Bad Wolves

Doc Coyle Says Bad Wolves “Have A Lot To Prove” On New Album, Explains His View On Negative Comments From Readers


Bad Wolves guitarist Doc Coyle is well aware of the criticisms that have been leveled against the band after they found platinum success with their cover of The Cranberries‘ “Zombie” on their debut album “Disobey“. The band had originally lined up The Cranberries vocalist Dolores O’Riordan to lend her voice to that cover, but in a tragic turn she died on the day she was to enter the studio for those sessions. In turn, the band donated hundreds of thousands of dollars of the proceeds from the song to O’Riordan‘s family.

In a new interview with Loud conducted during Bad Wolves‘ Australian tour with Nickelback earlier this month, Coyle addressed the Bad Wolves‘ detractors while also making mention of the negative commentary the band faced from readers of this very site on a past unspecified post.

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Bad Wolves have been working on a new album recently and when asked about where that material is headed, Coyle replied:

“It’s diverse. There’s stuff that’s probably heavier, as or more heavy than the last record. We have four or five songs that are really trying to bring the beef, the shit you can throw weights around to (laughs). And then there’s some really catchy, kind of more mainstream stuff to cover that end of it, and a lot of stuff in the middle.

For us, it’s so great that we were able on our first album to be diverse out of the gate; have a lot of ups and downs, and have a ballad. Because that way you don’t have to kind of warm your audience up to it; they already know what to expect. So we can kind of do whatever we want.

But I’m really excited about it, I think it’s really going to penetrate in a way… ‘Cause the truth is, we have a lot to prove on this next record. There’s a lot of people who are not familiar with our every day and our inner workings, who think that we’re just a band that had a cover, and that’s how deep it goes. But I know, being in this, that we do have a lot of dedicated fans.

There are some sections that more favor the lighter stuff, and there’s people who prefer the heavy stuff. But I think basically this whole year, we’ve toured with all these bands and understand the record we made and playing all the songs live, it inspires you. Like, ‘this is cool, but I know we can take it a level or two up’. So that’s really informed how we’re working on the next record, but we’re not done.

We have a lot of work done, but we still have a lot of work to do and it’s like that raw piece of clay, or a sculpture where it’s slowly coming into form. But we’re very committed to making this, because if this album is right, then it takes the band to that threshold to where we’re headlining the arenas hopefully one day.”

When asked as to whether or not he feels there’s a misconception that the band are ‘the ‘Zombie band’ and if they aim to knock that criticism down on their next record, Coyle responded:

“I’ll say this – it’s better to be ‘the ‘Zombie’ band’ than the band no one’s ever heard of (laughs). So it’s better to be known for something than nothing. But I had a rant on my latest podcast, and the theme of it was, the internet is not the real world. If the internet was the real world, we would be playing a shack right now with Nickelback.

Because Nickelback is the most shit-talked band that people love to hate, but every show is sold out and there’s 12,000 people there. So why do those things not equate? How is that in this realm, everyone loves to talk shit about them, but when you go to the show it’s sold out? And you see the record sales and they’re through the roof. So who are the people buying the records and going to the shows and buying the T-Shirts? There’s a disconnect there; the two realities do not match up.

And now we’re one of those bands. Like, I was looking at this website, The PRP, which I like and has a lot of metal news. They picked up something about our new record. There was literally like 40 comments, and I swear 39 of them were people just shitting on us. It was all about ‘Zombie’. I’m like, they’re only really upset because the cover was successful.

Let’s say we would have done the same cover, but no one really cared. It would have been a non-story. It would have just been like, ‘oh, that band did a cover, whatever, they’re a pretty cool band, they’re pretty heavy, whatever’.

But it’s this idea that success attracts a certain type of attention, that in that environment is overwhelmingly negative. But the truth is, there’s a much bigger… It’s a response to the fact that you have a pretty big audience. I think it would be really bad if everyone’s talking shit about you, but then no one showed up to the show, no one is buying the T-Shirts and the CDs.

The truth is the band’s doing really well, so you can’t, I really don’t take it personally. And I think the more crap you’re getting, the bigger you probably are. I think it comes with the territory. It’s like, when you get rich you’ve gotta pay high taxes. With the success comes a lot of ire. Being the kind of band we are, we are not going to be some band that just wants to play the most technically, scream the most or be the heaviest. We’re making the kind of stuff that inspired us… It’s the Panteras, Metallicas and Slipknots, all those bands are massive. And they do a lot of different things.

But I think any new band that comes along that has those aspirations basically gets shit on out of the gate. They want you to be humble, they want you to want to play in the basement in front of eight people and be happy.”

When mentioned that Hatebreed, etc. frontman Jamey Jasta has brought up the concept of ‘punk rock guilt’ in the past, Coyle responded:

“Well, there’s punk rock guilt, but it’s more elitism. So within the metal side of it, you’ve gotta remember, a lot of those people are other musicians, and there’s a new culture… I wouldn’t say a new culture. When I saw new, I mean the past ten, 12 years, of a big part of the metal community, that it’s musicians playing and writing for other musicians.

And the truth is, most of the audience is not going to be musicians. Now there’s some bands, like if you go and see Dream Theater or Rush, there’s probably going to be a lot of musicians. But that is kind of not what totally fascinates me. I’m much more fascinated by a band like the Foo Fighters or the Beatles, where you can create music that has some depth and some richness to it, but you don’t have to be a musician to get it. It’s framing interesting music in a way where… I think it’s a pretty deep skill, to be able to connect to the regular Joe.

And I think most musicians don’t understand it. They think it’s easy. They think, ‘oh, anyone can just make that Godsmack song’. Well, alright, go do it. And I think it’s because (say) you can do it, but then, how do you market it? How do you get on the radio? Do you know how to do that? Oh, I bet you don’t (laughs). And it’s not like I knew (laughs). Even now, if I started a new band, I don’t know if I would know either. Things just happened to have worked out for us and we’re in a great position to take advantage of this exposure.

But you can’t take the negativity personally, because it’s not real. It’s an illusion. This is real – we’re in the reality. That’s why so many people I know, the more successful they get, they stay off social media, they get off the phone, because it mostly poisons you.”

You can read more from Doc over at Loud.