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- Sunday, 14 October 2018. to read...

Swn festival is just around the corner, kicking off on the 17th of October with an array of eclectic artists. On the 18th of October, Drenge join Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever and The Orielles at The Great Hall in Cardiff for a night full of wavey tunes.

Fresh from the release of their latest EP - Autonomy, I caught up with lead vocalist Eoin Loveless from Drenge ahead of the festival.

So where are you right now and what was the last song that you listen to?

Wow! Erm so I’m next to a Waste Disposal Unit next to our practise room, and the last song I listened to was something like, Ambulance Blues by Neil Young.

Ooo, good shout! Like it! Your heading to Swn Festival on Thursday 18th October with The Orielles and Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever - how are you feeling about that?

Really really excited! We haven’t played a gig recently, so it’s nice to play a gig outside Sheffield and the lineup is exciting, right up my street, so I’m really looking forward to seeing those bands. I’ll feel like a part of the night I think.

Absolutely! It’s an awesome lineup, it’s going to be a great night. I’ve also read that its Five years since you played in pyjamas, and 6 years since all your equipment packed in - what will happen this year do you think?

Haha! Neither of those things. I think we’ll just have a really good night. It’s a lot bigger than any other show that we have done before. So yeah, just really looking forward to playing back in Cardiff.

And how was it to get back on tour earlier this year, you went on a bit of a hiatus, so how was it to get back on the stage for your Grand Reopening Tour?

It was humbling to see that people still have heard about our band and come to our shows. Yeah, I wasn’t expecting to feel emotional during that tour but night after night it was great that people actively like our music and they still wanna come and see us play songs. After being away for a while, that can be a nice heartwarming thing.

I bet! You do have a dedicated fanbase and looking at some of the photos from the tour it looked like there was a lot of energy in the crowds and a lot of mosh pits that went down?

YEP! They love a mosh the Drenge mob.

And you went all out for the tour with Boiler Suits and red ribbon cutting. Had you planned the aesthetic of the tour for a while?

Yeah, we put a bit a thought into it. Not too much, the stuff we had an idea for, we’d try it and then it would fail spectacularly. So the show got more and more paired back as we went on. Like that’s not gonna work and that’s not gonna work but yeah, yanno but sometimes you can turn up and play a gig and it could be like the most normal thing ever or you can make it, yanno, a bit special. Those boiler suits didn’t cost too much, I’m still wearing mine now. It’s a nice spectacle to put on.

Definitely! It makes it quite theatrical then. I thought it looked really cool.

Thank you!

And the release of This Dance was the first release since album undertow. Were you anxious about getting it out or were you quite confident with it?

Um, yeah quite confident with it. I mean it’s quite difficult to judge your own work but we’d done like a full day on it. When your working on a track your not in the best place to kind of judge a good piece of music or not because you’ve just been listening to it so much that you just know it inside out. And then I came in the next day after working on it, and pressed play on it with fresh ears and a nice cuppa coffee and was like yeah, this is really good! Really proud of it.

You should be. It was not what I was expecting from you guys, but I love the distorted beats in there. Whats was the meaning behind the song?

Haha, yeah, I was at a Wedding with Rory and my girlfriend and we were just dancing around at the end of the night. You know at a wedding when your just, kind of, free’er. The good vibes are just flowing. There was just a moment where I took stock a bit and was like, wow, this is quite a unique sensation. I think I need to go to a few more weddings.

Haha, you can’t really go wrong at a wedding! And how did you go about crafting the song, was it different to how you usually work?

I think, like, we finished touring and was like, yanno, we’ve gotta start writing some songs. And for whatever reason, we kind of down scaled a bit and bunkered down in my bedroom and worked in ways that were a bit more bedroom producer vibes than, yanno, rock band vibes. I think there’s lots of technology out there that would be foolish to go, oh we're not going to have a look at that. We wanted to have a look at that and see if we could adapt it to our music.

Definitely! And I think after a bit of a hiatus you can come back and experiment a bit and you have the freedom to bring something a little more experimental into your music.

Yeah, Yeah! Absolutely.

And your new EP - Autonomy. How was it to get back into the studio with Ross Orton again?

He’s done all of our records so we don’t really know anything else really. But I think it’s really special working with Ross. He’s such a special person and a very unique figure within the UK arts community. He offers something very different than what you kind find in other places.

And when and where did the DR3-NG3 robot come about?

Just a very bad idea that nobody said no too.


I hate that robot, like it properly ruined me.

What’s it made from?

Two bins.

Amazing! Love that. How did it go down the streets of Sheffield when you were strutting your stuff?

Aw brilliant yeah, they were really keen to see a robot. Yanno, you don’t see too much wild stuff, I think most people like to keep their heads down. So when there's a robot walking down the street, people tend to look up.

What can we expect from your set at Swn Festival this year?

Couple of new tunes. Couple of raw tunes. We’re bringing our new bass player, Ed. Rob has valiantly stepped up to play guitar. So yeah, it will be what it is, which I hope will be really really good and a lot of fun.

Everyone's excited to see you guys, so it will be a great night! And just to finish off, what other three bands would you recommend to go and see at Swn?

Ooo! That’s a good question. Boy Azooga, Gwenno and I’ll stick Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever on there too, that would be my top three to go and see!

Thank you so much for chatting to me Eoin and we’ll see you at Swn Festival in a few days time.

Thanks so much. See you there.

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