Pepper Keenan has admitted Down aren't the easiest band to get along with – and that meant they had a problem when deciding how to replace Kirk Windstein.
Down aren't easy to get on with - Keenan
Guitarist Pepper admits band's "own way of doing things" meant they faced challenge when it came to replacing Kirk Windstein
He bowed out last year in order to focus on Crowbar while Phil Anselmo and co continued to work on the material that would become their Down IV Part Two EP.
Keenan tells Guitar World: "Kirk and I had been doing this together for 20 fucking years. I knew we were losing something but I couldn't quite figure out what it was. I just knew that something was going to be gone.
"We were going to go on a nationwide search for guitar players and all that, but sometimes that ends up biting you on the ass. The truth is we're really not the easiest band to get along with — we kind of have our own language and way of doing things — so we wanted someone we knew we could hang out with."
The solution came in the form of Bobby Landgraf. Keenan says: "After we got him in the game, everything started rolling. It reinvigorated us to have some new blood in the band. We're happy as clams right now. Everybody's heads are clear — nobody's stumbling around, and we're ready for the next couple of years for sure."
And he's learned to live with Windstein's absence. "We were just going in separate directions, and that's okay," he says. "We only wanted the best for Kirk, but Down wasn't going to waste one second, and he understood that.
"I understood where Kirk was coming from — Crowbar is his baby."
Down IV Part Two is released next month.