Since releasing the beloved ‘90s rock hit ‘Seether’, Veruca Salt rose meteorically in the charts and received high critical acclaim. Their gold-selling debut album, American Thighs, dominated the charts with over a million record sales.
After breaking up in 1998 from what seemed to be a bitter stand-off between the two front-women, the original line-up – Nina Gordon, Louise Post, Jim Shapiro and Steve Lack – reformed in 2013 and were warmly welcomed back on stage after years of scarce correspondence.
Despite 15 years passing, guitarist and vocalist Gordon admits that once reuniting, everything just fell right back into place.
“It was so great and completely natural,” Gordon smiles. “We had many, many years to heal, so by the time we got into a room together after 14 years of not being in a room together, we were ready. The moment we started playing, it was like ‘wow this sounds like Veruca Salt, this is so weird’,” she laughs. “It sounded exactly like us. It felt really good.”
In 2015 they released their fifth studio album, Ghost Notes, which was the first to feature the band’s original line-up since 1997’s Eight Arms To Hold You and which served as a rollicking testament to the power of forgiveness – an ode to the band and their story, and what was to be their strongest record to date.
“We really told the story of our evolution and although we were looking back, we were also looking forward,” Gordon reveals. “It felt natural, like no time had passed, and yet we were older and wiser. A lot of the baggage and bad stuff was gone and a lot of the pressure we felt when we were in our 20′s and all eyes were on us, was gone.
“We felt free to be artists and I think that’s how we feel now. There’s a freedom that comes in so many ways; there’s the freedom that comes with age, time and perspective.”
Doing everything a young band coming of age in the grunge era could hope for – selling more than a million records, touring with alt-rock royalty Hole and PJ Harvey, and gaining critical acclaim for albums, the passion for music is still exactly the same – but it’s Veruca Salt’s new-found perspective and approach to music that has changed, with Post and Gordon both raising families and writing songs together for the first time.
“A couple of years ago Louise and I talked about how, and certainly when we wrote the songs of Ghost Notes, there was a feeling of ‘I don’t have the time to finish this song, can you finish it?’” Gordon reveals, “Back in the day, it would have been like ‘no no, this is my song, I want to write it from beginning to end’. We just share better now. We had problems with sharing like little kids do, nut then you get older and you realise it’s better to collaborate because you have support.”
Now Veruca Salt are returning to Australia for their very first A Day On The Green tour, as part of the almighty monster rock lineup alongside legends The Living End, Spiderbait, The Lemonheads, The Fauves and Tumbleweed.
“We were there [Australia] two years ago and it was great. We love it there! I feel like Australian fans are special – most musicians I know feel this way, it’s just something about it, we feel really welcome and loved so it’s always a nice little ego boost,” she laughs.
“Although this is a totally new ball-game – we’ve never done anything like it. We’ve done what you call a ‘shed-tour’ in the States which is similar and you play in these beautiful outdoor amphitheaters and rolling hills. Although I’ve never done something where people are sitting on blankets,” Gordon smirks. “I’ve never stood up and tried to rock when people are sitting on blankets eating cheese and drinking wine. I’m hoping some people will be on their feet.”
When & Where: Mt Duneed Estate, Geelong – Sunday, March 11. Tickets via www.adayonthegreen.com.au
Written by Talia Rinaldo
Image by Piper Ferguson