“I think that’s what it’s all about, this group of friends. We all support each other and we all try to help each other out, it’s camaraderie.”
It’s been a while since we’ve caught up with Thrust. Last we spoke, the band had just put out a new album, Harvest of Souls (2018). Since then, Ronnie Cooke and the band have been on a worldwide tour and working on new material. As you will see in the interview, part of the secret to their longevity is they never stop growing as musicians. They are always writing new music while striving to be at the absolute top of their game.
Please enjoy some excerpts from our interview with Ronnie Cooke on July 27th, 2019.
Anita: So what have you and Thrust been up to since we last talked?
Ronnie: We’ve been doing the Thrust thing, keeping the fire going! We’ve got some shows lined up and have been in the recording studio getting the next new album put together.
Anita: What’s the new album going to be titled?
Ronnie: We actually don’t have a title for it yet. The last one, Harvest of Souls, came out in July of last year (2018), so it’s been right at a year. We’ve just been writing a lot in between shows, been in and out of the recording studio, it’s like the ’80s again! I think metal has come full circle and its back in swing again.
Steve: I noticed ESP sent you a new toy?
Ronnie: Yeah! I’ve been playing them now for 20 plus years and my guy knows I love the ESP guitars with the Les Paul body and EMG pickups, whenever one comes out I must have it. They support us, they’ve got faith in us and they’re a huge company. They truly have a good sounding guitar.
Steve: Does it have a thin neck like the regular ESP neck, or is it more like the baseball bat Les Paul neck?
Ronnie: It’s got what’s called the Thing-U. They’re a lot lighter than the Gibson Les Pauls, that’s why I like them. The body shape fits me really well and they’re half the weight of a Gibson. It’s still super dependable, you can take it on the road and bang it up and it’ll still play like a dream. The sustain on it is nuts!
Steve: When do you think the new album will drop, or are you still keeping that under your hat for now?
Ronnie: We’re about half way done recording, so we’re looking to get it out January or February at the latest. We’d like to have a couple of months to promote it first. We’ve been writing a lot of good songs and have been blessed with still having that chemistry, playing really well together, it’s like a machine. We’ve just been taking all that energy fresh off the road and hitting the studio. Hit it while the iron’s still hot!
Steve: Do you foresee any singles being released before the new album is released?
Ronnie: Yeah, we’re going to do it like the last time when we released “The Sorceress” before Harvest of Souls was released. Hopefully we’ll do a video that can go along with it, our fans seemed to really like it when we did it that way.
Anita: What would you say inspires you to write and play?
Ronnie: It’s the fans, absolutely, the support and love from you guys. It’s the love of the music, we do it because its in our hearts and souls. We never stopped playing or writing when we went on hiatus so everybody’s really happy with the way everything has come back. It’s like the ’80s are here again! You go overseas and play, they’re still singing the chorus of songs from 20 years ago. Back then, you were 16, 17, 18 years old and everyone was full steam ahead but now we’re just so grateful that everybody’s coming out. That’s the amazing part about the metal family, it’s huge but at the same time it’s very small. Everybody knows everybody.
Steve: If there’s such a thing in this day and age, that’s true immortality.
Ronnie: Yeah! I think as time goes on, what’s most important is friendship. I can’t tell you how many times I went to a show, saw people and remembered. I think that’s what it’s all about, this group of friends. We all support each other and we all try to help each other out, it’s camaraderie.
Steve: Making the metal family bigger one shredded face at a time, from one guitarist to another!
Anita: With your fist held high!
Steve: Who would you say is your favorite guitarist to listen to, as an overall inspiration?
Ronnie: If I had to pick, one of my favorite guitarists Carlos Santana was famous for saying, “My tone comes from my soul.” I think all guitar players have a unique sound, that’s how we speak. That really spoke to me.
Anita: We noticed you’re leg’s doing better, we heard you had an accident and broke your foot?
Ronnie: That was actually Angel, our other guitarist. He broke his shin riding Motorcross, he’s crazy man! He told us at first and we didn’t believe him, so he sent me the x-ray. It made me grab MY shin!
We busted him out of the hospital for the Vince Neil show two days later. The show must go on but he’s had the cast off for a while now, it’s good to see him standing again.
Anita: Thanks again for taking the time to do an interview with us!
Ronnie: Thank you for having me again! We’ll keep you posted with news on the new album as well!