Interview: German breakouts MACHETE DANCE CLUB talk new single CHEAP MOTEL, featuring Dave Grunewald of Annisokay and headlining tour.
Today we are catching up with German breakout quartet MACHETE DANCE CLUB. Hailing from Munich, the band has been knocking around for less than a couple of years and taking giant steps across different soundscapes. The band of Chris, Tobi, Leo and David delivers a brand of modern rock with multiple influences spanning from electro pop and a sparkling 80s synth, indie rock, post-hardcore and metalcore laden guitars. Their sound is best represented as Crossover 2.0.
They have been exposing their rapidly growing fan base to a blast of energy, driven by passion and emotion after debuting on the scene with A Trip Outta Hell Into Heaven And Back EP released in April 2019 followed by an extensive tour sharing the stage of crossover legends DOG EAT DOG and a summer run of festivals and shows.
The band is now set to unleash their brand new single CHEAP MOTEL featuring screamer Dave Grunewald of Annisokay on October 18th, 2019 which was produced by Dennis Poschwatta (Guano Apes).
Our editor-in-chief Alessandra had the chance to sit down and talk with vocalist CHRIS KONRAD to introduce our readers to the band’s self-crafted extravaganza. In this interview we are discussing in detail the bands’ unique sound, their new single CHEAP MOTEL, the writing and creative approach as well as featuring Dave Grunewald of Annisokay. We also talked about the band’s journey and influences, the visions and lyrical themes, the extensive live experience and the band’s headlining tour hitting Germany this Fall and Winter 2019.
- Hello Chris and thank you for your time. Let’s start by introducing your band MACHETE DANCE CLUB. I would love to know more about your lineup, the journey of the band so far and your main influences.
Hi Alessandra, happy to chat with you. Machete was founded on the fifteenth of June 2018. Leo, our guitarist has a studio where I went with a friend to record an old song which turned out to be our first official single. But back in the studio Leo loved the song very much so he asked us to start a band and that he knows some guys to join us. So, I met David (bass) and Tobi (drums) and, I guess, 1 or 2 weeks later we got an opportunity to go on tour which we accepted. I had to take a pretty big decision for myself back than because I already booked my flight to Australia to stay there for at least 1 year. But I decided to stay in Munich to built our dream. So I cancelled the visa and the flight, quit my job and moved directly to Munich.
From that moment on we were constantly working on forming our way through this business, trying to bring our music and emotions to the people. Our main influences are coming from ourselves. Due to the fact that we all come from different origins regarding music, we all have our favourite bands we hear all day. The all-time favourites. And somewhere on our journey they all come together in different ways. Don Broco was/is a big influence, we love the appearance and the sound. But also, Gunship for example. Our main Influence for 80’s sounds. We love Gunship.
- What was the mindset behind choosing MACHETE DANCE CLUB as a representative name for your band?
That’s funny cause I wasn’t even present when Leo and David found the name during their holidays. While they discussed a potential name, they came up with the band “Knife Party” and someone said something with a Machete. Combined with our ideas of our future sound that was the only reasonable outcome: Machete Dance Club.
- Let’s talk about your sound. You have created a unique brand of modern rock with multiple influences spanning from electro pop and a sparkling 80s synth, indie rock, post-hardcore and metalcore laden guitars. Something you call Crossover 2.0. I would love to discuss this self-crafted extravaganza as your main asset to create something outstanding in the current scene.
That ‚extravaganza‘ (btw, thanks for that term, we take it as a compliment) may be the result of our love for all the different kinds of music. Especially Leo, our guitarist and main producer and his love for both heavy guitars and all the 80s synth-sounds that shaped his early childhood years, play a huge role in that. Since we want to be recognizable and outstanding as a band, we try to find our own style. So mixing heavy guitars with 80s synth-sounds on the one hand was inevitable and on the other hand quite obvious to us.
- On October 18th, 2019 MACHETE DANCE CLUB are coming out of the block in sparkling fashion with their brand new single CHEAP MOTEL. So what was the writing and creative process approached when the four of you sat down and worked on this single?
Cheap Motel was the very first song we wrote together as the band Machete Dance Club, so it holds a very special place in our hearts. We love to play that song live because it has a lot of energy and the people always seem to like it. That song had five to six different versions till we were really satisfied with the outcome and we felt like putting it on our EP. As we love that song so much, we wanted to give it an extra sparkle with a different progression by adding Dave Grunewald (Annisokay) as a guest-shouter. That and our new, very colourful video… ecco!
Watch MACHETE DANCE CLUB – CHEAP MOTEL (Official Video):
- What was different for this single as compared to your very first EP A Trip Outta Hell Into Heaven And Back dating back to April 2019 in terms of the writing process and delivery? Or on the other hand, what makes this single a natural follow up of your previous EP?
Since “Cheap Motel” already appeared on our EP, the writing affected only the feature part. But we decided as well to go over our guitar sound in order to make it a little bit heavier for this particular version. I think we can say that we will not stop to test multiple ways of writing for the upcoming songs. Neither we create boundaries or no-goes. We are open minded and ready to take our chance on being different.
- CHEAP MOTEL hosts the guest appearance of screamer Dave Grunewald of Annisokay. How was this collaboration set up and what kind of experience you guys had in working with Dave?
Pretty fast if I’m honest. We got connected through a friend of ours and Dave was pretty impressed about by the song, so he said “yes” immediately. We started writing his feature part together and recorded everything. Working with Dave in studio and during the video shoot was awesome. Tall and gentle, this man. He brought in his thoughts for the video and the song and we are pretty sure that we managed to combine our visions for this little project. Thanks to Dave again, Machete loves you.
- Any sneak peek about a possible upcoming record under process that CHEAP MOTEL may be a forerunner of?
We will be on tour in a few days and then again in December, but we are visiting our studio constantly. Nothing particular is confirmed but we are working hard to release new songs soon. For now, we want to make sure to play a nice tour with awesome shows and crazy people.
- What themes are important for you to discuss in your songs or what vision do you wish to bring forward with your music?
I think it’s very important to have themes and messages in songs and we always try to express our thoughts by words and sounds. We write about drinking, about love, about being rejected but also about party and never giving up. We all have so different thoughts and feelings about every song of ours. But that’s the beauty of writing and creating something that lasts. Everyone is different and acceptance is a big step of moving forward. We call it Crossover 2.0 😉
- MACHETE DANCE CLUB have been knocking around for less than two tears and already moving mountains, exposing their fan base to a massive blast of energy and passion. You have an extensive live experience already, sharing the stage with crossover legends DOG EAT DOG along their last tour and concluded a run of summer festivals and shows. So let’s share a memorable moment on stage.
This one was not really ON STAGE. There was a moment after the show in Mannheim. Actually a few moments. When we were finished loading all our stuff in the bus, we took a few minutes with a couple of beers and some cigarettes to talk to the boys from DED and fans outside the building. What we didn’t realized was, that we were standing next to some stairs to the basement. And there was a swinger party going on, nothing special but that night all the guys who left the party saw us at the top of the stairs standing, drinking and smoking and (I don’t know why) everyone on them started to tell us what happened down there. They were like “How you’re doing? Pretty dope fucks down there” and we were like: “Oh yeah really? Nice to hear!” One of them even thought that one of us were down there with him. It was crazy cause we never asked for any information, but we had a great time. Great conversations. Hilarious.
Another night we went to a pub with DED and some fans and one of them suddenly started to freak out (he was very drunk) and smashed a bottle to the ground right in front of the pub and DED (especially John Conner) got really really mad. So he gave him a big speech about responsibility and everything. This dude apologized so many times, picked up the shards, cleaned everything. It was no big deal honestly, but John turned this shit into some kind of life lesson and this was great. We all just sat there and watched this whole scenario (we were drunk as well). In the end, no bad blood. Sometimes you do shit when you are wasted, but you need to clean up your mess. John Conner – life lessons!
- After releasing your new single CHEAP MOTEL, you’re hitting Germany with an extensive Fall and Winter tour. So how are you preparing for your headlining tour and what gets you amped up?
We expanded our team. That was our first step after we got the confirmation on this tour. Also, we redesigned our show. New backdrop, new lights. We wanted to be prepared and well equipped. And we have such a lovely team. It’s unbelievable how everyone is working on putting something big together. We started the rehearsals and added some new songs to the playlist. All of us are so excited to hit the road again. It’s gonna be epic.
- If you had the opportunity to tour with 3 mainstream bands, in let’s say five years’ time, who would you tour with?
I know we all would agree on Don Broco. That’s sure. Royal Republic dropped a pretty awesome last album. So they would be a great catch as well. In Germany are so many great bands we would love to tour with maybe our friends from Annisokay 😉
- What’s in store for MACHETE DANCE CLUB in the short and long term? Any further details you wish to disclose.
We will play some awesome shows till end of the year with bands like Märzfeld, Killerpilze a.s.o., not to forget our big and last hometown show for this year in Munich on December the 14th and next year we will focus on a new record. Maybe you can hear already 1 or 2 new songs on tour. We will see 😉 Anyway we will keep working, writing and rehearsing in order to provide new content as soon as possible.
Thank you for your time Chris and all the best for the promotion of your new single CHEAP MOTEL. We’ll keep on supporting you into Europe and US and looking forward to more music to be dropped from you!
Thanks for the interview Alessandra, it was a pleasure.
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