Dripping Trees
Interviews

Introducing: the gloomy art rock from Dutch post punk / slowcore act DRIPPING TREES

Band photos by Indy van Oss
Dutch quartet DRIPPING TREES opt for an immersive sound that explores skulking, slow-burning dynamics, ghoulish gospel and rustic cob-webbed grandeur. After much experimentation, it became a band at odds with its own dramatic tendencies, deliberately suspending disbelief like a bad reality show.

The band’s upcoming debut LP Fuel Of Mankind explores an environment of lawlessness where terms like ‘truth’ and ‘order’ are mere facsimiles. Dripping Trees entertain this notion with infectious glee: they underpin their sinister sprawls of post-rock and slowcore with farcical computer-vocalized vignettes, essentially questioning all the performative emotion in their own work.

We have teamed up with thr band to give you a special insight into their unique craft, revealing the concept behind the album and the literature that inspired them to write the songs, as well as top 10 albums that served as the most important source of inspiration for Dripping Trees.

Songs frequently address the more absurd chapters of human existence. ‘Alba’, for instance, is named after the genetically modified glow-in-the-dark rabbit, a project in which science and art became scandalous lovers. The crepuscular noise rock of ‘Distant Light’ could be considered a warped love song, beckoning and rejecting the listener at an increasingly tense pace until the chase becomes the objective. The moonstricken folk-rock of ‘We Are Leaving Soon’ highlights a quest for beauty in both sound and verb, a gasp of relief in accepting the end. Indeed, like the story of Alba the Rabbit, Dripping Trees invite all sorts of sentiments within a single frame: their music can be beautiful, erotic, absurd and frightening all at once.

On March 19th 2021 our debut album ‘Fuel of Mankind’ will be released, on vinyl and streaming platforms.

𝐹𝑢𝑒𝑙 𝑜𝑓 𝑀𝑎𝑛𝑘𝑖𝑛𝑑 𝑖𝑠 𝑖𝑛𝑠𝑝𝑖𝑟𝑒𝑑 𝑏𝑦 𝑡ℎ𝑒 𝑓𝑖𝑐𝑡𝑖𝑜𝑛𝑎𝑙 𝑝𝑜𝑤𝑒𝑟 𝑜𝑓 𝑚𝑎𝑛𝑘𝑖𝑛𝑑

Dripping Trees

Dripping Trees – cover by Marcel Tannous

Because we are capable of imagining stories and share them on a large scale, we, homo sapiens, are a very succesful species. This has led to many beautiful, but also bleak things. Our frustrations, sorrow, but also hope are packed in these songs and interludes that are audible on the album.

The concept behind the album and the literature that inspired DRIPPING TREES

As a band, we always have been interested in the existential themes in life. Those themes were the origin of the lyrics on the whole album. The main question on the album is, why are we, human kind, on the top of the bill on planet earth? Homo Sapiens rules the world, but we aren’t physically stronger than a tiger.

With this question in mind, we started reading lots of different literature. We took inspiration from Yuval Noah Harari, Haruki Murakami, Leo Tolstoy and the story of Alba the rabbit.

Besides this, we also talked a lot about subjects as war, society, dreams and the crossings between science and art. These different subjects have got one main aspect in common. The source of these subjects is called: fiction.

As human beings we made up fictional entities. For example a layered society, and we shared this concept with tons of other Homo Sapiens. We didn’t only shared these abstract fantasies, we also worked together on a huge level to maintain these fictional entities. This resulted in the origin of many different countries, flags, languages and science.

However, this fictional strength and the ability to share it with peers, has got a dark side as well. It’s the cause of many different wars in our history.
Why did we fight against each other? Because the leader of country A wants to rule country B. When you start decomposing this, you’ll realize the concept of ‘countries’ only exists in our human minds. For example, a dog doesn’t know whether it is in the Netherlands or in Germany. This is because of the concept of borders, and nationalities only exists in the fantasies of Homo Sapiens.

You may consider human fantasies as a second layer of reality, a fictional reality. This fictional reality, is the fuel of our species. The fuel of mankind.

Dripping Trees

The history of the band.

Dripping Trees originated in the last months of 2018, triggered by the break-up of garage-rock outfit Mexican Surf. Guitar player Koen Ruijs, drummer Stijn Luijk and bass player Stef Leijten decided to start a new project. A new sound, a new formation and a new name. After the first shows were performed as a three-piece, ‘music friend’ Stef van der Wielen completed the formation as guitar/keys player.

In the first months as a quartet we did some very cool shows such as the support of the Dutch indie band Indian Askin. In the spring of 2020 we had planned a tour across The Netherlands to support our first two singles ‘Pulpa’ and ‘Grieved’. Unfortunately the tour was cancelled because of Covid-19. At that point we decided to fully aim for a debut album, as playing shows was not really possible.

So last August we went in to the studio for 6 days to record Fuel of Mankind. We chose to do this at The Super Nova studio with engineers Bob de Wit and Koen Verhees. Bob has worked as a tour manager and sound engineer for cool bands like Mudhoney and A Place To Bury Strangers, but also recorded albums for White Hills and Radar Men from the Moon. Koen is the guitar player of noise-rock band Søwt.
After the recordings were done we did some shows and livestreams before The Netherlands went back into lockdown again. You can watch the livestreams on YouTube!


Like many bands waltzing on this troubled earth, the tale of experimental rock outfit Dripping Trees once revolved around cheap thrills, escapism, and what the general populace would describe as ‘having a good time’. Some bands prefer to stay within this mirthful purgatory, running that treadmill until their old corporeal shells can no longer sustain their spry souls.

But such a fate would not befall Dripping Trees. At one particular junction, the Dutch quartet found themselves unplugged from the foggy romanticism that seems so synonymous with the term ‘rock ‘n’ roll’. Though the tools of choice remain largely the same, Dripping Trees opt for an immersive sound that explores skulking, slow-burning dynamics, ghoulish gospel and rustic cob-webbed grandeur. After much experimentation, it became a band at odds with its own dramatic tendencies, deliberately suspending disbelief like a bad reality show.

Dripping Trees

The band’s upcoming debut LP Fuel Of Mankind explores this inherently human trait like a flock of scavengers picking a carcass clean to the very last bone. Humankind has always used fiction as a way to goad their supposed dominion over the world. Yet at the same time, our Pavlovian instincts act as a natural foil, creating an environment of lawlessness where terms like ‘truth’ and ‘order’ are mere facsimiles. On Fuel Of Mankind, Dripping Trees entertain this notion with infectious glee: they underpin their sinister sprawls of post-rock and slowcore with farcical computer-vocalized vignettes, essentially questioning all the performative emotion in their own work. The gist of it is clear: the human gift for storytelling is a double-edged sword. Sure, it can help make sense of the chaos inherent in this universe, but it can also bend a large group of individuals to a toxic cause.

By fracturing their layered, impressionistic art-punk forays with these goofy interludes, Dripping Trees position themselves as ambiguous observers within their own self-shaped dwellings. Songs frequently address the more absurd chapters of human existence. ‘Alba’, for instance, is named after the genetically modified glow-in-the-dark rabbit, a project in which science and art became scandalous lovers. The crepuscular noise rock of ‘Distant Light’ could be considered a warped love song, beckoning and rejecting the listener at an increasingly tense pace until the chase becomes the objective. The moonstricken folk-rock of ‘We Are Leaving Soon’ highlights a quest for beauty in both sound and verb, a gasp of relief in accepting the end.

In a way, one could consider Fuel Of Mankind Dripping Trees’ fulfilling their own vitriolic, bemused take on the hackneyed ‘band mythology’ – for lack of a better word. These four individuals began their journey to escape from reality, then opted to wallow in that very reality, only to end up standing outside of it like a bunch of plucky explorers of their own muddled mortal condition. Like the story of Alba the Rabbit, Dripping Trees invite all sorts of sentiments within a single frame: their music can be beautiful, erotic, absurd and frightening all at once. Suffice it to say, we are all abundantly entertained.

Top 10 Records that inspired the art of Dripping Trees:

“The influence can vary from lyrical to more vibe related. There is not an order in this list.” – says the band.

Iceage – Plowing Into the Field of Love
Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds – Push the Sky Away
Silver Mt. Zion – Horses In The Sky
Sigur Rós – ()
Red House Painters – Red House Painters I
Marching Church – Telling It Like It Is
Idaho – People Like Us Should Be Stopped
Soundgarden – Superunknown
Godspeed You! Black Emperor – F#A#∞
Sparklehorse – It’s A Wonderful Life

The future of the band

Unfortunately our release show cannot be proceeded because of the lockdown in The Netherlands, but we still have a livestream the 29th of March which can be viewed via thesessions.stream. Furthermore will our album also be released on limited edition vinyl, which we will hand over personally to all fans that pre-ordered it and live close enough. We don’t work with a label, so anyone interested in a copy can just contact us via social media.

For the long term we definitely want to record a second album, hopefully already this year. We are already working on the songs that should appear on it. But for now we just hope we can perform some shows to support Fuel of Mankind soon.

Introducing: the gloomy art rock from Dutch post punk / slowcore act DRIPPING TREES
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