The gramaphone... the wireless... 45s....cassettes... the boombox.... the Walkman... the cd... the Discman... the minidisc... the iPod... online streaming....
It's all about the music. No matter how we listen, we're all still just kids tuning in to our favourite tracks on the radio. KID RADIO is going to take you on a journey through the evolution of listening. It's going to take a while, but it's going to be awesome.
KID RADIO is a brand new project from Dylan Smith and Marcus Ross with a new crew, releasing 'Far East' and 'Super Villain' under the new name in preparation for completion of their debut studio album due out in March 2013.
Following their successful years writing and performing together, and having released multiple discs including their first ever studio album 'War In My Kitchen', the guys commenced their new project 'Kid Radio' which kicked off with their first show supporting New Zealand's acclaimed 'Six60' at a sold-out Forum on September 28th. This marked the opening of a new chapter for the group and the introduction of the second evolution of their increasingly popular sound.
In their previous form, the duo racked up significant national radio play and rave reviews during a string of shows though 2010, including a hefty 21-date Australian and NZ tour, performances at Japan Music Week in Tokyo, a radio promo performance to a staggering 11 million listeners live from Ho Chi Minh City, The Hills Are Alive Festival, Woodford Folk Festival and to cap off the year opened the main stage at Rhythm & Vines for Tinie Tempah, Justice, Chase and Status & N.E.R.D. at Rhythm & Vines Festival NZ.
Being well underway with pre-production of the album, Kid Radio was born to complete the transition.
Produced by Count Bounce (TZU, Urthboy, Sparkadia, Ash Grunwald), mixed by Tony Espie and mastered at the famous Sing Sing Studio, Melbourne by David Williams, Far East saw lead guitarist Mikey Chan (Pharoahe Monch, M-Phazes, Illy, Jean Grae, Diafrix) team up with Dylan and Marcus to bring years of collaboration experience to the song writing table.
Kid Radio are releasing the first two singles across Nth America in Nov 2012 to satisfy their growing international demand.
Keep in touch for sneak peeks at the new tracks and upcoming shows here.
Dylan Smith - Lead singer
Marcus Ross - Guitar, Synths.
Mikey Chan - Lead Guitar
Simon Rabl - Bass
Shane Evans - Drums, Track Programming
Matt Hunt - Manager
Kid Radio upcoming album release 30th March, 2013
"Super Villain" second single for upcoming album. July 2012, re-released under Kid Radio in October 2012
"Far East" lead single for 2012 album. March 2012, re-released under Kid Radio in October 2012
As Direct Influence
"War In My Kitchen" Debut Studio Album released through Shock Records and 107 Entertainment
Defined a new direction for Direct Influence, toured heavily, significant media coverage
"Final Word" 2009, released through 107 Entertainment
Official rotation on Triple J and community/local radio and rave reviews
"Better Day" 2008, released through Long Beach Records Australia.
Had alot of play on major and independent radio stations.
"Home" single, october 2007-Tracks/ Home, Ropes (Sound Farm Mix 2006)
Released through Long beach records Australia 2007.
"Herbal Ninja" EP 2006-Tracks/Fire, Aint Nobody, Rock Girl feat.Rhyno (True Live), Ropes
Released through Long beach records Australia 2006.
Herbal Ninja received rave reviews from media, and had extensive airplay on most of Australia's radio stations.
"Finally" EP 2003- Tracks/Keep Moving, One Element feat. Corrine Myrteza, Music, Clap feat. Dime Juan, Fussing, New Waters,
2003 independent release
produce by nicki bomba.
Self titled ep 2002- Tracks/Deception, Drop The Bombs, Silence, War Of Peace -
2002 independent release.
Direct Influence at Republic Bar, Hobart
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Crowd participation is what you want when you’re in a band, up on stage and belting out your pride-a...Crowd participation is what you want when you’re in a band, up on stage and belting out your pride-and-joy, or so I’m led to believe.
That’s until the scene gets ugly....
Ok, so the scene at the Republic Bar and Cafe on April 23rd never got ‘ugly’. But it could’ve.
If mountainous frontman Dylan Smith had decided to pick up the painful old goat who’d invaded his stage (and grabbed the mic to rant about her ‘stolen’ phone) and speared her through the window and out into the gutter where she belonged, I guess it would’ve counted as ugly.
Lucky the DI boys weren’t interested in ugliness on their first trip to Tassie. They just wanted to amp the crowd up on their blend of funky Trans-Tasman, hip-hoppish, reggae-heavy tunes.
And that they did!
Touring on the back of their debut album, War in My Kitchen, the DI crew cruised through a set big on smooth grooves and soulful sounds. Foot tapping, head bobbing and broad, appreciative smiles were the order of the day for the punters gathered in the front bar.
The set was heavy with tunes from the aforementioned album (which you should all take a listen to, btw) and even without the range of excellent guest performers from the album (incl. the much-hyped Dan Sultan), all stood up to the live test!
Smith’s soulful vocals really set the tone, particularly on standout tracks like ‘Carry On’ and ‘For My People’ (the tune that features Sultan on the album). There’s an unassuming quality about the towering singer, but there’s nothing shy and retiring about his presence when he’s out front and enjoying himself.
Band maestro Ross and the rest of the assembled DI crew back-up their frontman beautifully, establishing irresistible grooves across a whole host of styles. By the time ‘Cornerboy’ came around, I was in seventh reggae heaven!!
Lucky for me I’d managed to catch the War in My Kitchen launch party in Melbourne at Easter. Far from 'familiarity breeding contempt', knowing some of the DI tunes going into this gig was a treat.
I might've been in the minority at the Republic, singing along to the words I knew (or thought I knew), but I doubt I’ll be on my ‘Pat Malone’ next time they grace these shores.
And for a band with a foot both in Australia and New Zealand, you’ve gotta think Tassie is the perfect place to play... Here’s hoping Direct Influence make it back soon!
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Fresh from attempting to conquer the Asian market following a slot on the world-famous festival Japa...Fresh from attempting to conquer the Asian market following a slot on the world-famous festival Japan Music Week in Tokyo, Melbourne six-piece Direct Influence are taking the road less travelled. Unlike most of their peers, it’s Japan and Vietnam that these electro-reggae heads have been squarely focusing on – though, look out Europe, according to guitarist Marcus Ross, you’re next in 2011.
“The Japanese are massive reggae fans, so our reggae element really appealed to them,” he explains. “We played Japan Music Week but we also did a whole bunch of other showcases in different venues. At one of the shows they had a guy who was painting a picture the whole time we were playing. The painting turned into this figure dancing which was really cool because he basically made a reflection of the music he was hearing us play, so I’d like to say I had a role in that painting!
“In Ho Chi Minh [Vietnam] it was a different vibe altogether but the Vietnamese scene is unlike anything you’ve ever seen; it’s really good. We played a set and did an interview for this radio station called Zone FM, it’s aimed at 18-to-30 year olds and it has a 10.4 million listenership a week,” he shakes his head in amazement. “It’s pretty mind-blowing because that’s your Melbourne and Sydney right there.
“The thing is that it’s still a communist government in Vietnam so they had to translate it first and take out swear words, even ‘damn’. It’s such an interesting country because there’s so much foreign investment – it’s like China’s little brother – but the youth make up most of its population under 30 because of the war. The young people now have some money in their hands and they’re keen to do something with it. Ho Chi Minh has got a booming nightlife and the music scene is growing so much.”
It’s certainly been a step in the right direction, according to Ross, who claims that in many ways, it’s also served as good practice for next year when Direct Influence set foot on European soil. And, if English backpackers camping out in Byron Bay are anything to go by, the results are set to be staggering once the band gets to the other side of the world.
“We’re so glad that our manager was able to make it happen for us in Asia,” says the guitarist, “but it’s also been a bit of a stepping stone for us. It’s been a way to get closer to getting ourselves over to Europe next year. It would be great to be over there for the summer festivals. Asia has been great practice ground and Japan is the second largest music capital in the world.
“I guess you could say our music has been tried and tested with a lot of the backpackers from Europe because we’ve played Byron Bay a lot. It’s always the backpackers that are really keen to stick around and buy our CDs and to stay in touch after the show. They’ve been begging us to come to Europe for years now, so it’s time we started considering it seriously. Again, Europe has a very large population and lots of little niche markets; there’s room for everybody.”
That’s why when it comes to the band’s follow-up to debut album War In My Kitchen, Direct Influence plan to release the record in Europe first. Long time Direct Influence fans should also know that Ross and co. are doing something of a u-turn on their upcoming tracks, focusing more on the reggae and hip-hop elements they first came to be known for on their earlier EPs.
“We released War In My Kitchen in May and we’re hoping to finish writing the next one halfway through next year. We’ve got a tour with (awesome Kiwi band) Kora in January, but apart from that we’re really holding back on the shows from now on and pushing ourselves with the next album. The songs are going to be more similar to the EPs, but they’ll also sound more like For My People and Moving On [ War In My Kitchen]. We’re also re-writing and reworking some of the older songs off the EPs which we still play. We’re scouting for the perfect producer to capture that sound.
“I was actually in Sweden,” he adds, “just before we went to Tokyo and I’ve met a few producers over there. My girlfriend is a singer and a songwriter so I went there with her to suss out the vibe. Sweden is the second largest music export in the world – if you hear a pop track on the radio, chances are it was probably written in Sweden, then taken to a US artist.”
Closer to home, according to the guitarist it’s Tiki Taane and ShockOne that make the top of Ross’ list of dream producers. Having worked with Dan Sultan on For My People, Ross says the band is keen to collaborate with more Australian and international artists and producers.
“It’s a pretty amazing story,” says Ross of Sultan’s contribution on War In My Kitchen. “He came into the studio and had never heard the song before. In the time that it took our manager to go out and buy some Coopers to bring back to the studio – Dan had the whole song laid out and finished. This was in the space of less than 20 minutes – going from never hearing the song before to having it done.
“I’d love to work with Tiki Taane as well,” Ross adds. “The sound he produces really resonates with us well. ShockOne from Perth would be great to work with as well. We’d like to get For My People remixed, actually, so I’ve been in touch with ShockOne about that. It’s a matter of him having to finish up his own album before anything can happen, though.”
DIRECT INFLUENCE finish of 2010 with the WOODFORD FOLK FESTIVAL over December 27 – January 1. Their album War In My Kitchen is out now.
Rhythm & Vines Bonus Line-up
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Just when you thought it couldn’t get any better, there’s even more reason to get down to Gisborne f...Just when you thought it couldn’t get any better, there’s even more reason to get down to Gisborne for New Year’s!
Best Festival award winner at the recent NZ Tourism Awards, Rhythm & Vines today announced a bonus release to its 2010 lineup, with the additions of Flying Lotus (Live), The Gaslamp Killer and Hudson Mohawk, local sensations The Naked and Famous and legendary 70s rockers Dragon.
Experimental multi-genre producer Flying Lotus has the music intelligentsia swooning all the way to hometown California and back. With rumours already flying on Australian website inthemix it was officially confirmed this week that the LA beat wizard is in fact on the R&V bill.
Joining Flying Lotus on 30 December is LA-based DJ The Gaslamp Killer. The crowd can expect an explosive set with his electric style ranging from pyschedelia to world music, dubstep and left-field hip hop.
Scotland based producer/DJ Hudson Mohawk joins Flying Lotus and Gaslamp Killer on the tour and also plays on 30 December.
The Naked and Famous need no introduction as ‘the’ Kiwi band of 2010. They’ll be joined on New Year’s Eve by legends Dragon who’ll keep the crowd happy with Kiwi summer anthems ‘Are You Old Enough?’ and ‘April Sun in Cuba.’
Add to this bonus release the latest additions in the BW Campgrounds festival line-up, and Gisborne is undoubtedly the number one place to be for music lovers this summer - with an entire week of music like nothing our shores have seen!
‘Festival week’ kicks off on 27 December at BW with a massive opening night featuring Kora, Six60, The Freestylers (UK), State of Mind (Live) and The Checks.
BW campground is operating in and around R&V opening hours with warm-up shows, daytime shows and late night after parties, for maximum musical goodness, check out their website.
In more R&V news, support acts and of course the winners of the Sonicbids competition to perform at R&V have been decided, with Wellington bands Afternoon Raj and Aviators, Auckland band Flip Grater and Direct Influence from Melbourne selected from a total of 129 bands that entered from New Zealand and Australia.
Support acts confirmed so far are: Coast, Jason Howson, Tim Phin, Popstrangers, Tim Richards, Daniel Farley, Maya and Vanya ft. MC Silva, Dan Aux, Thomas Sahs, General Lee, Dean Campbell, Mark Emerson, Blackbird, North Shore Pony Club, Beat Mafia, Chaos in the CBD, People of Paris, Space Creeps (live), Aroha, Rich Carey, Sick Disco All Stars, and Teenage Kicks DJs.
R&V’s hunt for the ultimate understudy is well underway, and the road for our six R&V Protégé finalists has been long and fraught with challenges! The ZM People’s Choice Award goes to none other than Flash or Matt Gordon – big ups Flash! We’re not letting the cat out of the bag quite yet though. Stay tuned for our Top Three to be announced 3 December and our overall winner also in December.
Keen to work at Rhythm & Vines? We’re currently seeking volunteers to work at the Festival with over 2,000 staff and volunteers needed to deliver the event. If you’d like to be a part of it, head to the website to register your interest.
Rhythm & Vines 2010 line-up
N*E*R*D, Justice (DJ set), Shihad, Carl Cox, Chase and Status (DJ set), Chromeo, Boys Noize, Erol Alkan, Netsky, Mystery Jets, High Contrast, Tinie Tempah, The Naked and Famous, Flying Lotus (Live), Miami Horror, Hollie Smith, Dragon, BARB, Bulletproof, P Money, The Gaslamp Killer, Electric Wire Hustle, Mt Eden Dubstep, Dick Johnson, Hudson Mohawke, Optimus Gryme, Our:House Presents and more.
BW Campgrounds 2010 line-up
Kora, The Black Seeds, High Contrast, The Freestylers, Six60, State of Mind, Tahuna Breaks, Mt Eden Dubstep, TheUpbeats, Sola Rosa, Concord Dawn, Batucada Sound Machine, Killa Kella, The Checks, P Money, 1814, David Dallas, Bang Bang Eche, Computers Want Me Dead, Maya & Vanya, Tim Richards plus more.
The Kaje talks 'War In My Kitchen' to Direct Influence
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Having just finished a tour of Australia and New Zealand, Melbourne’s Direct Influence headed straig...Having just finished a tour of Australia and New Zealand, Melbourne’s Direct Influence headed straight back to Western Australia for a second sell-out stint. Not a bad close to a year that has seen them welcomed in everywhere from Vietnam to Sweden. As the dynamic duo prepare for a much-deserved break, The Kaje caught up with guitarist Marcus Ross to find out more about their hectic year…
Sounds like you’ve been a busy bee. How is it all going?
Not too bad bro. Just driving down to the country right now. I am actually going down to tidy up my family home as my brother is coming in from Indonesia. He hasn’t been in Australia for two years. He is flying in tomorrow, so I thought I might make the house look nice for him.
Sounds like it has been a busy year. Did you expect it to all take off for you in 2010?
Yeah man, well, we wanted to do everything in our power to make sure it would take off to that degree. The aim was always to basically tour heavily and bring the live show to as many places a possible. Basically to bring the party to wherever they want us.
So when did you first get into music?
When I was about 11 years old and my cousin moved over to UK and left his guitar behind for me. I learnt guitar through playing in a band with mates. We learnt all our instruments at the same time. So I played my first live gig at 12, we came second in a battle of the bands or something. Ever since that I knew it was the direction I wanted to take.
Where does Direct Influence’s hip hop meets reggae sound come from?
It was when I met the singer Dylan. He came over from South Auckland, New Zealand, from a family heavily who was influenced by reggae in South Auckland which was heavily influenced by hip hop. When he and I met, I was more into the rock than hip hop, but we started writing together it just happened naturally that we started getting those elements.
When me and Dylan met I was 14 and then I was very much a rock boy. But over the last decade I have got very much into hip hop and reggae. It is hard to say. The conclusion I draw at the end of the day is a song is a song, no matter what genre it comes under, if it is a good song it will draw the same emotions regardless.
“War In My Kitchen” is a loaded album title, what made you choose it?
“War In My Kitchen”, which is obviously based off the title track. It was basically, a reflection from our viewpoint of the media these days. I know how cliched that sounds, but what I mean is just even in your own living room, you can’t escape, even if you sit down to watch a soap or a sitcom, there are always newsflashes. It is usually about war as the media likes to ham that sort of thing up as it usually sells newspapers in a sense. You just can’t escape even if you just want a relaxing night in your lounge or your kitchen, you are going to be faced with these images of war, whether you like it or not.
The album is a split between sending out a social message and a battle with the new age media, but about 50% of the album are love songs and break-up songs. So “War In My Kitchen” can kind of be applied to that too, if you see what I mean? It is a relative title really.
If you had to describe your sound to a stranger what would you call it?
I would definitely have to say a reggae, hip hop with elements of electro and rock. At that point people would be looking at us going what the fuck!?! At that point, I would probably invite them to a show to check it out.
What song would you recommend they listen to from as an introduction?
Personally I’d like them to listen to the last track “Moving On”, just because it gives a bit of an example of how we can mash the genres up. It is the perfect cross between the electro rock into the hard-hitting dub-reggae. I am quite happy to stay in the territory we are in. I am quite happy with the reggae/hip hop sound with a little bit of a rock tinge. That is definitely the direction we want to go for in the next album.
Who inspires you musically?
It is really funny, we always kind of go through little phases of what is in our CDs players. Right now its Temper Trap, so I’ll go I want to write a song like that. We always bring new elements into it. It is always our spin on whats coming out. What bands we listen changes every week.
The album features some pretty high profile collaborations, how did they come about?
EQ, he was actually working with the same producer we were at the time. When we came to the table with “Final Word”, which is kind of a scathing break-up song, the producer suggested EQ, who had just gone through a very shocking split with his fiance. He seemed like the perfect man for the job and he was. I love the verse EQ put in there. In regards to Dan Sultan, “For My People” Dylan wrote. He is a Maori, an indigenous New Zealander and he basically wrote that song as a message to all his people. He is sick of seeing them working as security guards and forklift drivers.
Dan Sultan, being an indigenous Australian, Dylan just said Dan Sultan needs to be on this track as indigenous Australian and Kiwi sending a message to their people. Fortunately our producer had worked with Dan Sultan before, so we were able to get in touch with him too. He was well up for the track.
Is there anyone else you’d really like to work with?
There is an artist from New Zealand called Tiki Taane. We have definitely got our eye on him. We’d love to work with him. We just love his sound and what he does to the whole reggae/hip hop thing. I’d love to bring some of his elements into our music. There is also a drum ‘n bass DJ called Shock One, who we’d love to get on board for a couple of remixes. I reckon our sound with his touch on it would really come alive.
You’ve spent a lot of the year on the road, what can people expect from a Direct Influence gig?
When you come and see Direct Influence, you have to expect a hard-hitting show. We have minimal breaks and many breakdowns. Our aim is to get every last person on the dancefloor, even if there is only three people. Basically we don’t give people much opportunity to have a conversation with the person next to them as they should be focusing on dancing to the tunes.
On the performance front, is there anyone you aspire to be like?
I really like what The Cat Empire did, in that they are constantly on the road and reaching out to audiences in the most interesting places all over the world. Whether they are doing a fraternity tour across the US or a tour through underground bars in Eastern Europe. I really like that. I just would like to go to the most interesting places to connect with the most interesting people throughout the world.
So it more about your music touching people than widespread acclaim?
Definitely, touching the people. I am sure you would make a lot more money if you r song is constantly played on the radio or your video is constantly on TV, but I don’t think you get the same satisfaction out of it while you are sitting in your apartment. You don’t get a gauge on how people are digging your sound. Whereas if you are out there playing festivals across the world, you really get a first hand gauge on whats going on. Europe is going to be our first port of call before we try and tackle to US market. We want to get over for a European summer. It is going to be special.
Direct Influence - War In My Kitchen
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War in My Kitchen is the first and long awaited studio album to come from Direct Influence. Direc...War in My Kitchen is the first and long awaited studio album to come from Direct Influence.
Direct Influence is made up of Dylan Smith and Marcus Ross and they have created a name for themselves in the indie music scene as the band sans genre.
The entire album is evidence of that, as track by track is a journey through rock, reggae, hip-hop, swing, electro and many others. Though surprisingly enough it is not a disjointed journey the songs are carefully placed in an order that suits the flow.
‘Final Word’ is begins almost as a hill-billy country tune, though before you’ve even noticed, it bursts into a soft R&B meets hip-hop style. Even writing those words I can understand that it doesn’t sound attractive, which is why words cannot do this album justice. You definitely have to hear it for yourself.
The title track 'War in My Kitchen' has a creative use of spoken word infused with a gentle electronic reggae rhythm.
Seemingly they have taken a stab at political commentary, with simple lyrics like “Are you ready? Ready for the rise up? / No more war, never again” sung over an empowering melody.
The next single to be released is hopefully one you will hear more of as the weeks go on. It is titled ‘For My People’ and features Dan Sultan adding his smooth voice to the melting pot of musical styles.
Music is often a powerful vessel for establishing a political voice, and Direct Influence have taken advantage of this opportunity and intelligently blended powerful lyrics with music that creates an involuntary swaying movement.
The album’s influences are in fact not direct, but varied. There are songs about relationships, (‘All Goes Wrong’, ‘Got You’ and ‘Carry On’), personal journeys (‘Job to Do’, ‘Walking Away’ and ‘Moving On’), and other life mysteries.
With such variety across the 11 tracks there is really something in this for everyone.
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ou’ve no doubt heard of the Trans-Atlantic sound, but a Trans-Tasman sound? Is there such a thing? I...ou’ve no doubt heard of the Trans-Atlantic sound, but a Trans-Tasman sound? Is there such a thing? It does make sense when you think about it, what with all those musically gifted Kiwis making their way across the ditch.
Dylan Smith is such lad, a Maori teenager arriving in the Victorian country town of Bunyip ten years ago and hooking up almost immediately with guitarist Marcus Ross.
“I moved to Australia when I was 16 and Marcus was one of the first guys I ever met,” Dylan explains in the clipped cadence typical of so many of his countrymen. “He was in a band and I was always writing hip hop lyrics. We became mates and he said to me, ‘You should jump up with us and have a bit of a jam’. So I got up and ever since then we've just been jamming and playing tunes. The band really formed about six years ago and wasn’t a proper, professional unit until about the last two years; before that we just jammed, played at our local pubs, had a few drinks and had fun – it was nothing serious until two years ago.”
And things have just become very serious indeed for Dylan and Marcus, with their group, Direct Influence, having just released the debut album, ‘War In My Kitchen’.
“It took a long time to produce – just through budget restraints and producers and stuff – but we’re really happy with the way it came together in the end. With our EPs before this we’ve focussed strictly on hip hop and reggae, and that was cool, but Marcus and I like other forms of music – like electro and rock – so we thought, ‘Man, let's just go for it, and write whatever comes to us’.
“And it’s ended up with more of an electronic feel, this album. It's still got the reggae and hip hop on there – you can’t get rid of them – but it's a bit broader. With our EPs it was just a live band in the studio; we didn't really produce it. But with the album we sat down with our producers and said, ‘We want a bit of synth there and some electric guitar here and some samples there’. It was just awesome to have a lot of time to do it and get those sounds out instead of just playing with the band. It was something different for us, so we experimented a little bit and we’re really stoked with how it turned out.”
‘War In My Kitchen’ has the sound of a band growing more comfortable in the studio environment. The production is crisp, the songs focussed, and everything’s jacked up with an infectious energy.
“Yes! We’re in our element in the studio,” Dylan chuckles. “I could just sit there for three days straight going over tracks. I'm a bit of a perfectionist and I like everything to be spot on, so I'll just be in there for hours fiddling with this and changing that, sitting on the one thing for ages and making sure it's just right. I love being in the studio. Marcus probably doesn’t enjoy it quite so much. He’s got quite the social life, old Marcus, so I don't think he wants to be in the studio any longer than he has to be!”
Still, like most young bands coming up through the ranks, Direct Influence made their name in the live arena, and that’s where they’ll be in the coming weeks as they head out on the road to support ‘War In My Kitchen’.
“There’s nothing quite like performing live in front of hundreds of people who are just going off. That's what you're playing music for. Getting out there, producing albums, getting them printed – you’re an entertainer and that's what you're supposed to do. And that's the best part about it, getting your music out there and getting a reaction from the crowd. I think we’d rather perform more than anything else.
“We’re at our most comfortable when we’re travelling. We dig playing Melbourne – that's our base and that's where our biggest following is – but we just love travelling. We've been doing that over the last two years: going all over the place and playing to people who don't know us and capturing their imagination – that’s the beauty of it!”
And what can the uninitiated expect from a Direct Influence gig, other than some amazing tunes?
“It's a showcase full of energy,” Dylan laughs. “We'll practice every day leading up to a show and we always make sure that it's pumping, that the beats are spot on, that it all flows and that the tempo is good. So we always try to put on a good show and give people a workout!”
Direct Influence play The Beach Hotel, in Byron Bay, May 1 and the Step Inn May 2. ‘War In My Kitchen’ is out now
5 Minutes with Direct Influence
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D.SMITH of Melbourne-based reggae hip hop duo DIRECT INFLUENCE answer some questions for RAVE. Br...D.SMITH of Melbourne-based reggae hip hop duo DIRECT INFLUENCE answer some questions for RAVE.
Briefly, how did Direct Influence begin?
Marcus [Ross] and I wanted to start a band that played reggae and a little bit of hip hop. We started jamming at school, after school, whenever there was free time ... It wasn’t until we left school that we thought maybe we could play gigs, so … [and now] Marcus and I are still kicking and writing songs we love with a line-up of kick-arse musos.
Your newie, War In My Kitchen, is your first studio album. How did the recording process differ to your previous EPs – Herbal Ninja and Better Day?
The previous EP’s we really stuck to the formula of playing reggae and hip hop, this album we really experimented with different sounds. On this record we have so many different styles of music and we are very happy with the electro reggae rock gumbo of sounds.
You’ve been writing and performing as a duo for almost a decade. What have been some major milestones for you?
There have been many things I have been proud of, like touring constantly and playing New Zealand last year to a capacity crowd, and working with so many amazing artists. But, I have to say that recording and releasing this album is a big deal for us, we have battled hard to get this out and are very proud of the way it sounds….
You’ve said that playing a show is ‘the ultimate test’. What has been your most memorable live experience?
I would have to say the first time we played in Byron Bay – we played the Beach Hotel to about 1000 screaming schoolie kids, it was our first taste of playing to a big crowd, and it just went nuts.
What’s on the agenda for DI after your NZ and OZ tour?
We are really keen to travel overseas and rock out, Japan is on the cards, and Europe is being discussed. Travel is what makes our band special; we have travelled to some of the best places and will continue to do that.
DIRECT INFLUENCE play Byron’s Beach Hotel on Saturday May 1 and The Step Inn on Sunday May 2. Their album, WAR IN MY KITCHEN is out now through Shock Records.
One hour set list generally consists of:
All Goes Wrong
For My People
War In My Kitchen
There are no upcoming dates at this time.