LAMB OF GOD Drummer CHRIS ADLER - "I Have No Idea What I'm Doing, Therefore I Have No Out Of Bounds"
September 12, 2018, 4 months ago
Speaking with Music Radar, Lamb Of God drummer Chris Adler sat down for a career-spanning interview. Following is an excerpt from the discussion.
Q: What’s the biggest onstage nightmare you’ve ever had?
Adler: “Easy. Simple 16ths tom roll from the snare down the toms and on tom 2 the stick tip split and bounced back at me, sharp end first, into my right eyeball. I felt the stick beak and then what I’d best describe as a slap in the face, but I was confused as to what happened and was anxiously reaching for another stick to keep the song going. As I reached down, my tech saw the thing in my eye and turned white as a ghost and started pointing at me as if ‘Alien’ was in front of the drum kit and somehow I didn’t see it. Then I tasted the blood amongst the sweat from my face that made it into my mouth. I knew something was fucked and now I knew it was my eye (which is not a good thing to know mid-song by the way) and panic set in. I finished the tune and turned around to my tech yelling 'What the f***!?!?? How bad is it?' He said 'It’s not good' and kind of crawled away from me as if it might be contagious.
I reached up and felt the tip of the stick - about 3 inches away from my face - to the right a bit and in front of my nose. I gently grabbed the tip with 2 fingers and YANKED it out! I could feel the blood start to run down my face so I grabbed a towel, asked for a few more, turned around and started the next tune. It bled for a bit - maybe 3 songs - then slowly stopped. Once the set ended I ran to the dressing room to check the damage while the guys kissed babies and shook hands. Turns out, the sharp end went right into the very corner of my right eye, the inside part right next to my nose. It went in enough to hold itself there, but it hadn’t actually punctured my eyeball and the blood was from the skin tears in the little area right there.
I found a splinter or two over the following week, but I don’t know if I even told the band that it had happened. Could have been worse. I tell myself that a lot these days. I’m a lucky guy.”
Q: What is your biggest strength as a drummer?
Adler: "That I’m not really a drummer. I have no idea what I’m doing, therefore I have no out of bounds. I love finding ways to accent the music with syncopation - a skill I fine tuned learning Yes songs on bass guitar. Chris Squire should be a conceptual example for every instrument. The guy is first chair violin and at the same time purposefully sitting this one out. Knowing when to play is as important as knowing what to play. Just because you can do something doesn’t mean you should. It took me forever to swallow that - I wanted to try and outplay my bandmates and other drummers for years for no reason other than to prove to myself that I was good enough to do this.
Truth is, I was able to quit my job and play music full time immediately after I stopped doing that. The guitarists were the same way - competing with themselves and each other. There was a moment when we actually discussed it and agreed to stop trying to outdo each other. When we stopped playing for ego and played for the song, things exploded for the band.”
Read the complete interview here.
Lamb Of God recently released their full-length covers album as Burn The Priest, Legion: XX, via Epic Records. The album is a collection of songs reflecting the greatness of the classic punk, hardcore, crossover and noise artists that influenced them in their formative years, released in celebration of Burn The Priest's upcoming 20th anniversary.
The band have revealed a brand new, Heath Bradley-animated video for their Burn The Priest cover of the Ministry hit, "Jesus Built My Hotrod". Watch the video below.
Guitarist Mark Morton says about the track: "This was a benchmark song from the early 90s. We didn't even originally plan on doing it - producer Josh Wilbur and I learned it real quickly and put it together. It turned out to be one of our favorite songs of the album. It features a side of Randy that people aren't used to hearing. Nothing was planned, so it felt fun, and we just went for it."
In conjunction with the video premiere, Legion: XX is now available for a special discounted price via iTunes. Make sure to grab your digital copy of Legion: XX for just $7.99 here - but hurry - this sale price is only valid for one week.
Visit hlamb-of-god.com for dates and information on Lamb Of God's European tour with Slayer, beginning November 1st.