Devilskin

Having stunned Australian crowds on tours with HALESTORM and SLASH Ft. Miles Kennedy and the Conspirators and appearing on Download Australia in 2019 DEVILSKIN are on their way for a headline tour in February thanks to Silverback Touring. DEVILSKIN have garnered a formidable reputation and a solid fan-base worldwide from their relentless touring schedule. A swathe of brilliant live reviews from Europe to USA to Australia are testament to the groundswell of support for this hard-working and focused New Zealand act. Jennie Skulander talks to Hi Fi Way about playing new album Red to Australian fans along with Shepherds Reign and These Four Walls in support.

It must be great to be able to finally start talking about getting back out on the road and touring again?
We have just finished a New Zealand tour, so we’ve been lucky enough to be able to do that over here. So, fingers crossed, we can actually do it come February.

How’s the touring been going in New Zealand? Have the crowds really warmed and taking a liking to the new songs?
Yeah, they have, actually. It’s been great. We did about fifteen shows over two months. We got rescheduled a few times, but eventually did it. It went well, which was great and a lot of other New Zealand bands are trying to do that as well, just get back out there and start playing.

Did it take quite a bit of work to make the songs work and fit within the live set?
Not so much. We decided we’d put every single song on the new album in the set. Our set is an hour and a half and we’re playing about twenty one songs in the set. We also had an acoustic VIP, which is about two hours earlier, so we would play about seven acoustic songs there. So, yeah that was quite a lot of songs every night.

As things start opening up (finger crossed), is the plan to go global and tour wherever you’re able to?
That is definitely the plan. We were supposed to go Europe and UK in April. We were all ready to head out and then COVID hit. That would’ve been our first headlining gig in Europe. We’ve played there several times now having played in the UK four or five times, but this was going to be our own tour. We were going to release the new album, go over there and play the album to them first pretty much. But obviously, it didn’t go as planned. There are lots of plans for this year to go travelling to America, Japan, Australia as well, but hopefully when the world does open up, we’ll be back on and doing that.

Has it felt a bit weird having so much time to be able to hang at home with family and friends and things like that?
It has been, yeah. I’m a very, very busy person anyway. I got my four-year-old daughter and my husband, and we’re looking to move next year. When I’m not doing I do pole fit, aerial hoop, aerial silks and roller skating. I’m going to be studying next year as well.

Wowsers, what are you looking to study?
I wanted to do a fitness trainer course and then get into Pilates. It would be nice to start having it as a side thing as it is something I’ve always wanted to do.

Have you found that particularly with all the challenges of 2020, that you’ve learned a lot more about yourself and your own personal resilience?
Not really. 2020 has just been really, really, really bad for me. I’ve had a lot of bad stuff happen and it’s just been really hard. I’m starting to come out on the other side but there’s been a few times I’ve been in some pretty dark places. Few deaths, my endo coming back and just not feeling great. It’s been quite hard and I’m just lucky to have great support. 2020 has been a pretty dark year.

It must be reassuring that the album has being well received and the fans are into it and the sense of anticipation for the upcoming tour?
Definitely, we’re excited to get back over there. Hopefully things are good and we can be there in February. It is pretty exciting thinking about it.

Have rehearsals started for the tour yet? Or do you take a bit of a break over the holiday period?
We just actually started before Christmas. We’ll be taking a little break, but we’ll start getting back into it getting the set ready for the February tour.

Have you kept writing new material throughout the year, given that there’s probably been a little bit more time to do so?
Yeah we’ve been writing a few different things. It was hard for a while because we were in lockdown. We couldn’t get in a room together, and plus having my stuff going on and then getting ready for the tour. We have started writing a few bits and pieces, the guys got all their equipment set up at home anyway. They’re always writing songs and it’s just a matter of getting together finally to put it all together.

Getting back into the band room and practicing again, did it feel all fresh, exciting and almost like at the beginning again in some ways?
Yes, it was cool. It was good to get back into it and felt just like when we did our first show back, it felt really good. We did play a backyard type of show for one of the radio stations in New Zealand and we were about to start our tour the week after. Then pretty much half the country went back into lockdown. So, it got rescheduled again. I just remember that feeling of getting back on stage. That first show back. It was like, “Wow. I miss this.”

Interview By Rob Lyon

Catch Devilskin on the following dates, tickets through Silverback Touring

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