Some may not be fully aware of the showmanship that is presented in a musician like Frank Carter. While many in the world of punk remember him as the former frontman of Gallows, the majority of them have regarded him to be one of the most professional and astonishing frontmen in rock music. Now, with his band The Rattlesnakes returning to Australia in February with Cancer Bats, whom Frank has toured with in the past, he and his band are eager to be coming back so soon for another killer set of shows with his old Canadian friends.
“I can’t fucking wait!” he says. “I love everything about Australia. But, I think the thing that I love the most is the gigs, always. The passion, the energy and just the vibe in the room is always second to none. Four of our favourite shows ever are when we were last here. So, we can’t wait for this one.I haven’t done a gig with Cancer Bats in a long time. So, for me, I’m just excited to see them and share the same stage with them. It’s definitely going to feel like a good ‘back in the day’ for me.”
While Frank looks back on some of the shows that he and The Rattlesnakes have done, he states that he’s more keen on what’s about to happen next month, which will be a big highlight to his career. He also reminisces the festival appearances that The Rattlesnakes have done in Europe, which have been quite extraordinary for him and his troubadours.
“A highlight for me is a gig that we haven’t done yet. We get to do the Brixton Academy in December. It’s basically all I’ve been thinking about this whole year. I can’t wait to play there! The festivals have been amazing, as well. Glastonbury’s phenomenal, and so is Leeds. We’ve played some crazy festivals in Europe like Rock En Seine in Paris. Every time we get given an opportunity onstage, whether it be festival or headlining, we always try to upstage every band. It’s not an easy job, but we try.”
Even though there are many differences between festivals and headline gigs, Frank sees them as another day at the office. But, at the same time, he’s out to try and prove to each and every show he’s participating in, why him and The Rattlesnakes are an important entity, and why they are onstage at that moment.
“The battlefields are even, when it comes to festivals and headlining shows. Everybody gets a similar amount of time, and a lot of egos are kicking about. But, everyone has been taken down a bit of a peg, because everyone wants to be a headliner. But, they know they’re not. It’s never as clear until you get to a show and you just realise how much work you have to do. Whenever we play a show, I just get really hungry. I go out there and prove to everyone why we’re there, why we’re one of the most important bands out there.”
Considering that he’s originated from one of the main landmarks in the world of rock music, Frank can see the difference between his home country and every other terrain on earth, he finds some things about Australia to be more captivating and unique, as opposed to all the countries he’s visited.
“In London, specifically, we’re quite spoiled. London is an amazing city. It’s got such a steep history of rock music. So naturally, everyone wants to play there. The problem with that is, it becomes quite saturated and spoiled. So, when we go to places like Australia where it’s expensive and takes a long time to get there, when you go there, people are so excited and they really show the appreciation. It’s just unparallel to a lot of places around the world.”
Frank Carter and The Rattlesnakes’ last visited Australia in December, where they had four shows across the East Coast. From there, Frank had a bit of spare time on his hands to go and do some tattooing, as well as playing around at a bar in Melbourne that he really enjoyed. Frank states that he’s hoping to get some more tattooing done in the country, but he’s hoping to treat this upcoming tour as more like a holiday, after he’s done his thing with the shows he’s performed at.
“Last time I came through, I got to go and hang out at some tattoo shops. I went and worked with my buddies Josh Todaro and Avalon at the Grand Illusion in Melbourne. It was just really nice to get out there and do something different, and make some crap for them and their friends. I just needed that, I needed something different. I’m gonna try and do my best to do some tattoo work. To be honest, I just wanna come out this time and have a holiday. I’ve been working so hard for such a long time, and I just want some time off in the sun and go to the beach. I also remember having a fond memory of playing pool in Melbourne. We played at this tiny little bar at the back of a club, and I just put a couple of bucks on the pool table with friends. The bar was rad, and most of the people there were really respectful. Considering that there were sold out shows, and people came to these shows to see us, everyone was just really chill. They let me play pool, a few people came and knew who I was and wanted to play, as well.”
Wrapping up the chat I had with Frank, we spoke about the work he’s executed in the form of his two latest records Blossom and Modern Ruin. For him, Frank feels most content about the fact that both of those records have made their way into the world. Not only that, he feels that whatever he inks into the paper with his rock n roll poetry, he’s more in it for what he’s feeling, and that what other people feel from his music is just an additional, but also positive coincidence.
“The thing I feel most proud of, is the fact that they exist. There was definitively, a time where it would’ve been easy for them to not exist in this world. I’m just proud that they’re here and here to stay. I never ever worry about what they do for other people. My responsibility is to myself, and I’m exploring my work. I’m always trying to worry more about me and search for the answers for the questions I have with myself. The convenient part of this, a lot of the questions I have, a lot of people have the same questions they want to ask. I never really worry what people think, because it’s art, and it’s supposed to be interpreted differently to those who hear, see or read it.”