Dead Sons are a Sheffield based band that have released a couple of dark (almost country noir) songs this year while giving out some great shows (specially their cracking set during Tramlines 2011). We sent them a couple of questions via email and they managed to answer them on their overbook schedule (recording, preparing for tour, rehearsing ’til the Pale Rider comes by to collect the rent).
1) The band name seems as dark as your music. How did you choose your band name?
There’s nothing sinister behind the name. It came about from mishearing Joe Green (drummer) when talking about band names and stuck.
2) Reverb is the common denominator I find in your style. What’s the magic or contribution of this tool to your music?
We use a number of effects on guitars and bass. Reverb allows us to crate space and add atmosphere within a song. And can add extra dimensions to riffs and fills.
3) There’s this feeling in your music that involves the quest for the best element or sound, like making a sculpture. Having said that, what’s the one element that really matters in a song for you?
When we write a new song if we don’t leave the practice room with the tune constantly repeating in our heads then it needs working on. We make music we wanna listen to and don’t follow trends, that’s what matters to us.
4) What’s the key element or mind-blowing feature you really fell in love with from your music influences? How does that affect your music?
We like music with balls and bands that get that across live. The live performance is a big factor and if a band can recreate a studio sound live, it’s the mark of a good band. That’s why we strive to perfect our live sound.
5) There are amazing twists in your tracks, like jumping from standard to psychedelic styles. How these breaks come forward to your songs? Do you think they’re the natural ebbs & flows of your music?
We don’t stick to the standard song structure of verse chorus, verse chorus. We make music that comes natural to us and try to make it as interesting as possible.
6) Speaking of ebbs & flows, we know you’re in the process of recording your new EP. Any thoughts, feelings about this process you’d like to share with us? Are you recording digital or analogue?
We’re more excited about our next recording session than we’ve ever been. There’s a new member in Dead Sons, Luke Baker, who is an extremely talented guitarist and organist. He’s brought all the excitement back to the band. Also we’re recording with Ross Orton who’s worked with acts like The Kills, Pulp and Toddla T, who’s perfected recording a big sound.
7) Can you give us a bit more information about the story behind ‘Berlin’ and ‘Junk Room’?
We prefer to leave the interpretations of the songs to the listeners, that way they can make them their own. Berlin is favourite place of ours, and a very inspirational place.
8) If it’s okay, can we ask a bit about the lyrics for ‘Quest for the fire’ and ‘Holler and the hymns? They are pretty great songs live but would want to know the history behind the lyrics
Hollers & the Hymns is one of the first songs we worked on as a band and a firm favourite to play. Quest For The Fire takes inspiration from spaghetti westerns and composers like Ennio Morricone of which we are big fans of. Tom writes the lyrics based on past experiences both musically and personally.
9) Any particular reason you went for a physical release for ‘I am the Lord’ whereas ‘Berlin’ and ‘Junk Room’ are free releases?
I Am The Lord was our first ever proper release and we thought it would be nice to have something physical to hold and keep. With Berlin and Junk Room we simply wanted to get our music out there to everyone.
10) Any upcoming gigs, either in Sheffield or around?
We’re doing a UK tour in October which finishes on the 29th with a very special homecoming show in a special place for us. Its definitely going to be a big show, more details can be found on our website so keep your eyes peeled. We’re also playing Sheffield on the 16th at the Bowery as a warm up show and to showcase the new tunes on our EP.
Words: Sam J. Valdés López (additional questions by Tonan)