It finally happened! Randy, Geof, and Mike got together at The Bunker in Calif. (Geof’s recording studio), rubbed the magick lamp, and out popped ten (count ’em) brand new renditions of doom metal mayhem! The Bede-Men warmed up with a 2K2 version of old Bedemon classic “Skinned”, which turned out so good, we decided to keep the new version to put on the upcoming CD as a bonus track.
Randy’s brand new Gibson Tony Iommi Signature SG sounded *so* good it sounded like the Metal Master himself had wandered into the studio! (Well…it would have if Randy played like Tony…!) Geof pounded the Bede-Jesus out of his drum kit, cracking one cymbal during the sessions, which lasted 7 full days, with 2 days devoted to overdubs. Mike was playing a Fender bass and he was able to dial in some of the coolest bass-crunch tones we’ve heard outside of early Savatage and Geezer Butler’s basement…
Randy had penned a number of new Bede-tunes (we’ll have to let the fans decide if they’re bona fide Bede-classicks, but we wouldn’t mind taking bets that you will think at least a couple are hellbeaters that put Bedemon ’72 to shame), including “Lord of Desolation,” Kill You Now,” “Creeping Unknown,” “D.E.D. (Dying Every Day),” and “Godless,” while Geof offered “Hopeless” and “Saviour.” Bede-fans who dug Mike’s song “Last Call” on the “Child of Darkness” sessions from the early ’70s are really going to soil their shorts when they hear his new one, “The Plague,” which is definitely in the “Last Call” mold.
And speaking of “Child of Darkness,” what’s really cool is that on the 3rd day of the 2002 sessions, the band composed a brand new sequel to that Bedemon signature tune. The ungodly “Son of Darkness” uses the main riff from “CoD” as a jumping off point and slams into an all-new number structured around the “CoD” theme and using the original as an antecedent, it recalls the classic ’72 tune while offering an entirely new vision. The three of us wrote “Son of Darkness” together and it literally came together in 10 minutes! (Well, the music did; the lyrics took longer.) It’s the first song Bedemon has written as a “band”!
After we finished laying down the basic tracks, we found that we had nearly an hour’s worth of material. The tape clocks in at slightly over the 58-minute mark: that’s more than 56 minutes of brand-new Bedemon blasts! (Turning back the clock, the newly-recorded “Skinned 2002” comes in at just 1:58, about the same length as the 1975 original. We didn’t update the song in any way, although of course it has new solos, 4 by Randy and 2 by Mike.
One thing that is significantly different from the old Bedemon is that on the new tunes, Randy deferred most of the guitar solos to fellow Bede-men Geof and Mike, preferring to play mainly just rhythm guitars. Although he played a few short licks in “Skinned 2002” and a kind of “lead theme” in the latter third of “D.E.D.,” Randy thinks it’s better for the modern Bedemon to let others who are more adept at lead guitar handle most of the solo chores. “I really like writing and playing just the songs themselves,” Randy explains. “I don’t really get my rocks off soloing, and I’d rather let Geof & Mike do most of the leads since they are more fluent than I am in that department.”
Geof and Mike didn’t mind; they are both multi-instrument talents. While Geof plays drums in Bedemon, he did play a solo here & there on the original Bedemon tapes recorded in the 1970s, and Mike, Big Bad Bedemon Bassist, played lead in his own composition, “Last Call,” as well as in one of the last songs Bedemon recorded in 1978, “Nighttime Killer.” Both he and Geof have gotten much better over the years, so some of the solos on the new Bedemon recordings are incredibly electrifying.
Our job now is to prepare a final mix-down of the songs, prior to recording vocals. Bedemon is not yet ready to announce exactly who will sing the blasphemous lyrics of new songs like “Godless” and “Saviour,” but we are looking at several individuals who have previously expressed interest in devoting their singing skills to the present project. One thing Randy promises Bede-fans is that the band will not stray from the formula that worked so well in the past. “There will be no death vocals in Bedemon. Expect someone who sounds like our original singer.” When a final decision is made in the vocal department, we’ll announce it right here at Bedemon.com.
Finally, we’d like to mention that our previous project, the remastering of the “Child of Darkness” sessions, is very nearly complete. There are a few record companies interested in the tapes, and a special “retro-release” is imminent–either through a legitimate metal label, or via self-release, if necessary. Of course, when negotiations are complete, you’ll learn all about it here first.
Thanks to all the great & gloomy Bedemon fans out there who’ve been so patient with us over the past year. You’ll see and hear new Bedemon material before this year is out, we promise!
Randy – Geof – Mike