On December 16, “Metal Zone” host Nikki Blakk of the San Francisco, California radio station 107.7 The Bone conducted an interview with AVENGED SEVENFOLD guitarist Zacky Vengeance before the band’s free show at the HP Pavillion in San Jose, California. You can now watch the chat below. A couple of excerpts follow.
On AVENGED SEVENFOLD‘s plans for the immediate future:
Zacky: “We’re gonna do something that we really haven’t done since the beginning and just dedicate a small amount of time, which, in the grand sceme of things, is a tiny amount of time, but to us, it’s huge. We wanna go back to Southeast Asia and just do it right for them. There are a couple of places that we really need to play, like Indonesia — there’s been huge supporters of us, and we haven’t been there on this touring cycle. So we’re gonna go back around April and just put it to rest with that. But from now until then, we’re gonna kind of do something that’s unheard of and not do anything. We’re not gonna worry about writing or doing anything. I mean, obviously, we’re musicians. When we’re at home, we’re gonna be tinkering down, trying to come up with ideas, but we’re not gonna do anything structured. We’re gonna get a warehouse, we’re gonna build it up, put up our favorite punk-band posters, we’re gonna do it just like we did when we were younger. And probably around summertime, we’re gonna work on getting together and jamming . . . And then once the ideas start coming. And once you have one song you’re excited about, it’s all over from there. But yeah, we’re gonna take a little bit of time off — not like an indefinite hiatus or anything — just enough time to rest, recover our frail old bodies and have some fun.”
On how AVENGED SEVENFOLD got caught up in the drama between their one-time touring drummer Mike Portnoy and Mike‘s former band, DREAM THEATER:
Zacky: “It was something that we were not used to at all. We had never, ever experienced any kind of in-the-spotlight drama; we just always stay in the shadows and keep any of our personal business private. And [Mike is] a very different character — he always goes straight to fans [on] Twitter or whatever… That’s how he dealt with his band, and it was new to us. We like to be in touch with our fans, but we’re also very private. ‘Cause, to us, it’s not about Zacky or M. Shadows or Synyster Gates, it’s about AVENGED SEVENFOLD; it’s more important than any one of us. And he’d been talking about quitting DREAM THEATER, that he wasn’t necessarily happy, and he was excited to be playing with us; we were playing huge shows and stuff. I think he got caught up in the moment, got excited. We begged him to consider what he did, because we were in no position to find a permanent replacement, because in all honesty, you can’t replace [late AVENGED SEVENFOLD drummer] Jimmy [‘The Rev’ Sullivan], who was our best friend — first and foremost — besides beng an amazing drummer. So it just wasn’t the right time and the place. And he told us, ‘Hey, I’ve got good news and bad news. I quit DREAM THEATER.’ We were like, ‘Oh, no. Well, if you’re happy, then that’s good.’ [And he was like], ‘Now I can be with you guys.’ And we were like, ‘That’s not necessarily what we decided upon. And you should take your time and reconsider.’ And he was like, ‘Well, I put out my press release.’ We were like, ‘Dude, that’s not how we do business. You should have talked to us before.’ Then it was back and forth [between Mike and his former DREAM THEATER bandmates]. We were out of it; we had nothing to do with it. We were just trying to get back on our feet. So when all that was going down, it was causing us a lot of heartache, to be honest — to see our name in this drama-filled love triangle. He helped us out at a really vulnerable time, and for that we will always be extremely appreciative. But for us, we were so unstable at that point that any unneeded attention was just very harmful to us. Obviously, it didn’t work out [between us and Mike], but I think it’s for the best — for him and for us.”