Interview: DMS

You have just released your new single “Games We Play”. What is the story behind the song and how did you create/write it? Also, what inspired the song title?
– Mike: This track, like most, started with John and I sitting down for an acoustic jam. The inspiration for the lyrics basically came from the fact that pretty much all of us have either been in or witnessed a toxic relationship where you know no ones going to have a happy ending. Pretty sure lockdown has made a whole bunch of folk question their life choices in that regard! Once the initial structure was in place they brought it to the rest of the band to flesh it out and give it a bit more layers. There were a few working titles along the way but in the end we went for “Games We Play” as it summed up the intent pretty clearly.

If you had to describe your sound, how would you do so? Furthermore, what artists (or other sources) do you cite as influences?
– Mike: Unfortunately saying “we’ve got our own sound” has been wrongly vomited out by so many bands in the past it’s a worthless statement these days. The problem is I really struggle to hear similarities to us. I think that comes from the fact that we listen to such a huge spectrum of stuff between us. When you stick all of those outside influences together you get this. What is it? Not really sure to be honest. I generally turn the question around and say who do YOU think we sound like? Got to wring out as many streams as possible these days! Some influences for me off the top of my head are Infected Mushroom/Muse/Nirvana/Deadmau5/Elliott Smith/Britney Spears/Steven Wilson/Death From Above 1979… You get the idea.
– Mush: This is a question we always struggle to answer. The best response is we sound like us. We all come from such different places musically that it blends together to form not something new, but certainly unique. We’re rock, we’re blues, funk and soul. We’re DMS.
– Jen: I would describe us as sounding like dark indie pop! John has a very powerful Chris Cornell vocal sound and Mikey’s guitar work is very Pink Floyd/Angus Young! Then you throw Callum, Mush and myself into the mix and there we have a very interesting collab! I am influenced by 80’s/90’s pop and Nu metal! Love a bit of my EMO music! Therefore I am more sinister sounding! But love high cheesy catchy synth riff melodies!

What have been band highlights so far? And what is on your bucket list that you’d want to achieve?
– Mikey: For me it was going down to Manchester to support our mates The Rainband at their homecoming show at The Deaf Institute. Amazing venue (that has thankfully been given a stay of execution last year) and a sell out show. It was also the night that all-round legend Mr Garry Harrison uttered the immortal words “Like Luther Vandross backed by AC/DC” which has been our shorthand answer to the previous question every since (opinions may vary)
– Jen: Highlights for me was getting to play Oban Live, party At The Palace and winning battle of the bands at the Liquid Rooms in 2018! 

If you could be the main support for any living artist, who would that be for and why? Alternatively, what would be your dream live booking?
– Jen: I would love to support Royal Blood, Yeah Yeah Yeah’s, Florence and the Machine or The Killers that would be absolutely HUGE!! To be honest Supporting any well known established artist would be an absolute honour.
– Mikey: I’m one of those guys that maintains the idea of “never meet your idols” so to be honest I just want to play to the crowd that is going to be most receptive to our music. Maybe I’m getting cynical in my old age but I don’t really see myself getting star-struck haha. At the end of the day a gig is a job. You’re more likely to fuck it all up if you’re freaking out like when Wayne and Garth met Alice Cooper. Fun fact – Wayne’s World is collectively one of the bands most quoted films DESPITE Jen never having seen it. We still have much work to do.

What artists have you been listening to? Additionally, who should others be listening to?
– Jen: Recently I’ve been listening to a lot of Depeche Mode and Queen! I love old school music! There’s a lot of amazing new artists out there breaking through! I would definitely recommend Primes, Holding Absence and Elessar!
– Mikey: Dirty Loops/TWRP/Miley Cyrus/Caravan Palace/Carpenter Brut have all been in heavy rotation recently. Also found some old Creamfields CDs in a cupboard that I had to burn to my actual computer like the old days. Closer to home I just picked up Jazz Spastics new album Camera of Sound. Been getting back into Bloke Music as well. Love a bit of Hessian Renegade too!
Finally, Ambient 1/Music For Airports by Brian Eno is probably my most played album ever given that I use it to chill out/trip balls/sleep. It’s an album for every situation!

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