Dublin-based Irish rock band Delorentos will play a headline Belfast show at McHughs Basement Bar on Thursday 08th November 2018. The band released their new album, and 5th studio album to date ’True Surrender’ in April 2018 and are pleased to tour the record in Belfast. Mark Millar caught up with the band to discuss the Belfast show and new album.
How did Delorentos get together?
We knew each other from mutual friends and the small music scene in north county Dublin. I had just left a band and the other three, having just lost a guitarist were looking to form a new one. We jammed together for fun initially but quickly developed a strong connection. The guys had the name Delorentos already and we kept it, for its unique strangeness. We first performed original material in “Schubas”, in Chicago. We were brought there by a good friend who used to organise a great themed covers night, called the “Hootnight”. In Chicago, we slept in one of the members of the band Lambchops house – Baptism of fire.
What are the bands musical influences?
Broad. Anything from the Pixies, to Radiohead, The Clash, the Jackson Five, Blur, the Strokes, Paul Simon…We have four songwriters who all come from different places musically and intellectually, so that makes for an exciting blend.
Delorentos play a headline Belfast show at McHughs Basement Bar on Thursday 8th November 2018. Are you looking forward to playing for the always ‘up for it’ Belfast crowd?
We can’t wait to play in McHugh’s. We’ve always enjoyed playing in Belfast from the Limelight to Auntie Annie’s and the Empire, with great bands such as Yakuza, Fast Emperors and TDCC. It’s brilliant to be back again.
You recently released your fifth album ‘True Surrender’. Did you go into the recording with any preconceived ideas how it should sound and the kind of songs you wanted to write about?
We didn’t initially, but having recorded some early demos while touring the previous album Night Becomes Light, we realised we needed to come off tour, to reflect and dig a little deeper musically and thematically. A lot has changed in our lives as we’re getting a bit older and also in the world around us. We also wanted to make sure that the songs had a depth of meaning that we would be passionate to get up onstage and express every night and also that sonically we would be pushing ourselves and our audience. I think we’ve achieved that with True Surrender. We’re really proud of it and can’t wait for people to hear it.
Is there a particular song on the new album that you thought “This is why we are doing this”?
There was one song we kept from our early demos called In Darkness, We Feel Our Way. It meditates on the divisiveness that is being pushed by certain cohorts around the globe and the horrendous impact this is having on ordinary people. The refrain “In darkness, we feel our way”, is hopefully an optimistic sentiment, that even in these difficult times, the vast majority of us are open, generous people and we look after each other.
What was the band’s songwriting process for the album?
in the last number of years, there have been marriages, babies and lots of other projects for all of us and so we don’t live in each other’s pockets and rehearse five days a week like we used to. That being the case, we did a lot more writing individually and in pairs, with the four of us gathering every so often for intensive jamming sessions. The way the process worked meant that individuals brought more fully realised compositions to the band than maybe we had before and I think that contributed to a more coherent piece of work.
What changes about how you work together as a band from tour to tour? Do you have set rituals or superstitions that are now integrated into your routines?
We don’t really have any crazy rituals. With everyone very busy outside of the band now, its really important to us, that when we do get together for shows, that we take time to reconnect. Making sure we eat dinner together is a really nice way of doing this, but I really like my food, so maybe that’s just me.
It’s wind down time after a show… what’s your go-to listen to unwind or recharge?
What are you most grateful for about being able to be a musician every day?
For the opportunity to express my thoughts, ideas, joys, fears through music and that I have collaborators who are excited to venture with me.
Do you have a record that you always return to?
Bruce Springsteen’s 18 tracks. Its how I discovered him. We were lucky enough to support him and the E Street Band in Kilkenny a few years ago. Listen to Brothers Under the Bridge.
What have you been listening to recently that you could recommend?
Now feels like a really exciting time for Irish Music. And this year saw established acts such as Villagers, Lisa O’Neill, Soak and Hozier all bring new material to a global audience. There is so much to inspire a younger generation and they are starting to make some noise. There are numerous new acts with an innate confidence, which could be symptomatic of where the country is at the moment. It should not be confused with the arrogance and self-entitlement borne of the Celtic Tiger. Many of these artists were kids in the boom, only to find upon reaching maturity, that good times do not necessarily keep on rolling and never even started for many. They are critical thinkers and activists, having participated in two historic referendums, on same-sex marriage and the repeal of the 8th amendment to the Irish Constitution. Through the ongoing successes of Irish musicians, filmmakers, artists and designers abroad, combined with the increasingly multicultural nature of our society, our younger people are excited to branch out and express their ideas on the world stage. Bands like Fontaines DC and The Murder Capital pick up where GirlBand left off, combining ferocious instrumentation, with cutting observations on the human condition. Listen to Chequeless Reckless and More is Less respectively.
We have two brilliant new bands with us on the True Surrender tour right now – Pillow Queens and True Tides. Both write intelligent pop music, with a heavy emphasis on harmony, but that’s where the similarities end. Pillow Queens is already garnering lots of attention internationally for their infectious punk-pop sound, wrapping gorgeous melodies around insightful lyrics – Listen to Puppets. True Tides are a band of brothers, who as far as I can tell, only right smash hit singles. There is a leanness to their instrumentation and production, that lets the melody do all the talking. Check out Irish radio hit Automatic.
Tickets are available for Delorentos at McHughs Basement Bar on Thursday 08th November 2018 from www.ticketmaster.ie, www.shine.net, Katy’s Bar & Ticketmaster outlets nationwide. Northern Ireland customers 0844 277 44 55 & Republic of Ireland customers 0818 719 300.