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Red Hot Chili Peppers’ Flea Says Band Almost Broke Up

Photo By Clara Balzary

Red Hot Chili Peppers are ready to unleash their new album, I’m With You, on August 30, which would be their first since 2006’s double-disc Stadium Arcadium. However, according to bassist Flea, the group was pretty close to throwing in the towel.

Speaking to Spinner (via NME), Flea admits that things were pretty tense after touring for years to support Stadium Arcadium. Flea demanded that the Chili Peppers go on hiatus after they got off the road.

“We’ve been going really hard for a lot of years with small breaks here and there, but never a major break,” says the bassist. “And I just felt like I wanted to take two years away just to really look and see if the band was something we should still be doing.”

Flea continues: “Things had gotten dysfunctional and not fun, even though I thought we were making great records, doing great shows and were a really powerful, mighty thing as a band. I was proud of what we did. I thought we honored our position in the rock world. I felt like we always gave our hearts, but we just needed to get away from it.”

While Flea was tempted to call it quits, his long-running friendship with frontman Anthony Kiedis motivated him to stay on board.

“I just realized, Anthony, man, he’s my brother, I love him so much, and we started this band when we were kids. I wanted to keep that going, I never want to let that go.

“I said, ‘Together let’s do this, let’s make this album, I love you, and let’s f____ rock.’ And as cliché as that might sound, I think for us as a band, and for he and I, both of us, we decided to do it.”

I’m With You is the 10th studio album from Red Hot Chili Peppers and the first since 1995’s One Hot Minute not to feature guitarist John Frusciante, who departed from the band in 2009. Josh Klinghoffer, who was the band’s touring guitarist, was made a permanent member to replace Frusciante.

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