I’ve known these guys for quite a while (how many years again?…) and it’s absolutely amazing to be able to follow their journey as a band. In this new interview, you guys will have the possibility to learn more about The Deadnotes‘ new album “Courage”, as well as their own record label.
Hello The Deadnotes, thanks for your time. Would it be possible to introduce your band to our readers, as well as your roles in it?
Hey! My name is Darius, I play guitar and I sing for a band called The Deadnotes. We come from Freiburg, a small city in Southern Germany, considered to be a very green and liberal city. But to be honest, the music we play and its scene is kind of dead there.
That’s probably why we got out of the city as much as possible quite early after we had founded the band at the age of 15, still in school. So far, we have played over 500 shows in over 25 European countries. You’ll find these stats in all our press texts as well but I’m not really getting tired of mentioning them. Because I still can’t believe it myself how much crazy shit we already have gotten to experience with this band and it’s actually just started!
How do you spend your time during quarantine?
The first few days were quite tough to be honest. The second half of our release tour, festivals in summer and in total over 30 shows got cancelled for us. I lost my part time job in the event industry too for an “indefinite” period of time. I was really suffering from existential fears and was obviously totally bummed out.
Now, a few weeks later, I feel like I am able to enjoy the status quo and live in the here and now. There are better and worse days but most of the time I play guitar for a few hours a day. Write new songs, drink A LOT of coffee, spend a lot of time outside in the garden. And keep myself busy with, for instance, interviews like this one. Thanks for having me! 🙂
You started your own record label called “22Lives Records” a while ago. Who had this idea within the band?
Since the early days, we have always wanted to run things as independently as possible. It’s often a bigger risk but a really rewarding experience to be able to say “we have done this on our own”. Every time the band or now the label takes a next step forward. We’re kind of used to “diy” and our early socialization was the very small local Indie/Punk scene in our hometown Freiburg.
In the end, it was a logical consequence for us to start our own label. And brand all these things we’ve already been doing for a long time.
Do you guys plan on signing new bands in the future?
Yeah, that’s definitely a plan! However, at the moment, we’re still totally wrapped up in the new Deadnotes release. And don’t really have the capacities to focus on anything else. If we’ll sign “external” bands, we wanna make sure it feels right and that we’re able to deliver 100%. It was the first release on our own label and the whole situation is still very new to us. And of course, there’s still a lot to learn for us too.
Your album “Courage” was also released two months ago. How long have you worked on this record?
The whole process was a very challenging and intense one. I fully understand that common phrase now that the 2nd albums are often the hardest for bands. Many bands always need a lot of space to be creative. We are a band that always needs a little pressure and deadlines. We started writing songs in 2016 already but also toured relentlessly all over Europe over the last few years.
We could have released the whole thing way earlier already if we had wanted to. But we wanted to make everything as perfect as possible, always learning from mistakes we made: Develop artistically and create something that we’re 100% convinced of. Not only in terms of music but also regarding the whole setup that it’ll be released in.
On the one hand I think it’s important to not rush through things when you create something that’s supposed to last forever. On the other hand, it’s quite tough to make out the point when it’s time to make the final call and when you’ve done enough self-reflection and re-working.
Two months in now and I think we did it all right. At least that’s how it feels for us and which is probably the most important thing.
If you had to pick one song that best reflects the spirit of this album, which one would you pick and why?
I personally really like the diversity and variety of “Courage”, lyric and music wise. It’s really hard for me to pick a standout track. That’s probably the reason why we did five single releases preceding the actual album release (laughs).
If I had to choose one, it’s probably “Never Perfect” as a very dark “mental health song”. Which is a topic that plays an important role in the band and on the the record. And I’d choose “I Must Have Been Blind” as a counterpart since I really love it’s lightness and it always leaves a big smile on my face when we play it live or when I listen to it. Both are very encouraging and positive songs though I’d say!
The last words are for you. If you have a message to convey, here’s your chance!
Stay safe, stay healthy, wash your hands, take care of one another. Can’t wait to see you all in real life again when all this is over!
Thanks for your time Darius!
Photo: Ilkay Karakurt