DZ Deathrays are in the middle of a worldwide tour alongside best mates and fellow Australians Dune Rats. We caught up with them before their gig at Bleach in Brighton this Saturday (22nd October) about tour routines, dream supports, and their favourite booze. Here’s what they came up with…
Hi guys, you’ve been described as “dance-punk” “thrash” and even “punk revivalists”, what would you guys describe your sound as to somebody that had never heard you before?
Simon: Thrash party. Actually I usually just say rock because it’s broad and I hate when people get too genre specific.
Shane: Haha! We make it easy for people and say rock n roll.
How different is the vibe on a tour where you’re co-headlining, instead of the traditional support/headline setup?
Shane: There is a great sense of camaraderie with the co-headline I think. We have all been mates for so long I think this was one of the best ideas we have come up with. It makes a tour so much more fun.
You pretty much tour all over the world, where’s your favourite place to play and why?
Simon: European shows are always amazing because of the riders the venues provide are always pretty amazing.
Shane: I think Europe is one of my favourites as they really know how to look after bands on tour. I find it crazy to go to places like Prague and have people bootleg your merch and know all about the Australian scene. It’s really awesome.
Can you walk us through your routine whilst on tour?
Simon: Wake up and look for water because I’ll most likely have an insanely dry mouth because I snore after drinking. Have a shower, talk to our tour manager about how good the hotel breakfast is or isn’t. Sit in a van and talk absolute shit for about 5 hours with everybody. Get to the venue, sound check, have some beers hope there is enough time for some decent dinner. Then play the show, drink enough so that loading out doesn’t suck too hard then maybe try find a cool bar or see a little of whatever city we’re in then go to the hotel and start the cycle all over again.
Shane: Wake, drive, soundcheck, eat, play, party, doze off.
Who would be your dream support on a tour, and who would you most like to support on their tour?
Simon: The Beatles for both. I’m pretty sure if you could raise the dead and reunite Ringo and Paul with zombie Lennon and George people would go to those shows.
Do you find being a duo is limiting on what you can do musically, or does it push you into doing things you wouldn’t otherwise consider?
Simon: We found it made us really have to think about layering songs to keep the dynamics of the songs interesting. But after the first album we felt it was too restricting so we said fuck it and just wrote songs that a 3 or 4 piece could play. So now we have an extra guitarist with us for the shows.
Shane: It’s a double-edged sword where we have found it a lot easier to tour only being a two piece, but over numerous records we have decided to add elements to the recordings that can only be produced as a 3 piece band. So naturally we have had a guitarist tour with us rather than use backing tracks. Also having a friend tour with you to play guitar is a lot more fun, which is the ultimate goal of the band.
What’s the next step for you musically? Obviously, it’s been a couple of years since (last album) Black Rat came out and you’ve just released a new single, any plans for when the new album will be out?
Shane: We are finishing our next record off after touring wraps up this year and will have another album out next year.
Simon: We’re planning on recording it in February next year so hopefully it will be out mid-2017.
And finally, if you could only drink one alcoholic drink for the rest of the life, what would it be?
Simon: Maybe red wine? I don’t know, I feel like whatever you picked you’d end up hating and then not drinking it anymore.
And there you have it, you’ll be gutted to hear that the gig on Saturday is completely sold out, but DZ Deathrays do play Brighton relatively often considering they live on the other side of the planet, so keep your eyes peeled for shows in the future.