Lamb of God's John Campbell talks about the Czech incident and how his brother Jeff from 3 Kings Tavern defiled his Star Wars slippers
You've said that Lamb of God is a punk band that plays heavy metal. Why do you feel that that's true?
I guess that was a very self-absorbed answer I gave [when I said that] because I didn't listen to heavy metal growing up. I was aware of it, and I had friends who listened to it, but I listened to punk rock. I grew up in the DC suburbs, and the hardcore scene was going incredibly strong. I kind of had my head in that world. When I came to college is when I finally had someone say, "Hey, man, no, seriously, check out heavy metal." So I guess I went to college and got experimental and checked out heavy metal.
Actually the first record that somebody -- it was Chris Adler when we met in the dorms in 1990. He sat me down, and he had a bass rig, because he was a bass player at the time; he had this giant, fucking, Peavy cabinet, a 2 X 15, if I remember right; and he had his stereo set up through that and would play through the rig, at incredible volumes, the kind where you'd have to time it to turn it off and hide everything when someone came around to figure out who the fuck was making that much noise. But we were blasting ...And Justice For All through his fuckin' bass rig, and I've been hooked ever since. That grew into Slayer and Megadeth and what I consider classic heavy metal.
Are there any bass players who you admire these days?
I can say when Crack the Sky came out, I called up Troy [Sanders] in Mastodon and told him that after I listened to that record, it made me feel like I was standing there picking my nose with my thumb up my butt while he was playing circles around me on bass. But I'm not really one to pick a hero to emulate. There are definitely people I respect as bass players and otherwise.
For Sacrament, you had that Deluxe Producer Edition. How did that idea become a reality and what made it an interesting project for you guys?
If I remember correctly, some other artist, maybe a DJ or something, had released one of their tracks broken down like that, and Chris Adler said, "Let's do our whole record like that!" We went to our label, and they thought it was a great way to sell more records. But we were really behind it because nobody had ever done that before and what a cool idea -- let people get in there.
When you're the band putting stuff together, you spend time with these tracks, not necessarily by themselves but you get the opportunity to mix on a somewhat limited level but similar to what we've gone through to get mixes done. It's a really cool way for people to get in and appreciate the music in a completely different way.