Don Broco | Rob Damiani

Don Broco are becoming one of my favourite rock bands of late, and I am very stoked for the four-piece’s December Australian tour later this year. Chatting briefly with the band’s singer Rob Damiani, we chat about their recent killer trio of singles, their plans to move beyond the UK with their next record and their current Sharptone Records backing, as well as their insane music videos.

Hey there Rob, how are you doing?

I’m well, mate. We’re finishing the last bits of the album, getting it all ready. Then the band and I are off to Ireland for a wedding and then I’m off on holiday. So today has been one of those days [laughs].

Keeping busy, at least. Where are you going on holiday if you don’t mind me asking?

Oh, I’ll be going to Spain, and I plan on getting some sun. To be fair, the weather hasn’t been terrible in England this summer, not the worst. But it’ll be nice to chill out in better weather and get my head out of recording. Literally, the last month has been studio work, so I’m working forward to Spain.

Good to hear! This album’s been a while coming for you guys, with the singles dropping every few months, and I for one am very keen for it. 

Cheers! It’s been really nice to keep putting new material out like this, as we’re constantly juggling between promoting new music, touring, and working to finish the new record. With the last album, we had to wait a year and a half before new songs could see the light of day. After all, we’re just trying to keep our fans happy with new music. As I know too well what it’s like when you’re a fan of a band and they’re very quiet. Plus, by the time we start touring, people know the newer song’s well-enough.

Yeah, that’s the tricky thing – play new stuff that no one or very few people know or just stick to the old material.

Totally, but the most important thing is to keep yourself happy… but you’ve also gotta play stuff people know. That’s we’ve put out these singles. I’d rather go to a show and know all the songs so I can sing along, and know when the breakdowns are so I can get ready for it. [Laughs].

[Laughs] of course. Is that also why ‘Everybody’, ‘Pretty’, and ‘Technology’ have taken on heavier sounds than your first two albums?  

I’d say so, yeah. It’s always selfish reasons as for why our recent music sounds the way it does. It’s why we evolve. All of our favourite bands have been bands that have pushed themselves to write something new for their sound. After we went down the path of ‘Automatic’, we thought, “Okay, we’ve done this. Let’s move onto something slightly different”. And after writing five or six new songs, we realised where it was going and what originally didn’t sound like Don Broco, eventually sounded like Don Broco.

Well, if the album is anything like these three singles, I think I’ll love it!

That’s awesome, thank you man!

No worries! I’ve followed you guys since ‘Priorities’ as Rock Sound covered you dudes heaps – and they still do to this day – so I’m very keen that there’s an Australian tour happening.

Thanks for sticking with us over the past few years then! Australia has always been on our minds to getting over there. Now that we’re on a worldwide label, we can really get out there and tour these new songs in bigger and newer areas. We can’t wait until December! 

Of course! One thing the label and DAL are pushing is the Alexandra Palace (AKA ‘Ali Pali’ show in November. Obviously, it hasn’t happened yet, but do you think such two very different kinds of shows will be humbling for the band or shock to the system in a way?

I think so! To be honest, our favourite shows are the smaller shows we play. Playing in these arena’s and big venues can be such a great moment for your careers, and when they go well, they really go well. But the smaller shows, it’s so much easier to get that real connection between you and the crowd. Because we’ve toured the UK so much, we’re really trying to catch up in the European and US markets to what we’ve developed with England. So it’s not really a thing for us.

Now, with the exception of s band from Wales called Casey and a Canadian band called PUP, I’d say that Don Broco have one of the best track records for interesting or engaging music videos I’ve seen from a band lately. Cause whenever a new video comes out from you guys, I know it will be A) well-edited and put together and B) like the ‘Everybody’ clip, will most likely be batshit insane.

 [Laughs] yeah man, that’s all the stuff that gets our juices going. The song really does dictate how creative the video can be. For example, a ballad or a song like ‘Nerve’, and if we had the cowboy cult followers during that song, it would just not feel right. Your videos are there to provide something new, to create something interesting visually from the sonics. When you’re given the opportunity to make a video, you should do your absolute best to make something entertaining or make the viewer think “What the fuck is going on?”. I think that some bands have, and I don’t want to say they’ve given up, but they have less concern for such things in this post-MTV world. And that’s another fact, there just aren’t as many music video channels and with budgets going down, it can be harder to create something creative, big, or different.

We got very lucky when we met our director, who has done the videos for ‘Pretty’, ‘Technology’ and ‘Everybody’. His company, Dominar Films, did all three and they’re based in Athens, Georgia over in the States. We loved their ideas and we bounce off each other well, so we knew we just had to keep working with them.

Oh, nice! Those other two bands I mentioned also have their go-to directors that they work and finding that kind of working relationship is key to making such awesome art. Because even when I show people your music and they don’t like the songs, they often love the clips and get a really good kick out of ‘em.

Oh, that’s actually awesome to hear either way.

With that, that’ll be all we’ve got time for Rob. Thanks so much for your time today. And I hope that Ireland wedding doesn’t end up like the ‘Pretty’ clip!

[Laughs] I hope not either! Thanks so much mate – catch you guys in December.

Don Broco will be making their first ever Australian trip this December, courtesy of Destroy All Lines and Chugg Entertainment. Dates below, tickets here

Thursday 7 December – The Brightside, Brisbane – 18+

Friday 8 December – Corner Hotel, Melbourne – 18+

Sunday 10 December – OXFORD ART FACTORY, Sydney – 18+

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