Metal Temple magazine recently conducted an interview with former MEGADETH guitarist Marty Friedman. You can now listen to the chat in the YouTube clip below. A couple of excerpts follow (transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET).
On the musical direction of his latest solo album, “Inferno”:
“When I decided to make an album that was not just for Japan, when I decided to make an album that was for the entire world, I had to be honest with myself: what does everybody wanna hear Marty Friedman do. And I know what they really want — they want me to play aggressive, crazy, heavy, wild, intense music; that’s what I knew for sure. So I had to keep that in mind. There’s a lot of things that I like to do — I like a lot more avant-garde music and strange, eclectic, traditional music and really modern music, but I tried to keep ‘Inferno’ in a place where I know what everybody wants me to do and I also enjoy it myself. So not only do I have to please everybody, but I had to please myself. So it took a lot of effort to be honest with myself about that, but it was worth it, because the record did really well and everybody seems to like it.”
On how his move to Japan influenced him as a guitar player and as a person:
“As guitar player, big time, because I’ve done so many crazy things in Japan — everything from all kinds of different television programs to radio to every possible media thing. My brain is working much, much more than it did when I was a teenager and in my 20s. So when you have that kind of stimulation, it really helps you as a musician as well. So that automatically helps my guitar playing. And I’ve played so many different kinds of music since I’ve been here, aside from, of course, my own solo music, but playing with every other possible artist. [It’s been] so challenging, and doing so many strange collaborations that my guitar playing has grown maybe twenty times faster than it did before I moved here, just because I’m forced to do so many different things. So it’s really good for my musicianship. And, as a person, it’s always good to have other cultures that you can tap into. When you speak another language, it gives you an even deeper understanding of humans in general, and you can talk more about different things with more interesting topics.”
Friedman has announced his first tour of North America since 2003 — a 21-date headlining run that will kick off September 9. The trek marks the latest leg of Friedman’s ongoing world tour in support of “Inferno”, his solo album that so far has seen him complete a record-breaking tour across South America; perform extensively in Europe with acts such as Gus G. (FIREWIND, OZZY OSBOURNE), ARCH ENEMY and KREATOR; and play multiple high-profile gigs in his current home country of Japan, including a set at the country’s largest heavy metal festival, Loud Park.
The upcoming North American leg of the “Inferno” tour will start in Friedman’s former hometown of Baltimore and wrap up on the West Coast on October 3. Support will be provided by the Los Angeles-based extreme shred outfit EXMORTUS.