The last time The Offspring paid us a visit, the year was 2013. The legendary pop-punks had freshly unleashed their most recent album, 2012’s Days Go By, and in celebration they delivered us not one but two Australian tours; one for Soundwave at the start of the year, and the other for the down under leg of Vans Warped Tour at the end of it.
Needless to say, 2013 was a good year to be an Aussie Offspring fan. And, tbh, a fan of heavy music in general.
Flash-forward three years, however, and both festivals were six feet under. And the domestic punk, rock and metal festival scene was essentially ~gone away~.
But over the past twelve months, we’ve seen a heartening resurgence in the barren scene, with old events expanding and new events popping up to fill the void that Soundwave and Warped left in our hearts. Not the least of which is brand new East Coast-roaming summer fest Good Things, which The Offspring will be coming down under to headline this December atop a staggeringly good bill that also features Baby Metal, Stone Sour, All Time Low and loads more.
And in keeping things symmetrical — after giving us two tours off the back of their last album — The Offspring may just be about to give us two new albums off the back of this next tour (!!!)
We caught up with guitar champ Noodles to talk about all the ~Good Things~ that The Offspring have in store for us this year.
Music Feeds: We’re so stoked to hear you guys are coming back to Aus! It’s been a few solid years since we’ve seen you make the long flight down under – I think the last time was for Aussie Warped Tour back in 2013?
Noodles: Yeah… I know that we started doing the [Soundwave] tour in January and then we finished in December doing the Warped Tour, and it was a great way to both start and end a year – going to Australia!
MF: Do you have any particularly fond memories of those last trips?
Noodles: I remember drinking a bunch of beer at a Bondi Beach place! Crown Lager would be one of my favourite [beers] — actually VB! I love VB! I drink a lot of ’em.
MF: That could be considered controversial!
Noodles: In all seriousness though, both of those tours were just phenomenal. Soundwave was a huge one, and that was just so much fun! And then Warped Tour was a little bit more low key. The Soundwave one was just incredible, there were so many great bands on that big stage like Slayer and Anthrax.
MF: And where do you think Good Things is going to fit on that Spectrum? Does it seem like more of a Warped or a Soundwave vibe?
Noodles: You know what, I haven’t heard that many details about it yet — it’s all just kinda coming together! But for me, they just said “Hey, you want to go to Australia?” and I’m like “Yes, yes I do” [laughs] It was just kind of a no-brainer because it’s been way too long.
MF: We’ll we’re all stoked – and the other exciting thing about this tour is that you guys are going to be playing the Smash album in full!
Noodles: Yeah, that’s right! So what we’ll usually do is go out and do Smash in its entirety then come out and do a few songs from other stuff, ’cause otherwise that’s just like a 40 minute set [chuckles]. So yeah, we’ve done it a few times now. We’ve also done Ignition in its entirety, and I’m pretty sure we’ve also done Ixnay [On The Hombre] and Americana as well. But this time we’re 25 years from Smash — or pretty much so — so we’re gonna do that, I think it’ll be fun!
MF: Yeah, insane! Does it feel like 25 years to you?
Noodles: When we’re playing those songs? No… Thinking back, it’s amazing. How fortunate to be able to go out after all these years and do this? It’s incredible.
MF: I’m pretty excited to hear you guys open a set with ‘Time To Relax’!
Noodles: [chuckles] Yeah, we try to throw in all the little extras and tidbits in there for sure.
MF: I have to ask the obligatory question – how are you guys going with the new record? You’ve been in the studio with Bob Rock this year, right?
Noodles: Yeah, we’ve been working with Bob on and off on this record for five years, really. But we had a real productive string this year, in the earlier part of the year, we had probably five or six songs that we did just right then and it started to feel like “maybe this is the direction we should be going with this record? A little bit more straightforward Offspring stuff”. So we have a whole record or more worth of stuff here — I think we’re looking at making two records out of it — you know, like, splitting ’em up and coming out with a pretty straightforward punk and rock record that sounds like us, and then maybe saving some of the crazier stuff for another record.
MF: Oh! What can you tell me about this “crazier stuff” you speak of? What’s it all sounding like?
Noodles: Well there’s always a song that we do [on each album] — because it’s just fun for us to experiment in the studio where we take different sounds — so sometimes we’ll try some piano or keyboard kind of sound… We have a song that has a lot of horns in it, like a full-on horn section in it, and we’ve been working on that song for a long time. I think that one might be the the one kind of wacky one that we keep on this record, well at least I hope it is! Like, we love this song, it’s such a fun song. It’s a risk to put it out there, but at some point you’ve just gotta say “screw it” man and just go with what you’re feeling and let the chips fall where they may. So I think we’re gonna do that.
MF: Well we’re pumped to hear it! On that note — are there plans to release any new music before this year?
Noodles: I don’t know, we were hoping to — we were hoping to have something, maybe like a record deal in place this Fall [that’s Spring in Australia], but we don’t have anything — you know, any deals — going. We’ve been talking with a bunch of different labels and distributors, but so far nothing’s really stuck. So we’re not sure how we’re gonna do this. I mean at this point, the way things are distributed, we’re thinking we could even maybe do it ourselves?
MF: Ooooh you totally could! Just cut out the middle man. And what about live — can we expect to hear you guys bust out any new material at these Australian shows this December?
Noodles: We’ve actually been playing a new song every night! We started doing it in Europe and we’ve been doing it every night on this current tour — it’s a song called ‘It Won’t Get Better’ and it’s just kind of like a straightforward Offspring song. You know, when you’re doing new stuff, you never know how it’s gonna go over live, and also the biggest concern is there’s gonna be some really crappy phone recording of it [laughs] But we’ve done it enough that I think there’s probably some decent recordings out there? But yeah we’ve been doing that — we’ve also been doing a cover of a fairly well known Australian rock n’ roll band — we’ve been having some fun with that.
MF: Ooooh! Any hints or are we going to have to get on YouTube and do some investigating ourselves?
Noodles: [Laughs] Yeah it’s not hard to find either! We’ve been doing a cover of AC/DC’s ‘Whole Lotta Rosie’. Sped it up a little bit, in keeping with what we do. I’ve actually had to try to slow down my playing because I get all excited and play too fast.
MF: AC/DC definitely has that effect on people!
Noodles: It’s so much fun to play and those guys are legends, obviously. I don’t know if we’ll dare do it in Australia! But maybe [chuckles].
Catch The Offspring headlining Good Things festival this December. Tickets are on sale right now!