- Hey, Jim! Since your reunion, you've been around for almost 2 years now, so how do you feel about been all together once again? What can you say about current band's status?
- We are just having a blast! Just having fun...as it should be. the band is between shows right now. But we are still here.
- Lately, you toured a lot. Do you still like playing live after so many years? Do you have you favourite tracks to perform? And what are the most wanted tracks by the audience?
- Oh of course I love playing live ..we all do and it shows. I love to play the stuff off of "Time Does Not Heal"...because I've played all the other stuff for so many years hahaha...Merciless death always seems to be the most requested :)
- Recently you had a great "Thrash Domination" show, in Japan. How did it go? How cool was it to play in such a fantastic line-up? How many times have you already played there?
- It was Dark Angels first time there! Gene of course has been there many times. Japan is a wonderful country and wonderful fan's.I regret I did not have more time to stay.
- You've been touring around the world, how could you describe different fans and pits in general? What is your favourite place to play? And is there still a city or a country where you would love to play?
- It's been a wonderful adventure. All the pits were incredible but CHILE was insane! HUGE!!! Britain was a dream come true for me. I'd love to play Ireland some day. :) But it would be unfair for me to say I had a favorite.
- Well, I believe I'll ask you now the most vulnerable question, so, what are your plans regarding the new album? It's been 25 years since your last album was released. What are your thoughts concerning the future of the band?
- Well it will be a slow process but it will happen. We all have other things in our lives....I know I do. Gene s booked up with Testament and his other ventures. Let's just say when it happens it happens...I'm not promising any time frame. We will just all send each other ideas.
I think we feel we want to play the best gig's and see more things...so we are here.
- By the way, since we mentioned the last band's album, you didn't take part in its creation. First of all, what was the reason for you to leave the band? And what is your opinion regarding the material? How do you think, what was the main challenge and difference in this album due to your absence?
- I think it's the BEST album!! hahaha I had to leave to go get my life together...school, work etc...just regular stuff...
Gene and Brett were a great writing team. I enjoy listening to that album to this day. When it came out Gene brought it over to me. We were all still friends it was clear that I was not going on in the music business so they carried on with me wishing them the best. Brett and I were very close as well. I've lost touch with him years ago. but it was all good.
- Let's have a few more questions about your early days. Originally, in far-far 1981, the band was called Shellshock. What do you remember about those days? How did you meet each other and what was your first rehearsal place? Who came up with that name?
- I took the name from my favorite band TANK.....we were bloody awful haha just kids...we did covers and then started writing our own songs and got heavier and heavier....we had nowhere to practice at that time....maybe a friends house or a backyard....we always got kicked out haha. I don't know if we were that loud or just THAT bad!! hahaha
In 1983 you were forced to change the name to Dark Angel. How did you accept that news? Do you think it was rather a positive moment for the band?
- We were not forced....at all no one knew who we were so no one cared... I just wanted a name of our own so I just said we are now "Dark Angel" I drew up a logo and later had friends re draw and it evolved from there. it was time to have a name that represented our direction of music.
- At those days, how was it to record and release your own demo records like? What kind of obstacles did you face? How did you distribute them and who was in charge of tape-trading?
- It was fun...I had Pen Pals and I just mailed off what ever ...and traded and so on..and it just took off...I mailed it off to any zine I could find. Friends did the same for us.And back then it took months to get any reaction so I was always watching the mail.
- In 1985, you released your debut full-length, "We have Arrived". Do you remember what that released meant to you? How was it to keep a copy of your own music like?
- I was at the the record shop " Middle Earth" the day it came out we were all so happy it was very exciting ! It was so cool for us to see pictures of ourselves on a record and have our own section ! After buying records for so many years it was awesome to finally have our own. I think I used to stop by everyday to see how it was selling :)
- How did your recording sessions go? Is there something that you would have done now in a different way? How long did it take you to record? Did any funny or even dramatic story happen while you've been working in the studio?
- I think it only took a few days as I remember we had a tiny budget and Bill Metoyer was there to help us...It went pretty fast.. Oh there are tons ofhings I would change haha we were so young.
- By the time you released you next album, "Darkness Descends", your music became really aggressive and dark. How could you comment on that play-style evolution? What was really the reason for such a development?
- Getting Gene in the Band. He had the same vision..to make this band a BEAST! and we did. We want to take it to a new level which we did.
- How did your song-writing approach change on this album? Did Gene Hoglan influence it anyhow as well? Composing the new tracks, did you set any goals for your-self?
- Yes having a drummer that was like him he re vamped songs we already had Like Merciless Death...Burning of Sodom...Perish In Flames....and then we wrote more insane things..we would talk..and "yes that's good" or' no that does not work" Gene also turned out to be an excellent guitar player and lyricist so there were even more ideas flowing...it was an exciting time. when the album was done we knew it was a BEAST !
- Alright, before closing, tell us a few words about another your band, Dreams of Damnation. What is the current state and what are your future plans?
- Dreams is alive and well we are in search of a drummer as our guy moved back to Brazil but we are all best friends and hang out all the time and they are very supportive of Dark Angel and are huge fans. There is plenty of unrecorded music.It's way diff than Dark Angel more of a Death Metal approach.
- Thank you for this interview, James! Would you like to add anything in the end?
- Yes sorry for the delay in getting to you. this will probably be my last interview for a long time so Glad to get it done! Thank you again!