"Rock Talk With Mitch Lafon" recently conducted an interview with bassist and producer Jeff Pilson (FOREIGNER, DOKKEN, DIO) about the just released self-titled album from THE END MACHINE, his new band with his classic-DOKKEN bandmates Mick Brown (drums) and George Lynch (guitar). (WARRANT and occasional LYNCH MOB vocalist Robert Mason completes the group's lineup.) You can watch the entire chat below. A few excerpts follow (transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET).
On how THE END MACHINE came together:
Jeff: "George reminded me of something. Here's the timeline: Basically, George hit me up sometime in 2017. Not sure exactly when, but he had been approached by Frontiers to do a Jack Russell record. Jack Russell, of course, being the original singer of GREAT WHITE. George called me up and said, 'Hey, I'm going to do this Jack Russell record. Do you want to help me write and do some recording?' Of course, he and I are always jumping at the chance to work together. I said, 'Yeah, of course.' We started writing. Very quickly, the whole Jack Russell thing disappeared. I don't know why; I don't know what happened. I wasn't involved on the business side. It wasn't anything real bad, but for some reason, it didn't come together. But we kept writing and then George reminded me the other day, at one point, we did actually approach Don [Dokken] about it. First, we got Mick involved and George and I had this music on a handful of songs and we thought, 'Let's invite Don.' We did actually invite him. He said no because then it would be a DOKKEN reunion and that's a whole other kettle of fish. He's probably right. It would have been kind of complicated to do it backward. But, anyway, he was invited. I kind of didn't expect he was going to do it anyways. Then, very soon after that, Frontiers suggested Robert Mason. I had done the WARRANT record with him a couple years previously. George knew him for years with LYNCH MOB. I had known him for years, but that was the first time I had worked with him on the WARRANT record. I was really impressed with his writing, his singing. His writing, his musicality and our chemistry in the studio was really great on the WARRANT record. I knew this was going to be great. It even exceeded my expectations. We really had a lot of fun with this record. Once we knew who it was going to be, we talked about it, did the writing, recorded it and boom."
On whether THE END MACHINE is a one-off project or there are long-term plans:
Jeff: "Listen, the plan was always long-term with this. That's one of the reasons why we're doing these shows. We want to prove that we have some legs and we are a long-term band. There's no specifics yet. There's no timeframe or anything, but Frontiers has already mentioned doing another record. We love working together. If we can create a situation that's ongoing, why wouldn't we? Yes, there will be more. I'm sure."
On whether Brown will be involved in the hypothetical next THE END MACHINE studio album given the fact he's decided to sit out the band's recent live shows:
Jeff: "It's hard to say at this point. It's just a nebulous thing. I mean, I'm conflicted about that because I mean, it feels like Mick is really part of this chemistry, but Will [Hunt, EVANESCENCE] is coming in and doing great things. Who knows? Maybe Mick won't want to do another record. I don't know; I haven't asked him. We'll see. All I know is I'm sure George, Robert and I are going to do another record."
On whether there are any plans for more DOKKEN reunion shows:
Jeff: "Never say never. Listen, we get along at this point. It's down to scheduling and you know how crazy my FOREIGNER schedule is. It is very prohibitive. If we're really going to do the DOKKEN thing right, we should do a proper cycle with a record and tour and when am I going to have a chance to do that? Maybe there will be other things like the M3 [festival] special, even situations in the future, maybe, with all four of us, who knows? There's a part of me that would like to make one last great DOKKEN record. The experience in making the new song on the record we put out a couple of years ago was very positive. We'll see, but I would love it if it happened."
Pilson — one-fourth of the classic DOKKEN lineup — joined FOREIGNER in 2004. In recent years, he has also produced albums by LAST IN LINE, KILL DEVIL HILL, STARSHIP and WARRANT.
THE END MACHINE's self-titled, Pilson-produced debut album was released on March 22 via Frontiers Music Srl. The group just played its first set of shows, albeit without Brown, who was unable to make the dates and was temporarily replaced by Hunt.