XXX - Snowy Shaw'z New Glam Slam! Page 2
by Martin Popoff
Heavy accents are part of the band's sound - you just know they are European - but another component is its toughness and percussive heaviness. "I can't think of a single other band that sounds anything like XXX these days," agrees Shaw, who also touches upon the thick Crue-ish sound brought by mixmaster Andy LaRocque. "We found in Andy the perfect working partner when it comes to the mixing; it was a real pleasure working with him on 'Heaven, Hell Or Hollywood?' and we will definitely go back to mix our next album with him too. Can't say that I know exactly what kind of producer Andy is normally, since I haven't really worked with him on any full productions since we did Illwill about ten to 14 years ago. But I know this - you can't find a nicer and more humble guy. X and I recorded and produced this first XXX album ourselves and then went to mix it with Andy, which was the perfect choice - also because he's such an old glam rock guy himself... even if he won't admit it officially (laughs)."
No surprise that there are huge drum sounds and grooves here, and that the man making those decisions is a hero to many drummers. So who are Shaw's heroes?
"My all-time favourite drummer is Mick Tucker from Sweet. I love Vinny Appice, Stefan Kaufmann, Ian Paice and so on. I was influenced by lots of killer drummers and initially tried to copy what they did. That was my education, and that was way, way back. For the last 20 years I've just done my own thing and I don't really care too much about what others do or about drums per se. I care about good songs, and from a drummer's perspective to play what fits and makes the song good. All hail Phil Rudd! Also I should not forget to mention this - Mikkey Dee influenced me a great deal when I first started. I had formed my first band and got to know Mikkey who was already an amazing drummer with ten years playing ahead of me. Another thing that I just recently realized - and actually told Mikkey - was that besides playing drums like a god, he also proved to me with his star-spangled charisma and self-confidence from beyond hell that just because you're the drummer, you do not have to be the anonymous prick in the background behind the singer and guitarists who normally gets all the attention."
In closing, Shaw indulges us with a few words on working with the legendary King Diamond. "I'd rather not go there. I have great respect for King, and actually for everyone who without compromise follows his or her heart and devotes his life chasing their dreams."
XXX - Snowy Shaw'z New Glam Slam! Page 3