Bursting with more energetic enthusiasm than your usual blend of pop punk bands and capturing a sense of reckless fun that makes you believe you’re a teenager again, Californian five piece Zebrahead are the guys who really know how to get a party going and who are guaranteed to inject some reckless feel good energy into everything they do. With an extensive UK tour happening later this month, a new album on the cards and a slot at this year’s Download Festival, 2008 certainly looks set to be a busy time for the band. Ahead of their return to Download, Zebrahead bassist Ben Odmundson took some time to tell R13 all about his days as a Kiss fan, his love of Motorhead and why he’s going to bringing the beer to the Download stage.

R13:You were last in the UK as part of Bowling For Soup’s Get Happy Tour along with Bloodhound Gang, how did the tour go?
BWAS AMAZING. I have never seen so mach throw up in my whole life!

R13:Considering the bands on the bill and their on stage antics, how many pranks were actually carried out on the tour and who were the main culprits?
B:To be honest there really weren’t many pranks. We really didn’t have time to do anything dumb with no days off. Who am I kidding everything we do is dumb.

R13:You last played Download two years ago, how does it feel to be asked back?
B:Really cool. I am damn excited to see Motorhead this year.

R13:You’re the first to play the now open air second stage, opening it on the Friday. Have you got anything planned to make sure you kick things off in true Zebrahead style and make sure the crowds flock to your set?
B:We are really honored to be kicking off that stage at the festival. Kinda amazing. I plan on bringing the beer. At least as much as I can carry and see who I can share it with. Have some fun and get the dust flying in the sky.

R13:On the Get Happy Tour part of your set included making everyone sit down on the floor for an entire song. Was there any real reason for this or was it just a case of lets just see how much we can get the crowd to do and are there any plans to recreate it at Download?
B:Maybe we will do that at Download … not really sure ... I just like the way it looks and the energy of everyone exploding after being completely calm and sitting on the ground. The energy is crazy. The crazier the crowd the more fun it is to play.

R13:There’s been a slight backlash about the festival this year, particularly on the forums concerning the line up with many metal fans feeling that Download is becoming less of a metal festival, do you think this is actually the case?
B:I would be a bad judge of this since this will only be my second time attending the festival. But I know Motorhead brings the rock and they are on our day.

R13:You're playing the same day as Kiss, will you be in full Kiss make up?
B:I actually use to dress up in Kiss make up as a kid. My friends and I would go all out following them. When I got a little older I would follow Slayer around on tour trying to go to every show possible.

R13:What other bands are you hoping to check out at the festival?

R13:You’ve recently been recording your new album, how has that been going and what can we expect from the new Zebrahead songs?
B:Umm...Hopefully people will like it as much as we do. Every band says it is their best ever. I will leave that up to the people. The new album is called “Phoenix”

R13:You’re doing quite a few shows in the UK before Download, how do the UK fans differ form other parts of the world?
B:I really enjoy the UK and the crazy ass shows. Seems more of a party atmosphere all the time. Everyone is looking to have fun and not so caught up in the dumb things of life. You can always find a pub and a beer and finish it off with some greasy food at 3 a.m. I work hard maintaining my fat ass figure so this helps me.

R13:If you had to describe your band mates in one word what would it be?

R13:And how would you describe yourself?