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Rex Brown on Johnny Kelly Joining Kill Devil Hill, the Current State of Metal + More

Rex Brown Rita Haney
Kathy Flynn, WickedGoddessPhotography.com

Rex Brown has enjoyed a stellar career, making his name in Pantera, but also serving a successful stint in Down. These days, the accomplished bassist is rocking in Kill Devil Hill, who just released their second album, ‘Revolution Rise,’ last fall.

We had a few minutes to catch up with Brown at the Revolver Golden Gods black carpet (where he walked alongside the late Dimebag Darrell’s longtime girlfriend Rita Haney), and he shared with us his thoughts on the band’s recent addition of Type O Negative drummer Johnny Kelly, his early memories of Guns N’ Roses and where he thinks the rock and metal scene is at these days. Check out our chat with Kill Devil Hill’s Rex Brown below:

So here we are tonight and Guns N’ Roses are one of the band’s being saluted….

Can’t wait, can’t wait. They always put on one hell of a show. That’s what it’s all about.

What was your first experience getting into their music?

Aw man, I remember us driving a car and we were playing the club scene down in Texas back in the Pantera days. And we’d just listen to that record ['Appetite for Destruction'] over and over again. It just grew on me like a great old pair of socks that you didn’t want to take off. Then they busted [out] big time. All credit due. They are the epitome of rock and roll from my generation, definitely.

This is great here tonight where they’re celebrating the metal and hard rock scene. Give me your own take about where the hard rock and metal scene is at these days.

Everyone says it goes in circles and man, it hasn’t gone anywhere. It’s still here. We’ve just got to keep it together and keep the stage alive. That’s what it’s all about. It’s all about the music, but it is getting stagnant with the genres of subgenres of subgenres and I’m not into that. It’s just all rock and roll. All of it. That’s where it all comes from.

And Kill Devil Hill has been doing great over these past couple of years …

Yeah, we’re doing fine. We just replaced Vinny [Appice]. He had to do his own thing and that’s cool. We’re fine with that. But we’ve got Johnny Kelly in the band from Type O [Negative] and we just got back from Australia and we’re playing all the big things, like the Rock on the Range and that stuff, coming up in May.

You mentioned Johnny Kelly. I love Johnny Kelly and what he did with Type O Negative and have been a fan of Seventh Void …

So do I. He was my first call. He’s one of my best friends and it’s worked out perfectly. It’s unbelievable. He brings the 10.

Vinny has his own style and Johnny has his own style …

I’ll just put it this way. I’ve been blessed as a bass player. It’s just the greatest blessing of all to play with all of these talented guys and just lock in. I’m so excited that it’s just stupid. So it’s just a blessing man, a blessing and I’m a lucky cat.

Our thanks to Rex Brown for the interview. You can pick up Kill Devil Hill’s ‘Revolution Rise’ album at this location. And look for the band on tour this spring at these stops

Read More About Kill Devil Hill's Addition of Johnny Kelly

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