Hoobastank to release ForNever
More than 500 invited fans of multi-platinum Island Records group Hoobastank packed the Wiltern Theatre in Los Angeles last week to celebrate the band's return to the front line. The private concert covered music from their career, and introduced a half-dozen songs from their upcoming fourth album. Among the latter was "My Turn," the lead new single which officially impacts October 14th at Alternative and Active Rock radio.
The new Hoobastank album, hits stores in January, 2009. "My Turn" will be available on iTunes October 14th. It was produced by Howard Benson, who produced All American Rejects, My Chemical Romance, 3 Days Grace as well as Every Man For Himself and The Reason, Hoobastank's Grammy-nominated double-platinum previous album.
"The Hoobastank machine is up and running again," announced lead singer-songwriter Doug Robb at the Wiltern. In addition to "My Turn," other songs checked at the Wiltern show from the new album included "All About You," "Don't Think I Love You," "The Letter," "So Close So Far," and "You're The One."
Release date: Unknown
Label: Island Records
Single: My Turn
Buy at: Amazon
"Thanks but I want more!" raved Doug Robb on Hoobastank's MySpace website, http://www.myspace.com/hoobastank. The band will play a Halloween eve (October 31st) show in Phoenix sponsored by KUPD radio.
Says, Robb: "Tomorrow will be the beginning of the next chapter for Hoobastank." The fourth chapter to be exact. it marks the official start of us returning to the road. What does that mean really? It means radio, video, internet, tours, interviews, tv shows, photo shoots and whatever else we're lucky enough to do. It means the hoobastank machine is officially starting up tomorrow… It'll take a second for it to get up to speed but it will eventually I promise you. it's the beginning of another journey for us and we're so thankful and honored that you the fans would want to come along… thanks for being so patient. This is just the beginning."
Prior to Every Man For Himself, Hoobastank delivered a true phenom with the RIAA double-platinum The Reason (released December 2003), the Island Def Jam Music Group's biggest and hottest-selling album of 2004. The title hit, "The Reason," 2004's longest-running rock single inside the Hot 100, hit #1 on the Modern Rock Tracks, Adult Top 40, and Top 40 Mainstream charts, and rose to #2 on the Hot 100. The song was heard by tens of millions when it was featured on the high-rated Friends retrospective special final episode (May 2004), and also on an episode of The O.C.. "The Reason" was nominated for Grammy awards as Song Of the Year and Best Pop Performance By a Duo or Group with Vocal, while The Reason was nominated as Best Rock Album.
“Yesterday I’ve learned from/Tomorrow is uncertain/So why can’t I just/Make my turn today.” “My Turn”
When a band has as much success as Hoobastank, the motivation to top itself must come from within. That renewed desire can be heard from the very first notes of “My Turn,” the first single from the group’s fourth Island Def Jam Music Group album, Fornever, which marks a return to the rock roots of their first two releases, the platinum-plus self-titled debut and the two-million-plus-selling The Reason.
“My Turn,” a self-motivational anthem that marks the band’s return to the airwaves, was Top 5 Most Added at Active Rock and #6 at Alternative even before its official impact with an alphabet soup of the country’s leading stations putting it in their rotation.
“We’re very hungry this time,” says vocalist/songwriter Doug Robb of the band, which came together in 1994, when he joined with a pair of his Agoura Hills high school classmates, Dan Estrin on guitar and Chris Hesse on drums. “Maybe there is a chip on our shoulder, because we have that fire in the belly again. We’re ready to do whatever we have to in order to get back to where we want to be. Even if we won’t come out and say so.”
Fornever was once again produced by longtime collaborator Howard Benson, who helmed the band’s last two albums, 2006’s gold-certified Every Man for Himself and 2004’s two-million-plus selling The Reason. The latter earned three Grammy nominations, including Best Rock Album as well as Song of the Year and Best Pop Performance by a Duo or Group for the title track, an international smash which went to #1 at Modern Rock, Adult Top 40 and Top 40 Mainstream and #2 on the Hot 100. The song was featured on the final episode of Friends, where it was heard by an audience of tens of millions, as well as on The OC. In fact, the song was so huge, it tended to overshadow the band itself. The band’s self-titled debut, released in 2001, was also a million-seller, producing a pair of Top 40 Mainstream hits in “Crawling in the Dark” and “Running Away.”
“We’ve accomplished everything we’ve ever dreamed about, including platinum albums, touring the world and getting nominated for awards,” says guitarist/songwriter Dan Estrin. “But getting a chance to do it all again is really exciting. We all have brand-new eyes and ears going into this, as well as an appreciation for what we’ve been through.”
Fornever, an album Robb describes as “about either the best aspects of relationships…or the worst. It’s either ‘I love you’ or ‘I hate you,’ and ‘What am I doing here?’ captures that return to the band’s bold, post-grunge, hard-edged sound. “My Turn,” inspired by a poem written by Doug’s older brother, is an ode to everyman or woman, someone who has worked all their life and is just looking to get the rewards they deserve, like the band itself.
“Don’t Think I Love You” starts with Dan’s piercing blues riffs, a tale Doug describes as dealing with a couple growing apart because one partner suddenly realizes the other has changed beyond recognition. “So Close So Far” was inspired by watching the war in Iraq on television, and imagining the anguish of being separated from your loved one, fighting in a foreign country. “You’re the One,” a song Robb wrote about proposing to his now-wife, started with a chord fingering Estrin never used before, a song inspired by some of the guitarist’s current listening faves, such as U2, Coldplay and Portishead. Another potential single is “The Letter,” which may end up becoming a duet in some future form, while “All About You” is already a live favorite. “Tears of Yesterday,” with a string arrangement by Beck’s father, composer David Campbell, is the curveball in the batch, based on Estrin’s piano riff, which he claims was inspired by his love of “quirky, cheesy ’80s television sitcom themes like Bosom Buddies.”
“The biggest difference is our mental attitude,” says Robb of recording the album. “The five years of constantly recording and touring honestly killed us. We were absolutely burnt. We had gone through a lot of band turmoil on our last album. We had to get our heads back to where they needed to be for the writing process on this record.”
“A successful band is like a puzzle where the right pieces have to fit together,” says Dan. “And our pieces weren’t fitting properly. We were beginning to take our success for granted.”
Taking almost 18 months off, Hoobastank went through a pair of management changes, and a few false starts before starting work in earnest on their fourth album.
“We just needed a break,” agrees drummer Chris Hesse. “When we came back, we were interested in being a band and playing music together.”
“It was a reeeeeeeeally long process,” says Doug about writing the songs for Fornever. “Nothing sounded or felt right at first. Maybe we were too relaxed, too self-satisfied with the last album. On this one, we wanted Howard to police us more, be more opinionated, force us to come up with our best stuff. We fought with him tooth and nail on The Reason, and those turned out to be positive, creative arguments which made the songs better.”
“It took a bit longer, but at the end of the day, what we came up with was worth it,” says Dan. “With time, the stuff got heavier and heavier.”
“Dan has a kind of love-hate relationship with Howard,” explains Doug. “But I think we all respect one another, which is what matters.”
“We did what was necessary for each song,” nods Dan. “If it turned out to be a heavy song, that was great. If it’s a slower, mid-tempo ballad, then that’s what we did.”
With Fornever’s in-your-face aggression and multi-layered songs, Hoobastank are playing to their fan base, not those fair-weather followers who flocked to “The Reason.”
“It’s like a make-or-break record for us,” says Hesse, describing the group’s urgency. “We approached it as if it were our last.”
“I just know what we’re capable of, when we’re not being lazy,” says Dan. “If all our pistons are working, we can do a lot of really good things in the future. Our tires may need a little air, but once they’re pumped up, it’s going to be sick. I’m confident in what we have the potential to do and what we will do.”
“At some point, you kind of have to check your ego at the door,” agrees Doug. “We’ve let go of any false illusions or swagger. We’re just grateful our true fans have remained with us.”
With Fornever, Hoobastank have gotten in touch with what originally motivated them, which has made them stronger than ever.
“It’s not all as novel as it used to be,” adds Chris. “But this point in our career is definitely something new. I don’t know if I’ve ever been this happy with an album. I’m more excited and proud than I’ve been since our first album.”
Hoobastank is Fornever.
meet the band: Hoobastank
Doug Robb: Lead vocals/rhythm guitar
Dan Estrin: Lead guitar/keyboards/backing vocals
Chris Hesse: drums/percussion
1. My turn
2. I Don't think I Love You
3. So Close, so far
4. All About You
5. The Letter
6. Tears of yesterday
7. Sick Of Hanging On
8. You're the one
9. Who The Hell Am I
10. You need to be here
11. Gone Gone Gone