SKID ROW guitarist Dave “Snake” Sabo has told Ireland’s Overdrive that the band is continuing to work on material for the final installment of its “United World Rebellion” trilogy of EPs. The follow-up to 2014’s “Rise Of The Damnation Army – United World Rebellion: Chapter Two” and 2013’s “United World Rebellion: Chapter One” will mark the band’s first release with the South African-born, British-based vocalist ZP Theart (DRAGONFORCE, TANK, I AM I), who officially joined SKID ROW last year.
“Myself and Rachel [Bolan, bass] are here in Nashville where Rachel lives and has a studio,” Sabo said. “We’re working on some post-production stuff at the moment. We have a small rehearsal space in east Nashville, which is really great as it’s like jamming in someone’s living room. I got down here a couple of days ago to write, which I’ve been doing now for a while. I come down here once a month and Rachel and I just get together and write and start working on new ideas, so we don’t really have a definitive timeline as to when we will actually be recording the record.”
According to Sabo, SKID ROW has spoken to Michael Wagener, the producer of the band’s first two albums (1989’s “Skid Row” and 1991’s “Slave To The Grind”), about helming the new EP. “He’s totally up for doing that, so we just have to make both schedules work,” the guitarist said. “Obviously, we have a lot of touring that we are doing this year, so I don’t know if we’re gonna be able to go in a do it all in one shot, or just by doing a few tracks at a time.” He added: “We are just so psyched to be working with Michael again, so much so that it’s really energized us and we’ll just do whatever we have to do in order to make it work.”
Sabo was also full of praise for Theart, whom he called “such a welcome presence within the band. Number one, he’s a good guy and a very positive person that doesn’t get thrown off the rails,” he said. “He’s got a very positive outlook on life and that in itself has brought so much to the inner workings of the band. For me, having that energy around has been fantastic and has had a very profounding effect on us all… He’s all about the band and the idea of making SKID ROW bigger, better and stronger. ZP‘s also very respectful of our past, he understands where we came from and our body of work, which he shows great reverence towards. That’s huge for us, man. This is just all just part of who ZP is and his natural personality. He’s a really good guy and a total team player.”
As for Theart‘s approach to singing the classic SKID ROW material, Sabo said: “He really knows where these songs have come from and pays huge respect to each and every one of them. He wants to do the tracks as they were originally recorded because he’s very aware that the people in the audience want to hear the songs the way they were recorded. ZP is very interested in paying respect to the legacy but also doing the best job that he can when performing them. The bottom line is, ZP loves the material and it shows.”
Sabo also once again dismissed talk of a reunion with former SKID ROW singer Sebastian Bach, saying “it’s been talked to death on so many levels” and insisting that “nothing has changed.” He added: “I don’t disregard our past in any way because it’s what got us here, but let’s just concentrate on the present. It’s like talking about an ex-girlfriend that you dated 20 years ago. Why bother? I’m all about moving forward and concentrating on the stuff that I’m doing or about to do.”
Despite having played sporadic shows with SKID ROW for a year, Theart wasn’t officially announced as the band’s new frontman until January 2017.
Theart stepped into the group following the departure of Tony Harnell, the former TNT frontman who joined SKID ROW in April 2015 as the replacement for Johnny Solinger, the band’s singer of 15 years.