A Conversation With ... Monster Truck
OK, there’s controversy circling the band, and sides have been taken. Artists make lousy choices. Would I hang with Kid Rock? Probably not. Nothing to do with politics, more to do with, why?
By Bill King
OK, there’s controversy circling the band, and sides have been taken. Artists make lousy choices. Would I hang with Kid Rock? Probably not. Nothing to do with politics, more to do with, why? There are further things to do in life than rail at every misspent word or inappropriate action. I’ve worked with serious crazies in my life, whose politics and behaviour are far out of my zone, but I’m a musician. We don’t get to elect who hires us. I’m a great fan of We the Kingdom, yet not big on sermonising.
Before we started separating bands and artists and stowing them into political and religious boxes, we rarely felt their beliefs. We understood Elvis lusted after Richard Nixon and drawers of pills; Little Richard was a minister, Ted Nugent executed anything bearing fur or feathers, and Lee Greenwood never said no. It was just the sound, performance and attraction of an artist or band that caught our ears. I would have never wanted to hang with Picasso or Hemingway, but dammit, they were and are epic in my life.
The moment I heard Monster Truck, I dug this band and the fact they are only miles down the Queen Elizabeth Highway or is that now the Charlesway, in Hamilton and that link to the beginnings of big stadium blues rock sound. Jon Harvey’s great vocals and the sturdy interplay between members speak for the celebrated band. I spoke with Harvey, who sat out the pandemic, on the band’s roots, direction for 2023. That’s where we begin on today’s FYIMusic News.ca podcast.
Monster Truck releases its epic, fourth full-length album Warriors on BMG and all streaming platforms.
The 10-track album, produced by multiple Grammy and Juno-winning producer Eric Ratz (Arkells, Big Wreck, Billy Talent), is everything you would expect from Monster Truck and more, bringing the band’s signature, riff-driven brand of rock to new heights.
The album will include the epic instant great track Fuzz Mountain which is available now. The lyrics are a testament to the mountain of distortion pedals used to record it.
Warriors will also include the recently released single, Get My Things & Go, a swampy, bluesy rock 'n roll blast to the face that is climbing the Canadian charts and is currently at #6 on Active Rock (MB) and #8 on Mainstream Rock (BDS). Additionally, Golden Woman, a fast-paced, unrelenting jam that marked the first track off the album and peaked at #6 on the iTunes Rock chart, can also be found on the album.
Since the release of their debut self-titled EP in 2010, Monster Truck, comprised of bassist and lead singer Jon Harvey, guitarist Jeremy Widerman, and keyboardist Brandon Bliss, has become known as one of Canada’s hardest-working rock 'n roll bands, a reputation they've cemented by touring relentlessly and consistently upping their game.
In 2011, the Canadian rockers released The Brown EP, featuring tracks that soon became staples on Canadian rock radio and set the stage for their debut full-length album Furiosity. After its release, Furiosity rose to success, reaching #13 on the Canadian charts and leading to a Juno Award for Breakthrough Group of the Year, and a nomination for Juno Rock Album of the Year.
The band continued to deliver new music in 2016 with the release of Sittin’ Heavy and hit the road again with over 150 shows over the next 18 months on their own and in arenas supporting Nickelback, Billy Talent, and Deep Purple on their final European tour. They later released True Rockers in 2018, which further cemented their reputation as a hard-rocking band respected by their peers and progenitors.
Monster Truck’s profile has grown substantially in North America, with the band landing headlining slots at Rock on the Range and Shiprocked in the US, and securing song placements for tracks Sweet Mountain River, Seven Seas Blues, and Old Train, which appeared in Ubisoft’s game, Rocksmith 2014, EA Sports’ NHL 13 and the hit TV series, Orphan Black. Additionally, Righteous Smoke was featured on EA’s NHL 17, and The Enforcer became the ‘goal song' for The Toronto Maple Leafs.