Niclas Müller-Hansen of RockSverige.se recently conducted an interview with ANTHRAX drummer Charlie Benante. An excerpt from the chat follows below.
RockSverige.se: A lot of icons are leaving us these days, like Lemmy and David Bowie. What did Bowie mean to you?
Charlie: David Bowie was my first concert ever. My cousin took me and it was definitely one of those life-changing experiences. I just wanted to keep going to shows after that. While I was not the biggest David Bowie fan, like I’m a big LED ZEPPELIN or KISS fan, I was always into Bowie and into what he was doing. Some of his records are just a part of our lives. Like I said, I wasn’t the biggest David Bowie fan, but I was definitely a fan.
RockSverige.se: He broke through a lot of barriers in music and art and fashion and these days it just seems so much harder, because it’s all been done and it was all done by those guys. Would you agree?
Charlie: I would agree with that, for the most part. And then there will always be like a Lady Gaga that will come out and you go, “What the fuck is that?” And [she] just does it with a different likeability. Nowadays sometimes it’s not even about the music, it’s about the style and the look and the music is secondary. A lot of it is just so marketed that it’s shoved down people’s throats and it becomes likeable, because you can’t avoid it.
RockSverige.se: With Lemmy, you get the feeling that from the day he was born, he always said what he thought and there was no bullshitting. It takes a certain kind of man to be like that.
Charlie: I think Lemmy had that kind of attitude that was his: sex, drugs and rock and roll. Let’s face it, when MOTÖRHEAD were doing what they were doing and I´m talking about the heydays, MOTÖRHEAD were playing rock and roll. They were playing music like ZZ TOP, but they were doing it with such an attitude and such a roar that punk rock fans, heavy metal fans, rock and roll fans, all enjoyed it. They were one of the first bands that you would see someone into punk rock wearing a MOTÖRHEAD shirt, someone into heavy metal wearing a MOTÖRHEAD shirt. It became so iconic that that’s what you would see at the shows. You’d see a mixed bag of people, which I thought was the greatest thing.
Read the entire interview at RockSverige.se.