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Interview – The Deep End – February 2013

| 2 March 2013 | Reply

By Shayne McGowan

At the end of 2011, The Deep End was on top of the local Australian scene.  They had just released their latest EP “Your Shout”, and had played shows all over the east coast of Australia.  With sell out crowds and massive amounts of momentum behind them, talk began of recording the first full length album.  Then it all went pear shaped…

A new group fronted by former Fastrack front man Brad Marr was coming together, and the drummer was to be The Deep End drummer Jarrod Medwin.  Originally, it looked like Medwin would continue to be a member of both bands, but with both MASSIVE, and The Deep End looking to record albums, tour Australia, and indeed tour the world, it was always going to come down to making a choice between bands.

While the drummer scenario was unfolding, yet another bombshell was dropped on The Deep End.  Lead guitarist Scotty Anderson was also leaving the group to pursue work interstate, and things did not look good for the band.

deep end promo

I asked front man Dale Schober, and rhythm guitarist Jarrad “Jazz” Morrice how close The Deep End actually came to calling it a day.

DALE – The moment Scotty told us he was leaving the band, the thought of the future of the band drifted through my head for a maximum of about 3 seconds.  Even though we weren’t sure of JD’s intentions down the line the rest of us knew that we’d all come way too far to throw in the towel now and we had so much more to give.  Although we were dealt a lot of shit situations along the way, you can’t help but look forward and when you have a no regret style attitude you just need to keep on truckin’.  Honestly, even if in 2 years time we’re playing to just the bar staff at the local pub there’s no doubting we will still love playing rock n’ roll no matter who’s around…

JAZZ – I don’t think we were ever gonna call it a day as such, but I’ll admit at one point things were looking pretty down and out.  In reality we had no guitar player and a drummer that was eventually bowing out too.  It was hard when Scotty left because he and I started out together playing years ago but his exact words were “if you guys quit I’ll punch you all in the face”.  We had worked too hard and felt we still had something to give. I was excited about what we were writing, and wanted people to hear it.

100% ROCK MAG: Jarrod Medwin was prepared to stay on with the band and gig and record with them as long as they needed, but Scotty’s departure was immediate, and if the band was to continue, a new lead guitarist needed to be recruited as soon as possible.
After countless auditions, one young guitarist was leaps and bounds ahead of the rest, and that was former Overdrive lead guitarist Drew Suhr.

JAZZ – We got lucky with drew coming into the picture.

DALE – Drew has definitely helped us to evolve as a band once again, and there is no doubting his influence in all of the songs on the album.  A few of the tracks started as his ideas and only those close to him or in the band would probably be able to pick them.  For some reason even though I’m a singer I listen most to guitar solos in rock songs and if I was good enough I would actually give up singing to be a lead guitarist.  Listening to Drew’s solos actually give me a stiffy.  Seriously.

Even former guitarist Scotty Anderson is full of praise for The Deep Ends choice of new guitarist.

SCOTTY – Now there is a new edge and new vibe and it fucking rocks hard.  Drewy has picked up what I was trying to put down and put his spin on it and it fucking works! He’s the perfect replacement.  I picked him.  Hahaha.  Drewy plays wicked solos but never loses the feel that’s needed in the band.

With Drew Suhr initiated into the band, the writing process was underway for what would become the first full length album for The Deep End, and being one of the hardest working bands in Australia right now, the boys weren’t wasting any time.  New songs were already popping up in their live sets, and the songs were great, but the proof would be in the final recording.

JAZZ – I think with every recording we have done we have tried to take things up a notch. The goal with the record to me was to have something in ten years that I’m still proud of, can dig it out, stick it on grab a beer and listen to a good rock n roll album. I reckon we did that, I just hope I’m not the only one!

DALE – We’re absolutely stoked and in a way I’ve been a bit blindsided by the how the songs have turned out quality wise too.  I’ve always been the bands biggest critic but even after listening to all the songs hundreds of times I’m still getting goose bumps from certain parts of songs on the album. Just to be able to listen to it and think to yourself, “I am so fucking impressed with what me and my best mates have just achieved” is an amazing feeling that we are extremely lucky to have.  The thought of other people listening to the album for the first time and feeling even close to how I feel about it is extremely exciting too.

Deep end tour

So what exactly does Drew bring to the band?

JAZZ – Drew and I had a jam at his audition while the other guys went off for a break.  We wrote 2 songs in ten minutes and it was all systems go again.  Drew is just a freak guitar player, but totally modest which is rare.  What he brings that I love is he is a hard worker and wants to improve all the time.  He definitely motivated me to become a better player, partly to keep up with the bastard!  He’s got that same drive and ambition that we still had even when things were looking pear shaped.   Drew joining the group was definitely a shot in the arm.  Needless to say we locked in pretty quickly and I feel comfortable bouncing ideas off him. T he bloke knows his rock n roll, it’s important that between the whole band it’s an exchange of ideas and what not, rather than one guy directing traffic- oh and did I mention he can play the shit out of the guitar?

DREW – I like to think I bring a new element to the band that I reckon that would be obvious to anyone who has listened to previous Deep End material, compared with that on the new album.  My background in studying music definitely comes in handy in the song writing process.  Some of my guitar playing is not what you would typically hear in a pub rock band but I think it complements the band nicely.

And what was behind the decision to record with a drummer that you knew was on the way out?

DALE – To be honest it wasn’t ideal, but we knew we had an album to record as promised to everyone so there was nothing that was gonna stop us from doing that.  Surprisingly there weren’t really any run-ins with each other and the whole time even though we knew we were coming to an end with JD, we all just tried to enjoy it as much as possible and treat it as natural as we could.  We had other options as far as other guys drumming on the record, including Matt D’Arcy (Producer), but in the end we came to an arrangement with JD as he knew the songs best and was the only dude who could drum them the way they deserved to be drummed at the time.  We’d already committed to recording the album and had already told the world it’s what we were doing so there was no way in hell that we were gonna make everyone wait any longer.

The final product is the album “Cop This”, and has got to be considered an early contender for local album of the year.  It is straight up, balls out rock ‘n’ roll of the finest quality, which is exactly what we’re used to from The Deep End, although the more you listen, the more there is to discover.  Dale Schober is singing in ways he hasn’t on previous recordings, and the new guitarist element is glaringly obvious throughout.

With absolute face melting songs like first single “Bigger, Better, Badder”, “Get On It” and “Shit Talker” leading the charge, and unexpected gems like “Midnight Sun” blasting through your stereo, it’s hard not to love this album from start to finish.  So what does the band think of the final product?

DALE – I’m very relieved to be done, and just outright bloody proud as punch.  Every last cent of ours (and the banks) has gone in over the last 6 months to get this album done.  It’s a great feeling now knowing that it’s all up from here!  No more selling my arse on the corner anymore.

DREW – The album to me sounds like rock records used to.  Not that there haven’t been good rock albums in the last 20 years or so, I just think they have been a bit few and far between.  I’m very happy with the end product, I’m extremely proud to be a part of the band and this album.  I urge anyone who is a fan of Australian Rock ‘n’ roll to crack open a beer and give it a listen!

And The Deep End might have parted ways with a member, but they gained a new biggest fan in the process..

SCOTTY – Man the album is massive! And as an album it represents them so well.  The songs are so hard hitting, the bass is monster, the drums are like thunder and it’s just so tight.  Drewy plays wicked solos, and dale sounds better than ever.  I’ve always been his biggest fan.  I think they have raised the bar to all unsigned bands.  They always did do that live, but now bands have to compete with this wicked album too.  I’m so fucking proud of them.  There was a lot of pressure on them after me and JD (Jarrod Medwin) left and people doubted them…  Well those people can eat shit, because this album is fucking gold.  I mean you fuckers have the best seat in the house watching them play.  It’s amazing to watch and I hope it was like that for everyone when I was up there with them.

With a new drummer now in place, The Deep End released their album with a huge launch to a sellout crowd, at Revolver Upstairs on the 22nd of February, and I think it’s safe to say that with a new album, new members, and a new lease on life, The Deep End are back on top of the local scene, and will now set their sights firmly on conquering Australia, and indeed the entire world.

Category: Interviews

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Editor, 100% ROCK MAGAZINE

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