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Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
Band EDM Pop


This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos



"RIP IT UP interview"

Deja Entendu

The rough translation for the French phrase deja entendu is "heard it before." It's an interesting choice of name, then, for a young band from Melbourne whose founder even finds it tough to categorise their sound. "Describing it is probably the most difficult thing about anything to do with the band," says singer/ guitarist/ producer Jack Arentz. "I usually describe it as electric pop music or digital pop music, mainly just because of the production and stuff."

"My guilty pleasures in music are not necessarily the more self-indulgent bands, but probably the bands that give me a bit too much to handle to start with. I think that when we make music we kind of strive to create something that may not necessarily be as instantly digestible as someone would necessarily want, but hopefully over time then it becomes something that they love more, because of the way it is."

Deja Entendu's debut EP, 'Skeletons', is a hectic mix - earnest pop music that takes its cues from Death Cab For Cutie and Motor Ace is underpinned with layered, Postal Service-influenced electronics, digital drums and swirling atmospherics, all the while with its sights set squarely on your radio. Arentz started the band after leaving Adelaide expats Skye Harbour, and spent months feverishly writing songs with second vocalist/ keys player Claire Rayner and Adelaide-based Anthony Wignall (The Keepsakes), getting 'Skeletons' recorded and ready for promotion before even playing a show.

Evidently, it's a tough balance - the business-like commercial attitude that's required of someone with such lofty ambitions, and the unbridled creativity that the band's music demands. "That's what we're trying to master," Arentz agrees. "I think listening back on the EP there's a few things that really come out, and that's one of them - you can't really have both. And I guess that's probably what we're working on with our new material - trying to get the best of the recorded elements and the best of the live elements and the best of translating the pop music to people's ears so it all makes sense."

It's a translation that's an exciting prospect when it comes to the live format - a mixture of digital samples and live instrumentation that the band is bringing to Adelaide for their EP launch in April. "Oh fuck, it's really stressful!" Arentz attests. "When it works, it works so well because of the way the backing track works and the drumming and the really intense things that occur in the set. But we had a pretty intense gig in Melbourne for our Melbourne EP launch - we just struggled to get foldback, and I guess in that situation you just kind of wish you were just playing with a drummer and a bass player!"

Risky live shows aside, 2009 holds a lot of hope for Deja Entendu. It's been a tough time the last couple of years for Arentz; he moved to Melbourne from Adelaide with his bandmates in Skye Harbour, but found himself departing the group after a year - right before the band won MTV's Kickstart competition. "I guess it was just one of those stereotypical artistic differences," he says of leaving. "It had a lot to do with the fact that I lived in a massive warehouse with them all for a year and obviously five guys living together, playing music together, just having parties together and shit, it gets pretty crazy. There were probably too many songwriters in the band. I realised one day that if I just left, it gave them more space and gave me more space and it actually worked out to be sick. Now there's more than enough music to go around, and we can play shows together and we're still the best of friends.

"There's a part of me that it finds it really difficult, but at the same time I knew that it was gonna happen. I left the band just before they were going into the MTV Kickstart competition, and there was seriously no doubt in my mind - it was pretty clear that it was probably gonna work in their favour. They are still my best friends, so as much as it's difficult, I kind of live in the vain hope that hopefully Deja will have the same success, and we'll help each other out and it'll all kind of work out."

And if it doesn't? "I guess I'll just have to deal with that if it ever comes down to it. Maybe I'll just do what any other guy would do - self-indulge in acoustic rock if the band fails. A Jack Johnson vibe, talk about banana pancakes and shit like that."

Deja Entendu launch 'Skeletons' at the Ed Castle on Friday 17 April with 20th Century Graduates and Steering By Stars. - RIP IT UP

"DEJA Q & A"

CC: What inspired the name ‘Deja Entendu’ based on the meaning:
“Heard it before”?
D: The name was originally inspired by the album 'Deja Entendu' by a band called Brand New. Not only did we love Brand New and their album Deja Entendu, but we really liked the sound of the name and the kind of cute irony that came with it. Unfortunately Deja Entendu ended up being far too big a mouthful for people so we ended up changing our name to just DEJA!

CC: Was it difficult to hold yourselves in “lockdown” to build a studio (and of course work on your music). I can imagine the result would be worth it, but was it ever frustrating at times?
D: Yes, at times it was definitely frustrating simply due to the fact that we were in such a state of limbo while the studio was being put together...we had to wait for certain equipment and gear to arrive before we could get the creative results that we wanted. Plus there was a lot of DIY studio building to be done! After that it was just a matter of being patient and persistent while we worked on all the new songs and held back from playing gigs.

CC: How do you all feel towards the degree of fandom you receive when you play live?
D: Obviously any fandom is lovely! We are just happy when our music and shows make people happy...And the more fun the crowd has, the more fun we have.

CC: Jack Arentz, how difficult was it for you to leave a success band such as Skye Harbour and start your own virtually from scratch?
D: It was extremely difficult. I had been in Skye Harbour since the age of fourteen, and the other band members were (and still are) my best friends and family all rolled into one. Not only had we been working together for years, but we made the move from Adelaide to Melbourne together. To leave an established band and try to do everything all over again from scratch was completely daunting!! Fortunately all the experience and knowledge I gained over the years made it possible, and DEJA happened pretty smoothly.

CC: Claire Rayner, what are your feelings towards being described as a “Rock n Roll Barbie”?
D: Fantastic! I love it. All of the best and most ballsy musical female hotties over the years have been very 'Rock n Roll Barbie', so I suppose being called that is a compliment. I just try to be myself.

CC: Corey Schnieder, is ‘Deja Entendu’ the first band you’ve ever played with? If so, was it difficult to transcend into a band already formed?
D: No- I originally played in a band called 'Red Menace' which is the complete opposite of DEJA. Think screamo rock! Despite that it wasn't hard making the transition. It really comes down to the people in your band, if you get along and if you love the music you are making. Jack and Claire were looking for a drummer before they had ever played a live gig (the first EP was already done at that stage) so we really did form the band as it is today together, despite me joining a little late.

CC: How does it feel it be described as, “potential electro-pop visionaries”?
D: It's very flattering. Our goal is to create innovative pop music that focuses on sound melodic ideas and killer production. We think that it is really important to be progressive and to challenge the standards of the current musical if that means we end up being "electro-pop visionaries", so be it!

Deja perform at the B & B Shuffle Showcase "Freak show Carnival" on Friday 22nd October. - Red Bennies

"Arjan Writes Music Blog: DEJA"

After giving listeners a taste of their hard-rocking pop sound with "Skeleton" last year, Aussie electro-pop trio DEJA returns with the brand-new "Fast, Hard." The song is a racing, pulsating synth stomper featuring dueling boy-girl vocals and a frantic guitar riff that is nothing like the sweet-sugarded synth pop you may expect. The band of Claire Rayner, Jack Arentz, Corey Schneider simply describe their sound as "big hooks, thumping beats and a raw live show" that fits perfectly in today's "musical climat of lo-fi indie." And there you have it. -

"DEJA - Fast Hard"

Quite I while ago, I started this blog with a post about a band called Deja Entendu. They had added me on myspace a few days earlier and although I enjoyed the blippy-piano pop of the majority of their EP, I was most interested by then-guitarist Anthony Wignall’s one track ‘I Think We Lost Her’. Since he’s given us more than enough pop gold in the last year with The Keepsakes, the rest of their debut Skeletons warranted a little more attention, especially as they eschewed the stage in the last few months in favour of cooking up some new recordings.

This track ‘Fast, Hard!’ is quite accurately titled. ‘Hard’ could perhaps be interchangeable with ‘Slick!’. The song kind of sounds like Muse (of the ‘Undisclosed Desires’ sort) after chewing up and spitting out the Rogue Traders, then upping the tempo. At first it took a bit of adjusting to appreciate how an (I think home-recorded, but am probably wrong) independent Melbourne band could put together something equally if not more shiny than anything coming out of major-label production houses. I also had to shake unescapable feeling that they are making a concerted effort to really hit radio over the head with this one.

Then again - and I quite like this train of thought - it is pretty awesome to see an unsigned band reclaiming that autotuned, big-budget electro-pop sound for their own, and for us all. No longer, Justin Timberlake and Rihanna, shall your over-produced pop aesthetic be an unnattainable fantasy for us ProTools homebodies with a synth and a dream! They even have sweet Brian May-esque guitar solos.

The track is nonetheless invested with an atmosphere of palpable paranoia and frenetic movement that is quite a shot edgier than their commerical radio counterparts. Also, the relative intricacy of the song’s hooks sets it apart from its more mainstream cousins and their more obvious, watered down choruses.

So, a few listens of adjustment later, I quite like this song. - Purple Prose

"DEJA, Skye Harbour, Sons of Messengers, Under Lights @ Revolver, Melbourne (05/03/09)"

Even after Skye Harbour’s perfect performance, the night truly did belong to Deja Entendu who were promoting their Skeletons EP. Perhaps the first sign that this band is a little left of conventional was the fact that their EP launch night did not have a single physical EP in sight. Another clue was that the stage was cramped with not one, but three keyboards, a keytar, a guitar, a completely digital drumkit, a laptop, a saxophone and a trumpet. Unfortunately, their set was marred by several technical difficulties. During their entire opening song Adelaide the band were gesturing and making symbols to the sound engineer to make changes. In between songs Claire Rayner told the sound engineer to increase their fallback, to which the whole crowd started clapping and chanting “FOLDBACK! FOLDBACK!” Despite the sound issues at the start of their set, the crowd did not seem disappointed at all. One girl in the crowd yelled, ‘I love you Jack!’ (aimed at frontman Jack Arentz) which was immediately countered with another female fan shouting, ‘I love you more!’ Another of Deja Entendu’s quirks is the fact that it has two frontmen (or frontpeople) who are both excellent and have different, albeit completmentary, vocal styles. Jack has a quietly powerful, soulful voice that would be fantastic in an indie setting. Leading lady Claire’s singing style, super tight lycra pants and awesome hair made this reviewer think of Blondie, who she was definitely channelling in Fast Hard! where she left her keyboard and keytar aside to focus on dancing and vocals. The band of musicians closed the night with the title track of their EP, the uber-cool Skeletons. They invited even more people onto stage, and with eight enthusiastic kids on stage belting out the tune it almost seemed as if this reviewer had stumbled upon a private party of happy drunks having a spontaneous jam. Deja Entendu is definitely one of Melbourne’s newest and most unusual musical outfits, and have the potential to be electro-pop visionaries. - Faster Louder


LP Preview - 2011



DEJA have spent almost three years getting their hands dirty in the fastidious pursuit of finely crafted pop music. Playing live shows relentlessly, releasing an EP and numerous remixes, DJing anywhere that will have them - even working with other bands in the studio. Such things come with the territory when engaging in Melbourne's crowded music scene.

Now the band is proud to release their LP preview, providing a glimpse of what is to come in 2011. Drawing influences from bands like Röyksopp, The Presets and Miike Snow, DEJA are part of a strong movement in Australia for progressive pop music.

Refined songwriting is nothing without a charismatic live show. After years of gigging it is no surprise that the band transitions to stage so well, combining their complex digital and organic elements seamlessly.

The next twelve months will see the band finishing their debut LP. To support the release of the LP-Preview, DEJA will be embarking on a full scale tour around the east coast with some of their favourite bands and DJ's.

After years of building solid foundations, DEJA are excited to share their hard work with the world.