DMA’s are an Australian band who have captivated the UK and are taking it by storm.
Many have compared the trio to Britpop legends Oasis but to merely restrict – what is in itself – a unique sound, would be foolish and harsh on DMA’s, as they deliver their own personal style.
The band have quickly built-up a great reputation for themselves in such a short period of time, which led to a supporting slot for The Kooks’ in their latest tour.
I caught up with band member, Johnny Took, in their dressing room at the SSE Arena, Wembley just before the last gig of the tour, and asked what it’s been like playing to an audience in larger venues.
Johnny said, “It’s been good dude, it’s a good experience playing some of these [venues] like fucking Wembley and shit.
“It’s good for us to get out in front of a different demographic and The Kooks guys have been real nice.”
DMA’s experience this time around in Scotland clearly stuck with the band though, which was obvious when I asked about his highlight so far.
“Definitely Edinburgh at The Usher Hall, it’s like one of my new favourite places to play.
“We played in Motherwell for our own show, I think that was our biggest show to date in the UK which was good.
“These [tour] shows have been great to get out there and just play but with our own shows we get to play new songs that are gonna be on the record.”
So nearly two years after their debut album ‘Hill’s End’ was released, we can now anticipate the release of their second, due ‘around March or April’ I was told.
He wasn’t giving much away so I got him to describe the album in just three words.
“Doesn’t make… sense. No I don’t know, it’s a weird one.
“It is maybe a little bit moodier in some regards but also a little bit more mature, there you go moody and mature that can be my three words.”
After the release of their new single, ‘Dawning’, I suppose I can understand that description as a taster of what to expect, and they will also be giving us another tune before the next album comes out.
But if you still haven’t had the chance to experience DMA’s live then I’m sure an opportunity will come sooner than you think.
“We got sent one [tour] the other day, it looks pretty hectic, we’re gonna be here quite a bit.
“I mean because we go to a lot of the little towns as well we don’t just hit like the major cities and I think that’s important.
“Over the last two years we’ve just kept coming back and it’s been really humbling to see that each time, we play a little bit of a bigger venue.
“We feel pretty fortunate of the response that we’ve had in the UK and it feels organic, it wasn’t like we had one song that got really big and then people only like you for that.
“I remember when we first did that Courteeners support and they were playing O2’s around the place and I remember thinking that would be good I would love to get to that level, so hopefully we can get to somewhere around that when the record comes out.”
I sensed the gratitude from Johnny towards the fans on behalf of the band. They’re genuine lads who appreciate everyone who turns up to their gigs and will socialise with them at every opportunity.
“I feel like the fans that do come and watch us play are really loyal and they know all the tunes.
“I mean we’re pretty straight up dudes, we’re not too precious. We’re just like everyday motherfuckers, we like hanging out with everyday motherfuckers.”
I was intrigued to find out how this band, who recently have been noted for their ‘rowdy’ lifestyle spent their free time whilst on tour.
“We just kinda watch TV and shit. I’ve been watching heaps of Netflix and I’ve got into a really bad habit.
“We played the other night for one of these Kooks tour dates and I’ve been watching ‘Better Call Saul’ because I’ve only just finished ‘Breaking Bad’ so I was like fuck it I’ll get straight into it and I’ll be watching it like five minutes before I go on stage.
“Then I realised I was just not in the headspace at all to play music, actually that was at the Motherwell show. I didn’t realise how hectic it was gonna be out there and I walked down and I was just not ready at all.”
Then I gave him my Netflix recommendations that I had binged-watched but wondered outside of touring and music what other hobbies he had.
“I just feel pretty fortunate that my hobby is now my job and it’s my favourite thing to do. We’ve got our own studio now where we recorded most the new record above this pub called the Lady Hampshire.
“Our mate helped us build the studio, so it’s technically his studio because he owns the pub so we just spend most the time recording our mates’ bands or our new shit.
“I’ve started working on a new band with my little brother so you know that’s just what we have fun doing and then time off, just hang out and go to dinner and shit nothing crazy.”
As I started talking about Johnny’s favourite UK festival so far, and that Y Not setlist, Tommy walked in to get his Kettle Chips as he was watching the Everton game next door, and swiftly left so he didn’t miss anything.
“I didn’t mind Y Not; the gig was good. The weekend, that was fucked and someone found our setlist and it was called ‘Y Bother festival’ but we didn’t think about that when people grabbed it, I think they could see the humour.
“I really liked T in the Park but I don’t think that’s happening anymore so I was kinda happy we got to play the last one of them.”
I told him it was kind of replaced by TRNSMT which wasn’t a camping festival, so I didn’t feel like it was the same.
“Camping’s pretty hectic. I went to a lot of the camping festivals when I was a kid, there are heaps of them in Australia in the bush but you just end up stinking by the end. Maybe it’s because I’m a bit of a brat now.
“When I go to a festival I just think of work, I mean I have fun don’t get me wrong and the gigs are mad but I couldn’t imagine hanging out at the same festival for like three days.”
DMA’s are in the line-up for Neighbourhood Weekender festival which takes place in Warrington on the 26th and 27th May 2018.
They will play on the Sunday with the likes of Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds, Blossoms, The Sherlocks and The Pigeon Detectives.