It’s fair to say that it’s been a great year for Norfolk based rockers Bad Touch.
Following the release of the band’s sophomore album, Truth Be Told these British road warriors have toured relentlessly with the likes of both King King and Broken Witt Rebels as well as making prestigious festival appearances at the likes of Ramblin’ Man Fair and Weyfest. Bad Touch has been building momentum along the way.
The five-piece will round out 2017 with a support tour opening for their good friends and Southern rock royalty The Kentucky Headhunters before embarking on their own headline tour alongside Mollie Marriot in November. Bad Touch will end this incredible year with an appearance at Planet Rockstock.
National Rock Review recently caught up with the band’s frontman Stevie Westwood before embarking upon the band’s tour with The Kentucky Headhunters to find out about Bad Touch’s recent studio activities, their forthcoming single with Mollie Marriott as well as discussing their current touring plans.
NRR: Obviously, you’ve been on tour this summer, you’ve been doing festivals like Weyfest and Ramblin’ Man. I was just wondering how have the shows been going so far?
Stevie: Yeah, really good mate, we’re having a great time. So it’s been nice to go out and play a couple of different shows and play in front of a few different people and hopefully gain a few more fans. So it’s been a bit weird at the moment, because we’ve had a week off, so I’m feeling a bit disjointed, I’m not quite sure what’s going on but we’ve played a few shows ahead of the couple of tours that are coming up to get ourselves psyched up and ready.
NRR: Obviously, it’s been a very hectic year for you guys. You’ve been out on the road with the likes of King King and all manner of bands. I just wondered what has been the highlight of your touring year so far?
Stevie: Ah, King King was great, lovely chaps. So we’ve been out with Broken Witt Rebels, great guys again. It’s all great, you know what I mean – there’s no downer because it’s like your dream, it’s what you want to do, so just having the chance to do it is a gift in itself. Yeah, just being on tour with my mates. I say no real highlights, everyone has been great and we’ve just been playing some bigger and better shows, so what more can we want.
NRR: Obviously, the band has gone full circle with regards to guitarists. Originally you had Rob Glendinning who left the band at the start of the year. Rob recommended Harry Slater who joined the band and now Harry has left and Rob is back. I was just wondering what is it like to have Rob back in the band?
Stevie: Oh, it’s great, we did miss him. I mean Harry is a great chap, unfortunately, he couldn’t commit to what we were doing. It was fun while it lasted, but what had to happen had to happen. Rob needed the time out to sort of evaluate himself and sort of realized what we are doing is what he wanted to do. You know it’s a scary thing, isn’t it? We are all in our mid-20’s now, all of that sort of questioning ourselves and saying oh god is this really what I want to be doing? But that timeout, really sort of clarified with Rob what he wanted and yeah, we are really chuffed to have him back, and it’s the old scene back together, so it’s great.
NRR: Like you mentioned you’ve got a couple of tours coming up between now and the end of the year. Firstly, you are going out with The Kentucky Headhunters again and I know you toured with those guys last year. I was just wondering what was your fondest memory of touring with The Kentucky Headhunters last time around?
Stevie: It was the kind of kinship that was formed. We only did I think it was six shows, it was only just over a week’s worth of shows that we did together and a sort of brethren sort of situation happened really quickly. They took a real interest in us and our music and us as people even. Richard and Doug, they sort of gave me pointers on my singing, which they didn’t have to do, I mean they’ve been doing it – I think they are celebrating 50 years at the moment. They’ve been doing it long enough that they don’t need to actually give a hoot about us, but they genuinely did and they are the most charming, genuine musicians you could ever wish to meet and it was just really, really nice that people like you. To think that they asked us back on their next tour is even nicer, I just can’t wait to see them again and catch up.
NRR: Obviously, also you are going to be hitting the road with Mollie Marriott. I noticed on Facebook recently that you guys have been in the studio together, you’ve been doing some collaboration. I was just wondering could you share with us any details about that?
Stevie: Yeah, it’s not a big secret, it should hopefully be coming your way fairly soon. We’ve recorded a single with Mollie ahead of the tour, I’m not going to tell you exactly what it is in case I get my wrist slapped, but it’s gonna be coming out very, very soon. Keep your ears peeled and I say it’s a proper foot stomper, and it sort of showcases us all. We all had a great time together and I say it hopefully comes across in the track. I hope you like it.
NRR: Do you think that you will perform the song together on tour?
Stevie: That is the plan at the moment, you know what these things are like, everything is a bit up in the air and kind of .. it’s down to the venue and kind of down to everyone sort of organising it and I’m the world’s worst organiser (laughing). The idea is that we will be doing it on the tour. Yeah but as I say we will see.
NRR: Obviously, you are going to be covering a lot of the same ground in a short period of time both with The Kentucky Headhunters and then with Mollie Marriott. I think some of the venues overlap almost. Do you think you will be switching up the show between the tours?
Stevie: Yeah, definitely. Obviously with The Headhunters we are going as the support, and so we’ve got to make our stamp in as short time as possible and then with the headline tour with Mollie we are gonna probably do a bit more showcasing, a bit more kind of like this show is being quite selfish – is about us and we are gonna try and go with that a bit more and maybe stretch it out a bit and sort of give you a bit more of a show, if you know what I mean.
NRR: Besides the track with Mollie Marriott, I understand when you were in the studio recently you were working on some other new material, is that right?
Stevie: Yeah, definitely we recorded some new material. Again, it’s a bit up in the air how we are going to release that at the minute. We are thinking maybe, we are not quite sure whether we want to release it now because we love it all really (laughing), or we want to hold back and save it for album number three, so we are in deliberations at the minute. The fact that you don’t know is probably because we don’t know (laughing).
NRR: Do you think that any of those new tracks will maybe drop into the set on the forthcoming tours?
Stevie: Yeah, I suspect probably more so in our tour rather than the one with The Headhunters, but yeah I hope so because we are really digging the new stuff and I can’t wait to get it in front of other people and see what they think as well.
NRR: I’ve got so many favourite tracks on your current album Truth Be Told, I was just listening to it again today and it’s such a great record and I really like it a lot. One of the tracks which I always go back to is “Heartbreaker Soulshaker”, it’s got such an infectious groove about it and it sounds great live as well. Generally, when I’m in the photo pit and I’m taking photographs, I will just find myself singing along to that and forget to take shots.
Stevie: (laughing) If we can make you forget to do your job then even better.
NRR: I just wondered if you could tell us a little bit about that song and the inspiration behind it?
Stevie: Oh, inspiration, it’s completely selfish, it’s about – I like to think our songs mean different things to everybody but this one is pretty out there. It’s just like I’m not here for a long time, I’m here for a good time kind of thing. I’m not going to be your husband, but I will show you a good time if you know what I mean (laughing).
NRR: Obviously, you’ve got a couple of tours coming up and I just wondered what is the band’s most essential item on your rider?
Stevie: Oh the rider, water.. (laughing). We don’t really have that much of a rider at the minute. It’s literally can we have some water please and maybe a few beers if you can spare the time? That’s pretty much it. We don’t have the whole roast goose and a wheel of blue cheese. Yeah, if we can get a few beers we are happy. So we are not asking for a thousand brown m&m’s or anything (laughing).
NRR: You need to take some inspiration from Axl Rose next time. … I know that Planet Rock has been supporting you over the years, obviously you did the Roadstars tour with them and you are going to be going out and doing Planet Rockstock at the end of the year.
Stevie: We are.
NRR: You must be looking forward to that?
Stevie: Definitely, that’s a highlight for me this year. I can’t wait to get out there and do that. I say yeah, it’s really nice of Planet Rock to have kind of adopted us and taken us under their wing and it’s really nice to go back and do Planet Rockstock again, I can’t wait.
NRR: Thank you so much for taking the time to chat to us today we really appreciate it and I will see you when you return to Newcastle.
Stevie: Cheers Adam, thanks for your time.
Bad Touch will be touring the UK throughout October with Kentucky Headhunters before embarking upon their first full UK headline tour in November alongside special guest Mollie Marriott.
Bad Touch on tour with The Kentucky Headhunters:
TICKETS: See Tickets, Alt Tickets & Ticket Web
6/10 Norwich, Waterfront
7/10 London, Boston Music Rooms
8/10 Manchester, Club Academy
9/10 Newcastle, Cluny
10/10 Glasgow, O2 ABC2
Bad Touch UK Tour Dates with Special Guest Mollie Marriott:
9/11 Sheffield, Plug
10/11 Leek, Foxlowe Arts Centre
11/11 Hard Rock Hell Festival *Bad Touch Only
16/11 Bristol, Tunnels
17/11 Manchester, Ruby Lounge
18/11 Newcastle, Cluny
19/11 Nottingham, Bodega
23/11 Glasgow, Stereo
24/11 Leeds, Brudenell
25/11 Coventry, Empire
26/11 London, Islington Academy
1/12 Norwich, Waterfront Studio
2/12 Southampton, Talking Heads
3/12 Planet Rockstock
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