Toadies Frontman Lewis Details New Album, Due Aug. 19
Exclusive: In a chat with SPIN.com, the reunited post-grungers' Vaden Todd Lewis unveils band's first effort in seven years, entitled No Deliverance, and announces Lollapalooza gig!
Toadies fans, your dreams have come true! After a seven-year absence, the recently reunited Fort Worth, TX-based alt-rockers will return Aug. 19 with No Deliverance, their third studio album to date and first effort since 2001’s Hell Below / Stars Above. The trio, hot on the heels of a string of well-received reunion gigs, also have a mostly sold-out summer jaunt ahead of them — including a headlining slot at Lollapalooza Saturday Aug. 2!
Catching wind of the exciting news, which has been long debated in the Toadies’ devout fan community, SPIN.com caught up with frontman Vaden Todd Lewis to get the lowdown on the band’s reunion, new record, and future plans.
“I’ve learned to never say never,” Lewis explains of the new effort, which the band didn’t considered until August of ’07, well after Lewis’ other project, the Burden Brothers, was on indefinite hiatus. “When I made the decision to disband [the Toadies] in ’01 I figured that was it… [but] I got the itch, so I called up Rez [drummer Mark Reznicek] and Clark [Vogeler, guitarist] and asked them if they would be interested in doing another album.”
And as soon as the formalities were out of the way, the material began to flow. “Once I decided to jump I started writing,” Lewis says, “stuff just came out of me while writing in my home studio… so the oldest ones [songs] are seven months old.” Next stop, the studio, where the band — which exploded on the success of 1994’s debut record Rubberneck, and its brash, catchy-as-all-hell single “Possum Kingdom” — have spent the past six to seven weeks. “We did the drums and most of the bass at Music Lane in Austin,” Lewis continues. “The rest was done at Fort Worth Sound… [a] cool new studio in my hometown.”
The result: No Deliverance, a collection of new tunes, produced by David Castell (Burden Brothers, Blue October), that Lewis confirms the band are now mixing for the Aug. 19 release date. “For this record I really tuned into what got me started as a musician,” he comments on its sound, “it’s the most bare knuckle record I’ve been a part of… don’t expect any cello.”
Amongst the album’s tracklist: title track “No Deliverance,” a tune about “the obsession with one’s fate,” “So Long Lovey Eyes,” which was “written during an intense argument with my wife,” and the first song Lewis penned for the record, “Don’t Go My Way.” “I wrote it during a pretty dark time, and it’s a warning to my daughter to stay away from the music business,” says Lewis. (The Toadies had a tumultuous relationship with past label Interscope, which scrapped their second record Feeler, and sent the band back to the studio. Three years later sophomore set Hell Below / Stars Above dropped. Soon after, the Toadies’ relationship with Interscope was over.)
But overall, Lewis, with the support of grass roots Texas-based indie label Kirtland Records on his back, has a new outlook, moving forward with the Toadies in positive motion. And notably Lewis is thrilled for the band’s forthcoming album-supporting tour (“Hell yeah!” he blasts), set to kick off in August, and for what the Toadies, especially after all these years, can offer fans and the music industry that no other rock band can: “Balls. A ton of balls.”