Friday, June 17, 2011

Alter Bridge guitarist hears new Van Halen album

The first Van Halen album with David Lee Roth in 27 years has at least one fan: guitarist Mark Tremonti of Alter Bridge.

Tremonti says he witnessed a live performance by Eddie, Alex and Wolfgang Van Halen of the full new album at Eddie’s 5150 studios.

In a new interview with Austria's Mulatschag TV, Mark was asked about his band friendship with VH bassist Wolfgang Van Halen.

"We played with Van Halen years and years ago at Madison Square Garden and Palace in Detroit,” said Tremonti. “The first time I saw Wolfgang, he was just a little… probably five-year-old kid or six-year-old kid. Eddie, that day, gave me one of his guitars, so I got to know Eddie.

“Then years went by and Wolfgang ended up being a fan of Alter Bridge, so we got to know him through Alter Bridge,”
he continued. “And Wolfgang invited us to go see soundcheck when Van Halen did a tour a couple of years ago, and we were the only in there, so it was quite a treat.

“And then recently, I was in Los Angeles and Wolfgang invited me to his Dad's house and I got to go to 5150 studios and watch Eddie and Alex and Wolfgang play their new record from front to back. So I was one of the only people who have heard the new Van Halen. It was incredible."

The latest news comes on the heels of a VH update from Slash last month, who told Rock Radio’s Tom Russell that he heard - through a shared connection - the new album was “in the mixing stages.”

Expected to be released before year-end, the highly-anticipated record represents VH’s first new music with original lead singer Roth in 15 years, and the band’s first full album since 1998. The group began recording in January with producer John Shanks.

Van Halen are confirmed to headline Soundwave Revolution, an annual music festival held in major cities around Australia. The fall dates start September 24 in Brisbane; Alter Bridge is one of the many acts also on the bill.

The Alter Bridge connection goes a step further: in early January, Wolfgang sat in on drums for a song with the band at the House Of Blues in West Hollywood; check out the video here.

Alter Bridge – Mark Tremonti Q&A
VH question begins at :23

See also:

Eddie Van Halen interviewed by Smithsonian magazine
Van Halen mixing new album, says Slash
Eddie Van Halen photo book due in October
PHOTO: Eddie Van Halen with Mike McCready of Pearl Jam
Van Halen: first 2011 concerts announced
David Lee Roth fan reunited with lost camera 12 years later
Van Halen mixing new album?
Van Halen: new album due for summer release?
Eddie Van Halen’s guitar enters The Smithsonian