Monster Truck: An Interview With Jeremy Widerman from Download Festival 2013

Monster Truck Band Photo

Canadian rockers Monster Truck have throughout 2013 started to make a splash outside of their native Canada. On their first ever trip outside the Continental US a few months back, Jamie caught up with Monster Truck guitarist Jeremy Widerman backstage at Download 2013 to see how things had been going regarding the release of their album Furiosity, plans for touring and many other things.

First of all, welcome to the UK..

Jeremy: Thanks very much man, thanks for having us!

How was it being one of the five bands to officially kick off Download 2013?

Jeremy: It was great man, I was really not expecting as many people as we had. Everyone seemed super excited for the festival to get going. To see that many people excited about a rock band, especially one that has never played here before was awesome for us.
Jamie: This is your first time in the country?
Jeremy: First time in the country for any reason actually. I’ve never been off the continent (North America) before so to be here and doing this has been a treat.

Awesome. Have you been to any of the other European Festivals or did you come straight here?

Jeremy: Yesterday was literally the first day I’ve ever been here ever. We flew in super early and kinda got settled and used to the time shift and ripped it up today. We’re used to not being on any sleep and travelling like crazy so its not normal but I’m definitely feeling it a little bit.
Jamie: Are you staying for the rest of the weekend or do you have to fly back?
Jeremy: We’re hanging around for the rest of the weekend! We’ve got a lot of bands we want to check out and we’re not going to be leaving until Monday morning.
Jamie: Great, who are you looking forward to seeing?
Jeremy: I want to see Graveyard. I wanna see Rival Sons again, Ghost, Queens Of The Stone Age, I wanna check our Down today, a lot of bands.
Jamie: There’s definitely something for everyone here.
Jeremy: Totally, if you can’t find something you like here you’re fucked, I don’t know what to tell ya.

Your album has been out now for two weeks now?

Jeremy: Just pushing up on three now.
Jamie: Has the reaction to the album been good?
Jeremy: At home the reaction’s been unbelievable. We’re on the fourth week right now of having a number one single in Canada.
Jamie: Wow!
Jeremy: Nothing’s really going outside of Canada yet. We really JUST broke the ice in the States and over here so just kinda waiting to see what happens. But the receptions been really good and reviews have been really good.

You have a very distinctive southern US rock sound but being from Canada has that come from the kind of things you like to listen to?

Jeremy: Yeah, most of the stuff we like to listen to is that style. We were down in the south in the States with Sevendust playing a bunch of shows and the people were like “how the fuck are you guys from Canada? Where did you get this sound?”. It’s like we listen to southern rock too! Just because we’re from Canada doesn’t mean we don’t get CD’s *laughs*. So we’re not a big fan of the Canadian rock sound, so kinda subconsciously we just went after what we like, which is more classic rock, southern rock and a lot of UK bands too.
Jamie: As you say, the Canadian rock sound is quite different, a lot more like bands like Nickelback or 3 Doors Down…
Jeremy: Rush too. Rush are a great band but not my favourite, we’ve just kinda strayed away from that.
Jamie: That’s cool, it is a very distinctive sound, at least to the point where there aren’t many bands that have broken out of the States to come here have that type of sound. I think there’s definitely a place for it.
Jeremy: Yeah I think so too and it’s been an advantage for us so far. People have reacted really well wherever we’ve gone so we’re just going to keep at it.

Do you have much lined up for the next few months to come and the rest of the year?

Jeremy: Yeah, after this we go straight home and start a tour with Alice In Chains. We’re opening for them across Canada. After that it’s kinda a crap shoot, we’re doing lots of Summer festivals at home and then we’re gonna try and figure out the fall, maybe do a headline Canadian tour, and we may go back to the States with Sevendust but we’re not sure yet.

Do you have any plans to do any of the touring US festivals like Mayhem or Uproar?

Jeremy: No nothing like that, those are kinda ballbreakers as far as timing and driving and everything if you don’t have a tour bus. I’m kinda OK with not doing those. Touring with Alice In Chains is going to be incredible. Everything kinda falls into place for us usually so I don’t tend to worry about it too much.

Did I see that you guys opened for Guns N’Roses a couple of weeks ago?

Jeremy: We opened for Guns N’Roses one show in Buffalo a couple of weeks ago. We actually played three weeks with Slash last year, separately obviously! But we’ve been getting great slots and a lot of help and a lot of luck which is what you need.
Jamie: You must have good people looking after you.
Jeremy: Good people…I feel like we have the rock gods looking after us. So many things have ended up working out so well that I don’t know if there’s any other way I can attribute it other than someone’s watching over us. I like to think so anyway. I hope it’s Jimi Hendris and Janis Joplin and Jim Morrison kinda lookin’ down and making sure everything works out for us. Otherwise it’s just straight luck and I’ll take that too!

I know Monster Truck won a Juno (Canadian Music) award, you must have been thrilled with that….

Jeremy: Yeah man, with the Juno we were the underdogs, like seriously, big time underdogs! We won, it happened right before our record came out, it pushed our single into number one and everythings just been so good and we’re just really grateful for the support and how the fans have been incredible, and as you mentioned our people, everyone who works with the band, management and booking have just been helping so much. It’s a great recipe!

Do you think there are any prospects of Monster Truck getting back to the UK this year? Or is next year more likely?

Jeremy: I think we may be able to do it this year, we just haven’t had anything written down yet. I think it’d be crazy if we weren’t back here before the end of the year. So we’ll just see what happens!

Jeremy was indeed right because Monster Truck are back on UK shores right now, supporting Vista Chino (the former Kyuss Lives!) on their huge UK tour. Catch Monster Truck and Vista Chino on Halloween and throughout early November at the following locations:

30th October 2013 – Manchester – The Ritz
31st October 2013 – Birmingham – The Institute
1st November 2013 – Bristol – O2 Academy
2nd November 2013 – London – Roundhouse
4th November 2013 – Glasgow – Garage
5th November 2013 – Nottingham – Rock City
6th November 2013 – Newcastle – O2 Academy

Further updates from the Monster Truck camp will be available here as and when they are announced. Stay tuned to for more of the latest interviews with rock and metal’s finest. You can also follow Monster Truck on Twitter at @Monster_Truck_.

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