Motor Sister, the project featuring Jim Wilson (Mother Superior), Scott Ian (Anthrax), Pearl Aday, Joey Vera (Armored Saint, Fates Warning) and John Tempesta (The Cult), released their new album, Get Off, on May 6th via Metal Blade Records. We caught up with Wilson and Ian to discuss their latest full-length effort.
How did the project Motor Sister come together?
Scott Ian: Pearl and I were/are superfans of Jim Wilson’s band Mother Superior. A few years after they broke up we decided that Jim’s songs needed to be played and heard, especially by us. So for my 50th birthday we asked Jim if he’d want to be in a band with us (and Johnny and Joey who were also Mother Superior fans) and play a show in the jam room at our house for a very exclusive crowd of our friends that also loved Jim. Jim said yes. We put together a set list of our favorite songs and played the shit out of them. That setlist is what became the first Motor Sister album, Ride, which was released in 2015.
Jim Wilson:We have all been friends for years. Scott & Pearl were always at Mother Superior shows and Joey Vera mixed and mastered songs for Mother Superior back in the day also. After Mother Superior disbanded, Scott wanted to jam his favorite MS songs with me at his 50th birthday party. As soon as we played with John Tempesta, it was obvious it was going to become a whole new thing.
What was the process like creating the album, Get Off?
Scott Ian: It’s our second album. I think around 2018 Jim started emailing riff ideas. He said he thought they’d be great for Motor Sister. We were all very excited by the prospect of writing new Motor Sister songs together as a band instead of us covering Jim’s older material again.
Jim Wilson: It’s actually our second album, although it’s the first featuring new material. The first album, ‘Ride’, was made up of the 12 Mother Superior songs that Scott chose for his party. When it was apparent that the band and the label, Metal Blade Records, wanted a second album of new, original material, I started collecting rock riffs and song ideas.
How has the response been so far?
Scott Ian: People think it’s the best rock record since Appetite For Destruction.
Jim Wilson: It has been really great! Everyone’s digging it and it’s all been so positive. It’s a KICK ASS rock and roll record!
How has the pandemic influenced the writing?
Jim Wilson: We actually finished recording the music tracks just before lockdown so the writing was finished. It was frustrating though because we had to wait until things calmed down before we could return to the studio and do the vocals.
What songs were more challenging to write?
Jim Wilson: To be honest, the songs were just coming out! I wanted the songs to be high energy and killer all the way through so that was inspiring. I sent TONS of little demos to Scott & Pearl and they would pick their favorites. Some were obvious like “Sooner Or Later” which was an immediate YES. There were a few that came right at the very end and Scott helped me finish them off, “Lion’s Den” and “Coming For You” which Pearl co-wrote too.
What was your experience creating the video for “Coming For You?”
Scott Ian: So much fun!!! We had the crazy idea to remake Black Sabbath’s 1970 Top Of The Pops performance of Paranoid. We ran that idea past Travis Shinn (he directed it) and he made it all happen. Pearl was the costume designer for it and she nailed the clothes and wigs! I think it looks and feels great.
Jim Wilson: It was so much fun! We did it with director Travis Shinn and I love the way it turned out. We wanted it to look like a vintage clip from Don Kirshner’s Rock Concert or Midnight Special. Pearl just rocks on this one!
Do you have any plans for this year you can share with us?
Scott Ian: I hope we can play more shows!
Jim Wilson: We’re heading to the Rockville Festival in Daytona Beach this weekend! So excited to get to play shows again. The next single from the album is “Sooner Or Later” and I feel like that one will connect with a lot of people. We’ll be doing more shows later this year.
Is there anything else you want to say or add?
Jim Wilson: Sure! THANKS to everyone for listening to Motor Sister and a quick shout out to our producer Jay Ruston and I’ll also mention ‘Get Off’ was recorded at Studio 606, the amazing Foo Fighters studio. The album sounds fantastic thanks to those two elements. Rock on everybody!