Testament singer Chuck Billy spoke in an interview with The Cassius Morris Show and explained his thoughts on backing tracks and extra musicians.
Asked by interviewer if he feels that an over-reliance on backing tracks and extra musicians can fatally hamper the immediacy and spontaneity of a concert.
“Well, I guess to each his own, but we were out with Heaven & Hell, for example, and the keyboard player and background singer, he wasn’t on the stage — he was behind the backline. Sometimes [he was] even set up outside, off the stage. [Laughs]
But, you know, it’s an important part to the show; he adds that element. And maybe they’re just not known for the keyboard to be on stage.
So each band has their own approach, I guess. And a lot more people experiment with more samples or the drummer taking control of a lot of stuff going on — you know, they keep the tempo and run all the effects and background vocals and rhythm guitars from the drummer’s starting position.
So a lot’s changed now, for sure. I guess it all depends for how each band is and what they feel. If they’re represented as a four-piece and [they] don’t want the keyboard player and the saxophone player in the photo and on stage, I can understand it. Or if it’s all sampled, just so they don’t have those members on stage, I understand that as well.”
You can watch the entire interview from below.