Monster Truck are roaring back into Donington Park for #DL2018 to get you head banging to some straight-up rock n’ roll on the Main Stage. Guitarist Jeremy Widerman gave us the inside scoop on what the ‘Truck have in-store for their #DL2018 set and when we can expect to hear new material from the band.
The ‘Truck are as ubiquitous to rock n’ roll as vintage double denim. Their debut album ‘Furiosity’ released in back in 2013 put the Canadian rockers firmly on the map as the go to band for classic no-frills-all-thrill rock. Following it up in 2016 with their sophomore album ‘Sittin’ Heavy’ the ‘Truck turned up their signature sonics to 11 dishing out more massive choruses, howling solos and muddy blues riffs. A self-proclaimed “touring beast”, we can’t wait for them to tear a chunk out of Download 2018.
We spoke to guitarist Jeremy Widerman to find out when the band are releasing new material, who he’d love to play with at #DL2018 and why he’ll be bringing a wildebeest costume to Donnington.
You played Download in 2013 and 2016, what was it like for you?
The first time we played we were filling in at the last minute.The whole experience was crazy, because we were coming over to the UK for the first time, we were playing our first overseas festival and we were filling in on the second stage – it was a really big play for us at the time and we were on no sleep.It was really impressive to us to see the amount of people that were at the show and how much passion there still is for rock n roll music over in the UK.
It was really overall a great experience and we had a great show. After we had a great show we saw a couple of the greatest live shows we’ve ever seen – The Hives and Rammstein. I just really had a great time the whole weekend.
What can we expect from this year’s performance?
A lot of new songs, we’ll be playing a bunch of new material from our upcoming record. I think the main thing we always try to do is be consistent; we’ve got a reputation of being a great live band and it’s basically sticking to that level we’ve put forth to our fanbase and living up it.
When will you be releasing the new material?
Probably in the fall. We’ll probably have some singles out over the summer, but the record will be out in the fall.
How would you describe the direction of the new material?
We try to keep a lot of things in the same wheelhouse, because that’s what I always want out of the bands I like is to not stray too far. At the same time, not leaving it so static that it’s boring and trying to add new things here and there – surprising people with new songs and pushing the band forward in some kind of evolutionary way.
Your last release was ‘Saturday Night’ a cover of the Bay City Rollers in 2017. Why did you choose that song?
It was not a choice that was ours. We were trying to choose anything else with the words ‘Saturday Night’ in it, but we were requested to do that song by our favourite hockey programme here in Canada.
We hold that broadcast programme so highly that we were willing to bend to provide them with the song they were looking for. We were a little intimidated to do a song like that at first as it’s so far from our wheelhouse and we found a way to make it our own and fit our style. It ended up being a lot of fun in the end.
If you could cover anyone else who would it be?
We’ve been wanting to do a lot of different covers. We’d love to cover a Queen song or we were talking about Rare Earth, Grand Funk Railroad or something like that.
Back in 2013 you released your debut album ‘Furiosity’ and won the Juno Award for Breakthrough Group of the Year. What are your favourite memories of that time?
There was a lot of excitement. I’d taken the band from what was supposed to be a side project and nothing too serious, to being a Juno award-winning, touring machine in a short span of about two years. There was a lot of excitement and a lot of shock around the stuff that was happening: getting our singles played on the radio, constantly getting tour offers and being on the road a lot.
Your motto and name of a collection of your two EPs is “Don’t f**k with the truck”, can you share any stories of people trying to f**k with the truck?
Back in the day when we came up with the slogan it was supposed to be a joke. Then we started getting into the music industry and we started getting f***ed with by different music industry type people. The ‘f**king with the truck’ has never stopped and it’s something we’ve come to deal with. It’s more of joke now than ever, because people f**k with us more than ever and we don’t do anything about it – we just deal with it and turn the other cheek.
It’s worth it as we have one of the best fan bases ever, we have so many awesome people constantly messaging us and are excited for the album you get the sense you don’t want to let anyone down.
Is there one song you’ll know will send the crowd crazy when you play it at a festival?
We play the ‘Lion’.It’s a song that we can open with and can close with it – it always goes over well. It’s one of those songs that will always be in our set forever, because it always works and it’s always fun for us. It’s also one of the songs I’m actually not sick of in a list of songs we’ve played nine billion times.
If you could play with any band on the Download line up, who would it be?
The Hives. I think he’s the most impressive frontmen I’ve ever seen in my life. I’d love to watch that every night to get a sense of how he’s able to control a crowd and have such a presence over everyone watching. They’re such a great unit, they work together as a band so well and get complete control of the audience. It’s great to watch and I’d love to see it on more of a regular basis.
Our fancy dress theme for the Friday at Download is Supervillains. Which supervillain would dress up as?
I’d probably make my own supervillain called the Wildebeest. It would just be this big, naked, scary animal. This would a superpower Wildebeest – half man, half wildebeest who does yoga.
Would it have a sidekick?
It would have a little pet dog, that looks wimpy like a chihuahua, but is super ferocious.
Talking of dogs our mascot is the Download dog. Do you own a dog or do you have a favourite breed of dog?
We’ve met him! I like Boxers, I don’t have one because I’m away so much I feel like it wouldn’t be fair to the dog. One day I hope to be able to have a dog in my life when maybe things are a little more stable or I have someone who’s at home to look after him.