This week, May 7, Ireland’s thrash metal grin and sin jesters, Gama Bomb will release their fourth studio album in North America. “The Terror Tapes“, the band’s fourth studio album, and its first for AFM Records, the first in four years, and the first to feature new guitarist John Roche. On Cinco De Mayo vocalist Philly Byrne and bassist Joe McGuigan connected with Metalholic to talk about the new album, the big changes the band has faced over the last year or so, the loss of Jeff Hanneman, and whose bath water they’d most like to drink.
Since Gama Bomb‘s third studio effort, “Tales from the Grave in Space“, which the band gave away as a free download, many things have changed. The guys left Earache Records and found a new home with AFM. Long time rhythm guitarist Luke Graham left the band and Slave Zero guitarist John Roche joined. Frontman Philly Byrne underwent a surgical procedure for vocal fold nodules.
The resilient quintet returned to the studio determined to make their most bombastic album so far, and after one listen to “The Terror Tapes” it seems fair to say they accomplished that mission handily. Roche adds a new dimension to the band with his lead abilities, and Byrne discovered new vocal nuances to play with. Gama Bomb even tracked down famed artist Graham Humphreys to create the cover art. Humphreys is best known for classic horror movie posters including “A Nightmare On Elm Street” and “Evil Dead”.
After a year that might have crippled or brought to an end lesser bands, Gama Bomb are back, tongue planted firmly in cheek, and ready to resume their goals of moral ambiguity, world domination and reducing their collective carbon footprint by drinking straight from the tap. You can listen to our full 30 minute interview with Joe and Philly below.