While Californian rockers Papa Roach could boast mainstream accolades like multiple Grammy nominees and various number one hit singles, we all know the real MVP is their feature on the infamous Tony Hawk Pro Skater 2 soundtrack. Reading this and thinking, “not me?” Well, that’s because Papa Roach are celebrating the release of their second greatest hits album, signalling their time on the scene to be long enough that they’re reaching newer generations of heavy music fans.
It may have been over 20 years since the band featured on the iconic PlayStation game, but Papa Roach remain a staple to rock music, and are set to release Greatest Hits Vol. 2 The Better Noise Years shortly. From the loft of his Sacramento home, front-man Jacoby Shaddix simply cannot believe it’s already been over a decade since their inaugural great hits album …To Be Loved: The Best of Papa Roach was released.
“I’m so humbled and grateful that we are in a position in our career that we are able to do this, it blows me away that it’s’ been so long since we dropped our first album, and a lot’s happened and this last ten years, it’s been a really good run for our band.”
Reflecting on the upcoming sophomore greatest hits album, Shaddix is really proud of the content on there. “We’re about to release a collection of songs that are not only ones that the band believe in, but the fans believe in too.”
When the band pulled together a second greatest hits album, they compiled bangers, restricted to the last 10 years, and what you’re left with is a bit of a journey. “It’s cool to look at the last 10 years and really see the evolution of the music,” the vocalist says proudly,“And how we’ve approached songwriting and just the relationship within the band as we’ve grown through these years.”
Upon completing touring cycles, Papa Roach get back to it, and see how they can better themselves. “We go in to rediscover who we are as a creative entity, and it’s always surprising when we do that because we’ve always had this adventurous mind state when we go in to make records.
The iconic rock band felt like this was particularly relevant on their 2017 record Crooked Teeth. “We kicked off the album with ‘Born For Greatness’ and it’s just such a different type of track for us, but I find that every time we really venture outside the box, there’s something out there that’s always exciting and blows us away.”
For Papa Roach the upcoming release is more than just a compilation record, it’s full of reimagined tracks and a whole lot more. “This is a collector’s piece you know, we’ve got some dope remixes on it and some unreleased acoustic stuff as well, we wanted to make it special.” The band are even including a newer track called ‘Broken As Me’ featuring none other than Asking Alexandria’s metalcore-gone-country singer Danny Worsnop.
“I’ve known Danny for some years now,” the Papa Roach showman tells us. “I actually first met him on set for a music video for Memphis May Fire, on this track called ‘This Light I Hold’ and Danny was this character in the video who kidnapped me,” the singer laughs. “We had a great time on set, we went out after that night, had a good old time and we just kept in contact over the years.
Since Worsnop re-joined Asking Alexandria, the band toured with Papa Roach and the relationship was built on from there. “We just bonded on that tour in 2019 – not only with Danny, but the rest of the guys in the band, like we just we vibed so well with those dudes.”
“So, when it came time to put a feature on ‘Broken As Me’ we just hit up Danny we’re like ‘yo dude, it’s time, we’ve been talking about doing something together, come in and slay this track’, and he did such a great job. He’s such a great vocalist and he’s just a fucking rockstar.”
Aside from ‘Broken As Me’ there is some thinking that goes into the track selection for Greatest Hits Vol. 2 The Better Noise Years. As much as the band had ideas on which songs thrived in the 2010s, the truth in the pudding came down to Spotify analytics and other things.
“This thing is a celebration of our music, so ultimately we let the fans pick,” Shaddix says with humility. “It’s what the fans gravitated to, they spun this track, they shared that track and those tracks. It’s really cool to allow our relationship with our fans to kind of dictate some of the decisions that we make as a band.
“I heard a quote from Billie Eilish and she’s like ‘they’re not my fans, they’re a part of me’ and when she said that I really identified that with that because this is like a living breathing organism, and they are the heartbeat.”
The best thing about the respect Papa Roach has for their fans, is that they even collaborate with them. Just over a month ago, TikTok sensation Jeris Johnson got the attention of Shaddix and the band with his experimental take on ‘Last Resort’ Low and behold the band connected with Johnson and they released the song/video which has clocked over 2 million streams already.
“Jeris put this little snippet of ‘Last Resort’ kind of reimagined, in terms of what he would do to it, and at the end of the video he said ‘imagine if I could get a real Papa Roach feature and this thing went fucking viral.” Shaddix had his mates texting him about the TikTok video and he couldn’t resist getting involved. “I was like ‘oh shit yeah this is cool’, so we invited him out to the studio, and I just wanted to get to know him and he’s the real deal.
“He’s got some really awesome ideas about music.” The band not only recorded the ‘Last Resort’ reimagination, but also other things too. “We’ve done even more collaboration in the studio and we’re creating some more music – [not sure] whether it’s for a Papa Roach record or a Jeris record, but we’re just in the creative space right now.
From THPS2 to TikTok collabs, it’s clear that Papa Roach appeal to all of their fan demographics, and continue to remain relevant in an environment that’s more musically diverse than ever before; but it’s always worth taking a moment to stop, sit back, and remember some of your highlights from The Better Noise Years.
Interview by Ricky Aarons @rickysaul90
Greatest Hits Vol. 2 The Better Noise Years is out March 19.
Papa Roach – Greatest Hits Vol. 2 The Better Noise Years tracklisting
1. Born For Greatness (Remastered 2020)
2. Help (Remastered 2020)
3. Elevate (Remastered 2020)
4. Come Around (Remastered 2020)
5. Broken As Me (feat. Danny Worsnop of Asking Alexandria)*
6. Falling Apart (Remastered 2020)
7. Who Do You Trust? (Remastered 2020)
8. Gravity (feat. Maria Brink) (Remastered 2020)
9. American Dreams (Remastered 2020)
10. Face Everything And Rise (Remastered 2020)
11. Periscope (feat. Skylar Grey) (Remastered 2020)
12. Still Swingin’ (Remastered 2020)
13. The Ending (Remastered 2020)
14. Burn (Remastered 2020)
15. Kick In The Teeth (Remastered 2020)
16. Elevate (Aelonia Remix)*
17. Help (Aelonia Remix)*
18. Born For Greatness (Cymek Remix) *
19. Top Of The World (Aelonia Remix)*
20. Face Everything And Rise (Live Acoustic) *
21. Leader Of The Broken Hearts (Live Acoustic)*