Heavy rock band Devilskin has been one of the first big name artists in New Zealand to announce a tour.
The band were due to go on a European tour supporting their new album RED but then Covid-19 happened.
The group’s bassist Paul Martin tells Katrina Batten it's an exciting time for New Zealand live music fans and that, although the lockdown had scuppered international tours, it had also offered opportunities.
“I think the lockdown give a lot of people the opportunity to sit down and reconnect with music in a way they might not have done for a while, so I guess it was a good time to release an album in that respect for while,” he says.
“We just about had the rug pulled from under our feet because we were just about to travel to the UK and Europe for an awesome string of dates… We’ve spent lockdown doing a lot of promos for the new album. We’ve still got to release the album, but we haven’t been able to tour until now, so just really looking forward to doing the New Zealand tour in August and September.”
The band were not included in each other’s ‘bubbles’ initially during the first weeks of lockdown, but still managed to work collaboratively on improving their material.
“We were sending bits of songs to each other and just kept in touch like that. Working on plans and a lot of us were doing various promos for different radio stations around the world. It kept us pretty busy in the first couple of weeks and then once we could all get together in a bubble it was straight back into rehearsals and doing what we love.”
Martin says the content of the new album is pertinent to recent events across the world, as some songs depict of societal breakdown and dystopian tales of woe.
“It’s kind of prophetic because the first couple of songs on it are all about a breakdown of society and a dystopian government running the world. Other tracks are about confinement. Just looking out the window and bemoaning all the freedoms you’ve lost.
“These songs were written a year or year-and-a-half ago, so it’s been surreal to see the world in that state.”
The upcoming tour in New Zealand is something the band is wholeheartedly focused on and Martin says other big Kiwi bands will be thinking the same way.
“All we want to do is play, and especially with the international scene at the moment, we won’t be going overseas for the foreseeable future… People are really keen for a party. They have been locked up for so long and they want to see the big stage and big production gigs again and we just can’t wait to do it.”
They start to tour on August 13 at Browns Bay in Auckland, then will tour town and cities the band has been unable to gig at in the past, including Whangarei.
Other stops will include Hamilton, Mount Manganui, Palmerston North, New Plymouth, Napier, Tokoroa, Dunedin, Oamaru, Christchurch and Pukekohe.
“There’s been some places that we haven’t been able to include in certain tours for whatever reasons, just logistics.
“We’re going to be one of the first ones out there but there’ll be a bunch of bands touring and it’s a really exciting time to be punter in New Zealand.”