We conducted an interview with Great Torrington, England band THE DEAD BETAS on January 8, 2012.
Thank you for taking this interview, guys. Please, introduce yourself.
Hello, we are The Dead Betas, a 5 piece synth-punk band from the middle of nowhere, UK. You are speaking to Tobias Monsters and Aidan Sugaboi, the co-founding front rabble. Our other members, Martron (synth) Chary Fuckewan (bass) and Greg (drums) are currently at work in our owl massage therapy center, we’re good like that.
You are hailing from Great Torrington, England. Please describe your local music scene. Is there anything that pisses you off about your city and/or country?
Basically, our local music scene was limp lifeless indie trying to hold on to some power left over from 2006. When we came along we started running dirty little bring your own booze parties in an erotic arts barn… the scene had a new, DIY, dirty punk flare. A whole new wave of bands came to a head, and now we run gigs over 3 venues. So quite luckily, we have a lot of influence in this grotty little scene, its fun, and we get to pick the cream of the crop to tour with us outside of the area! The only down side is finding venues that will take on our ethos of laid back music lovers that want to get sweaty and dance, but we just make sure we show them a great night!
What’s the story behind your name?
The name comes from two things, firstly, the term Dead Beats, used to describe people like us. Secondly, it’s mocking Aidan’s diabetes, basically his insulin producing beta cells on his pancreas are long dead.
You’ve been on a hiatus for some time. Tell us what happened.
We got in a session drummer for the Full of Spunk UK tour as we needed a good drummer fast when our first one left. We had always intended on sticking with him (The Aidanator) until Halloween, at which point we would search for a permanent drummer. So that is what we did. Since Halloween we’ve just been getting our songs in order, making music video’s, saving a little and generally enjoying the Christmas period ready for our first weekender back in the gigging game. And now Greg is ready to be unleashed.
Why did you decided to merge electronics with rock? How did you decided to do that?
Basically, Aidan was a computer nerd who made synth tracks on a laptop, and i was an emotional train wreck with anger issues and a love for punk… it just kind have worked.
How many shows have you played so far? Do you have a favourite venue? What are your touring plans for 2012? When can we expect European tour?
We have played around 80 shows so far, and over a quarter of those were in one hit on our 3 week tour back in September.
For me it’s got to be The Palladium Club in Bideford, just up the road from where we live, there’s no crowd like a home crowd and Palladium have got the grungy feel mixed with good sound and lights perfectly.
I have to agree with Aidan on The Pally, but if we’re talking out of town, The Cellar (Soul Cellar) in Southampton was great, good onstage and out front sound, great Promoter and great crowd!
2012 for us so far spells a weekender in Feb, Oxford, Kingston and Brighton on 3rd, 4th and 5th. We have an 8 day UK tour in march, a South West weekender at the end of April and many 1 off shows in between. And of course Beta Fest on 16th – 18th Feb, it’s our own festival, we started it in the erotic arts barn in 2010 as a 2 day party, and now its 3 days, 7 bands a day in a 500 cap venue and we’re headlining alongside 2 great British bands, SCHOLARS and INME!
How important is touring for you?
Touring is important for what we do, its all about steadily building a fan base in a town/city so that the next time you go you get a bigger crowd. Like Birmingham, it’s a kinda home from home. We made contact with Midlands Music Maniacs, a midlands based site early on and through them have built a fan base. 18 months ago we were playing a grotty pub to 10 people and now we’re booked for a 500 cap venue! It’s a similar story building for us for much of South UK… better start heading north!
Give us a quick tour of your releases. What are you recording plans?
First thing we ever released was a Demo CD called Demo-N/Beta Testing. We used to go to our favourite bands shows and give it out to anyone who would have one, and kids love free CD’s, some even thought we were important, and when you pretend you are, they stay thinking it!
Right at the end of 2010 we released our first proper EP entitled Blast-Arcadecore, so named as an ode to all those bands that put core on the end of 2 words and say they invented a genre.
In early 2011 we released the single Bideford College as a retaliation to the poor anti bullying procedure in the local school. The kids used to come to our shows with endless tales of woe about school thugs. The song is no longer available to download as The school filed a complaint, but it is still on YouTube!
And at the beginning of Feb you will be able to get our new single, Chav Chant!
What is your approach towards music and being a band? Are you planning to go mainstream?
We plan to have as many people as possible listen to our music. We just love playing. How could you ever make us “mainstream” i wouldn’t pay me with the intention of making us appeal to 14 year old kids that buy singles… it would be too much work, if i wanted to make some-one mainstream I’d find a chick on a bus with an acoustic guitar, not some shit punk band from the middle of no-where. We’re just gonna keep working hard till the whole of the alternative world loves us.
What’s your opinion about the current status of the music industry?
Simon Cowell is a genius, and we hate him. This is all.
If you could set up a dream tour bill with you on it, who would it be?
Thank you! Feel free to add anything you want.
I am an owl.
[Laughs] Thanks! We knew it!