Interview – Bruce Foxton & Russell Hastings about new album ‘The Butterfly Effect’

Bruce Foxton and Russell Hastings team up once again to release their third album together ‘The Butterfly Effect’ out October 28th.

Active from 1972-1982, The Jam created a legacy that would cement themselves as one of the all-time great British bands. The classic lineup consisted of frontman Paul Weller, drummer Rick Buckler and bassist Bruce Foxton, who carried on their legacy by forming From The Jam in 2007 with Buckler and new vocalist Russell Hastings. Created to tour the iconic back catalogue and ensure its continued relevance, the lineup has undergone a few changes over time, but the songs remain the same. With Foxton & Hastings writing and recording original music, this material has gained widespread acclaim of its own. Following on from previous albums ‘Back in the Room’ and ‘Smash The Clock’, the duo are set to return with ‘The Butterfly Effect’, displaying a growing maturity to their songwriting and a renewed sense of confidence.

Being known as an active touring band, From The Jam obviously could not tour during the pandemic. However, Hastings has stated that having time to record was ‘quite a relief. We like everybody else were concerned about the future and were glad when we were allowed to get in the studio’, with Foxton adding that the process was ‘extremely creative and fun.’ That sense of fun is a recurring theme throughout the 12 tracks, with the duo bringing together their influences for a familiar-sounding record and a journey through various genres. Described by Foxton as ‘a collection of very melodic songs, with very different angles, yet it all ties together’, the tracks range from 60s pop to 70s Motown and Americana on an album full of future classics. We hear all about this long awaited release below in an exclusive interview.

From The Jam In Action © Rik Bardsley 2022


How did you both meet with the shared goal of continuing The Jam’s legacy and touring their incredible back catalogue. We find out more below in an exclusive first intervie with both Bruce Foxton & Russell Hastings.

Our paths crossed early 2006 at Guildford University where The Gift which was myself, Rick Buckler and Dave Moore and the Kasbah Club which was the band that Bruce was playing in – we were on the same bill and Bruce suggested jumping out for a couple of tunes which he did. From memory it was Down in the Tube Station at Midnight and Smithers Jones. And it has continued on from there ever since.

Why do you think The Jam’s music remains relevant to many people today and how important is it for you both to continue the bands legacy?

Pure and simple. The songs are really good and lyrically they spoke for many a generation so people identified with them. It’s really important to carry that legacy on and to deliver those songs as they were intended. Hopefully we do that.

“The Butterfly Effect” will be the third album you have released together. What’s your collective songwriting process and how does it begin?

I basically come up with an idea which I might capture on my iPhone and then send a verse or a chorus to Bruce he will then work out a bass line for it in order for us to be able to kick it around in the studio. That’s pretty much how it works.

There is clear Motown influence listening to the album especially from the track ‘Time On Your Side” is this intentional?

No, nothing has been intentional from day one, we just happen to like that style of music. In fact across-the-board really. I guess if we were heavy metal heads then that would come out in our music but we’re not!

A stand out track for me is ‘Lula’ which I believe will be released as a single. What’s the inspiration and story behind the track?

Lula came about in my kitchen during lockdown when my wife was making dinner and I came up with the chord structure and she said ‘Oh I like that!’ I then did a bit more work on it and found the choruses and then the song was born. I quite like that southern Californian vibe about it.

Could you pick three tracks from the album and give us a short insight into the inspiration and meaning behind them?

Rain – The first song personally I had written lyrically about what I saw in front of my eyes which was the day we came back from demoing the track at a studio in Woking at Water.

Rat Studios – Sat down in the back of the house overlooking the garden and it was raining so I wrote basically what I saw.

Feet off the ground – A pretty funky groove that was a jam in the studio to start with but then took another direction. It’s sort of remind me of that Spyro Gyra stuff from the late 70s

What’s different about this album than previous material you both co-written?

Really that we had a complete free reign in writing whatever we thought we wanted to and will not beholden to a particular sound or style. It’s quite free to just do whatever you want!

Russell you are the only frontman to have worked with both Rick Buckler & Bruce Foxton since The Jam’s split in 1982. How much of a privilege has It been to work alongside two of Britain’s most Influential musicians?

It’s been a massive privilege and to have been welcomed in by the fans and other musicians alike. In those early days it was quite daunting but gradually over time you find your own feet which is why I think it works so well.

Bruce Foxton – Image © Rik Bardsley 2022

Is there plans to tour the album in the near future?

No plans as of yet but we will be putting songs in the set from the new album. These days people just don’t want to see tours of brand-new albums!

How long do you both see the band continuing and is there plans for more original releases?

Hopefully we can continue as long as possible as long as our health is good and we enjoy doing it. Never say never we say!
From The Jam Live – Image © Rik Bardsley 2022
Tell us about some of the people and musicians you have worked with on the record?

Al Scott the producer of this album was a joy to work with and made life very simple for us as he is a very relaxed calm guy. He is also extremely experienced and we all got on really well which always helps. Also Mark Brzezicki famously from Big Country and many an 80s track has his stamp all over it. It was also lovely working with string arrangers which was the first for me and hearing what they bring to the table. Nicky Madern also played brass on the album who has worked on Liam Gallagher’s recent stuff.

Pre Order the Album in various bundles, Vinyl and CD HERE

Bruce foxton and Russell Hastings The Butterfly Effect
The Butterfly Effect is available in various formats and bundles

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