

For me playing bass is a very aggressive, kind of sensual and I play with a pick. It comes from bands that I grew up loving like the Cro-Mags, Amebixs, basically punks bands with gnarly tones and that was my thing and it still is!

The Terror bass amp is cool because it adds a lot of warmth, it adds a lot of detail, it kind of allows me to shape what i’m doing and give it its best possible presentation.

A cool feature about the Terror bass amp that stands out to me is the clean switch, it basically allows the cleaner end of the approach to really sing. When i’m playing clean or when i’m playing my bass six, kind of on the higher strings, I still want there to be a lot of warmth. I don’t want it to start sounding too much like a guitar and this amp has really been instrumental in getting across what I want to get across.

I play Orange amps with Quicksand and Deftones, Orange cabinets as well. They just sound meaty! One of the things i’m definitely really into about Orange besides the bass amps are the cabinets. Something in the construction of it, something in the wood, something in the weight that really stand out, in a way that I heard immediately and i’ve been stuck on.

To me I use digital processors, you know amp processors and I run them straight into the front of the Terror Bass amp so I can add the warmth from the tubes and the extra colouring from the EQ. But it has a really rad effects loop that I have messed around with as well, so if that’s your approach its totally there for as well.

I originally started using the Terror bass amps because it was helpful in taking all of the digital processors that I was using and adding extra girth and width and helping articulate the distorted aspects of my tone, all of the effects that I like to use. Also its really there for me for the cleaner end of what I do, now that they’re back and I have my chance to get my hands on them again, especially with the additional feature of the clean switch, i’m super stoked.

I’m looking forward to many years with this, don’t ever leave me again!

I’m Sergio Vega and I play the Terror Bass!

 

 

Header photo by: TLBrooker Imagery

With a booming heat record of 32 degrees in big ol’ smoky London town, we made our way to Brixton Academy to chat to The XCERTS frontman Murray Macleod before their show with Goo Goo Dolls.

Were you always into music growing up as a kid?
Murray: Starting it all off and sparking the interest was definitely the household I grew up in, both my parents and older sister was very into music. My dad in particular is pretty much a rock ’n’ roll historical – not as a profession or a job, but for as long as I can remember he’s just always had this encyclopaedic knowledge about dates, record companies, releases, band members and tours, and he has this amazing vinyl collection that I’d go through as a kid, pick albums to listen to based on their covers and end up with bands such as KISS and The Monkees, but it wasn’t until he played me The Beatles everything changed; I even remember the day and exactly where we were, sat in our car parked up waiting for my sister, and he played me live at the BBC by The Beatles, and I think I must have been about six or seven, I was really young, but it just felt like real life magic.

After your Dad sent you onto the righteous path of music, what were the first sorts of bands you discovered for yourself?
Murray: As I got older, I started finding my own way of finding music and discovered Nirvana, and their Unplugged session was actually what inspired me to start writing songs, it was unreal. We had this crappy Spanish guitar around the house, so I ended up trying to write Nirvana-sounding songs which were just awful. There was something so fascinating about Kurt Cobain as well, he was this beautiful and intricate, as well as steeped in myth, I was just so fascinated about him, as if he were sent from above. I also got heavily into Marilyn Manson around the same time, which was just polar opposites to Kurt Cobain, but obviously at the same time, incredibly fascinating. I also just have to thank my parents for keep pushing me to pursue a career in music.

Also, I have to mention the whole pop-punk explosion in the early 2000’s with Blink 182, The Offspring and New Found Glory.

Now, let’s get down to business and talk Orange – what is your history and experience with the brand? Do you remember the first time you ever saw someone play an Orange?
Murray: The very first time I had that epiphany of ‘Oh man I HAVE to play Orange!’ was when we opened for Cage the Elephant around 2009, we hadn’t even released a record at this point and it was before they blew up. I can’t remember what amp I was using at the show, but they were using Orange and they just sounded so incredibly good – I remember being completely blown away by their tone, and also noticed that the wood used in the amps by Orange was way thicker which made them so much sturdier than the amps I were using. They sounded so good, but for the longest time I couldn’t afford one, and we weren’t big enough to speak to the company about getting a loan one.

How did you eventually end up playing one?
Murray: Our manager Dan Hipgrave (Toploader guitarist) was selling a 4×12 cab and I tried it and ended up having to get it. I was using a different head at the time, but I still knew that the cab just sounded so good. I ended up trying the AD30 and it just sounded so good, it was absolutely perfect – that cab and head was all I needed. I’ve been using a full Orange rig for about a year now and it just sounds amazing.

It’s nice to have you guys from Orange coming down to our show, as I haven’t really been able to thank you for all your support, so thank you!

Let’s dive straight into this – Orange, can you tell us about your history with the company?
Brad: Basically, I had an Ampeg deal back in the day so that’s where I started while Ken and Joby were the ones always using Orange cabs, and Joby having some sort of Orange connection. I always liked Orange, but I never had a deal, and the stuff I wanted was always a bit out of my price range, so it’s more in recent years I’ve gotten in on it as well. Joby reconnected with Orange recently and we did a bit of a revamp of our gear in the States and got some all blacked out Orange cabinets, and I got a 4 Stroke over there which I love.

Have you got the same set up for this UK and Europe tour?
Brad: On this tour I’ve got the AD200 which is a monster of an amp, it’s just such a simple set up but exactly what it needs to be. I hate when all these amps have all these annoying tweaks on them as there’s just a few things you really need. As long as there is gain I’m pretty much good to go – you set it up in like two seconds and then you’re just there like: “Well, that’s the best sound I’ve ever heard!” 

Any other Orange favourites…?
Brad: Definitely the It’s the Terror Bass which you guys don’t make anymore but should totally bring back! I still have the habit of bringing a spare amp with me on the road, but from my experiences with Orange I’ll probably never need it, but then again, you can never be too safe, right? It’s so great it could easily be your main amp as well, i
t’s just amazing that something that small can sound so good, that goes for the guitar one as well. Obviously as a bassist it’s driving mad that you’ve gotten rid of the bass one! When I got mine it was broken, and you cant really get the parts to fix it anywhere in the states. Luckily, my Orange guys in the states let me send it back here to the UK to get fixed. Everyone at Orange is so nice that it was the easiest thing to do ever.

With The Bronx we’ve also got Mariachi El Bronx, which is two bands from completely different sides of the spectrum – punk and mariachi, you must have a pretty wide musical background?
Brad: It’s interesting with me, I actually play trumpet in our other band, and that’s my main – or I guess I don’t really have a main instrument anymore, but you know, main instrument.  I started playing horn in 4th grade and did pretty well at it. It was never my intentions for that to become my life, or such a big deal, especially not that early on, I was kind of just doing my thing until it snowballed and it took me to college. Early on, I was more of a classical guy, and my mum was really into classical music as well, and I was a classical trumpet player.

Somewhere in middle school I discovered rock ‘n’ roll, started a band and went down the line of straight up old school rock like Stones, AC/DC and that sorta stuff, then that went into a punk fase. I’ve always been into a lot of stuff, and blues might be one of my favourite genres. What’s interesting to me, is that there’s actually quite a few musicians where bass and trumpet is the combo, Flea’s one of them. Obviously I can’t remember anyone else now, but oddly enough there is at least another 4-5 big musicians where that is the combo, which to me seems like the weirdest thing ever, and every time I hear about some other guy with that combo I’m just like ‘How did that even happen?’ For me it was just circumstances, I dabbled a bit between everything, guitar and drums as well – I could play them all but not well, and only ended up playing bass as the band I was in at high school needed a bassist, and here I am, years later.

 

 

Truls Hi my name is Truls Mörck and i’m the bass player of Graveyard.

It’s really hard to pinpoint when it is but when i try something out in the store and it may sound good, but when I take it to the rehearsal space and really like rehearse with it, with the guys in the band. That kind of glue that I can find in the AD200, that makes the whole sound, and gives it that bottom end. It’s not just about how the amp sounds, in itself but its like how it glues together the guitars and the drums and how it mediates, between those two worlds of melody and rhythm.

Without the bass, the drums can’t really speak with the guitarist that well. So i’m like the translator between the two languages, it makes them communicate, makes them sound better hopefully.

I play other instruments as well, I feel like when I grew up I discovered the Grateful Dead very early, the band as a whole and how they seem to have worked together as a collective force, a very democratic and wild freeform group. I guess they call themselves, “good time pirates”, seemed appealing to me and inspired me to make music and write music.

I’m using a pretty classic setup of a Rickenbacker bass, the 4001, then an Orange AD200 and OBC810 cabinet. Then I have an additional bass, 1963 hollow body Epiphone and a Fender Jazz Bass as well, to compliment but it all revolves around the Rickenbacker.

I used to play guitar in this band way back, at that point the bass player Rikard used this AD200 and he used that a lot in the band and it became an important piece of the bands sound. So when I came back into this band as a bass player, we tried out some other stuff but the AD200 always seemed to work best for me.

I must say the former bass player, Rikard,he is like the guy who inspired me most, when we played back in the day together, I was always amazed by his style and good kind of simplicity. Also Phil Lesh from the Grateful Dead is a cool guy, based in improvising, not really a steady form of bass playing but a free form style, which i also enjoy.

So have a new album coming out May 25, its the first album in three years, its been a long time coming but it feels really good. The album in general is a little heavier, harder than the last album, its very dynamic I would say. Like most of our records it has slow parts, like i’ve said before, the heavier parts are a little bit heavier and the slower parts are a little slower, and the mellower parts are mellower. Its a little bit more extreme in that way, in the dynamics. That is how I would describe it, then you just have to listen for yourself and see!

Guitar goddess, Orianthi has become Orange Amplification’s latest Ambassador. The multi-talented guitarist, singer and songwriter has performed with King of Pop Michael Jackson, toured with rock godfather Alice Cooper, played lead guitar for Carrie Underwood, exchanged solos with legend Carlos Santana as well as having a successful solo career.

More recently, Orianthi has joined forces with Grammy Award winner and Songwriting Hall of Fame inductee Richie Sambora to form the band RSO. This month they have released their first album Radio Free America. It is the perfect platform to showcase their considerable skills as songwriters, vocalists and guitarists, setting the bar high for all future male-female guitar and vocal collaborations.

Orianthi is the rock star with everything, guitar skills superb vocals, rock star looks and now an Orange Ambassador! She loves the Orange Rockerverb Mark 3 with its 4 x 12 cab and says

The first time I plugged into The Rockerverb Mark 3 I felt a instant connection ..the tone I had been looking for , very responsive and powerful at a low volume and when cranked up it never loses clarity…this amp is the lion of amps in the rock jungle, check it out’.

The versatile, dependable and uniquely voiced Rockerverb Mark 3 is the perfect complement for Orianthi’s distinctive style and electrifying playing with its clean sound and a meld of classic and modern tones from Brit-rock to R&B. To find out more about the Rockerverb and all of the amps in the Orange range please go to https://orangeamps.com/products/

 

 

Hey guys, what’s up I’m Scott Middleton and I play in Cancer Bats. So we just dropped an album called The Spark That Moves. It’s our 6th studio album. We kinda did a surprise thing – right now we’re celebrating our 10 year anniversary of our 2nd album Hail Destroyer which has been really cool and everyone’s been really excited. While the focus has been on that, we’ve been secretly making a new record and we just dropped that the day of our first show for the 10th anniversary as just kinda like, to give back to all our fans that have supported us through the years. It’s like, “hey it’s for you guys” it’s not about hype, we worked really hard on these songs and we hope everyone really enjoys this just as much as our past stuff – the reception has been amazing and all the reviews that have been coming in have been way better than what we could have hoped for.

It’s exciting to celebrate the old Cancer Bats and user in the new era of the band. I think our band, when we first stared out was was a bit, um, a bit more simplistic in terms of arrangements and idea’s I think. Things were a little bit faster, a little bit knarlier – we were pushing different styles for the bands and trying to be creative. It’s like how do you make a heavy interesting for 2018? Because so much of it has been done before. Yeah, we’ll always have classic elements of rock, punk and metal in our band but we’re always going to try and thing forward and see where we can push boundaries forward too.

The Bag Bangeetar is a pedal that I got a couple months before we actually went into to record and I mean, that pedal blew me away the second I tried it. I threw it in front of my little crapp practise amp that I’ve had since I was 15 – this terrible thing, but it’s something that I’ve used to write riffs on when I was home. I just plugged it in and it just sounded like a monster stack – it was crazy. Just the flexibility of the EQ – the Baxandall EQ… it just has a crazy amount of range and it’s all about sounding good. Because there’s a parametric mid-range band, i’m able to take out of any nasty frequencies that a certain guitar pickup might push through too much and I can take that out or I can add stuff that’s missing. The other thing that I notice is that the pots on it are the highest quality – it’s all de-tended to it’s easily recallable so if there’s a setting you just take a photo or write it down and it’s easy to go back and find that place again. As I experimented and wrote a bunch of song idea’s with the pedal, I had to bring it with me to write the new album. The Orange sound is becoming an important part of Cancer Bats in the new direction that we’ve been going in. I bought that pedal with me and I was able to just plug it into the effects return of a loud amp and there it was. There was the sound. When we track the guitars, we do yto9u know passive left and right, and we stereo pan them and entirely one side is the Bax Bangeetar and into an amp  that is cranked up and it sounded amazing. It was like ‘holy shit, this is just what we’ve been looking for’!

The other thing that I’ve been doing lately – I don’t know if everyone knows about it – but I’ve been producing a lot of records at my studio at home. What I found was super great with that pedal is that I can use it as a way to have guitarists track live in a room with a drummer. So when we’re tracking drums, I don’t have to have an amp that’s cranked up that bleeding into the drum microphones. It was a Cab Sim out which sounds awesome and gives the guitarists the a comfortable and accurate tone that’s inspiring. One of the drawbacks to headphones is how do you give the guitarist enough gain and tone so when he’s playing alongside a drummer, he’s giving it his all, and that in turn inspires the drummer to hit even harder. That’s been an indispensable studio tool. I had a band come in with the OR120 and you know, it was crazy how close I was able to dial in the Bax Bangeetar pedal to sound like a real Orange Amp – that’s the real difference with so many other distortion pedals out there… we’ve all used them and tried them! This pedal, really feels and sounds like a real amp.

As a pre-amp pedal, it’s inspiring to play, so when I’m trying to convince other guitar players to try something they’re like “you want me to plug into a pedal? Shouldn’t I be using a guitar amp or something?” and they’re like “oh, no, that’s good!”.

For me it’s been a revolutionary tool for studio work. I can plug in and go direct, that’s one thing, but I can plug into any amplifier and get that Orange sound that I’m looking for which is really cool.

If you think about the Bax Bangeetar in terms of a traditional pre-amp… what I would normally do is, run any other pedal I’m using before it. So I’d put my wahs, compression, any boost or fuzz – I’d run that into the Bax Bangeetar and I’d run any modulation or delay effects, post that pedal so it all kinda ties and again, because it has such an amp-like feel, I don’t need to think too much. It just compliments it really well. That pedal itself is a game machine. It’s not meant for clean tones really, you’re either putting it into a lcean amp or the effects return and turning it into a monster sound – and that’s what I love about it and what I’m always looking for. There’s so many amps out there with a million differnt knobs and six different channels and everyones trying to add extra features and such, but this is just everything you need, it is the high-gain channel that you want. That’s the difference for me. The simplicity with the pots, being easy to recall in a live setting, it’s flexible in it’s EQ – it can work with so many different amps, guitars and pedals… that’s why it’s kind of become the secret weapon for me.


To learn about the Bax Bangeetar click here

 

As far as current music goes, not many bands, most likely none, can compare to Earthless. Their musical craftsmanship is out of this world, and they’ve created an explosion of emerging psych bands coming out of San Diego and the surrounding areas. But then again, when Isaiah Mitchell used to be the local Encinitas guitar teacher, what else can you expect? Having obsessed over Earthless since I first came across them years ago in my bedroom back at my mum’s in Norway, they’ve always seemed like these unattainable gods from sunny California, so when I recently was told Isaiah would be playing Orange during their next UK and European tour… Ahh, yes, I was so stoked. About freakin’ time, he’s only the Hendrix of our generation.

You’ve been pretty busy touring lately as well as just releasing your latest record ‘Black Heaven’ on Nuclear Blast Records, which is an amazing record, but also pretty different from your earlier stuff.
Isaiah: It’s super different, we didn’t expect it to be exactly the way it was when it came out, but we’re all happy with the end result. We knew we were gonna do at least one song with vocals, but we didn’t expect it to be four songs, that kind of just happened. Those were the strongest songs, so by natural selection they ended up on the album.

You’ve obviously been singing in Golden Void for years, and I also heard rumours about a band from way back called ‘Juan Peso’ where you also used to sing?
Isaiah: Oh wow, yeah that’s from when I was about 19, and you have to do a lot of digging to find any of that online. You might get lucky on youtube but that’ll be it. I’ve always sung in bands, but for Earthless we just didn’t want to do it, it wasn’t our thing. It’s been fun not doing it, but it’s also been fun throwing it in there, do something different.

Last time I saw you guys in California you were using an old Orange cab, and tonight you’ve got a full Orange backline! Care to run us through the two?
Isaiah: I got that 4×12 cab when I was 17 or 18 from a music shop in Encinitas called ‘Moonlight Music’, I used to work at this shop and my boss Russell had two brand new Orange 4×12, I think both early 90s, maybe even late 80s cabs in the garage of his house. We didn’t have any other 4×12’s in the shop, so he told me I should get one of them, and I was just shocked when I saw them, they were so – Orange! At that point in my life I’d never seen an Orange in the flesh before, I was just a kid and they weren’t very common in the US at the time, my only ever encounter at that point was this old Black Sabbath video with Paul Shaffer in the background, and Sabbath playing ‘Iron Man’. Sabbath were using Orange amps there instead of their usual Laney amps, and they just stuck right out due to the bright colour!

I ended up taking the cab of his hands, and putting it up against any other cabs like old Marshalls or whatever, my Orange would just always sound better. Maybe it’s because the walls on the Orange are so thick compared to others, especially Marshalls’ who’s really thin, I don’t know, but there’s just no competition in any other amps, the Orange would just always do it better. For this UK and European tour, I’ve also got two Orange heads, a Rockerverb MK II and a Rockerverb MK II and they’ve been treating me well. Our sound guy’s really into Orange as well so he’s happy – we’re all happy!

There’s a lot of emerging psych bands coming out of San Diego at the moment with you guys being one of the first ones on the scene more than a decade ago, and Radio Moscow and Sacri Monti bassist Anthony Meier even described you as ‘the godfathers of San Diego’ last time I spoke to him, singing your praises, as most people do – it must be crazy though to have had that sort of effect on your hometown and the place you’re from, leading the way for all these other bands and artists. Obviously, they’ve all had Earthless to look up to, who was it that stood out to you when you guys first got together and formed Earthless?
Isaiah: First of all, I love Dukke (Anthony), he’s just great! We’ve toured with Radio Moscow and it’s always a good time with those guys. To answer your question; Definitely Jimi Hendrix, Cream and all the other great British blues guys who played loud amps. Blue Cheer, a bunch of German kraut bands as well as Japanese bands. When I was a kid growing up I didn’t know of any current bands that were doing that whole Cream style of playing where you’ve got half stacks or full stacks, I had never seen that before in my time. Then I met Mike and we started playing together in Lions of Judah which kinda made my dream come true as he was into all of those things as well. Then one day, someone sat me down and made me check out Nebula’s ‘To the Center’ album and I saw the picture on the back where they were just using all this old, rad gear, and I just had no idea that kinda stuff still existed. All that stuff was influential to me, and still is. I’m also really stoked about the whole emerging San Diego psych thing, it’s a really cool thing to be a part of, especially when you have all these rad bands citing us as influences, it’s an honour.


As I finish typing, I schedule this post for posting 19th of April at 2pm, knowing very well that mere two hours later I’ll be attending the first of three Earthless shows at this years Roadburn festival, and my endorphin level is through the roof just thinking about it.