Wednesday 13 just can’t keep away from Australia, which is nothing but great news for his legions of fans Down Under. Just over a year since his previous tour, an acoustic Evening With performance, the full band will be back to Australia and New Zealand at the end of this month, touring on the back of their most recent album Condolences. They’ll be joined by fellow Americans Davey Suicide, making their first trip to our shores. Before making his way over, I spoke with the main man himself to get the lowdown on what we can expect this April.
On their many previous tours in Australia, Wednesday 13 has been supported by some of the country’s best local alternative talent, but for the first time, the band is bringing some friends from home along for the ride. “This will be the first time we’ve come to Australia with another band from America, it’s always been a local support like our friends in Witchgrinder and Darkcell.” Wednesday explained. “When we left Australia last time after the acoustic tour we were already discussing coming back, and I mentioned to our promoter that we should come back with someone, or support someone bigger, we’re always tossing ideas around. When it came time to finalise these dates he came to me with a list of bands. Davey Suicide were on that list and we decided they’d be a perfect fit for the tour. We did a few shows with those guys years and years ago when he first put his band together. It should be cool, and a good fit. We tend to have a lot of the same audience, everyone wants to see a cool support band, so we always try to think about that when picking bands to tour with.”
In early 2016, Wednesday and his guitarist Roman Surman played three Australian shows that featured songs from the front man’s entire discography played acoustically, with stories and Q+As scattered throughout. It was a unique experience that Wednesday had done before overseas, but it was the first time bringing the Evening With to Australia. “It was great, I have a really honest, diehard fan base who support me on everything I’ve done. When I said ‘I’m doing an acoustic thing, it’s going to be cool’ they took my word on it and it was great. It was a really cool way to connect with fans.” The acoustic tour was a big departure to what the band are known for, loud, lively, theatrical shows that leave fans sweaty and screaming for more. I asked Wednesday how he prepares himself for the different kinds of shows he does. “Not to say one is harder or not, but to a lot of people the acoustic shows would seem like an easy thing to do, but it’s not, especially when I don’t consider myself to be this amazing musician who can pick up a guitar and just play anything. I’m lucky if I get through my own songs! To not have a band there to back you up, in front of a few hundred people, and all you’ve got is an acoustic guitar, there was a lot of stuff going on and it’s such a different dynamic. It’s terrifying. I got used to it a bit, but more times than not, it was really nerve wracking.”
With seven full length records, a handful of EPs, and a massive catalogue of albums from other musical projects, Wendesday 13 has more than enough songs to choose from when it comes to putting together a touring set list. I asked Wednesday how that process happens, and whether or not there’s pressure to keep in the fan favourites as the catalogue grows. “It’s hard to figure out how to make a set list these days, I have a twenty year history and I try to include something from every era, so that one person who comes to a show but hasn’t heard the last three records still knows some songs, I’m always thinking about the audience when making that list. It gets harder every year, with each release. This tour is in support of our new record so of course we’ll play some new stuff, I don’t know how we do it, we just decide what to play and cross our fingers, and hope the fans like it. We do take the audience into consideration, it’s not all about what we want to play.”
Wednesday 13 are not a band who sit around waiting for things to happen. The front man has already ensured he has a full calendar for the remainder of 2018, but he’s not stopping there. “We have so much stuff going on, we’re on vacation right now after touring to the end of last year, Australia and New Zealand will be our first tour of the year, then we tour through to August, with plans for October to November. We’ll be working on and recording a brand new album at the end of the year too. We’re already looking as far as summer next year, I just can’t announce anything yet, it’s like secretive James Bond stuff.”
With only a few weeks before their tour, Wednesday leaves me with one final thought; “We have a million fans out there, they just don’t know it yet.”
Interview by Sofie Marsden
Catch Wednesday 13 and Davey Suicide on the following dates…