Recently, you admitted to K! that you wanted to be less controversial. How’s that going?
“Very well. I’ve managed to hold my tongue a lot and balance myself out and be more compassionate. I have gone out of my way to speak to people who hate guns and see where they’re coming from, to figure out the best way to find a middle ground, because it’s in compromise that we find solutions. Some people want their way or nothing, but that’s not going to work because it’ll only alienate people and cause more problems.”
What does Danny Worsnop consider to be controversial?
“Not much, really. Actually, no, that’s a lie; people are not vaccinating their children – what the fuck is up with that?! We cured these medieval-ass diseases that are now coming back, and people won’t vaccinate their fucking children. It’s insane.”
The period around your departure from Asking Alexandria was pretty insane, too. You’ve since said that it could have been avoided if you’d had some time off, but you’re still incredibly busy now. What do you do to avoid a similar burnout?
“We’d all been through a lot and weren’t ever given time to heal. It was really weighing on me. I’d been through the stillbirth of a daughter [with a former girlfriend] and I was forced to be on the road throughout it. I found out in the studio and was put on tour without any mourning time or healing time. It was because people in management and booking and the label literally told us that if we took time off, our career was over. We were young and naive so we believed it. We pushed and we pushed, and I got to the point that I was broken. When we were writing [third album] From Death To Destiny, in my mind, that was my last album ever. I associated those troubles and negative feelings with music.”
How do you feel about those people that pushed you so hard back then? Do you forgive them?
“I forgive them, but I hold them at arm’s length, as a lot of them are still around because we have no control over that. I don’t pay any attention to anything they say anymore, and a lot of them know to keep their distance because they know we’re not going to listen. When we came to doing the last Asking album [2017’s self-titled fifth album], we got smart, so turned around and said, ‘No, we’re doing this our way – get onboard or fuck off!’ They told us it was going to fail as a result, but it ended up being the most successful release of our career. We got to turn around and say, ‘You’re not going to tell us what to do anymore.’”
A lot of people at that time thought you’d become disillusioned with heavy music. What’s your relationship like with it these days?
“I never listen to it and I never listened to it then, either. I just open my mouth and sounds come out. If people don’t like that sound, that’s cool, they’re entitled to their opinion. It’s not that we left something behind – it’s that we grew.”