Introducing Interview: Dearly Beloved

With their latest album produced by Daniel Ray (The Ramones, Misfits), Canadian band Dearly Beloved are fast building a reputation worldwide for their ferocious, energy-fuelled live sets and impressive punk-rock anthems.

Now, about to record some new material at the infamous Rancho De La Luna, we caught up with the band to find out more…

Hi Dearly Beloved, welcome to Gigslutz! How are you today?
Fine thank you. We are in Los Angeles today doing some writing… We head to Joshua Tree in a few days to record some new demos at Rancho De La Luna with our friend Dave Catching.

You’ve recently released your new album Admission. What’s the overall message/meaning of the album as a whole?
Admission is a reflection of the times, and the title refers to the price some people are made to pay. It’s a dark album obsessed with injustice, but almost every song works at finding a positive or two. It’s not all just kicking and screaming … There are some constructive thoughts and ideas in the mix as well.

What are your personal favourite tracks from the album and why?
‘Who Wants To Know’ and ‘Boxing Days’ are two of my personal favourites. One is pretty dissonant and the other is just plain pretty. Both are a departure from what we’ve done in the past musically, and lyrically they both speak to the absurdity of what this world has become. From the discourse to the monopolies, to the consumer madness, those two songs get after it.

How would you say this album differs from your previous one, Enduro?
Enduro has more primal energy as it was written on the fly in the studio in Joshua Tree. It’s more from the gut. This album was written ahead of time, tested on the road and then whipped into shape by an actual producer, a first for us. This album is from the heart, and it’s a little more cerebral. On Enduro, I literally wrote a new song every morning after throwing hand axes for a while and then we’d all go work on getting a take before dinner. This time around we took a more traditional approach which, for us, was a radical thing to do considering the experimental nature of our previous albums.

There seems to be a resemblance to Queens Of The Stone Age in your music, but who would you say are your biggest musical inspirations?
I wasn’t a huge Queens fan before we started making music in the desert, to be honest. Comparisons are interesting. I certainly appreciate what they do. Not many rock bands find that kind of success nowadays so hats off to them.
My biggest influences growing up were classics like NoMeansNo, The Clash and Jimi Hendrix. The movie Repo Man. What a film and soundtrack! Bruce Lee and Nicola Tesla, obviously not musicians, but they’re major influences as well.

It’s been said that you create carnage at your live performances (and we’ve witnessed your fantastic show twice!) – what has been your best gig so far and why?
Best gig so far… Hard to beat playing the Bowery Ballroom in NYC with Swervedriver, but the Scala show with them in London was great fun (yes, it was!) as well. We’ve been fortunate enough to open for EODM in our hometown. All great memories. Top of the heap, though, for me, personally, are two shows… The first where we opened for Mike Watt in Southampton at Joiners – he leaned on my monitor and watched every note I played that night with this great big smile on his face. We exchanged emails and have kept in touch. Mike is a legend and a hero of mine so I cherish that memory.

Which song of yours do you feel most energises the crowd?
‘Who Wants to Know’ seems to do a good job of that. ‘Olympics Of No Regard’ from Enduro also seems to light a fire.

You’ve worked with Daniel Ray from Ramones fame, and many more big names, who would you say has been your favourite person to work with?
He’s the first producer we’ve ever worked with. Generous folks like Dave Catching, Rob Sanzo and Chris Goss and have helped steer our ship in the past but Daniel is the first producer we’ve ever hired to work with us. So to answer your question … Daniel. He is kind, laid back, and knows how to make your song better. I can’t recall a single suggestion he made on a song that didn’t make whatever we were working on better than it was.

What inspired the name ‘Dearly Beloved’?
It was created as an outlet for me to make music … With people I trust and love – no long term goals just art for the purpose of making it, expressing something and hopefully feeling better as a result.

Do you feel as though your backgrounds have had an impact on the sound you produce?
Absolutely. When we create, the people in the room and their backgrounds have an impact on the songs we record. It’s part of the pleasure of not having had the same lineup since we started the band. Different backgrounds bring different vibes to the mix and as a writer I really enjoy hearing how an idea is perceived and approached by another musician.

What is your favourite new band of the moment and why?
They’re not exactly new but digging Thee Oh Sees. Russian Circles is a new discovery for me thanks to our guitar player Bobby. Super stoked on the new Black Mountain record as well as the new Run The Jewels. Death Valley Girls are cool, as are Gateway Drugs.

And, can you sum up your sound in three words?
Chaotic. Loud. Furious. On record there is more restraint with us, but when we play live we let it all hang out and focus on the more wild elements of the music we make.

Finally, what can we expect from Dearly Beloved in 2017?
Another European tour in February, a Japanese tour in April, an American tour sometime after that and recording sessions at Rancho De La Luna and again at 606 for a new EP sprinkled in there when we’re not on the road.

Huge thanks for answering our questions!
My pleasure, thanks for asking them!

Admission, the latest album from Dearly Beloved, is out on 27 January on Aporia Records.