From the outside it’s easy to assume that Revolution Saints are just the latest all-star melodic rock group assembled so regularly by their label Frontiers Records. However, fresh out of Whitesnake, guitarist Doug Aldrich believes that the quality of their songs, recorded for another reason entirely, could transform himself, Night Ranger bassist Jack Blades and Journey’s drummer/vocalist Deen Castronovo from a makeshift studio project into a fully fledged group.
It must have been a wrench to leave Whitesnake after more than a decade?
It was incredibly difficult. David [Coverdale] and I had a great run together, but I needed to spend some time with my family, and there were obligations that couldn’t be accommodated by Whitesnake’s schedule, including Revolution Saints and the production of a show in Las Vegas [Aldrich plays guitar in the Vegas show Raiding The Rock Vault]. David wanted me full-time, all the time, and I just couldn’t do it.
Has Coverdale heard the Revolution Saints record yet?
He was taken aback that I would leave, maybe even a bit upset, so we haven’t been in touch in that way. I hope that in the future we’ll have a laugh and a drink together again the way we used to.
Do you understand why there’s some cynicism about ‘assembly line’ bands?
[Laughs] I know what you mean. I’m not a huge fan of the so-called supergroup thing, but that’s not what happened here. Revolution Saints began as a solo record for Deen Castronovo, because nobody had really heard him as a lead singer, and he’s incredible. It grew from being a manufactured project to something far bigger and better.
Was the record made with everyone together in the room, or, as is common these days, via the internet?
The tracks were mostly done separately, in hotel rooms and whatever, and sent to Alessandro Del Vecchio, the producer, who also wrote most of the material.
Frontiers are known for being very ‘hands-on’ with their artists. Did the label get to hear the songs as they were written?
Not as far as I know. Alessandro was the primary writer, but later on all three of us got to pitch in with our own ideas and
it was all very comfortable.
Journey’s guitarist Neal Schon and singer Arnel Pineda also make guest appearances, so people should be able to guess how the album sounds.
It’s a eighties-style melodic rock record, with bits of the bands of the three of us, though perhaps I’ve brought some extra heaviness and rough edges to the music.
So are Revolution Saints a proper band, or a studio project?
That remains to be seen. If I’m completely honest I’ll say that I’d like us to become a band and to play some gigs if everyone’s schedules could be arranged, even just a little UK run. That would make it real. Deen is the shining star of this record and he deserves to be out front of a rock band, not hidden behind the kit. If we did play live that’s something that would have to be looked at. But I’d really love to see it happen.
Revolution Saints’ self-titled debut album is released on February 23.