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Adler – Back from the Dead With A Purpose

By: Kenneth Gallant

Blistering.com: You also brought in some guests for the project so how did Slash, John 5 and Michael Lord all get involved?

Let's start with the less obvious in Michael Lord. He is a local musician who does a lot of TV work and he is a really good friend of mine for years, and that’s how I met Jay Ruston through Michael Lord. When we did “Waterfall” we had this very mechanical sounding piano on it and we didn’t like it, so I said “Why don’t we just give it to my friend Michael Lord?” so that’s how he got involved. He played the piano on “Waterfall” and he played the breakdown and the ending.

Slash is another one that is kind of obvious because Slash and Steven grew up together. After we finished recording the song “Just Don’t Ask,” Jeff turned to us and asked if we minded if he reached out to Slash because he would be perfect for this song for the solo. Of course, he reached out to him and sent him the song and Slash loved the song and wanted to put a solo down on it. Then the John 5 came about which was a little less obvious because Steven’s wife and John 5’s wife were apart of this saving the animals organization and just about the time when they met Steven asked him to play on his record and John 5 said of course he would.

Blistering.com: What key ingredients do you think Jacob Buntun brings to Adler?

I hate to say anybody is more important than the other, but to have a vocalist like him leading the whole project, you know you can’t go wrong with that. I think he plays a huge role in the sound of the band, but not only his voice, his personality what he brings a lot to the table. Business-wise and all the songwriting, even the songs that I have written I would bring to him and he would just make them so much better. I can’t say enough great things about Jacob and he brings a lot to the table and we couldn’t do without him.

Blistering.com: What is your take on the personal squabbles between Steven and Axl?

Well, I mean I am not inside Steven’s head, but honestly he doesn’t talk about it. In fact he doesn’t talk anything about it anymore other than he wishes him the best and he was very proud of the time they had together.

Blistering.com: I know on tour you play GNR songs, so do you have a favorite that you like playing live?

That’s a good question. I always liked “Mr. Brownstone” because it has a great riff, great groove and I like “Rocket Queen.” “Rocket Queen” is more fun to listen to than is to play and I can’t explain it, but “Mr. Brownstone” was always my favorite. I still had to talk Steven into playing “Mr. Brownstone” and he likes “Sweet Child O’ Mine.” Those are the only two Guns ‘N Roses songs we play live, but we are more into pushing the new record and playing that live because we have moved on from the past.

Blistering.com: Now growing did you have any favorite musicians or bands that you looked up to?

Obviously, I was a big Guns ‘N Roses fan and I was a big Dokken fan. I loved early Motley Crue and I was a big Randy Rhoades fan. My first introduction to Ozzy was through Randy Rhoades and then, I went back to listen to all the Black Sabbath stuff, but I am a huge Ozzy fan, Black Sabbath fan and even the Beatles and Judas Priest.

Blistering.com: Do you have a favorite new band on the scene today?

I’m a really big fan of Papa Roach. They’re not really new, but I like them. There’s things about Black Veil Brides that I really like, and I like the Foo Fighters too.

Blistering.com: Finally, I have a question about the cover art and I was wondering if you had a hand in the concept at all?

Coincidentally, I actually did put the cover together. It’s funny… I went to Hollywood’s Forever Cemetery which is where I think some of the Ramones are buried and it’s right off of Melrose here in Hollywood. I went there with a camera and I took a bunch of pictures and there was a special scene that I wanted in the background that wasn’t there, so I had to Photoshop in some extra gravestones. I actually got the idea from a picture I saw of Randy Rhoades faded in b/w; it was ghostly and I showed Steven a picture of that and I said dude the record has got to look like this. He thought it was a great idea and I thought it was a great idea as well.

So when you take out the discs from the CD itself, Steven’s hand is popping up out of the ground, that is again my idea. It’s funny, I was looking at my neighbor’s yard from across the street and he hasn’t planted grass for months and I actually went over to his front yard and knocked on his door and asked if I could take a picture of his dirt. I got this idea, so I took some fresh dirt from my yard and put it in his and I just photoshoped everything and used some of the gravestones, and put them in the background and that’s what created where his hand was coming out of the grave.

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