Canberra core gurus Dead Kings have been laying waste to the country since their album dropped mid last year. Bass player Morgan Mcdonnell was kind enough to answer some questions in his time off.
Could you please state your name, role in the band and favourite Shai Hulud release?
Good first question! I’m Morgan, and I play bass, and Blood ill tempered would be my fav Shai Hulud release
Starting out in Canberra can’t be the easiest place for a band to be rooted. What’s the ‘Berra scene like now and what are some other bands to look out for in the area?
I love Canberra, the scene here has never been short of good bands, just venues to play. Canberra kids have a pretty good bullshit detector, so we have bands coming through and get the shits when no one cares about them. Good bands always get a good response though. As for bands from here, I Exist will be crushing skulls and stealing beers in your town soon, band will be huge! The new 4Dead record is out soon on Trial and Error, keep an eye out for that. Some cool young bands coming up as well, Carcass Brains, Observer, Something Must Break, Knives To The Throne, Vera and Reigner all doing cool things.
Considering the Australian music scene at the moment is basically littered with horrific trendy Deathcore bands I was super stoked to hear a band drawing influence from 7 Angels 7 Plagues. What other modern bands do you draw influence from?
A shit load; Shai Hulud, Veil Of Maya, Misery Signals, Converge, Remembering Never, Buried Alive, Poison The Well, Prayer For Cleansing, Dillinger Escape Plan namedrop namedrop namedrop.
In such a short period of time the band has played with international and local heavy weights including Parkway Drive and Terror as well as releasing a cd through established label Trial and Error. What can you attribute to this success to?
Just doing something a little bit different to what other bands are doing I guess, we have tried to stay as far away from the whole ‘deathcore’ thing as we can. We’ve just tried really hard to play every show we’ve been offered that we think will help us as a band and that will just be fun to do really, and we’ve just we’ve been really fucking lucky that people like Nigel at Trial and Error has liked what we’ve been doing and are willing to help.
Touring Australia can be a bit tedious considering the large amount of driving between each capital city. Which town have you been getting the best response from and which city is the hardest to crack?
Every place we’ve played has it’s pros and cons, we headed up to QLD a few weeks ago and that was fucking great. I reckon the hardest place to crack would be Melbourne, they have sooo many good bands that it’s really hard to stick out. But driving between city’s is half the fun!
The production on the new CD was huge, especially for an Australian release. Where were the tracks recorded and how intense was the process of recording your debut full length?
We recorded at Electric Sun in Western Sydney, and it was fucking great. Recording was pretty laid back, Shane who was recording us is such a pro and just made everything run smooth.
With a huge year laid to rest, what lies in ahead for Dead Kings in 2010?
We have heaps of shit planned! We are just getting our new vocalist Zaca from QLD up to speed at the moment, and writing a heap of new songs. There’s rumours of us doing a split 7” with some mates from Brisbane, and if all goes to plan we will be back in a studio somewhere recording a new album before the end of the year. We’ve got some shows coming up in Canberra and Melbourne in the next month too so come say yo.
Favourite band to play with?
Shinto, I Exist, Abandon All Hope, Mary Jane Kelly. Best Australian release of ‘09 Ummmm shit no idea, so much good stuff. I reckon the Iron Mind EP was killer. Was Antagonist last year? I love that band (they’re more or less Australian.. like Russell Crowe).
Best International release of ‘09
Trapped Under Ice, internet hype band that I ignored for way too long but Secrets Of The World is still in my car CD player.
Most impressive band you have seen live this year?
Mary Jane Kelly last week on the Perspectives tour. I’ve been watching this band since their 1st show, and they just keep getting better, last week was probably the best i’ve ever seen that band play. We also played with the new Samsara line up recently, band is so hard and the new CD will be killer.
Three ways to kill time in the van between Adelaide and Canberra?
For me? Sleeping, playing Pokemon on DS and listening to hiphop while driving.
Who’s the biggest punish in the band when on the road?
We all suck, and hate each other.
Any final thanks, shout outs or general bullshit you would like to finish the interview with?
Suss our singer Zaca’s new band Promises, tracks up soon. Also big love to all the bands we’ve played with and dudes who let us sleep on their floors. Suss the new I Exist CD coming out on Common Bond on May 7th. Go Vegan, it’s the best choice you could ever make.