Metal Blast recently conducted an interview with former IRON MAIDEN and current WOLFSBANE singer Blaze Bayley. A couple of excerpts from the chat follow below.
Metal Blast: How do you think [your new solo album] “The King of Metal” is going to be any different from your last album?
Blaze: Well, this album is a bit more back towards my classic metal style; it’s closer to the “Silicon Messiah” and “Tenth Dimension” albums. Although I didn’t plan it that way, this is how it has worked out. So far it sounds really good, the songs have really come together and even though it’ll still be a couple of weeks until we get to the vocals, I’m really excited about it. All the demos that we’ve done, as well as the rehearsals, have been very positive.
Metal Blast: What has been your favorite moment while creating this album?
Blaze: I had an idea to do a tribute song for Ronnie James Dio, and when that actually came together, when I heard the drums play for the first time, that was really a very special moment. Dio was my inspiration to start singing, so I’m hoping that the song turns out well and that the fans enjoy it.
Metal Blast: It was a very sad time when Dio passed away, and he’s still fondly remembered. People are always making tributes and keeping his memory alive. Now, regarding this album, who’s mainly in charge of writing the lyrics and music for “The King Of Metal”?
Blaze: Well, it’s my album, so I’ve written all the lyrics and quite a bit of the music. I’ve been working very closely with a young guitar player called Thomas Zwijsen, who has co-written most of the songs, and it has worked very well. Now, the title track, “The King Of Metal”, is dedicated to the fans, because they are the real kings of metal. Without the fans, there’s no heavy metal, and I think that people trivialize that and even disrespect heavy metal fans, compared to fans of pop or jazz. I’ve called the album “The King Of Metal” as a tribute to heavy metal fans, thanks to whom it has been possible for me to have such a wonderful career and spend my life as a professional singer.
Metal Blast: Well, you’ve clearly had a lot of obstacles to overcome. Do you think that it was a big obstacle to show yourself as more than “the guy who used to sing for IRON MAIDEN?”
Blaze: Well, there’s only three people who’s been the “ex singer” of IRON MAIDEN, and one of them went back. I’m really proud that we made with IRON MAIDEN, of the albums and the music that we made. It obviously was a huge part of my life and I learned a lot. But now, when I’m touring Europe, I have a lot of fans that say that “I don’t care if I don’t hear you play IRON MAIDEN songs, there are so many of your songs that I like that it really doesn’t bother me.” So, nowadays, if I go to a country that I haven’t toured properly before, and they’re not so familiar with my own material, I do more IRON MAIDEN songs. But mostly, in the rest of Europe, I do less IRON MAIDEN songs and more of my own.
Metal Blast: It’s very good to be able to show your own work and show that Blaze Bayley is still out there, putting out albums and go on the stage. Now, I’m sorry to ask about IRON MAIDEN one more time, but there was never any clarity as to what exactly lead to your departure from the band.
Blaze: Everybody was reforming back then, BLACK SABBATH, JUDAS PRIEST, DEEP PURPLE… everybody was having a reunion and IRON MAIDEN did the same. They said, “Bruce is coming back and you’re going.” It absolutely killed me. I loved being in IRON MAIDEN, and I loved singing the music and being on tour. Writing with Steve Harris was absolutely fantastic. I already had songs that I wanted to work on for another album, but that was it they just kicked me out and I had to do my own thing.
Read the entire interview from Metal Blast.