Jeremy Widerman, guitarist for the Canadian Rock band Monster Truck, spoke with Jamie Reader-Johnson of Planetmosh this week to discuss their latest album, Sittin’ Heavy, which was released on Friday 19th February.
When it comes to Monster Truck, I’ve always honed in on how their place of comfort seems to be on-stage, and time spent in the studio is nothing more than a requirement to progress. For me, this is what Rock is about.
Monster Truck recognise their core resides with the fans, and their involvement with this central base is much more intimate than we’re used to with other bands at their junction.
Where did the name ‘Sittin’ Heavy’ come from?
“We just thought it sounded cool. Kind of the same way we came up with the band name in that we knew no one had used it before and we thought it would reflect the music well. We always like comfortable names that kind of give you a mental picture of what you are about to hear if you’ve never heard us before and I think both those names do just that”.
Is there any song on the album that you’re especially proud of?
“I’m really just proud of the whole album. It took a little longer than we expected and got a little stressful at the end but we were able to persevere and I feel like we are stronger than ever”.
Did you set out for the album to follow a particular theme?
“We really just set out to stick to everything that we felt worked well on Furiosity and then expand in a few new ways too. A comfortable evolution as opposed to a complete reimagining. The new album seems to contain a lot more stylistic diversity compared to Furiosity“.
Do you feel as though this is a trait you’ve developed over touring, or is this the sound you always set out to achieve?
“I think it’s always been an ongoing evolution. Not just from all the touring but just becoming better musicians and finding new way to integrate slower blues orientated songs into our albums in a comfortable way”.
What influences did each member bring to the table on the new album?
“I’m not quite sure how to answer that one. Everyone listens to such a diverse spectrum of music and its hard to pin point how each artist influences everyone separately and then how in turn that affects the band in the big picture. I know for me personally I was really looking back on what I loved about some of the earlier EP’s and trying to find ways to improve and reinvent those ideas.
You’ve toured with a bunch of big name artists over the past couple of years. If you had to pick one memorable / iconic moment that will stick with you throughout your musical careers, what would it be?
I will never forget the first night of touring with Slash and having him come to visit us in the dressing room to tell us he was glad to have us on the tour and that he loved our song writing. It still seems like a dream to this day”.
What factors do you think differentiate Monster Truck from other bands?
“I’m reluctant to answer that for fears of painting it into too positive or negative light. That’s probably a compare and contrast better left to people outside the band who able to have a less biased perspective than me. With that being said I’m absolutely blown away by the sheer number of amazing bands that are out there right now for us to tour with. The future of rock and roll is bright in my opinion.
Your vinyl release of ‘Sittin’ Heavy’ contains a bonus track entitled Midnight, what can you tell us about that?
It was actually the very first song we wrote for this album and I think that’s why we kind of gave it a back seat on the new album because we’ve already been playing it live for years and sometimes feels like it was part of the Furiosity album cycle as opposed to Sittin’ Heavy. It’s a great live song though and I think it will still be a live show staple. Don’t Tell Me How To Live has been a crowd pleaser for some time now at our live performances, but was never released”.
Was the intention to hold on to this track for your upcoming album at the time?
“Not really. It was the second song we wrote for the record and kind of went through it’s own evolution of the last year. The plan was always to kind of have it be the first single off the new record and we were always excited to have it lead off the campaign”.
Are there any plans for an extensive European Tour later in the year (more UK dates)?
“Always on our minds and always in the works! ;)”
Following on from the album release next month, what can we expect next from Monster Truck?
“Relentless touring and festivals appearances!!”
Thank you for your time, and good luck with the album.
At the moment, Monster Truck only have a single date planned for the UK at the 100 Club in London on 5th April 2016, which has since sold out. Keep your eye out for tour dates in the future here at Planetmosh, and in the meantime, be sure to check out the new album.