I love music and I love magical musical moments. The moment I discovered Buckcherry was a magical moment for me. I was/am a huge Aerosmith fan and in the late 90s there wasn’t a whole lot of that raw rock guitars any more. Aerosmith wasn’t even doing it anymore. I remember lying in bed in my dorm in college when all of the sudden I heard the riff of “Lit Up” coming from the TV. I thought for a half second that Guns n Roses had gotten back together or that Aerosmith and gone back to their early sound, but instead it was a new band with a singer that looked like Tommy Lee and Steven Tyler had a baby. It was a moment I will never forget and because of that I will always be a Buckcherry fan. Needless to say I was excited when I got the chance to chat with Keith Nelson, the guitarist for Buckcherry.
Buckcherry has a new album out called Confessions that is sort of a concept album. You can read my review of it here: http://voices.yahoo.com/buckcherrys-confessions-packs-unexpected-punch-12023571.html?cat=33, It was an album I didn’t the Keith and Josh (Todd, frontman) were capable of making. Unfortunately I was experiencing technical difficulties during the first question, so for the first question I’m paraphrasing Keith’s answer.
Q: With Confessions I really think you guys knocked it out of the park. Do you consider it to be a full-blown concept album?
A: Not really, it started that way. Josh and I had always talked about making a seven song EP about the seven deadly sins with each song named after different sin. Josh had come up with this script that had evolved from that EP idea. We started to work on songs that correlated with the script and we ended up with a full album worth of songs. The goal is to put together a short film to go along with the album.
Q: I’m curious about the writing process, because whether you call it a concept album or not, there is a running theme through out the album. It’s a very theatrical album. Was that planned ahead of time or did it just come out that way?
A: We knew the album was going to be heavier and darker than it had been. Writing a record about the seven deadly sins doesn’t leave a lot of room for stripper pole anthems (laughs). That’s fine with us, because that’s not really what we’re all about. We’re about many things. The ideas started off in music, but we just kept writing songs and that’s why you get songs like “Seven Ways to Die” and “The Truth” and other songs that aren’t necessarily about the sins, but you can only write about those seven subject before it becomes like Groundhog Day. So we just kept writing songs and the best songs just kind of rose to the top.
Q: Since I’m talking to you, one of the guitar players in the band, I wanted to ask you about the song “Wrath.” That riff is something Joe Perry or Slash would be proud of. Please tell me that’s in your live set it will become a staple in your live set for years to come.
A: It is we’ve been playing that song every night. That’s one of my favorite riffs I’ve ever come up with. That song, before the riff was introduced the verse was very different as we were in the writing process, it felt like it needed more attitude and that riff just came out one day and I’m glad it did (laughs).
Q: Right now you’re out on tour with Kid Rock, how is that touring going?
A: It’s been great. We’ve been friends with Mr. Rock for a long time running. We did club shows with him back in the early days of both of our bands when both of our first records were about to come out. It’s been a great hang with him. The shows are great every night and he’s a phenomenal showman with an amazing band behind him and it’s really been a lot of fun.
Q: Most fans want to hear the classic songs when they go to a live show, but with Confessions it’s almost…I don’t know, personally I like listening to it in it’s entirety. Is there any chance that we’ll get, maybe not the album in its entirety live, but a vast majority of it some time in the near future?
A: We have an hour set time and we’re going to play three or four songs off the new record, which is a little much sometimes for fans, but they’re still going to hear all their favorite songs from the past. This record is really important to us, we’ve toyed with the idea of doing the record in its completion live. We may still do that especially if we do something in conjunction with the movie. This new record is something that we’re really proud of and want people to hear it.
Q: I wanted to ask you about the magical musical moments as a fan. I remember where I was the first time I heard Buckcherry and because of that I will forever be a fan. Do you have any moments that have stayed with you forever?
A: Oh yeah man, first and foremost and I think I can speak for all of us in the band, we’re huge fans of music. We often sit around and talk about the first time we saw some of our favorite bands or where we were when we got that record or cd or whatever it was. I have so many of those moments man.