Qs answered by Johnny Took.
- Your new album The Glow is out in a few weeks, how would you sum up your feelings leading up to the release?
Excited and a little nervous again. I’m not sure if this ever goes – every new album is like living the first again. We’re definitely proud of the work we’ve done on ‘The Glow’ and we’ve tried to make a record different to the first ‘Hills End’ and ‘For Now’ – we’re ready for fans to jump on board with us.
- Where did you write it and who with? Did you try anything new in the studio?
The songs span from nearly a decade of ideas. The closing track ‘Cobracaine’ was a Delete era tune of Mason’s that we re-worked however I guess most of them are on the newer side. I also lived in Edinburgh for a year last year which was a big move for me and penned the core of ‘LIFE IS A GAME OF CHANGING’ while living there.
When Stuart Price (New Order, Madonna, The Killers) set up the studio we arranged it in the way where it was almost like a home studio/ bedroom setup. The drum kit was 5 steps away, Tommy’s vocal mic 2 steps, pianos, keyboards and guitars at arm’s reach. We’d never done this in a high end studio and it was tremendously conducive to being creative and felt natural to us. Will definitely be making an album like this again.
- Where would you say The Glow differs from your previous two albums?
Being under the watchful eye of a producer every step of the way was a change for us. Even on the last album with Kim Moyes (The Presets) we had time at our studio where it was just us getting guitar ideas down. I think Stuart’s experience (especially with electronic music) was really inspiring to work with. We’ve been experimenting with that side of production after predominately being a guitar band and that put some of the songs in a different light for us. I feel Stuart also has helped push Tommy to make his voice sound better than it ever has which is a treat for everyone.
- ‘Life Is A Game Of Changing’ has a bit of a rave quality to it with what seems to be a strong influence from bands like New Order. Should we expect more immersive tracks like this one?
There’s a couple of harder electronic tracks on the record which we consciously wanted to bring to the table. However the guitar driven pop aspects of DMA’S and songwriting essence is still there. Not too dissimilar to later New Order there is a nice blend of both guitars and electronics.
– Sum up your new albums in three words.
– You’re returning to the UK this summer for Truck fest, Hit The North, Kendal Calling and Manchester’s Castlefield bowl. Are you excited to come back and headline some summer UK shows?
Our growth in the UK has been a beautiful natural incline. Because of this I feel we have a loyal and solid fan network which makes coming back to some of these festivals a pretty amazing experience. Plus – UK crowds are the best in the world right?? 🙂
- Do you feel like you have an affinity for the UK? Despite being from as far away from the UK as possible you have a strong cultural connection with the UK. Why do you think the UK loves DMAs so much?
My dad and Tommy’s dad are both from the UK, so I guess it’s in our blood. Growing up there were so many band from that 90’s Britpop era that we looked up to so in some ways (despite have a plethora of influence) I guess we wanted to get over here and be a part of it. I still have to slap myself when thinking ‘bout how the UK have taken us under their wing. I think there is something unspoken in the songwriting that people from all walks of life can connect to.
- Have you had much time to explore the UK whilst being on the road? What are your dream 3 day festival headliners?
We’ve been to crazy towns I’d never even heard of over the years but you never get to really know a city I feel unless you live there. Have met a lot of great people in them though.
The Jesus and Mary Chain
What is on your touring playlist? Who has control of the aux?
We all give it a spin. There’re a few songs that come up pretty regularly
Paul Kelly – Bradman
Saâda Bonaire – You Could Be More Than you are
Underworld – Jumbo
No Geography – The Chemicals Brothers
At The River – Groove Armada
Carolina – Royal Headache
In white room – Booka Shade
Questions by Will Whitby