When Bay Area thrashers Robb Flynn and Adam Duce formed Machine Head in 1992 it felt less like a beginning of something new for local fans, and more like the demise of Vio-lence. Yet, nearly two decades later, and ready to drop their seventh sonic opus, Machine Head has eclipsed those crumbled beginnings in no uncertain terms. Along with drummer Dave McClain and another Vio-lence alumni, guitarist Phil Demmel, Machine Head has become one of metal’s eminent and triumphant leaders.
The band’s make no apologies, in-your-grill approach has earned them a loyal following among the metal masses, and no shortage of respect among their peers. With their 2007 release The Blackening, the band set a new standard for themselves, and fans cannot wait to get their ears on the follow up, Unto The Locust, later this fall.
Flynn and company do not do anything halfway, and they don’t take shortcuts to appease the industry. Machine Head has yet to write a song under six minutes, and you won’t see the band changing their style to please anyone. They remain brutal, honest, and committed to the music, and they perform every note with blistering conviction.
Prior to the band’s main stage performance on Day 4 of this year’s Rockstar Energy Mayhem Festival, I sat down with Phil to talk about raising the bar on the new album, and where the band will take listeners with Unto The Locust. We also touched on the passing of former Motörhead guitarist Würzel, upcoming tours with Van Halen and Sepultura, and much more.