Dirty Heads, 2014

Dirty Heads photographed in 2014.

Change -- and the Sound of Change -- has been good for Dirty Heads.

The genre-blending California group's fifth album logged its first-ever No. 1 release, on the Top Alternative Albums chart in July, as well as career-high No. 2 and No. 8 slots on the Top Rock Albums and Billboard 200 respectively. And the group's Dustin "Duddy B" Bushnell tells Billboard that fans seem to be embracing the sonic changes implied by the album's title.

Dirty Heads Perform 'Lay Me Down' Live

"We definitely knew we were going to get a little bit of hate from it, and we knew our fans would be taken back a little by it," Duddy B says. "It's funny because right after the first song ('My Sweet Summer') leaked out there were all these people freaking out, and now that the album's out I think it's growing on people and they're like, 'Oh, I changed my mind after a couple of listens. I actually love this' and even more people saying, 'Ohmigod, after I actually listen to this album it's not that far off from what they normally did.' We just keep our heads down and keep pushing, and we make music that we enjoy and put out only things that we respect and we're proud of."

Duddy B acknowledges that Dirty Heads' intent on Sound of Change was an album that's "bigger and broader" than its three predecessors -- and was a bit of a reaction to 2013's acoustic "Home -- Phantoms of Summer." He and partner Jared "Dirty J" Watson worked with a number of producers -- including Grammy Award-winner Supa Dups, Budda Shampoo, Niles of the Cataracs and good pal Rome Ramirez (of Sublime With Rome) -- to expand the Dirty Heads sound and explore some fresh directions. "It was very cool," says Duddy B. "Once we kind of realized the direction we wanted to go on this album, we were like, 'Y'know what? Let's just go for it completely. If we're trying to step our game up musically and try new things, let's also go to some new studios. Let's work wtih some new producers. Let's sit down wtih other writers and try things we've never done. Let's step out of our comfort zone and try to push ourselves. Let's try to grow as a band and see what we can do, and if that doesn't work we can always go back to that old stuff, 'cause we can do that all day.' So we went for it and we tried something new, and I think we made something pretty cool."

Dirty Heads, 'Home | Phantoms of Summer: The Acoustic Sessions'

Dirty Heads have been celebrating Sound of Change all summer, and the group plans to do so into the fall. After taking September off for Dirty J's wedding, the group will hit the road again on Oct. 10 in Ventura, Calif. for another North American swing with Rome opening, then head to Europe in mid-November for dates in the U.K., France, Switzerland and Germany. Dirty Heads will again be promoting the Hard Rock International and WhyHunger Imagine There's No Hunger campaign, auctioning off tour packages that include meet-and-greets and other perks. 

"Fighting hunger's a great cause," says Duddy B. "There's, like, one out of five families in out country suffering from hunger, and not just our country, either. This is a cool program where it not only puts food in these people's mouths but it teaches them how to grow sustainable goods for themselves and feed themselves -- and not just (with) food but healthy food. It's just a really good cause, so we're spreading the word as we're on the road."

Dirty Heads' current tour dates include: 

DATE              CITY/STATE                          VENUE

August 7          Tempe, AZ                              The Marquee  w/Pepper & Aer

August 8          Las Vegas, NV                        The Beach at Mandalay Bay  w/Pepper

August 9          San Diego, CA                        RIMAC Arena  w/Pepper & Aer

August 10        Paso Robles, CA                    Vina Robles Amphitheatre  w/Pepper & Aer

August 11        Reno, NV                                Grand Sierra Resort  w/Pepper & Aer

August 13        Denver, CO                            Red Rocks Amphitheater  w/Pepper & Aer

August 15        Salt Lake City, UT                  USANA Amphitheater  w/311

August 16        Garden City, ID                      Revolution Center  w/Pepper & Aer

August 17        Redmond, WA                         Marymoor Park  w/Pepper

August 18        Portland, OR                           Roseland Theater  w/Pepper

August 19        San Francisco, CA                  Warfield Theater  w/Pepper

August 21        Boston, MA                             Copeky Square

August 23        Middlebury, VT                       Vermont Hard Cider Company

August 30        Long Beach, CA                     Shoreline Jam

October 10      Ventura, CA                            Majestic Ventura Theater  w/Rome

October 13      Santa Cruz, CA                      The Catalyst  w/Rome

October 14      Sacramento, CA                      Ace of Spades  w/Rome

October 16      Chico, CA                               Senator Theatre  w/Rome

October 17      Crystal Bay, NV                     Crystal Bay Club Crown Room  w/Rome

October 20      Calgary, AB                            Flames Central  w/Rome

October 21      Edmonton, AB                         The Starlite Room  w/Rome 

October 23      Winnipeg, MB                         Union Sound Hall  w/Rome

October 25      Madison, WI                            Barrymore Theatre  w/Rome

October 26      Omaha, NE                             Sokol Auditorium  w/Rome

October 27      Bloomington, IN                       The Bluebird  w/Rome

October 29      Toronto, ON                            Phoenix Concert Theatre  w/Rome

October 31      Hampton Beach, NH               Hampton Beach Casino Ballroom  w/Rome 

November 3    Providence, RI                         Lupo’s Heartbreak Hotel  w/Rome

November 4    New Haven, CT                     Toad’s Place  w/Rome

November 5    New York, NY                         Best Buy Theater  w/Rome

November 7    Norfolk, VA                              The NorVa  w/Rome

November 8    Richmond, VA                          The National

November 9    Washington, DC                     9:30 Club  w/Rome

November 11  Raleigh, NC                            Lincoln Theatre  w/Rome

November 12  Asheville, NC                          The Orange Peel  w/Rome

November 13  Atlanta, GA                              Variety Playhouse  w/Rome

November 14  Jacksonville, FL                      Mavericks at The Landing  w/Rome 

November 16  Ft. Lauderdale, FL                   Culture Room  w/Rome

November 19  Glasgow, UK                          King Tuts

November 20  Manchester, UK                      Night & Day Café 

November 21  Southampton, UK                   Joiners

November 22  Paris, France                           Les Etoiles

November 23  Zurich, Switzerland                 Eldorado

November 25  Berlin, Germany                      Bi Nuu

November 26  Cologne, Germany                 Club Bahnhof Ehrenfeld

November 28  London, UK                             Barfly

November 29  Coventry, UK                         Kasbah

November 30  Birmingham, UK                       Academy 3