Gene Simmons may say rock is dead, but Gavin Rossdale is hoping to prove otherwise with Bush‘s new album, Man on the Run, which comes out Oct. 21.
“I wanted to make a really interesting rock record,” Rossdale tells Billboard. “Rock is in this weird shadow and there are some great bands around — Queens of the Stone Age, Foo Fighters, Deftones, TV On The Radio…We argue that rock is back to its sort of counter-culture place, so for me it was how do you make a record when no one wants records and no one wants rock records? So there’s the challenge right there. The gauntlet is laid down, so how to you make it interesting?” Rossdale’s answer: turning to EDM, the genre that’s stolen rock’s thunder during the past few years.
“I approached the whole record from the live perspective, thinking about the EDM music and what is it that people are getting so lost in EDM about and what is the whole tribal thing that’s going on there? It’s that moment in Ibiza where 10,000 people lift their hands up in the air and lose themselves in the music, that whole push-pull crowd control thing that I was really interested in capturing on this (album), to get that pulse and that beat and then put a great (melody) top line on it and the guitars. I’m just trying to find a way to be interested and inspired and keep making records.”
Rossdale says he was also inspired by the reception to The Sea of Memories, Bush’s 2011 comeback album after the band lay dormant for a decade. “We had such an unexpected, for me, success for the last record, it went so good and the touring and everything,” he says. “I wanted to consolidate the return so it wasn’t like I was dipping back in and having a nostalgic runaround for fun but was back to work with the band. So I wanted to do a record as soon as we finished touring.” Man On the Run was produced by Nick Raskulinecz (Foo Fighters, Alice in Chains, Rush, Mastodon) and recorded at Dave Grohl’s Studio 606 in Northridge, Calif. Rossdale says Bush worked on “about 30 songs” for the project and still has “a load of songs I’m really excited about, that I love. There easily is another record ready to go, so maybe something will come out sooner.”
Rossdale is planning an extensive tour to support the album in 2015, though Bush will play select promotional dates and holiday radio shows before the end of the year. He’ll also be thumping the drum on NBC’s “The Voice,” joining the show as one of wife Gwen Stefani’s team of guest coaches. “It came up and I was pretty thrilled to do it,” Rossdale says. “I’m trying to be in the business of winning in a world where it’s really hard to even get a game in. It’s clear that going on (The Voice) is an incredible platform. When Gwen got the gig it seemed like everyone we bumped into was like, ‘Oh, I’m the biggest fan of the show.’ Everyone seems to love it. It’s a new world, and I don’t want to be caught in the past. If the way it works to alert people to a record is to go on ‘The Voice,’ I’ll do it.”
Bush also launched a PledgeMusic campaign not to fund Man on the Run, but to offer incentives for pre-purchases. And in addition to the new album, Bush is also re-releasing its first four albums 1994’s multi-platinum Sixteen Stone, 1996’s Razorblade Suitcase and 1999’s The Science of Things along with the 1997 remix album Deconstructed — during October, while a 20th anniversary expanded edition of Sixteen Stone is slated for release in December.