DZ Deathrays are back. Four years on since their last record 'Black Rat', and the duo are raring to go with new full-length 'Bloody Lovely' - and there's another in the works, too...
Hey guys, how’s everything going?
Well! Thanks for asking.
It’s been a while since your last album, did you find 'Bloody Lovely' more challenging than your previous projects?
In some ways, it was a challenge. We started recording the album in February 2016 but some of the songs were just not ready yet, and we were a little unsure where to take the album. This then led to the one-off singles 'Blood On My Leather' and 'Pollyanna'. We were also touring a lot that year which kind of put the brakes on writing, as we are pretty bad at writing on the road.
Did you try anything new on this album?
We used a bass guitar for the first time; we used bits and pieces of our demos all through the album also. I think once we found the tone of the record it was a lot easier for us to get it down. We really wanted this one to have a little more of a live element than 'Black Rat'.
What’s the main thing that you hope that people will take away from the album?
Essentially we are hoping it gets people excited to come to shows. We love playing live. Really though, people can take what they want from it, as long as it can transcend from an album you put on at a party to an album you listen to on the train to work to an album you run or work out to.
The artwork for ‘Bloody Lovely’ is pretty ace, specific shout out to the dog. Who is this lovely doggo, and how was the shoot?
The dog belongs to the owners of the bar, and she was there when we started doing the shoot. There was a ball being thrown around, and she jumped right into shot. We absolutely love dogs so when we saw the photo where she was airborne in it, actually taking the focus off us or the bar, then we had to go with it.
Where did the concept for the artwork come from?
I think when we were recording the album, Burke Reid who produced it kept saying that certain songs would be cool in the background of a dive bar, shooting pool, drinking beers. So we kind of ran with the idea that this record was a bit of a mixtape for a dive bar called Bloody Lovely.
Where did you mostly take inspiration from when writing for the album?
There were a few bands that kind of pointed us in a certain direction. Bands that we were listening to and also doing some live covers of over the last couple of years. We did some live covers of Blur and The Vines, and that really took us back to when we were in high school and super excited about them. We also have been listening to a lot of Beach House, and I hope this in some way has influenced our songwriting as I think they are amazing.
“We did some live covers of Blur and The Vines, and that really took us back”
You’re now signed with Alcopop! Records, how did this come about?
We met Jack [Clothier, label boss] a few years back in the UK, and when we had this album ready to go we were open to finding someone to release us in the UK/EU, so we put it to Alcopop! I have been really impressed with the bands on that label over the years, and it seemed to us like a good fit.
2018 will mark ten years since you first formed as a band, do you have any celebrations in the works?
Fuck I forgot about that, umm nothing yet... maybe we can throw a birthday party somewhere?
If you could give yourselves when you were starting out one piece of advice, knowing what you know now, what would it be?
I think it would be, keep writing no matter what. Even if you've just poured every ounce of energy into an album, start the next one straight away.
You’ve got a South Africa tour coming up in March, where’s the most interesting place that DZ Deathrays' live shows have taken you to?
I would say have been Iceland, Norway and more recently South America and China.
Is there anywhere you haven’t been that you’d love to play live?
We would love to play in Japan; I believe it's quite the effort to make work with record releases and all, but everyone has always said we would go down well over there, so we are just waiting for the opportunity.
Beyond the album release, do you have any plans for 2018?
We're writing another album at the moment, so plans are to get that done in any spare time we have between tours to support 'Bloody Lovely'.
DZ Deathrays' album 'Bloody Lovely' is out now. Taken from the February 2018 issue of Upset. Order a copy now below.