Interview: Josh Rand of Stone Sour
Stone Sour has been secured as one of the artists to lead The Good Things Festival that’s coming down under in December. Currently touring the U.S. in support of their latest album “Hydrograd” before heading back to Australia. Josh Rand took some time out of his busy schedule to chat about the upcoming appearance on the new festival.
It’s been just over a year since you’ve toured Australia & you’re already coming back as part of the Good Things Festival. Are you guys excited?
Oh yeah, we are beyond excited. We were actually going to end our tour cycle in November and this opportunity came up and we couldn’t say no. We are excited to be able to come back down for a second time on a record and play Australia. It’s the perfect thing for us as we love coming down there. The fans down there have been so great to us over the years. To end the entire tour cycle to be co- headlining a brand-new festival down there, we couldn’t ask for much more, it’s awesome.
Do you know what we can expect from this new festival?
Going off of the line-up, in some ways people feel like it’s a replacement to soundwave, which was one of my favourite festivals that I’ve ever played, I think it’s going to be awesome. From our side, the great thing is since it’s been a year since we played down there, in that course of time we’ve added so many new songs and rotated stuff out of our set list, that I truly feel like by the time we got down there we will be able to build the best set list that we’ve had on the entire record cycle. As we speak we are discussing what the production side of things will be like for us down there. We are excited to be a part of this festival.
Hydrograd was released in June 2017 and now a year later we’re getting the deluxe version, why the long wait?
Well really the deluxe all came about because we have all this extra content. It really came down to that we had so much extra content and we felt the quality of it was good enough to justify doing a deluxe version. We felt the second cd in the deluxe stood on its own to be released. I’ll be honest, I’m not a huge fan of this stuff usually because I think a lot of times it’s just a cash grab or ways to rip off your die-hard fans. I really felt this time around, it was definitely worth doing it. I felt that this is the best deluxe/special edition that the band has ever done because there is so much good content on it. Burn one turn one which is the single that we chose for the lead track for the second disk is a great song. I think it is a good enough song and it should have been on Hydrograd, the actual release from last year. We didn’t want to just hammer everybody with it even though we recorded 19 tracks for that record, that’s a lot of songs. In today’s world it’s all about attention span and that’s why you are seeing all these bands cut their number of tracks on CD’s to 10. I mean I think back to the late 90’s when bands were like “how much music can we put onto a cd, oh 79 minutes, great we’ll fill it”. Now it’s back to the early 80s where there’s 30 – 40 minutes max, no more than 10 songs. We were already pushing it with having 15, so it made sense to hold off with the other 4. The main thing is the quality of the content you are putting out there, I think that the bonus disc is worth being sold as a disc on its own.
Are you guys working on material for you next album?
No, I mean we are always writing ideas and stuff. Right now, the truth of the matter is Corey is working on the new Slipknot album. I’m sure we will work on stuff off and on, but there are no definite plans of anything except for possibly there might be a live record next year, but that is not 100% confirmed yet.
When you started playing music you played Bass, what made you move to Guitar?
Really it was Paul Gilbert, the guitarist in Mr Big and Racer X. When I was playing bass I slowly got into the technical bass players which Billy Sheehan is the greatest rock bass player ever. A friend of mines brother was like “hey have you heard the band Racer X’ so I checked them out and it was one of those life changing moments for me.
You’ve known Corey Taylor since you were 15; do you have any memories that stand out from touring with him?
The memory that will always stand out for me, Metallica is my favourite band and has been since I was like 10 years old and we got to be direct support for them in Italy for the Heineken Festival when Stone Sour first started back in 2002. It was Metallica’s coming back, after James’s rehab and after Jason left the band. I just remember sitting there going “this is surreal to me” not only stone sour is happening, and we are in Italy playing in front of 60000 people, but to be on stage and watch Metallica. I just remember sitting up there and it was a long way from 10 years earlier of us playing Enter Sandman in the basement.
You have been touring for many years in different countries and venues. Do you have a favourite venue to play?
Honestly, I don’t necessarily know of a favourite venue, but we did this crazy show a couple of days ago and it only held 400 people and I forgot cos you know we’ve been a part of these huge packages where we are out playing with Ozzy Osbourne right now and we are playing in front of on average 15000 people a night. I forgot how much fun it was to play a club. You know not having any barricade and having literally people touching my feet, it’s insane. I forgot all about it, but we had so much fun. We love playing period, but it’s just a different energy in a smaller room. The small club shows are just a reminder of how much fun it can be, we were stripped down, there was no production. It was just like starting all over again. We had a blast.
Finally, do you have any words for your Aussie Fans before you head back down under?
I’m thankful that you guys give us so much love to give us the opportunity to be able to come back down for the second time on a record cycle. It’s pretty amazing and we’re really looking forward to it. We are working on putting something special and unique together for you guys.
Written by Tam Schilling