Whether you love ’em or you hate ’em, Los Angeles based rap metallers Hollywood Undead have gone from strength-to-strength since releasing their debut full-length album ‘Swan Songs’ ten years ago.
This year, they’re headlining The Pit stage at Reading & Leeds Festival, so we caught up with J-Dog and Danny Murillo backstage to talk about moshing, MySpace, a new album for January 2019, and melodic hard rock songs about cocaine. You heard it here first.
DP!: How does it feel to be headlining The Pit then, guys?
JD: Different, because this is one of our first alternative festivals. Normally we do metal festivals, and normally we’re billed higher up on main stages, so it’s interesting to play a festival that’s not familiar with us and also play a smaller stage, but we like it because it’s a new audience, so it’s awesome. This weather blows, though.
D: Yeah, it sucks. Though I’ve stolen a fork from catering.
DP!: That’s… good? So, you released ‘Another Level’ earlier this year, tell us about that. It’s almost a bit EDM.
D: Sure. I mean, we’re always messing around with different styles of music. We’ve always done that since the beginning. That one…. I’m not even on that song, but that shit pumps me up.
JD: It was one of those songs that when I showed up in the studio the guys had some of the chords written already, and it just made me wanna drink. I was like, “This is fucking awesome”, and when people hear it, it pumps them out. I still listen to it, and I don’t listen to a lot of our music.
D: I put that on and I feel like someone just kicked me right in the butthole.
DP!: Is that a direction that you’re looking to go in in future?
JD: Nah. We don’t really have a direction. There’s another song we released called ‘Gotta Let Go’, which is a lot more alternative sounding. And then people are like “Is that the direction you’re going in?”, but we never go in any direction. We just do what comes naturally.
DP!: So when will we hear more new music?
JD: The beginning of next year. We’re gonna make a new record. It’s only been a year since our last record (‘Five’ or ‘V’) came out, but we’ll probably have another one done by the time January hits. We’re just going a lot faster now. The world wants shit quick nowadays.
D: We’re writing, and when we get home from this little run we’re gonna get in the studio and get some stuff together. We’ve got a couple songs that we might put out there. We’ve got a song called ‘Bloody Nose’ that we might put out there. We want the world to hear that one. It’s heavy as fuck. It’s melodic though, it’s actually the most melodic hard rock song we’ve ever written.
JD: It’s about doing cocaine, so yeah.
DP!: You guys have been around since the MySpace days, and MySpace was a really great platform for emerging artists in its time. Are there any other platforms nowadays that you think have taken the place of MySpace for musicians?
JD: We still hear a lot “Oh, you guys were a MySpace band”, and we’re like, “Well, we write music too.” I liked MySpace because it had a whole music section, they had charts, it was great for music. I have no idea about Facebook now, but there is other stuff like SoundCloud.
D: SoundCloud is like the new MySpace platform nowadays, where any artist can put their music up there for free, and if it picks up… well, you’ve seen what can happen to those artists.
JD: Yeah, like Lil Pump. We watched him and it was fucking insane. That’s like the new punk rock music, kids were going nuts. We couldn’t believe it. There were mosh pits and shit.
DP!: Who are you guys looking to catch this weekend, other than Lil Pump?!
JD: I watched Kings Of Leon the other night. That guy’s got a cool voice.
D: We’re missing some of the artists that I wanted to see. I wanted to see Post Malone and The Used, ’cause they’re friends of ours, but there’s a bunch of artists. I like checking out everybody and just seeing what they’re all up to, and then I steal all their ideas.
JD: Yeah. That’s why we’re really here.
The band’s fifth full-length album, ‘Five’, is out now on MDDN/BMG.