GAVIN ROSSDALE On BUSH's Longevity: 'I'm Very, Very Lucky'
November 3, 2022
In a new interview with Brazilian journalist Igor Miranda, BUSH frontman Gavin Rossdale reflected on the band's 30th anniversary. Gavin said (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET): "I'm very, very lucky. I've had a lot of great people to help me. And there's times when I've won the match and times when I've lost the match.
"To be successful is to withstand a thousand deaths and a thousand enemies, and it's not easy, but, at the same time, I think that there's been such incredible support for us at the shows we play — wherever we play," he explained. "We've been very lucky. It's only because the people want us that we stay; it's not even my decision. I'm just lucky. It's their decision, because if people don't like the music, don't come to the shows, don't stream it, it's no good; it's over anyway. So it could be over any day. But for now, I think with this [new BUSH] record ['The Art Of Survival'], we have a little bit more life. It's like oxygen packs; we get to stay in the dance a little longer."
BUSH's ninth full-length album, "The Art Of Survival", was released on October 7 via BMG. The band wrote and recorded the LP during 2022, reteaming with Erik Ron (PANIC! AT THE DISCO, GODSMACK) who produced "Flowers On A Grave" and the title track for "The Kingdom", and collaborating once again on two tracks with film composer, musician, and producer Tyler Bates ("300", "Guardian Of The Galaxy"). The central theme speaks to both the human spirit's resiliency in the face of trials and tribulations as well as the band's own enduring place as rock outliers.
In a separate interview with Stereogum, Rossdale was asked about the "more metallic sound" of "The Art Of Survival" compared to BUSH's earlier efforts. He responded: "Metallic, or metal? It's not a metal record, 'cause I don't sing that way, [but] look, I'm always trying to push.
"I totally accept rock's position in the culture, which is pretty — it's weird 'cause on the one hand it's nonexistent, and on the other hand, I'm playing to 350,000 people over the course of, like, two months. [Those aren't] 350,000 invisible people.
"For me, as a songwriter, I'm just always looking for different ways to challenge myself and keep it fresh, keep it interesting in service of a long career. People can either mellow out into the sunset, or they do something like I've done with 'The Kingdom' and with 'The Art Of Survival', which is try and fight, go against the tide of the success of the band, try and create records that exist in their entirety on their own. They don't lean on the previous work, you know? To me, it's just trying to find what inspires me, what's interesting, what I like in a studio, that's really what it is. And I get the luxury of being to an extent my own producer, where I can make tracks for myself to sing on. And then I collaborate, I sing on other people's music, whatever, I'm very collaborative. But in terms of the meat of the record and getting the aesthetic going, it's just me in a room, and I've noticed that these last few years so much is given to the live performance.
"I play metal festivals, rock festivals, alternative, more pop-leaning festivals sometimes, not often, so I would find myself over the years choosing the heavier songs off of certain records. You want to survive amongst peers on those stages and not be just going [sings mournfully], 'Swallowed…' [Laughs] It's a bit much. It just got into that situation, and I had that one record that we did called 'Institute', which is all [written in] drop C sharp and it was really fun to do, and I don't know, I just kind of felt there was something about that that's exciting to me. People have said about the last two records, 'Oh, it sounds like old BUSH,' you know? And I think that non-musical people just think that 'cause the intention and the vitality to it is consistent, that's what it is. Musically it's completely different.
"I read people writing about the dearth of inspiration in rock music, and how it can be a bit homogenized, because I think rock radio can be seen as a homogenous sound, going for a certain thing, whereas everyone else in the pop world can be far more experimental and way out there. And to me it's just as simple as trying to stay interesting to ourselves, and create excitement like that."
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