History has ossified around the idea that CHRIS POLAND and Gar Samuelson were jazzers trapped in a thrash metal machine of Mustaine’s making. Gar is now dead, and Chris has moved on from his seminal two records with MEGADETH, most notably with major label act DAMN THE MACHINE in 1993, into the here and now where he’s a fearless seeker of all things front-edge guitary.
“We’ve been playing The Iridium in New York, and so we had a little jam CD we called Tsunami Jams,” begins Poland, giving us the run-down on his current band OHM: and beyond. “We brought that CD there to try to make some money in New York. Because if you’re in New York, it costs you 50 bucks to walk out the door. So we brought that there, and we were selling that on the Internet and whatnot. But we just finished a project with HAWKWIND, you know, the late ‘60s band? Basically, Adam Hamilton came in and we used my studio, and it came out really good. So they’re going to send those tapes to England, and the sax player... they approached us to do it, and they said, ‘We just want you to jam,’ and it’s kind of a concept on each song, and see what happens, and that’s what we did. But as far as Ohm: goes, our new record is done—we just have to find some time to mix it.”
As for the vibe of the new Ohm: record, Poland explains that, “Since playing with the Sean, Jim and Frank Catalano from POLCAT, we decided we’re gonna make a live record in the studio. And I’m glad we did, because the energy that we exhibit live is actually on tape now. So I think people will really get a better example of what the band’s really about, instead of overdubs and everything’s perfect. I don’t know, everything is perfect on this record, but it’s just got way more energy and it’s just intense. So I’m glad we did it live. Peter, my co-producer/engineer, he insisted that we do it live, and I said, you know, you’re right, let’s do it.”
But we’re still confused about this Hawkwind thing... “Well, we composed the music, and existing members of Hawkwind are going to overdub over the top of it,” says Chris. “And some guys from The Doors, you know, just bands from that era, whoever they can find. It’s on Cleopatra Records. It was a blast, man. Because that’s one thing that me, David Eagle and Robby Pagliari, before we even start rehearsing or writing or anything, we jam. It’s something that we do, because we like to do that more than anything else, really. So it just worked out great. It was a pleasure to do it, and it was easy.”
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