Dear Chester, I only realised a few days ago that it’s nearly been a year …
It’s pretty easy to spot when a band really just love what they do and there’s really no band that fits this bill quite like Brisbane outfit Dune Rats. In the wake of the release of their second record, The Kids Will Know It’s Bullshit, Hysteria Mag sat down with the one and only legend Brett Jansch, bassist for Dune Rats, to find out whether everything they say is in fact… bullshit.
Tell us about your latest album, The Kids Will Know It’s Bullshit.
It’s probably been the best part of two years I’d say. Pretty much after the first record came out, almost two and a half years ago now really, we started writing songs. We had the idea that we were just going to write heaps and heaps of songs and then pull it back to the ones we thought would stick as an album.
Are you sitting on a massive back catalogue of stuff now?
We cut the heads off the baby really when we were in the studio. I think those guys just went to the curb I guess. By the time we come around to writing new songs, I don’t think we want to be going back to old stuff. We will most likely want to push on from what we’ve done after this album. It was hard to get rid of those songs in a way because then we all knew that we wouldn’t be playing them. A couple of them were great.
I guess then it means you’re still going to be writing and creating new music for a long while to come then?
Yeah, fuck yeah!
Why is it that you like to make music?
Without making new songs, we can’t keep pushing the band forward. The whole reason we love doing it so much is because we just enjoy each other’s company. When we play it’s kind of like… it just works well when we play together.
Where was the bulk of the new record written? Was it a case of travelling around, jotting down ideas and seeing what was the best fit?
That’s pretty much exactly what we were doing. We were just popping around different places. We spent some time in WA in our friends Dad’s boat shed, writing a couple of songs, one song from that ended up on the album. When we finished the Fidlar tour in America we went with Zac (Carper) into Joshua Tree and that was the first time we kind of went off to see what would happen with Zac and us together. We got a couple of songs out of that and we went home and the idea was just to do shit during the day and have a good time. When you get into the zone of writing, you’re more psyched to make something, because you’re having a good day doing whatever. We went to Stratty and Macmasters Beach, we had these little houses where we would just jam out. We basically just kept compiling songs and working it down to the ones we really wanted to be on the record.
When you were writing with Zac, was Scott Green one of those songs that came out of that collaboration?
Yeah absolutely. There’s a couple of tracks actually that have half of Zac writing together more heavily, and others where we had the song completely finished. Sometimes as well, we would open a song up a bit, and Zac would tighten up the screws, it was a collaboration with him the whole time. Even with the production we were always chucking stupid fucking comments from the couch in the back of the studio whilst Zac was trying to play on the actual record.
Without the fans exuberance and excitement behind the whole ship I don’t think it would be where it is today. It’s fucking psycho.
I can imagine that writing process being a whole heap of fun as well as a whole bunch of hard work. Do you ever catch yourself forgetting that you’re really trying to knuckle down and write a record?
That’s kind of the good bit about the record. We didn’t do a million takes for shit to try and get everything perfect. When I listen to it, I can kind of hear the bits in the record where it’s like we could have done that more times to get it better, but it is kind of perfect in a way. It’s kind of urgent in its delivery.
I heard a bit about the story behind the title of the record basically along the lines of the kids will really know it’s bullshit, can you tell me a bit more about that?
It was Courtney Taylor-Taylor from the Dandy Warhols. We were heading up north, driving through Portland and he was all like “stop into my house and have lunch” and shit. We met his kid and his wife and were just cruising. We ended up getting real pissed with him and we went to his sick studio warehouse thing and he’s rambling on telling us all these sick stories we kind of just started talking about the record and what he had to say about it. He just said make the record you wanna do because the kids will know it’s bullshit. That just rung in our ears for ages.
Does that sentiment carry over to the backbone of the tour as well?
Yeah absolutely. We’re pretty much going to make it like the album on show, which is fucking tough (laughs). We’ve gotta learn how to play the songs yet.
How many of the new songs have you played live?
In America we were kind of chucking like a few in. It’s kind of good to play a few new ones on stage. We weren’t kind of playing to the biggest crowds when we were in the States so it was cool just to chuck them in and wing it and see how it worked. We’ve almost played all of them at least once or twice but then we’ve been chucking some more in the set lately. It’s going to be fucking cool though, I’m fucking keen.
Speaking of your live show, the tour has already started to sell out. Did you expect that?
Nup, definitely not, everyone in our camp was just rocked. It’s fucking rad… Without the fans exuberance and excitement behind the whole ship I don’t think it would be where it is today. It’s fucking psycho.
Have you had any strange run-ins with any fans?
Nah, nothing strange I’m always psyched to just do whatever. It’s chill. I think it’s cool engaging like that. I like to meet a new person everyday anyway so engaging with new people is always chill.
The second record from Dune Rats, The Kids Will Know It’s Bullshit is out now. Read our review, here!