INTERVIEW WITH MONROE BLACK intervista di Daniele Pietrini

MELODY LANE had the pleasure to interview MONROE BLACK, singer and lead guitarist of the californian Glam/Shock Metal band Salems Lott. Salems Lott is the ultimate antithesis to the ever so tame "Modern" Rock scene. Band highly recommended to fans of Ratt, Accept, Wasp, Alice Cooper, King Diamond, KISS and Motley Crue.
Interview not to be missed!!! 

MELODY LANE: The line-up of the band is the same from the beginning or have you had changes. The members in tour will be the same that played in the studio?
MONROE BLACK: Salems Lott has had the same members since its inception.  It’s extremely difficult to find people you get along with not only musically but also have the same ambition and drive.  The same members you hear on the record, will be the same guys you see live.

MELODY LANE: List 3 songs, from the SALEMS LOTT discography (including new album), that can define the sound of the band … 3 songs that can help our readers to know SALEMS LOTT at the best.
MONROE BLACK: That’s difficult, as this band encompasses so many different sounds.  From the extremely brutal “Enigma” to some groove “Royal Desperado” and even a soft ballad like “Shattered to Pieces”.  Music isn’t supposed to be one sided.  You’re never just angry, sad or happy.  Your emotions vary and so should your musical expression.  Otherwise you’re selling a gimmick.

MELODY LANE: Tell us something about the creative process of your music. Is there a main composer or we can talk about a team work? The songs come from ideas of a single member and then the band works on these ideas in the studio jamming together, or your songs are written in the studio and all the members compose together?
MONROE BLACK: Jett and myself are the chief songwriters.  We usually come up with the ideas and bring it into rehearsal and jam it out with the guys.  Everybody then brings in their style and makes the song their own.  That’s how it’s usually done.  

MELODY LANE: What are going to be the differences between your first release “SALEMS LOTT” and the new one “MASK OF MORALITY”? After time, are you totally satisfied with your choices about sound and the writing of your first EP?
MONROE BLACK: I’ll never be the guy that looks back on his work with shame.  The EP was a glorified demo of songs Jett and I wrote years before Salems Lott was ever formed.  The writing on the EP is still very relevant and solid, both lyrically and musically.  With that being said the new record will show how much the band has grown.  It’s so powerful musically and also has a strong stance on our current societal culture that it will challenge what most people think is “right” from “wrong”. 

MELODY LANE: Will you tour in the next future? Already have dates planned? Any chance to see you live here in Europe during 2018?
MONROE BLACK: We’re an independent band.  Meaning we have no label support, no managers, booking agents etc.  Also to get on a tour with a well known act so that we can expose people to our music is almost impossible as the industry is monopolized.  If you’re not on a label or have extremely deep pockets, then you’re not opening for any big band.  Touring is extremely costly for a band like us, so there would have to be a strong demand and a show of support.  Would we like to tour?  Absolutely!  That’s the best part.  But realistically it’s not cost effective right now.  The best way to change that is to buy the new record, download it (don’t steal it) and support the band.  Show the record labels a band like us can sell and has a fanbase that is sick of the current music climate and from there the possibilities are endless.

MELODY LANE: Could you tell us two bands, from the actual scene, you’d like to tour with?... And why these bands?
MONROE BLACK: That’s hard, as there is no one like us.  All the bands seem to be stuck in some early “00’s time warp.  They’re just repeating the same sound and look over and over and over and over.  That’s why rock/metal has lost relevance in modern society.  These bands are boring and no one cares to hear or see them.

MELODY LANE: As a musician and as a band, what has been your biggest achievement to date and what do you want to achieve in the near future?
MONROE BLACK: Our biggest achievement would have to be being able to release this record with ZERO support from the industry.  They think we’re a joke and want us to go away, but the jokes on them as their business continues to shrink each year because they’re too scared to take on a band like us.  No risk, no glory.  As for what we want, it’s simple…WORLD DOMINATION and to bring the rockstar back roaring into 2018!

MELODY LANE: Up to now, could you tell us the best or a memorable concert for SALEMS LOTT?
MONROE BLACK: For us it would be playing one of the last shows to a sold out crowd at the House of Blues here in Los Angeles, before they tore it down.  The audience was chuckling at first, but then we had them by the balls and they were livid.

MELODY LANE: In the end…A message from you to all MELODY LANE readers.
MONROE BLACK: You want to see a band like us?  You want rock/metal to be a dominant cultural force again and not some irrelevant memory of the past?  Then buy the record.  Metal shouldn't only be underground, because the only thing that belongs underground are the dead.