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Feature Interview: Deep Sea Arcade

Deep Sea Arcade

While on tour with Hey Geronimo, we had a chat with Deep Sea Arcade about their recent string of international festival appearances, the new album and life on the road.

You guys have been quite the jet setters of late – international festival appearances, recording your new record in London – have your most recent travels and experiences informed or changed your live performances? Perhaps even your dynamic as a group?

The live show has definitely changed as a result of playing overseas. Being in the UK and playing to a predominantly new audience resulted in us playing a very different set to what we had been doing in Australia, one that was shorter and sharper and a bit more spontaneous and less reliant on playing songs that people might recognise in Australia. So in that sense we were able to road test a lot of new material and were definitely informed by watching and touring with a lot of UK bands like Charlie Boyer and the Voyeurs, Telegram and Temples.

How do the international festivals compare to live performances on home soil?

We did miss playing in Australian a lot, especially the club type shows we were doing before we left. And everywhere we went we were constantly reminded of how many great Australian bands there are. It must be said though, that festivals in that part of the world can be quite mind-blowing. Ones like Secret Garden Party and Wilderness Festival in the UK and Lowlands in Holland are noticeably less regulated than festivals of a similar size in Australia and seem to have a real freedom to be curated the way they see fit. There’s a relaxed, free roaming, otherworldly kind of feeling that, as great as Australian festivals consistently are, made it a different and pretty exciting thing to experience.

How will your new album compare to previous releases?

I think the new record will be a development on 'Outlands' in the sense that we will abandone traditional song structures. With the first record we were always trying to write the perfect pop song, I cant think of many songs off that record that are longer than 3:30. The songs that we are writing at the moment tend to try and escape that a little. I'm also very keen to have just as many instrumental hooks as lyrical or vocal ones.

Your critics have described your best known tracks as having some of the most infectious hooks of current Australian music. What is the key to writing a tune that gets put on repeat in listeners’ brains from the moment they hear it?

I believe that writing a tune that gets stuck in your head is in many ways the same as having a tune stuck in your head. Melodies need to come about when you are doing other activities like walking through the park, staring out the window of a bus. That's when I've written the ones I'm most proud of anyway. 

By now you must be either very fond of the road, or have grown to tolerate it. What are some of the best bits about being on tour, apart from the musical aspects?

Just getting to be an ultimate tourist and waking up in a new incredible city every second day is pretty alright. And I’d say food would be the major perk of touring Europe. One night in Italy they set up a long table for us on the grass behind the festival stage and read to us from a three-course menu that we couldn’t understand a word of. We realised later that we stuffed our faces full of donkey ragu bolognese and it was delicious.

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