Post-Nirvana grunge rockers Bush launched their 78-date tour of America last week in Miami, Florida in support of their sophomore recording effort, “Razorblade Suitcase.” MTV News caught the band backstage…
MTV: So, how did you think tonight’s show went?
NIGEL: Tonight’s show for me, personally, went really well. It was exciting. It’s good to be back.
GAVIN ROSSDALE: Well, it was really loud. It’s sort of really weird being in a band that sings predominantly depressing songs, because everyone was really happy all the time. It’s like a whole different sort of thing, playing for that many people. People everywhere. But it’s really good, and I enjoyed it. And we’ve only got 77 left, so we’ll be refining it.
MTV: Do you wish people would get the songs, not be so happy?
GAVIN: No, no. Excitement is good. And passion, and just to go for it…I would never dictate how anyone should feel.
DAVE PARSONS: I always thought we play too loud but actually I think the audience is too loud. They deafen you before you deafen yourself. Which is quite unusual. It’s great, really good. Great to play in front of this many people. The first song, the first bar, is, like, deafening, but not instrument-wise, people-wise.
MTV: Your last show in the States was last May. Was that an arena?
ROBIN: May 1. Yeah, it was Denver, Red Rocks. Well, it’s not an arena. I don’t know. But it’s a big place with rocks in it.
GAVIN: Was that the last time we played?
ROBIN: Yeah, last time we played in the U.S.
MTV: Does it seem like that long?
ROBIN: No we’ve been working all the time. But it does in a way because we were recording or touring again. So we’re in that never-ending circle.
GAVIN: The best part is that people think that, because we haven’t played over here, we haven’t been doing much. Europe is like the far away islands…
MTV: So how did Europe go?
GAVIN: Really good. Really good time. It’s no secret that we obviously started our careers in America, so, it’s been good to get the balance going. But whether or not we’re ready to play to 15,000 people going ape shit, I don’t know.
MTV: A gentleman from the London Telegraph asked me, “Is this was the album that will break them”? I said, “Oh no, they’ve been broken.”
GAVIN: Yeah, we’ve been broken. This is our establishment record… What’s really weird is, how are you meant to do those shows? There really is no guidebook. Or no rule book. I find it really hard to understand how to do those shows. No one can tell you how to do those shows. That’s the weirdest bit. I wish there were a manual.
MTV: I was going to ask you, when you walked out on-stage, you just casually walked out…
GAVIN: That’s cause no one knew what was going on!
NIGEL: You’re confusing nonsense with confusion.
GAVIN: Maybe… I don’t know. I think that, maybe, doing an arena tour of 78 shows and only one rehearsal’s not enough. But you learn by your motions.
ROBIN: Exactly, There are no rules. You apply your rules to our show and we failed on the first entrance.
GAVIN: But isn’t that weird really when you think of the kind of music that we do, why that number of people would congregate to sort of celebrate it… I find that a weird thing to think about. Just to do with such personal politics, and personal thinking, sometimes I just think, it’s just weird in itself. Bands like us, rock bands, where we’ve come from and what we’re used to is clubs. So the question is, can you manage to play like we normally play and still maintain the integrity about it. Because obviously we all hate that cock-rock thing. It’s a weird balance. It reverberates around, and people get affected by it as far as we can see. So it doesn’t seem fair to disqualify a whole bunch of people because it doesn’t suit the regular way a rock band play. It’s weird…I’m a bit undecided about it.
ROBIN: We don’t actually need too much theater, we just need to play and I think however we decide to walk on the stage is pretty immaterial to what happens when we start playing. And I’m not having a go at you, I’m just saying, we don’t need blood and guts.
NIGEL: We walk on differently every night.
GAVIN: We eat the heads off of chickens before we come on stage.
DAVE: Sometimes we walk on backwards, you know.
MTV: So you rehearsed one day?
GAVIN: Well, for about an hour.
ROBIN: In panic.
MTV: So how long did making this set list take you?
ROBIN: Set lists have natural little moments that you just kind of get together and put them in blocks.
DAVE: Was that your evidence? Watergate files or something?
ROBIN: As performed in the Miami Arena. That’s the first time we’ve ever played that set list.
GAVIN: Apparently, rumor has it that we always play the same set. So everyone involved with you knows what you’re doing, but we get really bored and we think we should change it.
NIGEL: In Europe we did 25 shows, and 11 different sets.
GAVIN: The good news is you can always come and see us twice and you’ll never get the same show. This was obviously the first time we’ve played two albums, two records.
ROBIN: Makes a hell of a difference.
GAVIN: A bit of a difference. It’s nice to not compete with certain songs off of the first record. We could’ve used the same producers. I could’ve tried to write the same songs. Everyone could’ve tried to play the same way. It’s a case of widening the effort we do instead of sort of chasing it so we don’t have to play certain songs off of the first record. It was always a way of bolstering up the set, of playing more and not going where we’ve been before.
MTV: Is there anything you’re doing differently on this tour that you didn’t do last tour?
GAVIN: Yes, we’ve got really crap buses.
ROBIN: Custom built turds on wheels.
DAVE : By Ikea? Do you have Ikea over here?
GAVIN: The best part is, we have country buses.
ROBIN: With cactuses…
NIGEL: And steel guitars in the bathrooms.
GAVIN: We’ve got lovely designs. Your run of the mill cowboy hat, cactus, barn…a couple of guns…
MTV: Have you ever been physically affected by touring? Gotten sick?
GAVIN: Never. Never in three years.
NIGEL: We’re hard as nails, not like Oasis, who are like wussies.