Shane Parsons is on the way to the studio, our call will be one of many interviews for him today. It’s the last chance DZ Deathrays have to talk before returning to the Grove to record Positive Rising: Part 2—the second part of their forthcoming double album.
The new feature is the first DZ have written and recorded as a trio. Lachlan Ewbank joined Parsons and Simon Ridley in the writing process in 2017, just after Bloody Lovely wrapped.
“I was getting a little bored of my own sort of guitar stuff, it kept sounding the same so it was really good having Lachie come in and give parts,” says Parsons. “I sort of had to give up what I wanted to do in terms of, especially lead lines on guitar, and it kind of made me focus a lot more on just doing a lot more on vocals and song structure,” he continues.
Turning a new leaf of sorts with this album, DZ enlisted Lee McConnell to make the bright, saturated cover art to match the record’s optimistic title. The title itself is taken from a song due to arrive on part two. Parsons insists it’ll all tie together when the second part is released. He also says that while the two separate parts will sound similar, there is a little bit of a progression throughout.
The records lead single “Year of the Dog”, with Matt Caughthran, sounds rotten, angry, setting the gruff tone.
“My body says that it’s had enough//and I keep screaming for an answer”, cries Parsons.
The track, along with the rest of part one was recorded in LA. “It was one of those things we were jokingly saying that every band needs to go and do a record in L.A.” Luckily their good friend, and great producer, Miro Mackie has a studio there. Parsons says unfortunately there just wasn’t the budget to return. Instead, they’re heading to the Central Coast of NSW to finish part two.
The video clip for “Year of the Dog”, also under budget constraints, was filmed on an iPhone using the green curtains of a ‘shitty hotel’ in Poland as a green screen. Its simplicity harks back to their 2008 clip for “Mess Up”, in which Parsons and Ridley trade a bottle of Jagermeister while they try to sing.
Parsons insists, after all, “we still kind of treat ourselves like a DIY band as much as possible.”
Release: Positive Rising: Part 1 is out now.
Catch them live at The Forum, Melbourne – October 25 & The Evelyn, Melbourne – October 26 (U/18).
Written by Darby-Perrin Larner
Photo by Carley Solether