Tommy Mann Jr.
The Orange Leader
LAFAYETTE, La. — One Texas-based rock act is taking the music to the fans this spring.
HellYeah are in the midst of a six week tour with metal titans Avenged Sevenfold and will perform on Monday, April 28, at the Cajundome in Lafayette, La. Tickets are $26 - $46, plus service charge, at all Ticketmaster outlets. Opening the show at 7 p.m. is Adrenaline Mob.
HellYeah, which features Pantera's Vinnie Paul on drums, Chad Gray of Mudvayne on vocals and Tom Maxwell on guitar, are touring in support of its forthcoming June release, "Blood on Blood." The band means business on this record too, according to one bandmember.
"The difference with this album compared to the others is that it has evolved into a more song oriented record," Maxwell said in a telephone interview. "It's heavier, but in different ways. The formula for writing it was quite different, and the writing all fell into my and Vinnie's lap this time. It's way more passionate and organic, and the fans are loving it."
Maxwell said HellYeah is performing a standard 45-minute slot as the special guest attraction on the "Shepherd of Fire" tour with Avenged Sevenfold.
"We're doing nine songs, and that includes a couple off each record," he explained. "We are playing three new songs off the new record and the fans seem really jazzed about it. I would play more new songs if we could."
Maxwell said the sound of the new record was a natural progression and never seemed forced.
"It was a very natural evolution, and the songs just kind of came to us," Maxwell added. "There was no set formula."
Maxwell attributes the band's recent success in the studio to producer Kevin Churko, who has worked with the likes of Ozzy Osbourne, Five Finger Death Punch and In This Moment.
"We've always been a self-produced band, but this time we wanted to try something different and take a step back and see what someone else could pull out of us," Maxwell said. "Kevin (Churko) added a lot to this record. He is a very talented producer and songwriter, which some people may not know. We even wrote a song together ("Hush") in the studio for this album. There's a lot of anticipation for this album, and it's exciting."
Maxwell believes the next several months will be a very productive, and a very busy time for HellYeah, but that is what this band lives for.
"Being out on the road is good for us," Maxwell continued. "This is like a warm-up tour for us, and being out with Avenged Sevenfold is a great metal package that fans will enjoy.
"We will be busy through early June, and then come home for a bit," he said. "We'll head to Europe for a month and do some of our own shows over there and do some of those big festivals too. Those are always great. After that, who knows. We are just now beginning to figure all of that out. Until then, we plan to be on the road and rocking everywhere we can."
Visit www.hellyeahband.com for more information on the new album and tour.