At a time when ProTools and Technics seem to be all the rage, P.O.D. are adopting a back-to-basics approach to their music. Ironically, they’re currently touring with Linkin Park, a band whose infamous use of digital editing tends to ruffle the panties of traditional musicians everywhere.
According to P.O.D. frontman Sonny Sandoval, however, it’s not such a big deal.
“They’re good at what they do,” he says of his tourmates. “They have the old synthesizer and Depeche Mode type of vibe, and Chester and Mike and all the guys are great at what they do. But for me personally, I pride myself on the rawness. We come from the hardcore underground scene where the kids are in-your-face sweating, going crazy and that’s just something that’s hard to get away from for me, because you come and do these big old huge stages and it just doesn’t seem right. I mean, we’ve played a lot of big stages in the past few years, but still – there’s something to be said about the purity and rawness of a sweaty little club and a cheap P.A. and everybody just going nuts and the unity in that. That’s my vibe.”
After years of constant touring, P.O.D. almost lost touch with that vibe last year. In order to prevent that from happening, the band took a much needed break before plunging into the creation of their most recent studio album, Payable On Death.
“I think we’re famous for quoting,’Once this becomes a job, once it becomes not fun anymore, then why do it?’ I think at the end there, that’s why we took a break,” Sandoval says. “We took some time off to straighten out our heads and spend the holidays at home and just get away from music for a second. As I said before, one guy didn’t show up. That’s the sad part.”
Of course, Sandoval is referring to the unexpected departure of P.O.D.’s co-founding guitarist, Marcos Curiel one year ago. Luckily, friend and Living Sacrifice guitarist Jason Truby was ready, willing and able to help his friends during their time of need.
When asked if there is any possibility of reconciliation with Curiel, Sandoval says it’s highly unlikely.
“It’s crazy, ’cause it’s been long enough where I’ve already forgiven the fact that he left us stranded, he left us hanging without a word,” he says. “Then all the backbiting and all the talking afterwards, that’s the stuff that we still gotta get in the right place for. It’s tough.”
“He’ll have to fight me,” adds Truby.
Now that P.O.D. are back and stronger than ever, they plan to remix selected tracks from their latest album with some big names in hip-hop.
“I wanna remix ‘Execute The Sounds’ and bring in KRS-One,” says Sandoval. “I wouldn’t mind him coming in and doing a hip-hop remix.” Other potential collaborators include Nas and Black Thought from The Roots.