Sammy’s not impressed with his former band’s new single – but he’s glad they’re at least back in the game
Sammy Hagar admits he “expected more” from Van Halen’s anticipated comeback album – but he’s glad his former band are at least making music again.
The 80s icons are back with A Different Kind of Truth, their first release with original singer David Lee Roth since 1984. It also features Eddie Van Halen’s son Wolfgang on bass, replacing Michael Anthony, who plays with Hagar in Chickenfoot.
Tattoo, the first single from the 13-track record, was released earlier this month. But Hagar, who recorded four albums with them and enjoyed two stints as their frontman, says the song falls short of his hopes.
He tells Cack Blabbath: “I don’t think that what they have just released, what I have sen and heard, is great at all. It should be better than it is.
“But hey – it is what it is, and at least they got together and at least they came out with something. God bless them, but I was expecting a lot more.”
Hagar isn’t sure why they decided to come back now. “I’m not going to speculate on why anyone does anything,” he says. “But I’ll tell you what: they waited so long and they’re so not fan-friendly. And as big as Van Halen was in the past…”
And he’ll remain unsure of their motives, he believes: “I got thrown out because I didn’t want to do a greatest hits record. I said, ‘Why the fuck, we’re the biggest band in the world? Why would you want to sell them the same old record again and give them two new tracks? Why do you want to do that to the fans?’
“They wanted to do it for the money. A new manager came in and he thought we could make a whole bunch of money for doing nothing. And I’m going, ‘We’ve got a whole bunch of money, so why are we doing this?’”
Hagar isn’t happy with the ‘supergroup’ label applied to Chickenfoot, also starring Joe Satriani and Chad Smith, who’s been replaced by Kenny Aronoff while he’s working with his day-job band, the Red Hot Chili Peppers.
But that doesn’t mean Chickenfoot is a side project. “I love this band more than I ever loved Van Halen,” he says. “When I first joined Van Halen all I did was try to make what I do work in that band, and I think we did a great job. I’m not condemning anything we did – except break up. I’ll condemn that.
“This band is really special to me, because we’re still fucking great.”