Social Stats: DZ Deathrays

April 8th 2011

From humble beginnings playing shows in their friends’ lounge rooms, to two American tours and a trip to the UK in the pipeline, the party just keeps getting bigger for DZ Deathrays. Since their 2009 single ‘The Mess Up’ blew up on blogs and radio stations alike, Brisbane lads Shane Parsons and Simon Radley have gained significant notoriety for bringing their no-holds-barred thrash punk to dancefloors nationwide. We caught up with the duo before they blaze into FBi Social this Saturday to celebrate the release of their new EP Brutal Tapes.

FBi: So you’ve just come back from a run of gigs in the USA, including playing at SXSW. Do you find the American audience any different from crowds back home?

DZ Deathrays: Yeah a bit, but it's the same with any new crowd you play to who don't know what you're about. Fans here know our songs and come to the shows ready to get loose. Whereas no one knows us in the USA so they are usually more timid.

It seems you’re creating a definite vibe with your stage show, when you list Shane’s live setup to include ‘no samples’ and Simon’s as ‘Drums/Strobes’, and engage your fans in fully-funded drinking competitions. What would you say you’re trying to do to people?

We started the band to play our friends’ house parties so we try to recreate that at the shows. Sometimes if the crowd is a little shy we've even just gotten people to stand at the front of the stage and hand out tequila shots and our rider.

Alongside the garage/punk/thrash sounds, you seem to have a keen ear for infectious melodies. Do you have any sneaky pop influences you’re not telling us about?

We were both raised on old-school pop music like Fleetwood Mac and Creedence so I guess there is a little of that in there.

You’ve got a few shows left in Australia before you head off overseas. Can we expect any going away presents?

This is the first tour down south where we get to bring our full light show (except Adelaide, sorry Adelaide) and we got some treats for the people at the front of the stage.

Do you have any tourist adventures or holiday plans while you’re over in the UK? Or is it strictly a business trip?

Not really, I have some family I'm going to meet with but other than that there isn't much time. We have something like 20 shows in 22 days.

The Brutal Tapes EP is out now through I OH YOU.


Read more from Nick La Rosa