After releasing their latest album ‘From Out Of The Skies’ to critical and fan acclaim, BulletBoys announced they would be touring Australia for the first time this year. After 32 years and twelve studio albums, the Southern California heavy metal rockers are finally bringing the high energy live show that made them famous to our shores. We recently had a chance to talk to frontman Marq Torien about the upcoming tour, their most recent album, and the music behind it all. The first thing that becomes clear is that Torien and the band are just as excited as the fans are about their first Aussie tour. “I’m ecstatic about it, and I can’t wait” says Torien excitedly, “We can’t wait to get there, and it’s the first time so it’s so exciting. We are bringing an amazing show to everybody there – a lot of love and passion and just that Southern California swagger!”
BulletBoys first became famous for their engaging live performances. Coming to the fore in the ‘80s Los Angeles metal/rock scene, BulletBoys immediately stood out and grabbed audience attention with their brand of heavy metal infused with rock and roll played with style and a fun seeking attitude. Torien mentions they will be playing the old hits along with the new and that “We’re going to be mixing it up a lot. The band is just firing on all cylinders right now, it’s incredible. Like I said we are looking forward to coming out and blowing the roofs off of all these places and bringing out a lot of love.” He also states that he hopes people will be bringing their earplugs and their drinking stomachs. We assured him that this is Australia, so that’s a given!
Many bands, after performing for as long as BulletBoys have been, tend to rely on their greatest hits. But not Torien and his crew. The latest album, released in March, has been quite successful. The whole album has a fresh, up to date sound and feel whilst maintaining the rock/metal foundations that made BulletBoys popular. Torien states that they had to do something that was fresh and a bit risky, and out of the box, for the fans. He believes that “People deserve to have fresh new music for not only the ears, but for the eyes also. So we put together something that takes twists and turns, and has peaks and valleys. I believe there is something on this for everybody.” He also still very much takes inspiration from the place where he grew up, and the place that helped launch the band, Los Angeles. “(The album) embodies where I grew up, which is Los Angeles” remarks Torien, “There’s a mixture of everybody here, there’s all types of different foods and faiths. So on this record, when I wrote it I tried to paint with broad strokes. To be able to let people hear or see elements of this beautiful city in Southern California.”
As the conversation continues it becomes clear that the front man is still very much about the music. He talks of still feeling challenged and soaking up knowledge, of coming from a musical family. Of how music is in his blood. He also lights up when talking of performing, and Torien is certainly the embodiment of the consummate performer. “I’m a performer so I really relish in performing. Not just standing behind the mic, but really performing. I think that I just enjoy people, and I enjoy bringing uplifting music to human beings out there in the world. I think we all feel that way as a band”. Like many artists in today’s landscape, he feels there is a lot of negativity in the world but says “we try to take people’s minds off of the morose and put them into a better frame of mind”. Torien is clear, he and the band are about enjoying and celebrating life. It is this attitude he brings with him on tour. He mentions that touring is not easy but he still seems to enjoy playing for and connecting with audiences. He once again talks excitedly about being able to tour Australia and that the band feels blessed to still be able to travel and still be in the industry.
Torien expresses that the band are in a really good place musically, and there are plans to record again once they have toured the new album. Torien’s enthusiasm is infectious. He talks of feeling blessed again and about bringing smiles as entertainers. No passion or love for the music has faded over the years. But some things have changed in the music landscape over the years, a point Torien is quick to jump on. The one thing that he finds tiring? Social media. “There’s a lot of things now that bands have to do to promote themselves. It’s a whole other thing we are completely used to; but if we could just focus on music, and focus on touring, instead of focusing on always having to constantly promote.’’ He takes this further, noting the difference in the way musicians get their start now. “That’s something that’s in the business now so it’s kind of like a given thing you know? But if we had more time to actually be working? A lot of musicians are broke because they are having to promote on their own through (social media). It’s just a different game now, everybody has opinions!” Times have certainly changed in this regard. But once again, Torien looks to the positive. “We always just try to make sure that we are being positive through all the negativity, and sometimes people don’t understand that. That’s the BulletBoys, the way we roll!”
The one subject we come back to is Toriens excitement at the upcoming Australian tour. He talks of getting to know the cities and the people between shows, of sitting down with fans and hearing their stories. The old school, fun loving rock attitude is never far away. His final message for fans keen to see their first BulletBoys show? “We are going to have a lot of people back stage! We don’t have a bunch of ego, we are very punk rock with the way we roll. So everybody can come back stage and say hello, and get lots of hugs and lots of kisses. So please feel free to come back and say hello!”
You can purchase tickets for the upcoming Australian tour HERE!