With Dead of Winter Festival approaching quickly, Tayla Sudall caught up with Sam Bassal from Ocean Grove to chat about their huge set at Dead of Winter as well as their upcoming tour in Japan. Sam chats about the bands success and recent publishing deal with BMG as well as giving word of a new album on the horizon from the Ocean Grove boys!
Catch the interview below!
RR: Hey Sam, what’s up? It’s Tayla, how are ya?
SB: Good, how are you?
RR: I’m good thank-you, what’re you getting up to today?
SB: Not a whole lot at all –laughs-
RR: -laughs- that’s good, that’s a good day
SB: Cleaning my house
SB: Making breakfast and that’s about it, yeah, a lot of that goin’ on
RR: Cleaning is a bit boring but that’s alright, a good day off is nice –laughs-
RR: So, I just wanted to talk to you about Dead of Winter Festival obviously, you guys are one of the main acts on that line up, um, and so you guys are gonna be hitting up The Tivoli for that one, are you guys pumped?
SB: Hell yeah! I think it’s gonna be a sick festival, a sick show. I’d never actually heard of this festival but apparently… yeah apparently it’s gonna be real cool so I’m excited!
RR: Yeah, it looks cool, the line up sounds really fun are you friends with many of the other bands playing?
SB: Yeah! I mean, we got a couple of friends, I mean, I guess from over the years of touring we know sort of, quite a fair few bands that are playing um, some closer than others but you know, when you’re in the scene you sort of, you know most people um, but we got our friends like the Polaris guys, they’re sort of close friends of ours so it should be real cool to you know, hang out and also watch them as well so it should be sweet
RR: Yeah, yeah, totally! I know you guys are into doing some pretty cool stuff on stage so have you got any plans that you might be able to share for your performance at Dead of Winter?
SB: Um, to be honest I haven’t really thought, I mean, I guess we haven’t really played too much in Australia this year, I think the only times that we, that people have been able to see us has either been when we played Download Festival back out in March and then also the Limp Bizkit tour so I think for a lot of people that didn’t necessarily wanna pay the you know, $100 per ticket to sort of come and see us, they probably haven’t seen us in a while um, maybe even since our last headline tour back in August last year so I think for, you know, since then like the last time people may have seen us, we’re sort of, we’ve been very fortunate to tour the world and spend a lot of time overseas and sort of, pick up new things and gear and sort of, production things, so I think just overall it should be a better version of Ocean Grove after people get to see us
RR: Yeah! Awesome! And what’s it been like touring around overseas, what’s the ah, like the reception been like for you guys?
SB: Yeah I think it’s been really awesome, we did Europe a couple of times last year, I love sort of getting out of Australia and experiencing new cultures and whatnot and I think Europe does a great job of sort of being pretty different, and still having that touch of you know, familiarity, um, where as when we did America you know, I sort of look at that as pretty close to home um, but, in terms of reception and sort of how crowds responded and whatnot, I think we can’t really complain at all for how we were received, for the most part we were sort of opening the bill on a pretty heavy line up and we’re not the heaviest of bands, you know, we’re sort of always the odd one on a bill, but for the most part you know, to go over and sort of have these great audiences and for almost every show you know, come off stage and be like yup, we really won people over! It was very encouraging you know, the next time we come back I think we will have some serious fans you know in each sort of, pocket of the world.
RR: That’s really cool, that’s awesome! Um, and earlier in the year you guys signed up with BMGwho also have some huge bands under their name like um, AC/DC, SAFIA, Dead Letter Circus just to name a few, so what’s it like being signed with BMG compared to before?
SB: I think it’s pretty… I mean, that in itself is, just being able to say like yeah you signed to BMG, like it’s pretty classic –laughs- we’re just like that’s sick, like that is really cool. Um, I think the awesome thing about that is knowing that, you know, when you’re in a band, you obviously want… like you write music that you love for your music to be you know a movie or a sort of a… on TV or something like that, and I think having that BMG publishing is really exciting, you know, writing music for the future knowing that someone else, like, now we have the opportunity that someone else might see the same sort of vision that you have for your music and be able to get that to other places that before, as a small band you know a couple of years ago that we never would’ve expected so I’m excited to you know, have them on board and it’s awesome to look and see that we’re a part of that thing as well so yeah, it’s really exciting!
RR: Yeah it’s sick, must be pretty surreal! And so, the last album we got from you guys was last year, The Rhapsody Tapes, and since then like you said you guys have been pretty much touring non-stop, so are there any plans to get back into the studio soon or are you gonna keep it up with the touring?
SB: We’re currently in the studio right now!
SB: I can’t give away too much of course but also, I mean, it’s funny because the studio is literally like, my house
RR: -laughs- a studio is a studio!
SB: Yeah! Let’s go with that –laughs- Yeah, so pretty much like, it’s no different for me ‘cause realistically every day I wake up, I’m always in the studio sort of writing but um, yeah, we’re in the studio now and writing and y’know, working towards another album like I said, I can’t say too much of course but um, I think we’re just trying to obviously, like you said we put out an album sort of February last year and I guess at this point now I think we’re trying to keep, like, you don’t want to make your fans angry by making them wait a million years for new music but I think just due to the, you know, the fortunate success that we had off the last album, I think we’re really sort of trying to take our time and not rush this next one because it’s, you know, the follow up, you know, second album and we just wanna make sure that we’re not sort of focussing on dead lines so much but we’re just trying to get a product that we really are happy with and know that we’re gonna want to put that forward as our best body of work so, yeah, we’re in the studio at the moment
RR: I think fans will appreciate that a lot more too, like, that you’re not just trying to pump out music for the sake of pumping out music
SB: I hope so! You know, I mean, at the end of the day I think fans, like, we’ve got a really awesome fan base, I think because we are a bit different to everyone else, I think they just kind of understand that what they get with us is what they get and I think that makes for it, so we have a really awesome fan base that are very accepting of you know, the fact that we play sort of different genres you could say, um, you know almost on a song to song basis –laughs- but yeah nah, the fans are really good so I think they’ll be pleasantly surprised when we do get something coming out –laughs-
RR: That’s awesome, that’s exciting! Um and you guys also have a tour coming up in August after the Dead of Winter Festival, you have a tour coming up in August with Crossfaith and you’re gonna be playing a few venues around Japan. Have you guys played in Japan before?
SB: No, so that’s our first little taste of Asia that we’re gonna get which we are SO excited for, I think like, Japan in itself so I’ve never been um, so I’m excited to go more ‘cause the fact that I get to go to Japan you know, compared to the fact that. You know, it’s a bonus that we get to play shows as well so that’s gonna be really exciting, the line up is cool, Crossfaith are friends of ours and they are wild, wild units –laughs- So I’m sure that is going to be one insane show, full of fun, um, we’re actually, a couple of the guys were actually staying on afterwards to holiday for a couple of weeks
RR: Oh cool, I was gonna ask – have you got anything planned for during that, your free time?
SB:I think to be honest, in my case, whatever budget allows really –laughs- so just gonna try and have some fun, I mean it’s always, I think that’s the one positive thing about being in a band, I mean, the many one of the many positive things, but sort of being able to travel the world, you know, having the band pay for y’know life –laughs-
SB: Sort of, nothing else to worry about so I think whenever you holiday off a tour you know, I think you’re always pretty… no matter what happens you’re having a good time really so I think I’m just gonna try and fill it up with a lot of the touristy stuff, couple of the guys have got our partners coming over so just to spend some time with our partners ‘cause when you know, you’re on the road, It’s hard being away from people for a long time so that’s pretty much our plan but obviously first thing, you know, the main important thing is delivering an awesome show –laughs- here I am talking about holidays
RR: -laughs- priorities!
SB: Show first and foremost!
RR: Yeah, no, it’ll be good; it’ll be a good time! So what are you, have you got any expectations for the audiences in Japan? Or like?
SB: I actually, I have no idea what to expect I mean, I think the interesting thing that I guess I always forget about, especially when we played in Europe as well, obviously there’s a language barrier to some degree. Like, not everyone in the world speaks English so I’m curious to see what that’s like in Japan especially like, it might be a little bit more hectic than sort of the language barriers in Europe
RR: Yeah, that’s kind of what I’ve always wondered about whether you have to change or even try to speak another language for your shows or? –laughs-
SB: Yeah, well see, I have an easy job I can sit down and play drums and that’s it –laughs- so I’ll let my singer worry about that one, learn a new language on the plane there. But yeah no, I think, I genuinely don’t know what to expect, I think that’s the best part ‘cause I think if you go into a show you know, trying to picture what’s gonna happen or you know, you either give yourself expectations, they’re either met and you’re gonna go, you don’t get to enjoy it as much ‘cause you thought about it or you know, it doesn’t happen and you’re really bummed out and it’s like well at the end of the day we’re in another country you know, playing shows to new people that have never heard our band before like it’s a win-win no matter what
RR: Totally, totally! Well, that was just about all I had for you today so thank you so much for the chat and I wish all of you the best of luck for the upcoming shows and especially Dead of Winter, I’ll be seeing you there!
SB: Thank you so much and have a good day and if you catch us around come say hi!
RR: Yeah totally! Alright, hope you have a good day
SB: You too, bye!