A-SIDES WITH JON CHATTMAN: VOLCANO GIRLS VERUCA SALT SET TO ERUPT AGAIN
With apologies to L.L. Cool J, we all know how “comebacks” work. They usually, um, don’t. You know the drill – a band breaks-up, disappear for awhile, and tour in support of a new album that fails to capture that old magic. Veruca Salt don’t fit that mold, and although they just released their first new material in over 18 years, it doesn’t seem like they ever left – at least for me. “Seether.” “Volcano Girls.” “Aurora.” These are just some tracks that have been a part of the soundtrack to most of my adult life, and it feels like many tracks from the alt-rock band could fit on radio today since so many of their songs never left the airwaves. That said, boy is it cool that the band’s original lineup (Nina Gordon, Louise Post, Steve Lack, and Jim Shapiro) are back with two new singles “It’s Holy” and “Museum of Broken Relationships” – originally was released on Record Store Day, and joyfully blindsided us. More is to come! I chatted with Veruca‘s Nina and Louise and talked all about their comeback, which I won’t call it. Head nod Ladies Love J.
It’s insane that it’s been nearly two decades since we got new music from you guys. Does it feel that long to you? Longer perhaps?
Louise: No, now that we are back together and have just finished tracking our new album, it does not feel like a long time at all. In fact, it feels almost like no time has passed.
Convincing one band member to regroup is one thing, having all four originals onboard is almost unheard of. How’d the “comeback” take flight?
Louise: We all got together two years ago and realized we still really liked one another, for starters. I don’t think any one of us thought this would ever happen. In fact, I’m sure we didn’t. But it became clear after the first rehearsal that we had a lot more to do together.
Nina – your song “Tonight and the Rest of My Life” is amazing. Just simply amazing. That said, it was featured in the trailer for Captain Corelli’s Mandolin. Louise – does she lose some street cred for that?
Nina: Thank you.
Louise: Do I lose street cred for not knowing what that is?
Nina: No, you gain even more. You mean the movie, right? OK, just checking.
“Seether” got a lot of buzz for what the song was really about. You vaguely answered it in “Volcano Girls,” which is the best song ever by the way, care to weigh in on what it means a little more? I mean seriously it’s reached almost “You’re So Vain” heights.
Nina: Well, obviously it’s about Mick Jagger, James Taylor, Warren Beatty and Louise Post.
Why’d you guys disband in the first place? How has growing up helped you guys deal with each other on the road again?
Nina: Louise’s horse bit my horse. Horse bites are serious. It was a very difficult time. But now we are all much better at communicating, and that is extremely helpful in the studio and on the road.
Veruca Salt was such an epic name for a band back in the 1990s. Did it lose any value with the creepy Johnny Depp version of Willy Wonka in your opinion?
Nina: No, I don’t think so. Veruca Salt wasn’t so bad in that one. And the name Veruca Salt still stands for the same fine qualities we can all get behind today: rudeness, impatience, narcissism, and entitlement.
Lastly, in my opinion, it doesn’t get any better than 1990s alt-rock. How did it feel to be part of what I consider to be a golden era of rock?
Louise: Oh God, are we part of an era?
Nina: I guess we are. It was golden, but this one is too.
Veruca Salt – “Volcano Girls”
About A-Sides with Jon Chattman:
Jon Chattman’s music series features celebrities and artists (established or not) from all genres performing a track, and discussing what it means to them. This informal series focuses on the artist making art in a low-threatening, extremely informal (sometime humorous) way. No bells, no whistles – just the music performed in a random, low-key setting followed by an unrehearsed chat. In an industry where everything often gets overblown and over manufactured, Jon strives for a refreshing change.