INTERVIEW: Hellions (28/07/2018)

Credit: Promo

They’ve already toured in the UK previously with the likes of Northlane and Comeback Kid, but now Australian four-piece Hellions are back for a headline tour of their own, hitting up some festivals in between whilst on our shores.

So, whilst over in the UK ahead of their London date, we caught up with both vocalist Dre Faivre and drummer Anthony Caruso backstage at their final show to discuss touring, Green Day, and that much anticipated fourth album.

DP!: How’s the tour been?
D: It’s been pretty good. We did Y Not Festival yesterday and it was sick, very cool. We got to meet all the Kurupt FM dudes. The UK crowds are very similar to Australia, apart from the seasons! It’s freezing at home, so we’ve come to pick up your summer, haha. We live for it. We’ve been talking to British people and they’re all like “I’m dying in the heat”, and we love it!
A: It’s the last night tonight, which is a bit of a shame. I’m not quite ready to go home! It’s been amazing. The shows have been a level up from last time that we were here. It’s been so humbling to play these little DIY shows. Everyone who’s been at the shows has been so involved, singing along to all the words.

DP!: What was the reason for two London shows?
D: We just decided to do a full circle, start in London and finish in London, so we did the first show at The Old Blue Last, and that was sick. It was the day of the semi final that England were in, so that was very interesting because they lost! It was a weird mood, this real weird depressive mood. So I was like “Um, I don’t wanna mention anything football related on stage.”
A: We’ve played in London a few times, but this is the best time that we’ve ever played here.

DP!: You’ve released two new songs this year, does this mean there’s another album on the way?
D: Yep. It’s coming. We just don’t know when it’s coming. It’s all written and all recorded, it’s all finished. We’re just plotting our next moves and when to release tracks. Both of the songs that we’ve released recently will be on the album.
A: We’re all very very excited about it. In my opinion, it’s our best work yet. It’s a little bit different, we’re kind of just blending what we’ve learnt from the last few years and what we learnt doing the last record. I’ve personally taken on a lot more vocal duties. There’s a whole new dynamic that we’re still navigating. The recording process for it has been very refreshing, we did everything a little bit differently this time round.

DP!: There’s a line in your most recent track ‘X (Mwah)’ where you talk about “breathing cosmic debris.” What does that mean?
D: Breathing in what’s around you. Trying not to get too lost in what’s happening in the moment, for the simplified version.
A: Basically, in the chorus of the song, there’s a line that says “Are we water without salubrity?”, because our bodies are made up of mostly water, so it’s saying, are we made up of that without the health giving benefits? We’re essentially made up of stardust and water, so it’s essentially just a different perspective on the way that we’re made and how we are as humans.

DP!: You’ve made it through three full-length records now, with a fourth on the way. How has your sound evolved?
D: Just maturing through the years, I guess. We still listen to a lot of hardcore and metal music, but I guess it’s about opening our palate to what’s out there. We all listen to very different stuff. I got introduced to a lot of bands through Matt and Anthony. I guess I listen to a lot of R&B and hip-hop and stuff. I’ve grown to love My Chemical Romance and stuff like that, I moved that way a bit later. I guess from each year we’re just learning and listening to each other’s influences and stuff. We like that it’s hard to pigeon-hole us. It sounds deliberate when it’s released, but it’s completely an accidental thing. It starts with Matt, our guitarist, who writes most of the skeleton and foundation of the tracks, and once he has his vision of the track he’s written he passes it on to us, and everyone has their turn of putting on their own personal flavour, and then when we hit the studio it just changes again! It gets flipped on its head, and we write with our producer Shane Edwards. He’s a musical mastermind. He’s just as much a part of the band as we are, he’s the ghost member. His input is just as important as ours.
A: We’re very, very different now. I think the first Hellions record felt to us like a demo, because we didn’t release any EPs or singles prior to that. That was our first release. The second record we were heading towards the direction we wanted, but we were still kind of finding our way. The third record was when we felt like we’d found where we wanted to go musically, and we kicked into gear to do this record, and we realised the last one wasn’t the be all and end all of what we wanted to be. It’s also heavily influenced by what we’re listening to at the time. This next record will be a bit more listenable, for want of a better term. We’re taking influence from everywhere we can. We go to Thailand to record, and there’s even influences from the music they play. We have hip-hop influences, pop influences, hardcore punk influences; no-one is biased to any sort of particular genre, which I think works in our favour.

DP!: Of all the songs to cover, what made you pick ‘Jesus Of Suburbia’?
D: That was more the other boys’ decision. Personally I’d never heard the song, but when I got told it was a nine minute track I was like “What do you mean?!”, but then when I listened to it I thought it was awesome.
A: It was for a Kerrang! compilation, but we did it as something of a pisstake. They asked us what Green Day song we wanted to cover, and we jokingly said ‘Jesus Of Suburbia’, and they were like “Okay, sweet”, then we were like “Oops!”, but that’s one of my favourite Green Day songs. There’s so much to it, so many different layers. It kind of made sense because we try to do that with our own music. Maybe not write nine minute songs though.

DP!: Aside from the new album on the way, what’s next for you guys?
D: We’re definitely gonna do a tour in Australia. Probably after the album hits. Then we want to come back here as much as possible. We really enjoy the UK, and this summer has made a massive impression on us. I think this is our third time here. We came here with Northlane before for the Impericon Tour, but this time we’ve been playing more intimate shows, which is great.

The band’s fourth studio album, ‘Rue’, is out on October 19th 2018 through UNFD.

You can pre-order the album online now from the label’s webstore (here), iTunes (here), Amazon (here), and Google Play (here).

You can keep up to date with the band online by following them on Facebook (here), Twitter (here), and Instagram (here).