Since forming back in 2008, Don Broco may have only released two albums, but they have also achieved quite a lot else in that mean time! Not only have the pop-rock/alternative rock/post-hardcore quartet from England been continuing to release singles since their second album Automatic in 2015, but they’ve also been busy touring with Bring Me The Horizon across Europe as well as supporting 5 Seconds of Summer on the Sounds Live Feels Live World Tour! Let’s not also forget that Don Broco have signed with SharpTone Records, as well as having re-released Automatic in the United States…not bad for just 2016 alone!
Don Broco are continuing to break ground and build momentum in 2017; not only are they preparing for some massive upcoming headline shows at home including one at Alexandra Palace, but they also recently announced their first ever tour of Australia! Don Broco are tearing up the East Coast of Australia, hitting Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne within 4 nights: unfortunately Adelaide and Perth miss out, but that just gives the band more incentive to come back out sooner than later!
OVERDRIVE sat down with lead vocalist Rob Damiani to discuss the upcoming Australian tour, as well as a couple of other things that Don Broco have achieved in 2017: the first topic of discussion was about which waiting period is worse; the wait to book a tour so Don Broco can visit Australia, or the wait to finally land on our shores now a tour has been achieved? Damiani was quick to elaborate:
“I’d say definitely the wait before it was announced; for our band it’s been about a 5 year wait to get to Australia, so it’s a long wait without a calendar date! We’ve been wanting to get out to you guys since we started the band, so you know; even for us now to have the dates is exciting, the wait for those dates to be secured was a lot worse. It’s one of those things that we have been looking forward to for a long time and waiting for it to happen; it’s a really nice time for us as well to have that break before getting to tour down under. Here in the UK, it’s a completely dead time; for some reason, as soon as the first of December kicks in, the musical industry shuts down and there aren’t any more tours or shows. Yeah it’s great to have a bit of time off, but to get out and to get to play shows in Australia in a time where we usually get miserably cold at home; obviously it’s your summer as well and everyone says that is the time you want to head to Australia! It’s really satisifying as well when you know all your friends and family are at home in miserable weather (laughs) You know in the UK, during December if it was colder it would be a lot better: you’ve got these visions of a white Christmas, with snow falling and people tobogganing. But the way it is currently in the UK, it’s just kind of wet and a little bit miserable in December; it doesn’t really get cold until January or Februrary so it’s just this horrible time of year!”
Damiani couldn’t contain his excitement about getting to tour Australia, as he continued:
“Not only getting to get out of England at time of year is phenomenal; but getting to do it whilst getting to spend the time getting to experience Australia for the first time, we’re just kind of stoked to be getting out there to see the country!” This made for a perfect segway to find out not only which city Damiani was most excited about getting to visit, but as to why that is also.
“For me, I think it’s Sydney; I’m really excited just because I’ve got a lot of family there who I haven’t seen in years! It’s good to be able to go somewhere and have a base; I wouldn’t say it feels like a home from home already but it’s nice to know you’ve got people you can count on. The amount of stuff to do there is awesome; we’ve also got some friends out there and it’s the final show of the tour, so I’m definitely excited to stay out there for a few days longer. It makes sense for us to transfer this into a bit of a holiday; but honestly when it comes to Melbourne and Brisbane, I want to just ideally just get everything in as much as possible. At that time of the year, with the sun and getting down to the beaches, I’ve just got this amazing vision of everyone just chilling and having this crazy BBQ lifestyle: please tell me this is going to happen or I’ll be really disappointed! (laughs heartedly)”
This interviewer informed Damiani that Don Broco have chosen a good time to tour Australia, as the extreme summer heat hasn’t really kicked in yet; Damiani then continued with how “it’s kind of a good time for the shows as well; we did our first tour in the US as well earlier in the year and the tour started about that same sorta time. Towards the end of the tour however, we were playing our shows in that really hot heat and it gets kind of too much, so we’ve nailed the time of year to come to Australia.”
Knowing that Damiani already has plans to catch up with long missed family, is there anything else that the band want to do whilst down on Australian shores? Damiani explains about the insight the band has received from within the Don Broco camp:
“I think that the thing we’ve heard about…firstly, Mike our guitar tech is Australian; he’s recommended these watering holes that he and his old band used to just travel by. They’ve marked them down on a map and it’s apparently just so picturesque; some of the photos he’s shown me of these waterfalls and these crazy places that are just a drive off the main road! It’s that kind of stuff I’m really excited about as well; just experiencing Australia for it’s crazy and natural places to go and have a good time, which you just don’t get in the U.K unfortunately…either it’s too cold or there’s nowhere you can just go for a swim out in the middle of nowhere. You know, you can sort of follow a guide and see the “5 best things of Sydney” and do all the classic things; don’t get me wrong they’re nice to do and say you’ve done it, but the best memories come when you stumble across this place that you didn’t know existed and only a few people know about it!”
Don Broco has also been busy on a non-musical front; they’ve teamed up with Winwood Laboratories to create a video game inspired by the single ‘Technology’. Not only that, but the band have decided to reward their fans who achieve a top 10 score! This interviewer unfortunately didn’t have time to try it before the interview, however it was most definitely a topic most eager to be discussed…Damiani didn’t disappoint when explaining how the game came about:
“It kind of came about like most weird and out there ideas do; we were just sitting around talking about it. We found out that we had a friend of a friend who was a programmer and he made 8-bit video games, like the old school Sega MegaDrive and the SNES! Our single ‘Technology’ is more about social media and the impact it has on people’s lives; in the video it extends itself to people not being to put their phone down. So the concept of the video is that someone at a Don Broco show has to deal with an alien invasion and basically they don’t bat an eyelid whilst people get abducted and the city gets destroyed. I’ve played the Wu-Tang video game back in the day and it blew my mind that you could play as your own character, so we had this thought of what could we do; the most obvious thing was have Don Broco fight these aliens. It’s a really simple premise; we set these levels up where aliens come down, abduct people from our show and you’ve got to fight them off/collect beer tokens on the way. It’s just a bit of fun really! When we found out that we had a friend of a friend who did that and it was the main thing that he did, he literally knocked this out of the park and put it together in like a week. We had a lot of fun doing it and it’s now out there for all our fans to play and hopefully win stuff by getting the high scores. It was a lot of fun to just branch out and do something out of the box!”
Damiani let us into a small behind the scenes brainstorming session that Don Broco had not too long ago:
“With the show coming up, it kind of made us think “wow maybe we should actually get aliens to try and abduct people from the show” Then we started coming up with all these terrible ideas of getting a load of our mates to dress up as aliens with laser guns and start shooting the crowd; we realised that it would most likely terrify people/look like a pantomime show so we abandoned that quickly (laughs)”
Damiani had nothing but high praise for the team at Winwood, explaining how “when we do collaborate with companies on music videos, promos videos or stuff like that, it can take so long. One of the most infuriating things about this job for me is that there’s so many things that I can’t do; I wish we had this control and we go back and forwards with changes but we can never get it right. Literally we got this game down; we told them what they wanted and the first draft they sent back was spot on!”
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