Chimaira Interview: Guitarist Rob Arnold on the Band’s Early Days & the Nu Metal Era

“We were just young and hungry, and wanted to do whatever we could,” guitarist Rob Arnold reflects on Chimaira’s early days as a band. “Now being in it, we just know so much more — so much of the reality.”

Sitting outside a cafe on Sunset Blvd, Arnold reminisces on Chimaira’s 13-year career and the late 90s Cleveland, Ohio music scene that spawned bands like Mushroomhead and the short-lived Sw1tched. Out supporting their sixth studio album The Age of Hell, Arnold says that outliving the nu metal era at the turn of the century had much to do with being prepared for longevity from the start.

“We always from day one have prepared for a lengthy career,” he commented, adding that the band modeled their decision-making after Metallica, Slayer, and other bands with long-term impact. “We knew we had to make the right moves and be responsible for it to come this far.”

In 2001 when I was 15, I wrote an article for my high school newspaper (which can be found here) that called Chimaria an “enormously anticipated band of 2002.” What was your perspective on both Chimaira and the music industry back then, and how has it changed in 10 years?

Front page & article photo by Doc