Deryck Whibley: “Heaven :x: Hell is the best Sum 41 record we’ve made”

Is the title a reflection of what it’s been like being in a band for the past 27 years, and the highs and lows that come with that?
“Yeah, absolutely. It’s not just that it’s two different sides of the record [musically]. The whole career of Sum 41 has been heaven and hell, because it’s been extreme highs, extreme lows, and everything in between. I brought my mom on tour one time, and she didn’t know what to expect. She was like, ‘I don’t know how to be on tour, what do I do? What’s it like?’ And I said, ‘It’s like heaven and hell.’ Touring is heaven and hell, as it is the greatest experiences you’ll ever have, but then it’s the hardest, most difficult where everything falls apart. So it’s about being in a rock band for this long and having success and failures.”

Speaking of touring, can we expect a proper run of headline shows when it comes to Sum 41’s goodbye?
“Yeah, it’s gonna be a full world tour. We’re still working on all those dates and we’re gonna announce that as soon as we can get it all locked in.”

You have announced Sum 41’s final UK festival appearance, at Download next June. How excited are you for that?
“Yeah, very excited! It’s always been a great festival – we’ve done it a few times. I just love that there’s a festival that celebrates rock music. You know, for a long time a lot of festivals were leaning so heavy into pop and we lost a lot of rock festivals, so it’s great to have a festival like Download.”

All in all, then, it sounds like Sum 41 are going out on a high?
“It’s bittersweet, for sure. There is a sadness. It wasn’t a quick overnight decision; it’s something that had been coming for a while in my mind. So, I’m not having any regrets or anything, but it will be somewhat sad – especially since the band gets along. We’re all good friends and we’ll continue to hang out and be friends after the band. Which is not the norm usually when bands break up!”