Burning Bush

Burning Bushale & co. plan plenty of head-banging at CPR Fest
Beautiful Music
May 02, 2002

Bush frontman Gavin Rossdale believes Friday’s CPR Fest 2002 will be a “Plan J” venue.

“There are some places where we might want to start with mellow songs” and build from there, he said last week by telephone. “Or, there might be other places when we want to come right out and smack everyone.”

Rossdale’s “Plan J” should delight South Mississippi head-bangers at the Mississippi Coast Coliseum grounds. You can look to be smacked. (Side note: Rossdale was happy to know it would be dark when the band takes the stage.).

That’s the beauty of a Bush concert. No two are the same.

“They have to change,” Rossdale said from his hotel room “on an island somewhere off the Coast of Florida where the sea is beckoning me.” Different places “make for different ways of playing. We change the sets all the time. It makes everyone scared.”

He and his Bush band buddies have just come off a 10-day break from their Golden State tour, named after their latest CD released in October 2001. Rossdale needed the break to make a video in England and to check on his dog. “He’s cool.”

The group has been touring in the United States since February, giving performances with a consistently high energy level, thanks in part to a slight change in style reflected in the new release. No more internal angst; it’s all on the outside.

“It’s another chapter, really,” Rossdale said of the album. “I don’t have any reflective concept about it. All it means to me is changing how I approach the next record. It’s an expression of where we are now.

“Writing songs is easy, but not to write songs that displace the songs that had been favorites.”

Those favorites include “Machinehead” and “Glycerine,” among others that propelled the 1994 debut album “Sixteen Stone” into platinum-plus status.

He’s satisfied with the CD and the fan reaction, but it’s been an uphill climb commercially. With the release just a month after Sept. 11, the band felt some changes were necessary to make it more acceptable.

The CD cover image was changed as was one song title. “The People That We Love” had been titled “Speed Kills,” itself including a song title and the cover.

“I never imagined we would have to change artwork because of a terrorist attack,” Rossdale said. “It was unfortunate timing. . . . but I’ve never complained. We got off lightly.” Rossdale wasn’t sure when the next Bush CD would be released by Atlantic Records.

“I think we’re going to take some time,” he said. “You know, the World Cup is coming up.” And one can bet the former semi-pro soccer player will be glued to the TV watching the English national team.

But the question still begs for some hint of what kind of music is to come. Even with fiance Gwen Stefani’s influence, the “No Doubt” ska sound won’t likely work its way into the Bush scene.

“Never say never,” he said. “She’s very receptive to the stuff I play. But she’s not really into rock music. You won’t find her reaching for a Tool CD.”

So, what can fans expect to hear? Rossdale relented to the secret, but he was difficult to understand with his tongue in his cheek: “Deep, deep space rock.”