Festivalphoto spoke to Will Stapleton from Jettblack before the bands performance at the Relentless Garage in London.
Festivalphoto: Your debut album (Get your hands dirty) came out in 2010. When can we expect a second album?
Will: Its planned for May time. There's no specific date yet, but that's what we're heading for. We've got a single coming out two or three weeks before that as well.
Festivalphoto: Is there a title for the album yet?
Will: There is but for some reason we haven't told anyone yet. I'm not sure if I'm allowed to say it, I don't know why not. It's still being decided but we'll announce that pretty soon.
Festivalphoto: How would you say the new album differs from the first one?
Will: Not by a lot. It's still definitely us. There's more diversity in a random way. There's some heavier songs and some nicer songs, but it's still full of sleaze to be honest so its the same thing really.
Festivalphoto: What's the writing process - is it a group effort or one or two main songwriters?
Will: What happens is Jon and I, because we both sing, we write an equal number of songs. It kind of works out that we write songs on our own individually, then bring them to practice and the creases get ironed out. With the new album there are seven songs that I've written and seven songs that Jon has written. Miraculously we're on the same wavelength and it all sounds like the same band, so thats the way we do it. I read that some bands spend hours with five people in a room just trying to bash one song out and there are too many egos and decisions in the way. If we do it ourselves it seems to work anyway.
Festivalphoto: It's finding what works right for you.
Will: Yeah, and the the other two just get told what to do. Thats a lie really.
Festivalphoto: OK for anyone who hasn't heard your music yet, how would you describe it?
Will: I'd say its all from metal backgrounds, not new metal, old school metal, but a sexy version, so Sex metal. Good songs - anthems hopefully.
Festivalphoto: What bands do you think have influenced your music the most?
Will: All the band know I'm pretty obsessed with Ugly kid Joe, so I'm pleased to see they've got back together. That's my biggest influence, since "Americas least wanted", when was that...when I was 12. I still listen to that at least once a week, I'm not bored with it. So, Ugly Kid Joe, Metallica, Skid Row, and Extreme are the core four for me. There are others - Whitesnake, Mr Big, but thats from early on, they inspired me to play guitar to start off with.
Festivalphoto: With Skid Row, is it the old stuff with Seb Bach you listen to or the new stuff as well?
Will: I've not heard any of the new stuff. The only chance I nearly got to hear it was at Hard Rock Hell the year before last, but we were playing at exactly the same time, so I didn't get to see them. Seb was apparently hard to get on with but you can't really replace him.
Festivalphoto: Do you get much of that frustration when you're playing festivals - "I'd love to see them, but the times mean I cant"
Will: Sometimes I think, maybe naively, as soon as we're announced for something like Download, I'm like "Yes that means I get free tickets to see the rest of the bands", I dont think "Yes, I'm playing" then I suddenly remember "oh shit, I'm playing as well". Yeah we do get clashes with other bands, but you can deal with it.
Festivalphoto: As well as playing you also have time spent doing interviews and stuff.
Will: Yeah, Sonisphere last year was pretty manic, we didnt eat anything from 9am till 9pm and just survived on beer and red bull. We had four gigs in the same day as well. It's quite enjoyable though, it's really good, an amazing day. Once that was out of the way it was just full steam ahead, just enjoying yourself.
Festivalphoto: Any festivals for this year?
Will: None confirmed yet but in talks I think, although there was a rumour we might be playing Hard Rock Hell. We couldnt play last year as we'd played the year before, so I'm hoping that happens, but its not confirmed.
Festivalphoto: You've played Download, Sonisphere, and Hard Rock Hell - when you first started did you ever expect to be playing festivals like that so early in your career?
Will: I think it's up and down, some years you get more than others. Yes it's happened quickly, the first time we played Download we were quite high up on the Red Bull stage, that was two or three years ago, so to go not from nowhere but we were pretty unknown, to that huge crowd was outrageous, and Black Stone Cherry were playing at the same time yet people still came to see us
Festivalphoto: Are you looking forwards to tonight?
Will: Yeah, all three bands are quite different but we're all the same genre, the same label, and all good friends as well, so yeah its going to be amazing.
Festivalphoto: Which do you prefer and why - CD or legal mp3 downloads ?
Will: I'm still CD's. I haven't got an ipod or mp3 player, I still like CDs. I've got a few downloads but then I burn them onto CD anyway. I love the artwork. I like vinyls but havent got a vinyl player.
Festivalphoto: What was the last album you bought?
Will: I hardly ever buy anything, I just get passed stuff, but the last one I bought...It would probably be the Allanah Myles best of CD. I was intrigued, I love "Black Velvet", a classic track, she's a good rock singer but it wasnt the greatest of greatest hits really, a lot of filler on there
Festivalphoto: OK thanks for your time.