ROBB FLYNN ‘Couldn’t Bring’ Himself To Tell IAN GILLAN That MACHINE HEAD Wasn’t Named After DEEP PURPLE LP

MACHINE HEAD frontman Robb Flynn was recently interviewed by Gastão Moreira of Brazil’s Kazagastão (KZG). When Moreira expressed his surprise at the fact that MACHINE HEAD wasn’t named after the classic DEEP PURPLE album, Flynn explained (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET): “ I loved classic rock, and it wasn’t called classic rock back then. [Laughs] It was just rock back then. I was very particular about the classic rock bands that I loved. Like, I was never crazy about LED ZEPPELIN. I didn’t really care about LED ZEPPELIN. It wasn’t until way later in my life that I truly appreciated LED ZEPPELIN. But at the time all the assholes at school liked LED ZEPPELIN. So I was, like, ‘Fuck LED ZEPPELIN.’ BLACK SABBATH [was more my thing], because they were way more evil. DEEP PURPLE in California wasn’t that popular in the ’80s. It was other stuff that was way more popular. So, for lack of a better word, it was just off my radar. And then, of course, later on, obviously, I knew that ‘Machine Head’ came from DEEP PURPLE. I probably haven’t even listened to the record all the way through. I’ve heard the big songs — ‘Space Truckin”, I’ve heard, obviously, ‘Smoke On The Water’.”

He continued: “I tell you what, though, I met [DEEP PURPLE singer] Ian Gillan. We were in Liverpool mixing our second record [in 1996] and he was in Liverpool recording a solo album. And we just happened to be at the same studio. And he came over into our studio one night and [was], like, ‘Hey, how’s it going?’ We were, like,’ Oh my God.’ And I couldn’t bring myself to tell him that we weren’t named after his band. [Laughs] I’m certain that he thought that we were. But we just hung out. We went to the fucking studio and he was, like, ‘Play me some of the new songs.’ And so we ended up playing him a bunch of songs. And we played it pretty loud. He was probably almost 60 at this point — [in his] 50s. And he started playing it, and he’s, like, ‘Oh, I need it louder.’ And he just literally turned it up to full blast — I mean, the giant studio speakers. And we were, like, ‘Holy shit. All right, let’s go.’ And he sat there and he listened to the fucking whole record. And he’s, like, ‘Hey, come over to my studio and listen to my solo album.’ And he was kind of going through like a folk phase or whatever. And he came over and he ordered just fucking bottle after bottle of vodka, Jack Daniel’s, beer, just chainsmoking cigarettes the whole [time]. I mean, we just had the fucking best night. [He was] telling story after story after story.”

Earlier this month, MACHINE HEAD announced leg one of its “Slaughter The Martour North America 2024” tour. Forgoing their “An Evening With…” format for the first time in a decade, MACHINE HEAD will have Los Angeles’s cyber-metal masters FEAR FACTORY, Sweden’s ORBIT CULTURE and Louisville, Kentucky’s GATES TO HELL in tow.

“Slaughter The Martour North America 2024” will kick off with a “hometown” show for MACHINE HEAD, their first since 2020, in San Francisco on January 19. Then the tour heads north with shows in the pacific northwest as well as eight shows in Canada. Other stops include: Chicago, Orlando, and Houston before concluding in Los Angeles on February 24 at The Bellwether.

This past April, MACHINE HEAD canceled its previously announced spring 2023 U.S. tour “due to work visa issues,” explaining that “half the band, as well as a handful of key crew members, reside outside of the U.S.”

The 18-date “The Electric Happy Hour (Live)” trek was scheduled to kick off on May 15 in Ventura, California and make its way to Des Moines, Fort Wayne, and Detroit before ending in Los Angeles on June 9.

MACHINE HEAD has been touring in support of its latest album, “Of Kingdom And Crown”, which came out in August 2022. The follow-up to 2018’s “Catharsis” includes the three songs that were featured on the 2021 “Arrows In Words From The Sky” single: “Become The Firestorm”, “Rotten” and “Arrows In Words From The Sky”. Much of the new MACHINE HEAD album was recorded at Sharkbite Studios in Oakland, California with engineer/producer Zack Ohren.

In November 2020, MACHINE HEAD released a single, “My Hands Are Empty”, via Nuclear Blast. The song marked the first musical collaboration between Flynn and original “Burn My Eyes” guitarist Logan Mader in 24 years.

“My Hands Are Empty” was just one in a line of singles to be released by MACHINE HEAD, which issued “Do Or Die” in October 2019, “Circle The Drain” in February 2020, and the two-song digital single “Civil Unrest”, consisting of “Stop The Bleeding” and “Bulletproof”, in June 2020. “Stop The Bleeding” featured guest vocals from KILLSWITCH ENGAGE frontman Jesse Leach, and was written and recorded just days after the murders of George Floyd and Ahmaud Arbery.

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