MUSIC INTERVIEW: Life On The Road With…Monster Truck
Photo Credit: Matthew Guido
Rock quartet Monster Truck will soon embark on a huge 25-date headline tour, set to take them far and wide across the UK and Europe in support of their latest album True Rockers. We caught up with vocalist/bassist Jon Harvey ahead of the tour to hear his top tips and past stories from the road.
Favourite thing about touring:
My favourite thing about touring is exploring new cities. And I love going back to cities that I’ve been before because I know which places to go.
Least favourite thing about touring:
My least favourite thing is definitely the inevitable exhaustion. I think as a singer, naturally my body eventually gets worn out. There’s only so much screaming you can do without tiring the vocal chords. So it’s a delicate balance.
Five essentials for the road:
Chaga mushroom – Chaga is an immune system booster. I started taking it a year or so ago, and I’ve felt better ever since, and have yet to get a cold.
Good shoes – I bring a few pairs of shoes every tour. Runners, boots and casual street shoes typically. All of them are the most comfortable I could find. Lots of standing day to day folks.
Tracksuit – I need to have a tracksuit for the relaxing moments of tour. Travel days, off days, a tracksuit is my happy place. Haha.
Water – Hydration is the most important thing for me. I try to drink water all day, even when I’m not thirsty. There’s no way you can feel good in life without TONS of water.
Acoustic guitar – I do a lot of my writing on the road. It’s a good place to get into a creative mindset, and it’s a place where I finalise a lot of my arrangements. I write everything on an acoustic first because if it’s heavy on an acoustic guitar, it’s heavy on everything.
Favourite way to pass time:
I like to pass my time in galleries and museums. It’s funny, if I’m not tired I walk the entire city and check out as much as I can. If I’m tired, I stay on the bus and watch movies. But nine times out of ten the guitar is about a foot away from me.
Well one of my most memorable moments was playing the Roundhouse the first time we ever played London. I remember it like it was last night. We supported Vista Chino (which was basically Kyuss) and for some reason we were absolutely on fire. One of the best shows of my life. I’ll never forget the vibe in that room. It was electric.
I think my most hilarious moment wasn’t that funny at the time, but now it is. We had just finished supporting Nickelback in Vienna, and we were outside after the show having a drink. I turned to Chad and said, “dude, any secrets on songwriting?” He turned to me and said, “make sure none of the parts suck.”
My most embarrassing moment happened like two days ago. I had been feeling tired for a few days and not sleeping so great. Staying up too late and not providing myself the down time I need. We had a packed house in Fredricton. I felt a bit hoarse hitting the stage but went up anyway. Well by the time we finished the first song my voice was GONE. We were all scrambling and having rushed meeting with the promoters, and we ended up asking the crowd if they didn’t mind singing. We played all of our singles and they sung every word as loud as they could. Hundreds of people saved my ass. I owe that crowd. Big time.
The thing I thought was most outrageous was one time we played a Harley Davidson event at the Bell Centre in Montreal. We kinda did a sound check, it was pretty vague what was going on, but we had a stage time and we were clear on what we had to do. They told us motorcycles were gonna be driving through the middle of the stage, but they forgot to mention the backup dancers that appeared behind us. Nothing happened cause we noticed them at the last second, but the way we flail around we coulda killed em. Scared the shit out of me.
The most drunk I’ve been was in Boston in 2013. We were on tour with Slash (SMKC), and found out that Lemmy was coming to the show that night. I was losing it. The Legend. In the hallway. Outside our dressing room. So the very excitable me starts pounding vodka crans for some reason. I ended up meeting Lemmy, but got more and more drunk. It was not great. I ended up falling over right in front of Slash and like 300 fans. This is a grim portrayal but it’s foggy at best. I guess this could also have been my most embarrassing and most outrageous as well.
I think my most rewarding moment is every time we hit the stage to a packed house. No matter the capacity, a packed house is electric. The anticipation of something special happening. It’s the drug I crave. It’s why anyone ever goes on tour.
See Monster Truck live at one of the following dates:
Thu 18th – BRISTOL, UK – O2 Academy
Fri 19th – BIRMINGHAM, UK – O2 Academy 2
Sat 20th – MANCHESTER, UK – O2 Academy 2
Mon 22nd – GLASGOW, UK – SWG3
Tue 23rd – NEWCASTLE, UK – O2 Academy 2
Thu 25th – NOTTINGHAM, UK – Rescue Rooms
Fri 26th – NORWICH, UK – Waterfront
Sat 27th – LONDON, UK – Electric Ballroom
Mon 29th – LUXEMBOURG, LU – Rockhal
Tue 30th – ANTWERP, BE – Kavka
Wed 1st – AMSTERDAM, NL – Melkweg
Fri 3rd – COLOGNE, DE – Kantine
Sat 4th – FRANKFURT, DE – Gibson
Mon 6th – MUNICH, DE – Backstage Werk
Tue 7th – ZURICH, CH – Dynamo
Wed 8th – MILAN, IT – Legend
Fri 10th – SAVIGNY LE TEMPLE, FR – L’Empreinte
Sat 11th – VAURÉAL, FR – Le Forum
Tue 14th – WARSZAWA, PL – Hydrozagadka
Thu 16th – VIENNA, AT – Chelsea
Fri 17th – BERLIN, DE – Huxleys
Sat 18th – HAMBURG, DE – Ubel & Gefahrlich
Mon 20th – COPENHAGEN, DK – Pumpehuset
Wed 22nd – OSLO, NO – John Dee
Thu 23rd – STOCKHOLM, SE – Debaser Strand