Matt Sorum Talks KINGS OF CHAOS, THE CULT, Replacing Steven Adler In GUNS N' ROSES - "It’s Like Somebody’s Fucking Your Ex-Girlfriend"

Rock Hard

Posted on Friday, April 19, 2013 at 08:42:47 EST

The all-star supergroup KINGS OF CHAOS, featuring former GUNS N' ROSES members Matt Sorum, Gilby Clarke, Duff McKagan and Slash, DEF LEPPARD’s Joe Elliot and Vivian Campbell, former SKID ROW’s lead singer SEBASTIAN BACH, COLLECTIVE SOUL’s Ed Roland and GLENN HUGHES (BLACK COUNTRY COMMUNION, ex-DEEP PURPLE, BLACK SABBATH) will make their Australian live debut at the Stone Music Festival which is scheduled for on April 20th and 21st at Sydney’s ANZ Stadium and headlined by VAN HALEN and AEROSMITH.

Matt Sorum spoke with Faster Louder about the super-group, the show and a number of other topics. Here are a few excerpts from the chat:

Faster Louder: When you joined The Cult were you were hired to be a live drummer. Was it originally planned as a temporary thing?

Sorum: "No, I mean I was hired as a live drummer but I was gonna go back. I started recording a second album, there was some stuff on a “best of” that I started working on in the studio, songs like ‘White’ and some songs that ended up on the album after Sonic Temple. I did record a lot of stuff and I was gonna go in the studio and be the drummer – they offered me a position in the band, a percentage and everything – at that point they had tried me out for a year and they decided that they liked having me around. Which is smart on their part because a lot of times the thing about musicians is guys get big personalities and sometimes get along and sometimes they don’t, you know?

We got along great, we had a blast out there. Me and Ian were good friends, and me and Billy [Duffy] were friends, so when it came time for me to do the next album at that point Slash and Duff were looking at me to join their band. I had a big choice to make. When I moved over to Guns N’ Roses I became a member of the group and that was a big thing for me. I wanted to be part of the band. Here I was coming into a band that had another drummer but I wanted to be part of it. I wanted to be part of the writing process, I wanted all that, I wanted to be in the mix.

When we put together the Use Your Illusion albums I was there every day while we were putting that together and getting ready to do the records so it was a great time in my life, something I look back at. When people used to actually play instruments together and be in the same room as each other and record live. I used that experience as a stepping tool to what I tell young bands: If you’re gonna write music try writing music together and writing great songs and play live, all that kind of thing. It’s what I learned coming up and it’s what makes bands great. It’s what made Guns N’ Roses a great band. It’s why The Cult was a great band. We worked as a unit.

Faster Louder: When you were brought in to replace Steven Adler did you get to meet him?

Sorum: "I didn’t meet Steven right away because that wasn’t a good break for them. We had some tumultuous times over the years and things were said in the press but years later we’ve finally been able to come to terms with it, but I always said to him, 'Look Steven, if it wasn’t me it would have been somebody else because you were out and somebody was gonna be in.' But we went to the Rock And Roll Hall of Fame together and that was great and I felt really good about that. So it was a time being there with him and he was very gracious and I played one of his songs, ‘[Mr.] Brownstone’. And I was able to give him a little dig when I did my speech because he fucked with me for so many years.

Faster Louder: I know that in more recent interviews he’s said that he feels better about it now, but at the time he was pretty upset.

Sorum: "It’s like somebody’s fucking your ex-girlfriend. You know what I mean? It’s like the same kind of feeling. You don’t like it but you meet the guy and you go, 'Hey, he’s not a bad guy.' It’s always been my counterpoint to it. You have a preconceived notion of someone until you meet someone and talk to them.

Faster Louder: It seems like a lot happened in a short space of time from 1987 when you were recording with Tori Amos and then by 1990 you were doing Use Your Illusion. Did it really feel like a lot was happening?

Sorum: "Well, yeah. I was so young but I was driven. I still am driven. I love to just push forward and I think as a musician you can have talent but the one thing you gotta have that goes behind that talent is a lot of drive and you gotta want it. You gotta want it more than anything. And the one thing I knew is that I was moving forward and I really wanted it.

Read more at Faster Louder.

More on Kings Of Chaos here.