INTERVIEW With Alter Bridge via Glide Magazine

Interview With Alter Bridge via Glide Magazine

“I played drums before I played bass,” Brian Marshall told me backstage after an exhaustingly energetic performance by his band Alter Bridge. “Thankfully you made the change,” deadpanned drummer Scott Phillips. The foundation of the more-popular-than-ever band, which also features guitar god Mark Tremonti and vocalist extraordinaire Myles Kennedy, have sat down with me following their show in Biloxi to talk about the tour they had only recently started. They are excited to be back in front of their American fans and the past couple of shows have been really special to them.“We did Earth Day Birthday in Orlando, which was a large all-day, three or four stage festival show,” Phillips explained. “It’s tough when you’re the last band on and people have been out there all day in the sun drinking and I think by the time we got out there most of the crowd had fallen asleep. But we had a great reaction and it was the first show for us in almost a month so it was nice to do it in front of a hometown crowd.”

Biloxi’s show was also a highlight. “Tonight was amazing,” said Phillips with a smile. Featuring songs from their latest album Fortress, released last October, and sprinkled with many of their most beloved tunes such as “White Knuckles,” “Metalingus,” “Rise Today” and the acoustic Kennedy-only ballad “Watch Over You,” the only slowed down moment in an otherwise high energy set. With Tremonti roaring like a fierce bull on guitar all night and Kennedy hitting from first note to last, this has to be among the top five concerts to see in the first half of 2014.

With so much volume in one show, I asked Phillips and Marshall which of the songs tend to wear them out the most:

Brian: None of them really take me out. The hardest song for me probably is maybe “Waters Rising.”

Scott: What about “One Day Remains” or, well, you use a pick on that now so it’s not so bad.

Brian: Probably “Waters Rising.” “Metalingus” is really busy throughout the whole thing.

Scott: “Ties That Bind,” that’s one that gets me pretty bad

Brian: My arm gets a little crampy about the second verse. You can see it in my face going “arrgh.”

Scott: Either “White Knuckles” or “Metalingus” would be the two that are probably the busiest songs that are kind of non-stop the whole time. “Addicted To Pain” is another one that is real up-tempo and there’s not a lot of downtime for me but it doesn’t seem to wear me out. Maybe just cause it’s the beginning of the night and I’ve got more energy. But either “Metalingus” or “White Knuckles” would be the two.

Playing the title track for the first time in America was a breathtaking highlight. “We only did it once on the entire European run, back in October/November, and we played it in Portugal on the very last night of the tour,” recalled Phillips. “Got a great reaction from it but I think we were all probably more nervous than the crowd was as far as not having played it. It’s not an overly complicated song but there are a lot of time signature changes and tempo changes and just making sure everybody hits all that stuff really tight. And tonight was awesome. It felt good and it got a good reaction too.”

Which new songs not on your setlist would you like to add?

Scott: I think the only … you have to help me out, Marsh. I think the only song that we haven’t done live is “All Ends Well.” Does that sound right? Off of Fortress?

Brian:Yeah and it’s my favorite song

Scott:And I am sure that will make it in to set at some point.

Brian: I think you’re right

Scott: We’ve done “Bleed It Dry,” we’ve done “Peace Is Broken,” “Uninvited.”

Brian: We haven’t done “Peace Is Broken” live. We’ve practiced it.

Scott: We did it over in Europe. At least once, once or twice, I thought.

Brian: Never did it

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