Deadland Ritual, featuring bassist Geezer Butler (Black Sabbath), vocalist Franky Perez (Apocalyptica, Scars on Broadway), drummer Matt Sorum (Guns N’ Roses, Velvet Revolver) and guitarist Steve Stevens (Billy Idol) has unveiled a debut track and video, Down In Flames (through Sonik Riot Recordings/AWAL powered by Kobalt), watch it below.

Drawing inspiration from the ritual symbolism of desert badlands paired with Sorum’s love of the idea of a “ritualistic forgotten space,” the name Deadland Ritual felt appropriate for the darker tone of the music the group was making. “Obviously we’ve been through some stuff,” Perez says. “If you’re being honest artistically, all the turmoil of love, loss, happiness and pain in life makes its way into the music.”

Sorum’s longtime friendships with Stevens and Perez helped to form the initial core of the lineup, but it was a pivotal moment when Butler agreed to join. Butler admits there was a lot to think about when he got the invitation. “I had to get used to the idea of starting from scratch again, which is good,” he says. “But I really liked the music I was hearing. It’s not your typical hard rock or metal stuff.”

For Stevens, it was a revelation the first time he found himself recording with Butler. “There’s a lot of times in the studio as a guitar player, you get a guitar sound and you’re trying to make it work, tweaking it,” Stevens says. There was none of that bulls–t. It just fit against his bass sound and it was really exciting to me. I get to hear my guitar against a bass guitarist that I’ve idolized forever.”

Sorum was determined to take things to the next level. “I wanted to get the best drum sound I’ve ever gotten, and play the best I’ve played,” says Sorum. “I think I’ve achieved that. As a drummer I’ve morphed through a lot of decades of rock and roll.”

The initial recordings are only the beginning of what fans can expect in the coming months. The band is focused on quality vs. quantity and letting the muse carry them in the appropriate direction. With festival appearances booked and headline dates in the works, they’ll use the time leading up to that trek to continue writing and recording, releasing singles along the way and perhaps, a LP.

Deadland Ritual promises the live shows will be something special, mixing the original material with deeper cuts from their collective past. “Not the typical songs you would expect,” according to Sorum.

Deadland Ritual tour dates so far:

June 14 Donnington England @ Download Festival
June 22 Clisson, France @ Hellfest Festival

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7 Responses

  1. This is the first I’m hearing of this band (which is why I like this site). I really like Steve Stevens guitar playing and Matt is a solid drummer, and it will be interesting to hear Geezer in another band. I’ll definitely give this a listen.

  2. This is definitely an interesting combination of players. You just don’t think of Steve Stevens style of playing (at least from what I’ve heard him playing with Billy Idol) and Geezer’s style of almost jazzy bass riffing working together. I will definitely look forward to hearing more!

    1. Steve Stevens is so underrated. Some of his best work was on Vince Neil’s solo album Exposed. In my opinion, it was just as much of a Steve Stevens solo album as it was Vince Neil’s, considering he co-wrote more than half the songs, played all the guitars on the album, and played all the bass on the album as well! Great guitar solos on every song, almost as good as “Dirty Diana!” 😉

    1. Love Steve Stevens guitar work – very inventive.
      But agree with others on here regarding his work sounds more like Sabbath.

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