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Interview~Keith St. John talks about the new 4th Burning Rain album Face the Music.

Burning Rain

BURNING RAIN, the hard rock band was established in 1998 by guitarist extraordinaire Doug Aldrich (REVOLUTION SAINTS, THE DEAD DAISIES, EX-WHITESNAKE, DIO)and vocalist Keith St. John (MONTROSE, KINGDOM COME). The 1999 record established BURNING RAIN as a hungry yet seasoned group of musicians. Although the album was limited in its release, it did receive rave reviews from fans and critics alike for their take on heavy, blues-y hard rock and they released three albums. Are now pleased to announce the release of their long awaited  fourth studio album  with Brad Lang (Y&T) on bass and Blas Elias (Slaughter) on drums.

IMM: When did you and Doug start writing songs for this album?

Keith:  We got together at some point and said hey, it’s time to start writing for the new record. Because we didn’t know when it was going to happen and we have know each other for over twenty years and we will just start writing stuff and we’ve done it several times between the last album and the current one. So when we say we have enough time do another one, we both go into our hard drives and unearth all kinds of stuff we’ve done together over the years. We hang out as friends and get together just to write and is what we both love doing rather than hang out a bar and watch football with a beer which is fine too. Our way of doing that is writing music and being creative and we have songs on this record that span from zero to ten to fifteen years from their conception and first time we might have thrown that riff around. And we have twenty to twenty five ideas thrown around and say gosh this might be really cool and this would sound cool on the record might turn us on and maybe what was left over from before because maybe we felt we didn’t have the right chorus for it or didn’t feel this or that but we still love it and now for some reason the spark happened and how about this? Shit! I have great chorus for this song. Yeah, let’s do it blah, blah and that’s our process for getting the songs together.

With this new line up we got going with Blas Elisas (SLAUGHTER) on drums and Brad Lang (Y&T)  on bass helps us playing live a lot. But we want these guys to be part of the band and not just for the recording process and once we got the songs worked out which was probably over a year or well over a year before the record release and got the guys involved and turned this thing into a band.  In the past we might have had some misgivings since we didn’t play a lot live and people might have thought that is project was dead yet we intended to take it this far. And by and large we got caught with the national acts both of us are playing in and thing lead to another and the timing didn’t work out. Something that is happening on this record that didn’t happen before is actually take these songs out and play them live that have been stuck all these years and hopefully new ones.

IMM: What was the decision to bring in Brad and Blas for this album?

Keith: Let me start with the lineup we had on the last record that was Matt Star on drums and Sean McNabb on bass. Both are great guys and great players we love very much and was hard for us to part ways. From the last record to this and these guys are great players and by and large get calls from other bands and they get busy and just happen to work out when we saw our time to put this record together. Matt has been real busy with Mr. Big and Sean is still with Lynch Mob and full blown tour dates with the band. So we had to make a choice and got really lucky with Blas and Brad and they are super, great guys, great players and I’m so happy with this band and this line up. There is no kind of weird guy in the band so to speak. Among artists you can have different personalities sometimes like they clash or one guy who is a pain in the ass and nobody in this band who is that guy so there four guys that are normal and I wonder if that can implode back on us because there is no weirdo (Laughter).

IMM: The songs on this album weren’t finished or not put on the first Burning Rain album?

Keith: Not all of them. We have a lot of brand new ideas on this record and let it be known that several riffs have been around while and didn’t craft it into music. And even had riffs and titles like Face the Music sitting around before the third album or that album so it’s been a round a while. Though never crafted it into a tune but I had some clips on my drive and asked Doug do you remember this?  And he said yeah and maybe we can work it into a song.

IMM: Will there be shows for 2019 & 2020?

Keith: This year will be a ramp up for next year. We have a lot of stuff going on such a promotional tour that Doug and I are doing at Europe that starts at the beginning of April 1 with very few days of that starts at the UK to the Czech Republic and Finland and at Frontiers Rocks for our record label Frontiers and Milan. All that is promotion with the label guys, and radio jocks in nearby cities will be showing up getting a leg up. And hopefully we will be back in September and working on dates right with the full band and a few sprinkle around the that way by 2020 we can play the festivals.

IMM: Any plans for North America?

Keith: Well, right now we haven’t committed to one American agent yet for a long term plan which we need to do. Were old dogs and not nineteen anymore so we do know a lot of people in the business and know a lot of promoters and buyers in the U.S. So we’re already sprinkling around the states maybe as early as May when we get back from Europe and were in the heat of the fire putting this together.

IMM:  Great! Who design the album cover?

Keith: Well, if you listen to the songs, I had kind a had a reason for the cover and mention it to Doug and he was into it and I put a little something myself. I sent it to the label to inquire what they think and they loved it. They hired an artist for the cover regardless what we did and we volleyed back and forth with the artist style and can figure out the double or triple meaning related to the songs.

IMM: You can have contest stating listen to the album and which song or songs on the album references the album cover?

Keith: Nice!   And can fill in the blanks of which songs.

IMM: Always good to talking to you.

Keith: Always good talking to you.

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