For 31 weeks now, Mudvayne's tunefully visceral "Happy?" has been positioned at or near the top of Billboard's Mainstream Rock Tracks chart. But while the deceptively melodic song suggests Mudvayne have staying power, it presents only one side of the band's multifaceted sound, which has caused some confusion for certain Ozzfest attendees.
"The other day I jumped up on the risers while I was singing that song and looked down and there were three nice-looking, well-dressed women in their 30s watching me," frontman Chad Gray said with a grin. "I could just tell from the looks on their faces that they were thinking, 'Is this that band that plays the song I listen to on the radio when I drive back and forth to the bank? You've gotta be kidding me.' I thought that was awesome."
"Happy?" shows no signs of fading from rock radio playlists, which should please rockin' soccer moms. But Mudvayne have no intention of waiting around until listeners get tired of "Happy?" They've already started a campaign to plug the equally catchy but more dynamic "Forget to Remember," which is starting to receive airplay and is the lead single off the "Saw II" soundtrack (due October 18). Like many songs on Mudvayne's Lost and Found, "Forget to Remember" examines the concept of nature vs. nurture and explores the kinds of experiences that mold personality.
"It's really about reflection, experience and growing up," Gray said. "You've almost got to look back at where you began. What was Chad before Mudvayne? What was Chad before high school? What was Chad before grade school? You gotta keep digging deeper and deeper if you want to get to the bottom of what makes you who you are."
Earlier this month, Mudvayne and "Saw II" director Darren Lynn Bousman shot a video for "Forget to Remember" in Toronto. The clip consists of performance footage and scenes from the movie, which opens in theaters on Halloween. "Saw II" isn't the only upcoming soundtrack that'll feature Mudvayne. The band will appear on "Masters of Horror" (also due October 18) via the previously unreleased "Small Silhouette," a jagged, angular track with haunting vocals.
Now that Ozzfest is over, Mudvayne plan to take a break before announcing their fall tour plans. Gray said the band will remain on the road through next spring and will probably return to the studio in the summer to start writing the follow-up to Lost and Found.
"I can't wait," he said. "I love playing shows, but I'm always itching to get back to writing. [Guitarist] Greg [Tribbett] has got this tiny Marshall amp that he clips onto his belt loop and he's been jamming on that every day in the dressing room to warm up. He's been coming up with some riffs that are pretty badass. I've heard a lot of heavy stuff going on and maybe that will find its way into some of our future songs. It's too early to tell what it will sound like. I just know it'll be Mudvayne through and through."