Chad Channing – the drummer who appeared on such Nirvana releases as Bleach, Incesticide and With the Lights Out – is just about finished writing his second album for his band Before Cars. Handling vocals, rhythm guitar, and drums, Channing will be joined again by guitarist Paul Burback, violinist Justine Jeanotte, and bassist/percussionist/keyboardist Andy Miller.
“I’m hoping to get into the studio by late summer or early fall,” Channing tells Rolling Stone. “It’s going to be a lot different than the first one [2008’s Walk Back] I did, which was kind of like a personal anthology – it had songs I had written before Nirvana, during Nirvana, after Nirvana, and up until the record was done. This is just all new stuff. It’s got a lot influence from Seventies singer-songwriter type of stuff. It’s kind of like a mix between David Bowie meets Gordon Lightfoot.”
Although the album does not have a confirmed title, it will include such songs as “Trip to Mars,” “Jerk Water,” “How We Run” and “The Last Times.” Channing is looking at a late 2011/early 2012 release for the album (to be produced by Duffy Williams), but is unsure as to how to release it. “I might put it out myself, but I think I’m probably going to float a copy to Jonathan [Poneman] from Sub Pop and see. He did like the first record that I did.”
With Channing’s former Nirvana bandmate Krist Novoselic having recently appeared on a recording by another Nirvana drummer-turned-frontman [the song “I Should Have Known” off the Foo Fighters’ Wasting Light], is there any chance of a Channing-Novoselic reunion? “I don’t talk to Krist very often, but we have spoken a couple of times within the past year,” he says. “I would definitely entertain the idea of working with him if the opportunity should arise. Definitely.”
And lastly, what is Channing’s favorite Nirvana song that he played on? “One of my favorites has always been ‘Swap Meet.’ One of the reasons why I like that is it’s a song that’s in a drop-d tuning, and of course, also being a guitar player, it’s one of the songs that I really like the riff on it. I just sat, turned my guitar down to d, figured the song out, and was like, ‘That’s a really fun song to play!’ That got me more into it, and the lyrics are sort of campy – I like them too.”