Clutch Are Wary Of Nostalgia As They Near Their 30th Anniversary Together

  • Written by 
  • Friday, 14 February 2020 14:00
Published in Music  
Clutch play Download Festival at Melbourne Showgrounds 20 March and The Domain (Sydney) 21 March. Clutch play Download Festival at Melbourne Showgrounds 20 March and The Domain (Sydney) 21 March.

As US alternative metal mainstays Clutch approach 30 years as a band, the milestone seems oddly unreal to frontman Neil Fallon.

“Disbelief is probably the first thing,” Neil laughs, “it'd probably explain what happened to my face. It's been a blast and for many years I thought it was like living day-to-day,” he continues.

“We stuck to our guns and we have Clutch fans to acknowledge as a big thank-you because if they didn't continue to come to these shows year after year, we wouldn't be able to do this. So it's a mixture of being bullheaded and also lucky to have a fan base like that.”

As Clutch pump the brakes on their US touring for the time being, Australian fans will at last get their fill of the band, not to mention their latest album 'Book Of Bad Decisions', when Clutch perform as part of Download Festival in Sydney and Melbourne.

These will be Clutch's only Australian shows. “It's been a long time since we've been [to Australia],” Neil says.

“I'm not trying to overstate the obvious that it geographically presents challenges and we haven't had the chance because we've done so much touring in the US and Europe.

“I would like to add some club shows but if you've got to be there just in a short period of time, [playing festivals are] the most efficient way to get in front of as many pairs of ears as you can at once.”


He goes on to say that even after nearly three decades, performing in front of their adoring fans remains the greatest drive for Clutch. “For us selling records is all well and good, but the real soul-satisfying aspect of it is seeing a crowd of people singing along, that's what gets us going,” he says.

With 'Book Of Bad Decisions' released in 2018, Clutch are nearing the pointy end of the album's touring cycle and will soon begin work on their next record. “We did a lot of touring on this [album] and for all intents and purposes we are winding it down,” Neil says.

“We've started to think about writing the next record over the next year or so, so when that will come out it's way too early to tell but I think that's the fuel that gets us going, is the excitement of seeing what's around the corner, creatively.”

As for marking their 30th anniversary as a band in 2021, where many bands may retreat to producing a 'best of' release, Neil says the best way to honour both the legacy of Clutch and the support of their fans is to press ahead and keep making new music. “I think we've always been a little wary of nostalgia,” he says.

“I think maybe the most appropriate way to mark that is to continue what we've been doing for the past 30 years – put out another album. We were on many different labels in the '90s so we can't really do a retrospective, but I think just doing what we do is the best way to acknowledge that.”

Clutch play Download Festival at Melbourne Showgrounds 20 March and The Domain (Sydney) 21 March.

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