In Conversation With Tommy O’Dell Of the DMA’s Ahead Of Their Show At Rock City

The DMA's - Photo Credit Jordan Hughes/NME
The DMA’s – Photo Credit Jordan Hughes/NME

Australian three-piece DMA’s have released their second album, ’For Now’ on 27th April, 2018.  

Ahead of their show in Rock City, Nottingham, on the day their album drops, Tommy O’Dell, one of three from the rock band reveals more about the album, touring and much more.

How would you say your sound has evolved over time?

When we started we were garage-y rock’n’roll band. On our new record, we’ve tried not to over saturate our guitar layering. We’ve tried to make a little more minimal in that way, to let the parts breathe a little bit more. We spent more time on the vocals. So sonically, I think we’ve progressed in a way that’s sounding more polished, fuller and warmer.

Is that fuller, warmer direction a conscious decision or has it just been a gradual, natural process?

It was natural and conscious. I listen to the first record and think it was a little bit trebly, so we wanted to work on making it fuller and warmer particularly on the vocals.

Your new album ‘For Now’ is out today. What was the recording process for it like?

The recording process was a little different from the previous record. We demoed them in our bedroom, then went to a studio and recorded live. It was different in that we had a really nice studio and we had a lot more time to spend on it. The process, it took me ten days to record the vocals and maybe two or three weeks for all the other stuff.

What’s been your favourite venue to perform at?

I enjoyed playing at the Ritz in Manchester. But my favourite venue would have to be the Enmore Theatre in Sydney, only because I’ve seen some of my favourite bands play there growing up and when we got to play there, it was nostalgic and really cool.

Who would you say are your major musical influences?

Personally, for me, it would British bands of the 80s and 90s. I’m listening to Frank Ocean a lot currently. Mason and Johnny they come from a different musical background than me. They are more into American guitar bands- Sonic Youth, Dinosaur Jr. You mix all of that together and you get where we are at the moment.

What’s been a song on your personal playlist you’ve had on repeat recently, and why?

This band called Splashh, I’ve just discovered their second record, and there’s a song on there called ‘Gentle April’, been listening to that quite a lot recently. And as I said been listening to Frank Ocean as well.

What’s been a major career highlight?

A highlight would be getting to a second record; which is today. If you’d have asked me when we first started the band and we were recording in our bedrooms if you were to tell me we’d release an album-let alone two- and for it to get released and be playing live, I probably wouldn’t have thought so. So to release this second record would be a highlight and one that I’m proud of. When we did the first record, we did it without realizing and it was in the moment, with this one we thought about it more.

So was there a particular message or thought you’ve tried to convey in the new album?

A lot of our songs are about relationships With this record because we’ve done so much touring,some of the lyrics came from being on the road. Some of them seem sad, but also uplifting at the same time, because that’s how tour life can be – sometimes sad, but really amazing as well.

So what do you think is the best part of touring? And what’s the worst part?

The best part of it is playing your music to people on the other side of the world. It’s why you make music, so that you share it with people. The worst part is just being away from home.

What’s next for the DMA’S?

We’re going to be touring until the end of the year atleast, get on some good festivals.See what we can get out of this second record, and in the meantime keep writing and working on new tunes, which we are doing already. Just continue what we’re doing.

What’s one question no one asks you in an interview you wish you were asked?

To talk about my football team, no one really asks about it. No one asks about football.

So tell me about it then.

No, we’re struggling at the moment. But the whole band is actually going to watch Everton play when we play at SoundCity next week, so that should be good!

Check out the DMA’s on their official website, Facebook, and Twitter.

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