By Bob McMahon
By Allison Babka
By Kelsey McClure
By Carolina de Busto
By Ben Westhoff and Sarah Purkrabek
By Steve Brennan
By Joseph Hess
By Allsion Babka
[Laughs] Yeah. Ended up spending way too much money and getting a little weird.
The first time I remember hearing of High on Fire was actually opening for your previous band, Zeke, at a venue called the Hi-Pointe. But the show got canceled for some reason.
That's when I first met these guys, actually. Zeke was doing some shows with High on Fire in 2004. We [Zeke] had to pull out of the later part of the tour because we got offered a tour with Superjoint Ritual. So yeah, we unfortunately had to cancel a bunch of shows on that one. In retrospect, that might have been a questionable decision. That was a weird tour. It was a weird crowd for Zeke to play to, for sure.
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How did you get hooked up with Norway's Kvelertak for this tour?
I've kind of been a fan of that band for a while. I actually went and saw them play for the first time earlier this year and met those guys, and it turned out they were really into High on Fire. We were talking about how it would be really great to do a tour together, and it fortunately worked out that they had some time open and were able to hook it up. I think it's an awesome package and going to be a really fun tour. They're really great live, man. Really killer band. Three guitars.
Do you have plans for the next LP yet, and do you predict you'll record with Kurt Ballou again?
I'd say the chances of us recording with Kurt again are pretty good. I think he does awesome work, and we're all super stoked on everything that he's done for us. Right now we're just in the process of writing music. We've got a pretty big backlog of ideas and riffs and partially finished songs, so we're looking forward to getting together after this tour and really getting down to doing some more writing.
That guy's been releasing some of the absolute meanest-sounding records lately.
Yeah, it's a pretty cool and rich sound. He's an amazing engineer. It's gnarly sounding, but it's clear and punchy and just good.
What can we expect from the setlist this time around?
We're still kind of figuring that out ourselves. I think we're going to try and play a few songs that we've never played live before, so it should be cool. Exciting for us and hopefully for the fans, too. It's gonna be a good mix of material from all the albums. It'll be a nice long set.
Any cool bands out there that you're itching to tour with but haven't yet?
Well, you know Black Sabbath is up there for sure. [Laughs] Yeah, there aren't that many, honestly. We've been fortunate enough to tour with a lot of really awesome bands. There's always great new bands coming out, but none really off the top of my head, except Sabbath. That's one band I'd like to share a stage with before I die.