– Hello, thanks for answering our interview. How’s everything doing right now for WOLFSBANE?
Everything is going great thanks. The new album ‘Wolfsbane Save the World’ is getting great reviews and interest all over the world. It’s a very exciting time.
– After so many years of inactivity and having the member been involved with different musical projects; what prompted the band’s reunion?
After so many years I think the thing that drove us to get back together more than anything was to go out and have the kind of fun and excitement with rock music that we always had. Also we really wanted to make the record that we didn’t have the chance to make back then.
– Anyway you reunited in 2007, played at the Rock of Ages fest and then keep on doing some gigs. Did you ever think back then years later this would become a “real” reunion? And this being said, is this a steady comeback? Can we expect more albums to come?
I think we ‘tested the water’ to start with to see how it would be. It’s all just snowballed from there with offers to play coming in and new interest in Wolfsbane. We’re in the process of writing more new music now and more touring too.
– What has changed, both musical and personally, in the band since you released the “Wolfsbane” album?
Wow, that’s a big question…..It’s been twenty years and a lot happens in twenty years! The real answer is, everything and nothing. In that time our lives have changed out of all recognition and yet as soon as we start to play nothing has changed at all. Music has a strange and magical power. That’s why we all love it so much.
– And after so many years, has the creation of this album been different? How do you feel having finally this “Wolfsbane Save the World” out?
Yes it has been a different process. Now I am a producer myself and have made many records for other people. It was important for me to spend time finding out how Wolfsbane sound in 2012. We shared the writing of the album out in a slightly new way, writing more finished ideas individually then bringing them together. My focus as a producer was to capture the live excitement of the band on record, as this is something we’ve never managed to do in the past. I wanted it to jump out of the speakers and attack you with power and energy whilst at the same time licking your face like an over excited puppy and make you smile and feel good. We love this record and we’re very proud of it! We made exactly the record we set out to make. Now it’s out there it’s like a child that leaves home and goes out into the world to have a life of it’s own. It’s great to hear stories from people telling us how it’s affected their lives in some way.
– Getting a bit into your new opus, I would first like you to tell us what does its title represent.
There’s always been a ‘larger than life’, fun, cartoon element to Wolfsbane. We couldn’t just call the album ‘Here’s a Wolfsbane Album to Stick in Your Ears’. We had to come up with some silly ‘over the top’ claim. Think people will get that.
– Its name gives the feeling you are a really united unit; is this the case of the creative process as well?
We bring our ideas together and when we play them it becomes Wolfsbane. Blue Sky for example went together and finished in about half an hour when we wrote it but Illusion of Love was a specific idea that we wanted to realise and took a lot of rewriting and rethinking to end up in the shape that we originally envisaged.
– This effort is full of energy; what does keep you motivated and with that energy that seems to come from a new band? It seems like you haven’t aged at all.
Thanks, that’s a real compliment. It is something that people have picked up on in quite a few of the reviews. I think it’s the spontaneity that we kept in the performances that retains the energy in our sound. We have such a great time playing together and I think that comes across in the music and makes us sound fresh.
– “Wolfsbane Save the World” stands out for being a really diverse record, with elements from different styles and with different musical instruments as well… Was this diversity something you wanted to get? Has the final output been as you expected it to be at first?
Yes! We didn’t want this record to be ten versions of the same song. We discovered that no matter what we play, the fact that it’s US playing makes it sound like Wolfsbane. This gave us the freedom to play all the different styles that are on the album without having to worry about it ‘being’ or ‘not being’ Wolfsbane. We intended to make this album really varied and interesting to listen to. We wanted to make an album that was full of surprises.
– If I’m not mistaken, “Smoke and Red Light” deals with a real experience but, what do some of the other lyrics on the album deal with or what are some of the main ideas covered on “Wolfsbane Save the World”?
Yes Smoke and Redlight is about the early days playing our local venue and all the sweaty madness! Starlight is a retrospective about the things in life that you realise over time are the only things that matter, just being happy whatever that means to you. Not wasting time being bothered about things that you can’t control and don’t really matter. Whereas Teacher is a fun song supposed to make you rock out and smile with no serious message. So the subject matter on WSTW is as varied as the music on it. We’re very serious about our music and we’re also very serious about having fun making it and want people to have a good time listening to it.
– We can also find on “Illusion of Love” a duet with female singer Givvi Flynn (and If I’m not wrong, she has done backing vocals for some other songs as well). Could you please tell us how did this cooperation start, who is she and what has he brought with her voice?
On Illusion of Love we wanted to do our take on a Bat Out of Hell style musical extravaganza. We wanted a real challenge in the middle of the album for us to write and people to listen to. I met Givvi when I was playing in Ginger’s (The Wildhearts) solo band and recorded with her when I engineered and produced some of Ginger’s solo albums. We needed a powerful female rock voice that had character for Illusion of Love so I immediately thought of her. She’s a very accomplished singer and vocal coach and a very nice person too! She’s also singing backing vocals on ‘Who are you now’.
– And finally, what are your near-future plans for WOLFSBANE? Do you plan touring? If so, wouldn’t this be hard due to the Blaze’s schedule? As he has just released a new album with his own band as well.
We toured last November and played the Hard rock Hell festival. We have no plans to tour month in and month out like Blaze does. We just do a few weeks here and there, some festivals and a few special appearances so it’s easy for us to fit it all in. We have a U.K tour planned for October and we are currently writing the next album.
– That has been everything from my side, thank you once more for taking your time. If you now want to add some last words; is your time.
Thanks for your time and interest in the band. Wolfsbane’s ethos is to be very serious about our music but to have a great time making it. We hope that people will have a great time listening to it. The good times and the positive things in life should be celebrated and Wolfsbane are the house band at that party!! We wanted the record to be full of the kind of ‘don’t give a fuckery’ that the world is missing and needs when the going gets tough!! So pull yourself a pint of ‘couldn’t give a shit’ and let’s ROCK!! Forget about things for a while! Put ‘Wolfsbane Save the World’ on the ‘fuck off’ sound system and turn the volume up to 12 (yes two more!!) and totally lose all control!! Come see us on tour. I’ll be at the bar. Mine’s a pint of Newcastle Brown!! Dom Lawson from Metal Hammer said of ‘Wolfsbane Save the World’ “its like being punched repeatedly in the face with a giant fist made out of sunshine and beer, that’s what it’s like!” And that’s what we wanted it to be like!! Available from www.wolsbanehms.com