Jettblack blast back with Black Gold
Black Gold is a 13-track collection that includes covers of three hard rock anthems (originally recorded by Motorhead, Heart and AC/DC); a brand new song, Red Horizon; guest appearances from members of Deep Purple and Black Star Riders; plus the new Jettblack single – a revised version of Black Gold, a track from their recent Raining Rock album.
There follows an interview with drummer Matt Oliver, who explains the raison d’etre behind the release…
The new single, Black Gold, is a fresh version of the track from the Raining Rock album featuring Damon Johnson from Black Star Riders – did you invite Damon to guest because you felt the song has a Thin Lizzy-esque feel?
Dante [Bonutto] at the label [Spinefarm] suggested the idea, and we thought it’d be great for Damon to add a few tasteful licks on to the track. We don’t feel there’s anything immediately Lizzy-esque about the song, really…
You also have Ian Paice from Deep Purple guesting on another track from the Black Gold collection, Feel The Love – how do you know Ian?
I met Ian a few years back when he was basting a turkey in the kitchen, at the scene of one of my favourite music vids and songs of all time, Perfect Strangers. We actually used the same kit from that iconic record on the whole of our Raining Rock album. Ian was excellent, and the recording process was a lot of fun. We know the Paice family through his daughter Callie and son Jim.
We have to ask… does the title Black Gold have anything to do with a taste for Guinness? Have you ever visited the Guinness factory in Ireland?
We did a photo-shoot at the Guinness factory a few years back with legendary Maiden photographer John McMurtrie, which helped to inspire the song. We visualised ourselves elegantly swimming through the black tubing and slurping up the creamy froth – adding a dose of nitrogen to any liquid or musical concoction usually brings superb results!
There are three cover versions on the collection – why did you choose songs from AC/DC (Let Me Put My Love Into You), Motorhead (Name In Vain) and Heart (Barracuda) to re-work?
The AC/DC and Motorhead tracks were recorded purely for compilation CDs, celebrating anniversaries of these two heavyweights. The thing with covering a track by a very well-known artist is that, no matter how you do it, die-hard fans are always going to have something to say; so we just went for it, stuck our own twist on them, and had fun – now let the die-hards go to town! But we love the way both turned out. The Heart track, meanwhile, is a song we’ve always wanted to put our own Jettblack spin on; adding some male pipes to it, as well as a few heavier sections, was exciting for us, although the awkward time signature was testing, it must be said!