By Carl Begai
It’s fair to say that former Venom bandmates Tony “Demolition Man” Dolan (vocals/bass) and Jeff “Mantas” Dunn (guitars) do their best work as a unit. There are folks that labelled Dolan a pretender to original / current Venom singer Cronos’ pincushion throne when he stomped in for three albums from 1989 – 1992 (Prime Evil, Temples Of Ice, The Waste Lands), but Dolan is still recognized as an integral part of the band’s history. The fans were reminded of this in 2004 when Dolan joined Dunn’s new albeit short-lived project, Mantas. It was a venture that died before its time, largely regarded as a nice try and not much else. When the buzz of another reunion project started up in 2010, however – this time with ex-Venom drummer Antton Lant in the mix – people were all ears, particularly since the trio had chosen to work under the banner Prime Evil as a tip of the hat to their collective past. One name change and Lant’s unfortunate but amicable departure later, Dolan and Dunn are in arguably better form than ever with Mpire Of Evil.
“We had a long discussion before anything got off the ground,” Dolan admits. “Every time we’ve tried to get back together it’s been because we wanted to, and every time we stopped it was because of some other fucker, never because of us. The Mantas thing for example; we did the album (Zero Tolerance), we shot a video, we did the Earthshaker Festival in Germany, but when we got back it became apparent to me rather quickly that the record company (Demolition Records) might not be spending the money promoting the album they way they should have been. I told them that if they didn’t invest in it, thing were going to go the same way they always have. We had a big discussion with management and the record company, and I wouldn’t let it go. I kept bringing it up and they got so pissed off at me in the end, thinking that I’d become a bit of a problem saying they should do this and that. The label eventually told Jeff that he either dropped me or they were going to drop the band.” Continue Reading