‘We’ve had so many challenges over the years. We’ve been written off, we’ve never fit into any kind of mainstream music and there’s been a lot of peaks and valleys but 22 years later, this is our 9th record. That’s something to really look at you know.’
Buckcherry vocalist Josh Todd is undeniably proud of his body of work and in these days of disposal artists, the longevity of his band. It’s something that has been with him since the beginning.
‘We’ve always been on this island, all on our own, since we started. A lot of people who don’t understand that try and connect us with all these old 80’s rock bands and we’re like ‘no no’ our first record was in 1999. There was no rock bands at that time. We just cut through it because we have a unique flavour of rock n’ roll. Some people love it, some people don’t. We built our reputation on our live show and when people frequent Buckcherry shows they know they’re gonna get their money’s worth, we’re gonna show them no matter what. We go to places that people won’t play – which are not just major markets around the world – and we’re gonna put on a rock show. People admire that and that’s why they keep coming back.
That’s was my thing when we were a baby band, that was my fave thing, going into a real hostile environment where people didn’t know the band and were loyal to whatever headliner we were opening for and to win them over. I loved that and that challenge.’
The ninth album in twenty two years is the soon to be released hellfire that is Hellbound. A raunchy sleazy rock n’ roll party you’ve come to expect from Buckcherry. However there is a little something else more mature time around.
‘On the record there’s stuff kinda off the beaten path for us. We have a song for instance called ‘Wasting No More Time’ which has a Tom Petty feel which is kinda cool for us. ‘No More Lies’ feels like Led Zeppelin back in the day and how they approached some of their songs, like they released some tracks which had a reggae style you know as a rock song. Another song ‘The Way’ is a very Beatles song. I think a lot of flavours really added to how cool the overall record is when combined with some of our usual suspects like ‘So Hott’, ‘54321’ and ‘Hellbound’, stuff like that.
Covid was ultimately the main reason for the quick turnaround from 2019’s ‘Warpaint’ to 2021 ‘Hellbound’.
‘We were supposed to have 2020 touring the ‘Warpaint’ album. It all changed and we were like ‘hey by the time we get back on stage, it could be over a year, so we gotta think ahead’. It’s definitely up with the best Buckcherry records for sure. We worked really hard and it paid off. We’ve been sitting on this record since October 2020 dying to get it out.
We’re gonna make a video for every song on the record. The next song and video is the title track ‘Hellbound’. We’re dropping that later this month so you’ll be seeing that real soon.’
Long time collaborator and hit maker Marti Frederiksen is back with the band – ‘he brings the best of our us and writing with him is such a joy’ – however it’s how the band has matured which is the key.
‘Yeah, we have all gotten more mature. The difference between us and other bands with long careers is they stop making records somewhere down the line. We haven’t stopped. We’ve always made new records. We have to grow as songwriters and I love that. I love building something from nothing and it’s always been a lot of fun. Making a record and working our asses off isn’t easy. We hit a lot of challenges and all kinds of stuff but when you are passionate about what you do then it’s all gonna work out. I started this band on a 4 track machine in my bedroom in my apartment, sitting on the edge of my bed before I met Keith. I sat on my bed so much that my bed had a slant from where all my weight was. To come this far is what I’ve dreamed about. To be in one band and have a great catalogue of music.’
While Josh has a well deserved rock n’ roll reputation, he is also a devoted family man. So what do his kids think of the whirlwind on stage who looks like dad?
‘They don’t like that guy on stage. My teenage daughter came to see us for the first time, she was in the audience and she didn’t like us. She thought I used too much profanity, she didn’t like the person I became. I tried to explain to her that it’s not who I am it’s just something that is part of me. It’s entertainment, I’m playing a character to some degree. She understood that and at one point she started singing ‘Radio Song’ with me when she came to the shows. I have good memories of her singing that and bonding with me. She just likes me when I’m not being crass and vulgar! Yeah it’s weird for them because they see me as a completely different person.’
People who don’t see Josh Todd as anything other than a rock n roll star are his Australian fans
‘You’re a wild bunch and we love playing shows for you. As soon as we get there we will bring it.’
Interview By Iain McCallum
Hellbound is out on June 25. Pre-Order HERE