Guitarist Jim Durkin and drummer Gene Hoglan of reactivated California thrashers DARK ANGEL were interviewed on a recent edition of “The Metal Magdalene With Jet” show on Metal Messiah Radio. You can now listen to the chat below. A couple of excerpts follow (transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET).
On how Gene manages to shuffle so many different projects:
Hoglan: “Well, you pretty much just deny yourself any form of social life. You pretty much go from one band to another. And I’ve got a band with my woman at home, and that’s getting off the ground too. Fortunately, I’m in a very fortunate position where every project that I do… There’s, of course, always money involved — I’ll always be okay there — but I go where it’s fun. Getting back with the guys from DARK ANGEL, it’s fun. When we did pack it in back in 1992, it wasn’t over yelling or anything; it was just kind of dissolved, and we all remained friends. And every time I’d come through town… Everybody kind of moved to separate areas of the country, really, and every time I’d blow through town somewhere, I’d call up Ron [Rinehart, vocals]: ‘Hey, I’m in town with DETHKLOK. Why don’t you come on down?’ Or Eric [Meyer, guitar] would always come down to shows. And I’d always come around and visit Jim when I had time off. So I just tend to go where there’s fun. Playing in TESTAMENT? It’s fun. Playing in DETHKLOK? Fun. DARK ANGEL. Fun. DEATH. Fun. So there you go. I always put the fun first. And when you do stuff like that, you always enjoy your work. This is a job for me, but it’s a great job and it’s super fun.”
On whether they were nervous before playing DARK ANGEL’s first reunion show in April 2014 at The Metal Fest in Santiago, Chile:
Durkin: “I don’t like to call it a reunion, because we’ve always talked and we’re always gonna write. Ron and I have always talked, and I’ve been in and out of touch with everybody. But the agreement was always there: ‘This is the lineup. We’re gonna play. It’s a matter of when, if the right things come up.’ Me, I’m always worried… When I play, I worry more about what I’ve gotta do, what my job is. I’m never worried about the guys next to me or behind me, because these guys are badass. So it’s not a nervous thing in that sense. I just try to go out and not let my guys down and do the best that I can. And that’s the most nervous thing I go through. I don’t care about the crowds; I love them. They’re why I’m there, so my biggest job is not to let anybody down. I just pay attention to what I’ve gotta do, and I get it done. And my guys are right there, and it’s badass. You can’t beat the feeling.”
On how it feels playing together as DARK ANGEL again:
Durkin: “One thing I can say about this band is we laugh a lot. We have a pretty twisted sense of humor, and there’s some things that we say that only we get, when we’re talking about stuff, old stories or something. And we laugh a lot, and that’s really important. No matter where we go, we’re always cracking up or cracking on somebody or making fun of somebody. We laugh a lot, and that’s the key right there; that’s what makes it so much fun. You know, everybody’s been in a band with somebody where they’re, like, ‘Oh, God, I’ve gotta see that guy again. Oh, I’ve gotta put up with him or her.’ Or whatever. And it’s not like that here. It’s, like, ‘Okay. Fuck. We’ll go practice on Saturday. I can’t wait. It’ll be great.’ Everybody’s flying in. We’re gonna have a good time. And we have a lot of laughs. We make fun of each other and everybody’s got a good sense of humor about themselves.”
Hoglan: “Yeah, that’s really fun. Everybody can hack and be hacked upon by the bandmates, and that’s always fun.”
Durkin: “We get pretty brutal, and nobody’s flying their hands in the air and going out the room. It’s pretty brutal.”
On whether there is new DARK ANGEL music on the way:
Durkin: “We have always had some things in the works, and there’s some demos laying around. Yes. I won’t give everybody a time limit. I want everybody to be excited, and it’s gonna blow your heads off. But we want it to be the most badass thing that we can possibly do, and trust me, it will be.”
DARK ANGEL released two albums with Don Doty on vocals — 1984’s “We Have Arrived” and 1986’s “Darkness Descends” — before he exited the group and was replaced by Ron Rinehart (after a brief stint with Jim Drabos in 1987). The band issued two more studio LPs — 1989’s “Leave Scars” and 1991’s “Time Does Not Heal” — before calling it quits in 1992. Rinehart, Hoglan and Meyer reassembled DARK ANGEL more than a decade ago but were forced to abandon their reunion plans after health issues reportedly put Rinehart’s singing career on hold.