Fueled By death cast



Fueled By Death Cast Ep. 192 - Tom Hunting

Tom Hunting standing behind a drum kit

EXODUS DRUMMER - TOM HUNTING

"The drums are the bread that holds everything together, and the riff is the meat, and everything else on top of it is condiments - Tom Hunting, drummer of Exodus

 

WATCH THIS EXCLUSIVE VIDEO CLIP

ABOUT TOM HUNTING:

Tom Hunting is a force to be reckoned with behind the drums, and helped to form the legendary band Exodus in the late 1970s alongside high school friends including Kirk Hammett, who later joined  Metallica. Tom talks about what keeps him passionate about the music and what is next with new album from Exodus coming soon.

TRANSCRIPT:

Jeff:
Thanks for joining me on the show today and-

Tom Hunting:
My pleasure.

Jeff:
I am so excited to talk to you because one of the things I love to do is finding out what makes you tick and really what was the catalyst that made you go from... Because we're all music fans. We're all fans of music. But what's that catalyst that makes you go from becoming a fan of music to wanting to do it in your life? And I mean, obviously everybody knows you're a drummer, but I know that that wasn't always the case. When you were a kid, you actually picked up the guitar first, right?

Tom Hunting:
Yeah, I started playing trombone in fourth grade actually. I gave that up after a year and then played guitar for a minute, but I always had an inkling... Can you hear me okay?

Jeff:
Oh, yeah.

Tom Hunting:
I'd always had an inkling to want to play drums. Back when I was going to school, it was easy to learn any instrument. They'd since sucked that out of the curriculum of most schools these days. But when I was going to school back then, junior high, high school, you could learn anything you wanted to learn, I mean, music wise from a beginner stage to advanced stage, which was the third... Everybody was trying to get to drums three or guitar three because that was like the advanced thing. But it was cool because it was such a formative time for music. Man, I had some great early on music teachers, Mr. Martin and Mr. Davis back in the high school days, and they were super open to... We did Stairway to Heaven in junior high, like on guitar. We had our guitar two class. I hadn't made it to three. We did Stairway to Heaven and there was like 12 junior high schoolers playing that song. And then eighth grade came and I was like, "I want to play drums."

Jeff:
Was there a moment or a band or a drummer that really was what gravitated you to want to play drums? Or was it just banging on things?

Tom Hunting:
Being an early fan of classic rock and even going back as far as like when I was three years old, I held Joe Cocker's album in my hand that my mom had, and I was like, "Damn, that looks like fun." You know? And then of course it was all over TV back then when I was a little kid. But the people that I admired were... I always really liked Heart's drummer, Michael Derosier, in the early days. He played on Barracuda. And he was kind of a bottom style. He had really good tone and he always just did things right. And Keith Moon and, of course Bonham, and even the early days of Tommy Aldridge... He was in a band with Pat Travers way back in the day. I don't know if you go back that far back, but Pat Travers live is one of the best live recordings ever, and that was very influential on me. That album kind of came out when I was already in the flow of drumming and whatever, and Neil Peart, you know? Clive Burr, rest in peace. I mean, I'm still crushed that he got fired from Maiden.

Jeff:
Me too. Oh, man.

Tom Hunting:
He was so good. He was throwing like disco beats in metal songs and like, whoa, where did that come from? But it was highly influential on me. Those guys kind of forged the path forward for me anyway, listening wise.

Jeff:
So when you start playing drums, are you predominantly learning in school at this point, or are you learning with records at home?

Tom Hunting:
Learning drums at school was actually kind of hard for me at first because I'm a lefty, for one thing. I didn't have a kit at home just yet, and I finally got ahold of some drums at home and I set them up lefty and I finally got to talk my teacher into letting me at least switch the floor tom and the high hat around and the snare. And back then, I mean, besides all them rock drummers, it was also like... I was heavily into funk and Parliaments and Rick James and, jeez, so many like Con Funk Shun out of Vallejo, California, Sly Stone, Ike and Tina. All that stuff was very much influential to me. It was like a... There was lots of kids going to that school from all different backgrounds. I was showing all the funk drummers rock shit, and they were showing me how to play funk stuff, and it was cool. They were showing me rolls to this day that I turned into metal stuff and still use.

Jeff:
That's awesome. That's awesome. So as the story and the lore goes, obviously you start coalescing what would become Exodus in high school. But before that, were you kicking around with any school band before that? That was the first time that you ever did a band?

Tom Hunting:
No, actually our high school music teacher, Mr. Davis from Richmond High School, is a very progressive music teacher. And I was in concert band, jazz band. I spent one night in marching band. I said, "No fucking way. I'm not carrying a bass drum around. If you want to put me on a rolling trailer with a five piece, I'm good with that, but..." Anyways, it just didn't do anything for me. And our football team sucked, too, so there was no inspiration.

Tom Hunting:
But he formed... This is the late 70s, dude, so you know... We had this thing called modular scheduling at our high school where basically you could pick the days you wanted to go to music class and you could pick the days you had breaks and you picked homeroom. Anyway, he formed this subclass called rock band and it was basically the earliest formations of Exodus. It was myself, Tim Agnello, and another guy, Eddie Claire. There's two drummers and a guitar player basically jamming in an attic of a music classroom. And that's kind of where... And we were already listening to rock. My friend, Eddie, he was the other drummer, he was a big Kiss fan. And I never so much was into Kiss back then because Sabbath was coming out with amazing stuff, like two albums a year that just blew your mind. And Rainbow Rising and all that stuff. But that's like the earliest formations I can remember.

Tom Hunting:
And then I transferred high schools, and I was already friends with Gary at that point at Richmond High. He didn't even play guitar yet. Anyways, I transferred to another high school, and that's when I met Kirk. And then we formed Exodus, kind of got a bass player and went through a couple of members that... Me and Kirk kind of formed the band way back then with some other guys. Keith Stewart was a singer, I remember. Carlton Melson was our bass player. We were a three piece for a while, and then Kirk showed Gary some cords and, wow, that was a good idea, right?

Jeff:
Right? So when you meet up with Kirk, is that just like two guitarists meeting and you both find out that you play guitar, so do you immediately start playing guitar to each other kind of thing? Or did it take a little bit after that initial meet-up?

Tom Hunting:
Basically, I ran into Kirk, kind of already knew of him. He was just starting out playing guitar and he was heavily into UFO and the Scorpions. He was the only guy I knew that had like an actual subscription to Creem and Hit Parader and those magazines were out. And we became friends, just kicked around [inaudible 00:08:14] together, cut school pretty much every day. I don't know how he graduated. We would just hang around El Sobrante and we started jamming. At first we were jamming in my mom's living room while she was at work and we were cutting school. Gary was coming along. Gary took to the music really fast, as far as learning how to play guitar. The most natural progression, naturally skilled person I've ever seen in my life.

Tom Hunting:
But Kirk introduced us to all this crazy new wave of British heavy metal music, Angel Witch, and then we were hooked. Because we were already listening to punk and reggae because Gary's older brother would play that for us on the college radio stations. Which college radio doesn't get enough mention or props into the formation of what punk became and later on, metal. Because they were basically the vehicle that launched tape trading.

Tom Hunting:
But I'm just babbling. Back to your original question. Kirk kind of introduced us to the new wave of British heavy metal and UFO and Scorps. He had a Michael Schenker poster in his room, and when you're 14 and 15 and like it's that classic one where he's got the V between his legs and he's all doing... Yeah, I mean-

Jeff:
That's how you want to be.

Tom Hunting:
Yeah. For metal guys, that's like the Farrah Fawcett poster in the bikini, you know?

Jeff:
I've never heard it put that way, but I'll never not think that when I see that actual poster from now on. Yeah, it's ridiculous.

Tom Hunting:
I was more of a Jaclyn Smith fan, but I like Farrah too. She was awesome.

Jeff:
So those early days of Exodus then, you guys start playing, what, backyard parties and just like garage band stuff? Did it hit you at that point, like "Oh, man, this is what I want to pursue"? Or was it still just kind of like, "Oh, this is fun, and I'm not thinking about pursuing this as a career," kind of thing?

Tom Hunting:
No, I mean, we knew that we loved it. I remember our friend, Murrel, bought the first Iron Maiden album just because of the picture. He didn't know anything about the music. And three weeks later we were playing that shit at backyard parties, and they thought Running Free was an Exodus original. I would love to take credit for that. But you're right, yeah, that's how it all started, like backyard parties. And we would sponsor shows. We had one called jug night where we bought all this booze. Back in those days you could attract a crowd just having free beer, you know? And so we put on these parties and we would rent halls, and under this fictitious... We would have somebody older go in and say, "Hey, we're just going to have a little social gathering," and it ended up being a rager.

Jeff:
That's awesome. I know this as a musician, too, when you're starting out as just a garage band, the idea of playing shows is one thing. But then the idea of cutting a record is sometimes a whole other thing. It seems unattainable, especially for just a garage band of kids. Cut to... We're working through the timeline here. Cut to I think it was, what, '84 is when you guys really started to record Bonded and Blood, that first record, right? '83-'84?

Tom Hunting:
Well, Kirk went off to Metallica. They poached Kirk out of our band.

Jeff:
Those jerks.

Tom Hunting:
Turned out to be a pretty good career move for him, by the way. And then Gary kind of took over by that point, I mean, Gary, within six months, was doing crazy bar drops and just super advanced lead work on guitar for a 16 year old kid. It was pretty impressive. But we recorded Bonded by Blood in, I think it was July of '84, or something like that. And we didn't know anything about the process. We actually had Mark Whitaker helping us. He was kind of our slash manager protector, and he kind of showed us the ropes. We had an engineer there and we knew what we wanted to sound like and we had the songs to do it. It was fun. The first part I remember... I still love the process of creating the music, and tracking it even is such a good time. When you nail something and you get it right, you're just like, "Oh my God," and then you're layering things on top of it. I always equated with building the perfect sandwich. The drums are the bread that holds everything together, and the riff is the meat, and everything else on top of it is condiments.

Jeff:
Yeah. Yeah. Oh, that's a great analogy. That's rad. So, I mean, it really was this organic thing. You guys just were moving a long-

Tom Hunting:
It still is.

Jeff:
Oh, definitely. But I mean, in those early days, as kids, you're like, "We want to just cut this record," and you go and cut that record. What was that feeling like? Because that was a time... It's hard to think about now because metal is a vernacular. Metal is a lifestyle now. When you guys were coming out with that record, it was on the heels of Metallica's Kill 'Em All. Like you had just mentioned, Maiden was blowing up, Sabbath was putting out records every other week. It was a cacophony of this new thing. What was that like? Did you feel that? Could you put your finger on it, or were you just riding that wave?

Tom Hunting:
We were just kind of writing music that we enjoyed jamming to. We didn't have a big picture-like moment where we were just like, "This is what we're going to do. This is going to be our formula." Basically, we were influenced by other metal bands, by classic rock, and a little bit of punk. We were into the Cro-Mags too. We were into reggae, but we never tried to tackle a reggae song, or even reggae style. But we weren't aware, basically. No, we weren't aware of anything. We loved being part of the little scene that was happening out in California. Slayer came up and played the first time in Berkeley, California, and they were still wearing... They were like one of the first corpse paint-wearing bands when you think about it, because nobody was wearing... The New York Dolls don't count, and neither does Twisted Sister, but as far as really fucking heavy metal, they were the first. When they came to Berkeley, we're like, "You better take that shit off around here because Bay area people don't like the corpse paint for some reason. I mean, we were all into Motley Crue, quietly. Baloff loved Motley Crue, and we all loved Rat. We were super Rat fans, but back then it wasn't cool to like the hair metal if you were playing thrash metal, you know? Now I look upon it as stupid. If it's good, it's good.

Jeff:
It's the truth. I've talked about this on previous episodes too. I'm a child of the '80s, and I remember growing up loving punk and metal and always hitting that wall where if you liked Metallica, then you can't like this band. Or if you like Black Flag, then you can't like this other band. And I always never understood that, even as a young kid. And I think in today's age, I think it's a little bit more inclusive. I think it's okay to like all sorts of things. I hope.

Tom Hunting:
Yeah. I mean, it wasn't cool to like Journey with Steve Perry because they were a band... Before we were even playing music, Steve Perry joined Journey and they were a progressive, prog rock band with crazy musicianship. And then Steve Perry came along, and they kind of started spitting out hit after hit. But I listen to that stuff now and I'm like, "Wow, man, that is a really well-written song. Why was I being such a dick as a young guy? Why didn't I allow myself to like him?"

Jeff:
I will never stop believing. This is terrible. Yeah, no, I totally hear that. I totally hear that. So as the writing process has changed throughout the years and you, obviously, you left the band for a little bit, you came back. Has that core, at least with you, has your writing style with the music changed throughout the years, or do you consider yourself still producing the same way you were on those early records?

Tom Hunting:
And you mentioned the word organic, and it's kind of a overused word at times, but it really is like an organic process. Everything starts with a good riff. But also Gary's written riffs. We had a song called Iconoclasm on our Exhibit A Atrocity Exhibition record, and that started with a drum beat. So it happens sometimes where I'll just throw down a beat and like, oh my God, five minutes later he comes up with a riff to a beat that I make. But most of the time it's drums and guitar, jamming together, working it out. It's not always a fun process at the beginning because... Me and Gary have this connection from growing up and learning our instruments together, I think, and that's pretty organic. But when Lee and me get together and try to write stuff, Lee makes fine wine and Gary makes moonshine, basically. So I'll jam with Lee for four hours and we won't even have 40 seconds worth of usable shit, and I'm like, "I quit. I want to retire." But Gary will come through the next day and we have a nucleus of a song in five minutes, and I'm like, "We're back," you know?

Tom Hunting:
So it's a process. I mean, I love the process from the point of where you know something sounds good to the point of you get to track it and then you get to build on it with layers and harmonies and leads, it could go in any direction. It's fun. Could be worse, man.

Jeff:
Yeah, definitely. So from the band's perspective then, like for the last record, Blood In, Blood Out, when you guys go into the studio, do you have a skeleton of what you're working on, do you write more in the studio, or is it all ready to go and you're just hitting the record button?

Tom Hunting:
It's been different. Most records we're totally prepared for, but I mean, there's been songs that have been finished in the studio. I can remember Chemi-Kill, off our second record, was actually assembled couple of days before we went in, and we built the song in the studio. We would track something else, and then go back to that song and work it out. I remember Fabulous Disaster, Open Season, that one wasn't complete, and some of this stuff... Pretty much nowadays we're totally prepared. We try to be totally prepared. But sometimes it'll go into a different direction when you're in there tracking it, and Andy Sneap will come up with something, saying, "Hey, I think we should put up blah, blah, blah there, or try this. Try this timing instead of that timing," or whatever. So yeah, I mean, it's a fun process.

Jeff:
Recording music is always interesting. And I've equated it to something akin to magic because when you're in a studio and you've been playing these new songs, however long you've been writing them, but when you've got them in the headphones and you're listening to them back after you've recorded a couple of tracks and stuff like that, sometimes inspiration just hits you. And I'm glad that you guys as a band are open to that and allow things to kind of magically coalesce sometimes.

Tom Hunting:
Yeah. I mean, sometimes there's like... There's a song on Blood In, Blood Out called Numb, and that one actually wasn't completely ready. It was one of the last ones we wrote, and it just had some weird timing signatures. And I was trying to track that thing on the drums, just going, "Fuck you, Gary Hall! You son of a bitch!" And they were just laughing, and at the end of it... Sometimes, too, because of technology nowadays you can cheat a lot more, and we try not to do that. We try to do it au natural, but sometimes in the interest of time, and there's nothing wrong with it, recording can sometimes, and for some other bands, the process be, okay, you're making a template for what you're going to have to be playing live here down the road. So even if your formula for your template is not completely ready, you can piecemeal it in together, at the same time still trying to make it good. But in the long run you're going to have to play this shit live, so don't write checks your body can't cash, so to speak.

Tom Hunting:
Myself, when I record, I'm like, "I don't want to infuse any unnatural elements other than my playing because I'm probably going to have to play some of this shit live, so stick to what you're good at." But yeah, sometimes in a song like Numb, we've never played it live, but if we do, I can play it now. At the time I recorded it, I was like... you know? But we made a template by making the song and finishing it. I had something to practice to at the end. And that's just one song off that record. Everything else was like... We were totally ready to go.

Jeff:
Right. No, that's really interesting-

Tom Hunting:
And obviously with this corona time, we have a lot of time to write this new one.

Jeff:
Yeah. So I did want to mention that. You guys are currently working on a new record, right?

Tom Hunting:
Yeah.

Jeff:
Where are you in that process? Is it still early writing phases of that?

Tom Hunting:
Yeah, very, very infantile stages. We got home on March the 12th from the Bay Strikes Back tour, and seven people from the tour tested positive. I'm sure you know Will's story by now. Everyone's trying to figure out what's the process going to be going forward. I actually own a house in Lake Almanor, which is way in Northern California. It's right by a lake, and I think it's going to kind of be our fortress because I have a studio here. We'll track the drums in the Bay area once we get the music worked out and then move everybody up here and we'll record super remotely and go water skiing and barbecue and drink beer.

Jeff:
That sounds like an amazing time. And it's going to be an amazing record that's going to come out of it. Did it change your writing process at all being away from each other during this pandemic? Or did you guys kind of always write away and then kind of come together as you're getting-

Tom Hunting:
I think everyone's still trying to figure out their status because, I mean, we all have families and we've all been sheltering in place. That's such a stupid term. Shelter in place is what I did when we were having the nuclear war drills when I was in second grade, you know? Get under your desk and fucking duck and cover. You're not sheltering in place. You're just hanging out at home, bro.

Jeff:
Right. You're not traveling.

Tom Hunting:
But when we got home, I think we have to figure out what our jamming process is going to be. Right now it's just, he sends me riffs and stuff to listen to, but we can't really arrange or piece anything together till we get in a room together, and we all want to be comfortable with each other doing that. I mean, seven people from the tour tested positive for corona. One almost fucking died. I don't know my status because I was sick when I was in Europe. We landed on February 5th, and I was sick that day until probably the 13th with this crazy chest thing. I don't know what it was. It was a cold like I had never had before. So I might be immune to it now. I got an antibody test. I don't have the results yet, but I want to find out.

Jeff:
Yeah, definitely.

Tom Hunting:
Then I feel a little more comfortable because I came to the mountains on March 14th, two days after we got home, and I didn't see my mother even for 21 days. I just wanted to be sure, you know? I don't want to be typhoid Tommy out there fucking spreading COVID, which is crazy. They don't understand the contagion of all this stuff yet. So I might've had it already or some form of it. Me and Will were hanging out every day, digging ice, making drinks out of the same ice bucket and "Yeah! Woohoo!" Probably drank shots out of each other's shot glasses, so who knows? I either had some form of it over there or I might've dodged the whole thing, either of which I'll take. I don't want any part of this shit.

Jeff:
No, no. And I'm glad that everybody, even everybody that was sick is better now, and that's good.

Jeff:
So all of this kind of brings us to the theme of the show. We're all fueled by death. We all are fueled by the same thing. We're going to die someday, but we want to do our part to leave this world a little different before we do. And you've been doing that in spades, your entire career. But it begs the question, what fuels you to keep going? What fuels you to keep wanting to drum, to wanting to perform, write music, tour the world? What keeps you wanting to be creative?

Tom Hunting:
I think it's just still a hungry desire and an undying love for what we do. I look back at the times that I was away from the band, which is two times now, and I missed the guys, and I missed all the relationships I've developed with people over the years, like our crew in Europe. We got crew from all over the place that help us out when we're in South America, or my drum techs from Hungary, Budapest, and we have a French guitar tech. And it's like, I love those people. They're like family to me. So I really missed it.

Tom Hunting:
And we love what we get to do for a living. I mean, it's pretty cool. It's the best education I ever could have gotten in my life, going to places. I mean, we've been to like Bulgaria and Macedonia and all them other countries with a E on the end of them. So that, at the end of the day, when we were finally done, I guess that's... I mean, anybody who gets an education like that through their life is special. I mean, I drank cappuccino in Bosnia-Herzegovina with Rick Hunolt, sitting outside. Wow. Looking at bombed out apartments from the 90s, you know? And I was like, "Well, this is..." And I talked to those people because they had crazy wars in Bosnia in the 90s, and those people came to our shows and holding up their prosthetic legs, taking pictures with us, and I'll never forget that, dude. When I'm laying down at the end, I'm going to be all, "Ah, I had coffee in Bosnia with Rick Hunolt and talked to people about their war."

Tom Hunting:
But no, I think when you're a young man doing this, and I'll say this for everybody in my band, I'm sure they wouldn't disagree with me, when we were young doing this it was more about the party. But now we're older, and I think we humble ourselves to what the journey has left to. We're still playing good, and we could still write relevant music, and metal has kind of done this. And right now it's like, "Whoa, Jack Black was right. You can't kill the metal."

Jeff:
Damn right. Damn right.

Tom Hunting:
So we're going to ride the wave and see where it goes. And slayer retired so we got our guy back. That's one more notch. Okay, they're gone so we can keep going.

Jeff:
And it just goes to show how close you guys are as a band and how much you guys really love it. Because I had Steve on this show as well, asked him the same question, and he basically said the same answer, how much he loves it, how much he loves playing with you guys, and how much you guys just are... how much you guys love metal, how much you guys love to do what you do. And it shows when you get to go see you guys play live. It's ridiculous how much fun that you guys look like you're having on stage-

Tom Hunting:
It's pretty fun.

Jeff:
Because you guys are playing not only some of the stuff off the new records, but I mean, every time I've seen you, you guys have played stuff of way back, to Bonded by Blood and everything. And I mean, how do you even come up with set lists when you have that much material? Is it really tough? It's got to be tough.

Tom Hunting:
It's a problem sometimes, but there's a lot worse problems a band can have than to have a catalog of material that dates back 10 records. In the 90s when we reformed with Baloff again, we toured Bonded by Blood, and man, that record, I didn't like playing those songs for a while, and now I'm kind of into it again. And it's cool because... And this is true with a lot of bands. They might not want to admit it, but you can write 10 new records and put them out, and they still will just want to hear the old shit, you know? But it's part of the process, and we like making new music too, and it's going to be part of the legacy someday. So we enjoy what we do and we enjoy the creation of new music. And every once in a while we'll do a Bonded by Blood only set and maybe add a few other songs. Those nights are super fun. It's fun to go back and reminisce and rock that shit again.

Jeff:
Oh, hell yeah. Oh, hell yeah. So out-

Tom Hunting:
Yeah, set list is a problem. We go round and round about it all the time. There's worse problems you can have.

Jeff:
Of course. Out of all of that awesome music, especially from your style of drumming, like I said, it looks like you're just having a blast, pun intended, up there when you're playing. Do you have a song that you just can't wait to get to in the set? Maybe it's not in the set all the time, but it's just like a song, when it is in the set, you're stoked to get to that point.

Tom Hunting:
It switches all the time. Right now I have a good time playing Deathamphetamine, and I didn't even play on that record, but I love it. I love that song. I played on the pre-production of it, and it's a great song. It's the best song Gary has ever written because it's true to life. It's basically about our life and how we were living it up to about 2002 when people stopped using chemicals and went to coffee.

Jeff:
And that's good to hear.

Tom Hunting:
And as a former chemical user, I could say, you guys make really good coffee.

Jeff:
Thank you very much. Thank you very much.

Tom Hunting:
It's got flavor.

Jeff:
You know, it's funny. I talk to so many musicians, and I'm always really excited to talk to people who have been in the game as long as you've been because I've heard that a lot. When we're kids... You said it the best. When you're kids and you're creating music, or doing whatever you're doing as a kid, you have that mentality of "I'm never going to die, so let's have a party. Let's do all the crazy stuff," and we've all done that kind of crazy stuff. But it's really nice to be able to talk to people who've made it through that. We've all grown up a little, but we might not be doing those chemicals anymore, but we definitely want something. And that's why I'm always proud of the product that Death Wish makes because-

Tom Hunting:
That's where Death Wish comes in.

Jeff:
Exactly, exactly. It's like, "Yeah, we're not doing that hard shit anymore, but the coffee's kind of hard. I'll take two more cups of that. It'll be okay."

Tom Hunting:
One cup of Death Wish is enough.

Jeff:
That's good. That's good. That's good to hear. Finally, on the subject of the new record, I know the whole world's on pause and like you were saying, it's really trying to figure out things. Do you guys have any kind of idea... Are you thinking, even with the world on pause, that this would be something that would maybe come out in 2021, or are you just not even thinking-

Tom Hunting:
Oh, absolutely. We want to work on it this summer. We have a plan now of how we're going to do it. We're probably going to do it in my mountain fortress. It's a little fortress, but I can still house everybody, and we'll do some rocking up here. I also live on a go ranch down in the Bay area, in the East Bay. So we'll probably do some writing there too. But yeah, I mean, we're not really looking at a target date to get it out. We don't care when it comes out just as long as it's good. There's a bunch of bands putting music out now. And it's funny because, like you said, the world's on pause and somebody's album comes out, and it fucking charts, and it's only sold 7,000 albums. It's charting, like charting high. It's crazy.

Jeff:
It's so crazy and strange. It's such a weird-

Tom Hunting:
I don't really care if we chart. I just want to make a good record, one that kind of... I take them one at a time at this point. I can't say I'll be doing this when I'm... I just turned 55, so see how much we got left in the tank, but we're not ready to retire yet. But as far as making the records, one at a time is the wise formula, I think.

Jeff:
Awesome. Awesome. Speaking of you, personally, do you play every day?

Tom Hunting:
No. No, I don't. I mean, I go through regimens. When we're getting ready to go on tour and stuff like that, I'll put it in two hard hours a day of songs back to back and nothing in between. Since we've had this break, I've been studying riffs. I have different days where I play different things. A couple of weeks ago I had a Ike and Tina Turner day and I had a Creedence Clearwater day and I had a Zeppelin day where I just practiced Zeppelin music. And then I have those days where I put like five Exodus albums back to back and take four songs from each one and rock to those or whatever. But we're not in a hurry to do anything right now.

Jeff:
That's true. That's true. But it is really exciting to hear that you guys are thinking about the next record and you aren't going to rush it. You're going to put out something that's going to be awesome. And speaking of all fans of Exodus, that's all we ever want because we love you guys. And for real, I can't thank you enough for taking time and talking with me on the show. It was really awesome to hear everything you had to say.

Tom Hunting:
Right on. It's been a pleasure. Thank you very much.