Devilskin

New Zealand rockers Devilskin are not going to let a crisis get in the way of the band releasing their third album Red this Friday. Already we have seen a slew of singles All Fall Down, Endo and Corrode from this awesome album with plenty more to discover. Hi Fi Way talks to lead singer Jennie Skulander who was in lock down in her home town Hamilton in New Zealand.

Congratulations on the album, it must be a good feeling to have something positive to talk about?
We’re pretty excited to bring it out even under the current circumstances with what’s going on. We’re really proud and excited for next Friday when it comes out.

Were there any anxious moments about what to do when this started to unfold? It definitely has changed the album/ tour cycle hasn’t it?
Yeah, we were going to release the album then two days later jump on a place to the UK and Europe for a nineteen date tour for the album release over there. That was the first thing to go for us unfortunately and a lot of the gigs we’ve had around the release in New Zealand have either been postponed or cancelled. Even our JB Hi Fi signings and meet ‘n greets we can’t do because our country is in lock down. This is day two but everything is closed except for supermarkets and essentials are open. Even McDonalds is closed, it is pretty crazy and we have been told to stay in our houses and not leave. It is really hard for a band.

How has it been in lock down so far?
It is pretty weird, really quiet, hardly any cars on the road, not much open. It is odd and I’m here with my husband and three year old and we are trying to find ways to keep busy for the next four weeks.

Do you think you might start writing songs for album number four during this period?
It could be! The band could get together on Skype and play some stuff that way. We’re not allowed to see each other for the next month so I’ll be writing some lyrics any way.

Do you think that there will be more singles from Red or other special releases to keep it alive considering there’s no touring for a while?
We are looking at that, we did release a new song on Spotify last week. It wasn’t going to be a single but we put it out there any way for people to have a listen. It is a hard one because you think about all these things you are going to do and then your plans get crushed. We’re releasing the album next week but we can’t sell the physical copies because of the lock down.

On reflection do you feel satisfied with what you’ve achieved with Red?
Oh definitely, very proud! We’re very proud of the album and there’s a lot of songs on there that are quite emotional and have come from life experience. To finally get them out and be able to explain to people as well why we’ve written that song is pretty cool. I hope people enjoy it as much as we do.

Was there the usual challenges that come along with making an album?
Everything went to plan, the only problem we had was agreeing on the songs to go on the album. We had heaps of songs and I’m pretty happy with what made the album as I got my favourites on there! I’m quite happy with that! It was probably one of the most easiest processes of making album for ourselves so far. It was more relaxed because we were in New Zealand as well.

Do you think you’ll revisit the songs that didn’t make the album?
Not too sure, we’ll probably carry on some of the other songs for the next album. Who knows though? We could release EP’s, there’s a few songs on Red that are quite old that we had forgotten about or they were only part songs. Then it’s oh right we’ve got this song. All Fall Down was one we came up with years ago and had forgotten about it. We changed it up a bit and we were much happier with it. That could happen again with songs that we have come up with in the last few years that didn’t make this album.

Was the theme behind Red and the powerful messaging that goes with discussed early as the album started to take shape?
We decided on album titles after and Red was one of them. At the time Paul had come up with it. Red means so many things. It represents love, passion, anger and so many other things which is how the album is in so many ways with so many different emotions that the title is perfect.

How has the Devilskin sound changed over three albums?
I feel it has and we have matured a lot. I feel that songs like Bright Light are completely different to what we have done. It was a song fully written by Mick who also played bass, drums, guitar and doing samples. He said he had come up with this and could we do this song. I was keen for it and I really love that song.

Are raring to go once you get the green light to tour?
Absolutely, we’re gutted that all our gigs have been cancelled or postponed but once we get the green light we’ll be very excited to get going again.

Interview By Rob Lyon

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